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Thread: Bearton Ave

  1. #1
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    Default Bearton Ave

    I've got a business appointment today in Hitchin, quite near Bearton Ave........Hitchin is a place I've never been before so I am leaving earlier and will stop and have a sly look at number 11.



    Mark

  2. #2
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    No 11 was once quite a nice detached 3 bedroom house built on a double plot. Now it's the office of a chemical distribution company. The latest Google Earth images show vans and cars parked on the lawn. The house was traditionally pebble dashed. It's been painted pink!!

    Walker lived there with his first wife Ruth, and his mother, who owned the house. It was built some time in the 20s.

  3. #3
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    How do people organise a blue plaque? There really ought to be one!

  4. #4
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    Yes I agree that there should be something like that, but in reality it's not going to happen.

    My great friend, the late Eric Hodson, founder of the National Association of Specimen Groups tried to organise a memorial plaque to Walker to be placed in Winchester Cathedral or Westminster Abbey. He managed to collect £500, but had to pay it all back when the money stopped coming in.

  5. #5
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    I got there via Fishpond Road and parked the car in Bearton Avenue (opposite the Sikh Temple...........a new addition, I presume, to the Avenue since the 1950's).

    Strolled past ther house - quite a nice largish detached house that looked like it would contain some element of architectural character inside..... in a typical suburban road. Nowdays the house has been painted a horrible pink as Ron says.

    As I was looking at the house, someone left the actual property, glanced at me and got into their car and drove away..... I wonder if the bloke gets a few like me staring at the house. "Oh no not another one".

    It felt odd looking at this actual house footprint - now really looking slightly downtrodden, with an overinfestation of cars, paved over front gardens, trade vans and traffic noise. To think of the craft, hard work, written words, energy, sprit, inspiration and original thought generated within the property footprint......by Walker, his contemporaries, mates and the visitors ......now all that energy and spirit has disappeared ........or at least moved on.

    If I had a bit more time I would have liked to have looked at Hitchin Priory (I saw a sign as I left the town) where I think Walker took lots of large roach (14 two's in one session) out the the Hiz.

    On the way home I got a bit lost and ended up in the Herts countryside where, for a brief while, I could not see any signs of the 20th Century....... and felt momentarily that I had been spirited to an earlier time..... like the 50's. It was a nice little introspective buzz.

    All in all it was for me a worthwhile small and memorable personal experience.

    Mark
    Last edited by mark halsey; 07-02-2011 at 18:56.

  6. #6
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    Thanks for writing about Richard Walker's old home. I read about it in Barrie Rickards biography, and I wondered what it would look like now.

  7. #7
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    Walker was born at Fishponds Road, Hitchin, but I don't know the number, I wish I did. The next time I speak to Pat, I'll ask her.

    No. 11 Bearton Avenue has a touch of the "Art Deco" of the 20s, as did a lot of English houses built during the short economic boom of that time.

    I feel saddened to realise that Walker's fishing hut went the same way, forgotten and unloved. However the fishing hut was burned down by vandals!

    ---------- Post added at 02:07 ---------- Previous post was at 02:01 ----------

    The house I was born in at number 46 Retford Road, Handsworth, Sheffield, although semi-detached, had a similarity to No 11 bearton Ave, in that it was pebble dashed and had Art Deco stained glass windows in the front and rear doors.

    This house was also built on a large plot. It belonged to my Grandfather who was a very keen gardener.
    Last edited by Ron The Hat Clay; 10-02-2011 at 09:12.

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