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#141 [url]

Nov 24 12 9:32 AM

Hi mate I knew the bells as he lived with me in number 6 he dad two brothers Carl, Kevin and Albert think a sister too but not sure. I little tale about his bother Kevin, and every time I get a lawn mower out or even hear one it reminds me of a time when we were trying to cut the grass at the front of number 5 and being a very inquisitive lad he said what would happen if you put your foot under the mower!!!! ............. Stop reading if you are squeamish ;) ........ I told him it would cut it off!! 

Obviously not happy with my answer he did just that ......... Yes put his foot in the spinning blades ?@£&?): ....... Luckily for him it only took the top of his shoe off and grazed the bridge of his foot OMG why did you do that ??? To see if you were right he said 

Lol you could not script it ...... 

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#142 [url]

Nov 24 12 12:59 PM

Hi Lucy!
Welcome to the forum, and yes, good to see another Harpenden girl on here!  I guessed, as Roy has, that you were at Highfield a bit later than some of us.  My time there was from the mid-40's to the early 50's. Who was the sister in charge in your family?  It could have been someone I remember, as some of them were still there for a while after I left.  
Highfield itself is still very much as it was.  I used to spend a lot of time over at Lords and in what was known as the Boys Woods in my time.  You are right--we were lucky to have such extensive grounds to play in, and a feeling of summer being endless.  I was in Sister Cora's family, but I don't know exactly when she retired.
I went to the Church Green School that you mention, but Harpenden had changed some by your time.  Not sure I remember the shop you refer to.
I was at the 2010 reunion at Highfield, and it was really something being back there after a very long time for me too.  I actually stayed at the hospital, which is now the Hospitality Guest House, so that was very nice.  Felt like a kid again! :-)
Looking forward to hearing more from you, and if you happen to have any photos from your time, it would be fun to see those.
Best wishes,

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#143 [url]

Nov 24 12 1:15 PM

Hi Margo!
Oh yes, I do remember the maypole dancing!  It was a lot of fun, but I don't think I was very good at it, and probably messed up the weaving of the ribbons around the pole by not making the right moves at the right time!  Embarassing too!. I remember the sports days on the Oval, too.  I liked watching the fancy skipping up on the wooden platform, and got quite good at doing some of those things myself,  (the bumps, for instance) but not for exhibition purposes!  I wasn't really athletically inclined--more of a booky type!  Hid behind books to stay out of trouble, I think!  But I had my moments on skates, bikes, and up the trees in the Boys Woods too.
Do you remember the coach trips up to London?  I went with Sister Cora and family one Christmas to see the ballet, Swan Lake.  Unforgettable magic!  It was Margot Fonteyn and Rudolf Nureyev dancing.  Complete magic!  And then we used to go by coach up to Westminster Central Hall to sing in those festivals that were arranged--fund raisers for the NCH I suppose. That was very special too.  Any change in the normal routine had to be exciting I would think, because there was in fact an awful lot of "routine"--but the stability of that served me well I think.

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#144 [url]

Nov 24 12 10:46 PM

Hello Shelagh,  
So glad that you remember the maypole - I thought I may have dreamed it!!    I remember we had a lot of fun when it went all wrong, though not sure which sister was 'in charge' of us all.   Poor soul.
Yes did a few of those trips to London including the Westminister Central Hall.  Never really paid much attention to what was going on, since I was so happy to be 'out' .  Like you, I think the stability of the routine was good for me too.  I was athletically inclined, and it kept me focused on things I should be doing, and not the stuff I really wanted to do!!

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#145 [url]

Nov 29 12 10:21 PM

Hi Shelagh

Thank you for the kind welcome.

After leaving Highbury, I came to Harpenden when I was just 3 years old and my sister was 5, I still can remember the day we arrived as if it was yesterday. We were in flat 3 with Sister Ella Phillips from 1960 until 1967, (my sister was fostered in 1965), I remember my time at Harpenden as mainly happy times, although I was quite a strange child and I suspect a bit of a pain to the older children.

I do have a couple of photos, one or two taken outside the flat with my sister, will try and upload them to here when I get a moment.

Good to have this site to chat on

KR Lucy (real name Patricia)

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#146 [url]

Nov 29 12 10:57 PM

Hi Royl

Love this site, good to be able to chat to other Harpo's ha ha, I guess there has to be change after all these years.
I made a lightening trip back to the home with my eldest daughter (well we drove around the oval and out again) about 12 years ago, it was quite a sad time as we had just been to Sister Ella's funeral, but as she had met my fellow housemates I wanted her to get an idea of where we all grew up, it wasn't a great success as it all seemed a bit bleak and very empty, so would be lovely to bring all my girls back and see it all in a different and happier light.

Lucy(real name Patricia)

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#147 [url]

Nov 30 12 1:04 AM

Hi Lucy(?),

Now lets get this straight from the start - should we call you Lucy - Patricia or maybe Lucia?wink
The thing that I like about this site is that there are far more friends on here than one ever had just on a branch and suprisingly although they come from branches far afield they speak Harpo-ish and are house trained. Whoops  only joking!
Highfield can look a bit deserted on weekdays especially around midday plus if you visited in winter it would have seemed as though it was deserted.   I have driven around and found it as you did but in the summer this year I visited with Shelagh and some of her family only to find the place as busy as we had ever seen it.   Sadly we did not have a Harpenden reunion this year but hopefully we can organise another in 2013 and if you are able to come to that you will find the old place as busy as ever. This is probably the best time to bring family - when you will meet up with people who were living there at the same time as you and who knows, old flatmates even.

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#148 [url]

Nov 30 12 12:52 PM

Hi Lucy!
I'm going to call you that because I like the name--but do correct us if you would prefer your real name!
Lovely to hear from you Lucy.
It's nice to hear from folks who were at Harpenden after my time, as well as during my time.  There must have been some changes (TV., youth clubs and such) but other than that, it seems like it might have been much the same as the experiences of us earlier folks.
I don't recall a Sister Ella, so can only assume she came to Harpenden later.

It's amazing that you remember the day you arrived at Harpenden when you were only three years old.  I was five and a half when I arrived, and have almost no recollection of either that day, or for the months that immediately followed!  I was apparently attending the school that was still at Highfield for those first few months, because my records tell me so!  But it's a complete blank! 

I see that you call yourself a strange child.  I wonder how many of us think we were strange children?!  I feel the same way.  I'd like to think, nowadays, that we were probably fairly normal, and that it was the circumstances in which we found ourselves that were strange! But then again, maybe we really were strange! :-)  And maybe "strange" isn't so bad.

Looking forward to hearing more of your time at Harpenden, and it will be so great to see your pictures when you get a chance to upload them.  It's easy to do that.  Just click the "upload files" button at the bottom left of the posting window, and click on the picture you want to upload from wherever you have it on your computer.
All the best!

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#149 [url]

Nov 30 12 2:56 PM

Lucy is as good as any name, and yes house trained and everything.
It would be lovely to come to a reunion, the last one I attended was about 35 years ago and now only a vague memory, do you organise them yourselves or is it something the NCH arrange themselves ?
Looking through some of the pics and names on here, I do recognise one or two, so would be great to meet them face to face 

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#150 [url]

Nov 30 12 10:05 PM

The next main NCH reunion will be held at Watford (Action For Children office) on the first Saturday in July 2013. All are welcome from any branch of the NCH.
The Harpenden (Highfield) reunion should be in the middle of 2013, if we can get an available date when Youth With a Mission don't have anything major planned that day.
More info as soon as it is known.


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#151 [url]

Dec 1 12 1:32 PM

Hi folk
Is there anyone out there who read a book entitled-"On the back of the south wind"? this was the first story I read right through tho I can't recall the author's name.
It started with a little lad peering through a knot hole in his wall. The south wind took him through the hole and he had many adventures riding on it's back.
This was during my years at Edgeworth where we made to have a quiet reading session on Sunday afternoons and would be circa 1941 ish.
I would be totally immersed in the story -miles away!       Wonder why?



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#152 [url]

May 23 13 8:54 AM

Any one around from Danesford school from around 1952 to 1956. I would love to hear from you I am in contact with only one person from those days.I must say I really enjoyed my stay in Cogleton with many fine memories.If you only want to speak personnel y try Thanks Danesford for many happy memories.

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#153 [url]

May 27 13 9:01 AM

i remember all of that and more from the 50s

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