Year Six of Wateringbury Remembered

Message Board:
Due to the enormous number of advertising spam entered onto the Message Board we have decided to change the service to one of needing approval before an entry is published. Please carry on using the message board and I will aim to publish your entry within 24 hours.
We are now into year six of the website and have had over 21,400 different visitors from over 94 different countries.

Whilst I once lived in Wateringbury myself I am by no means an expert on it or its people, I am simply a conduit to allow memories to be shared.

I am sure many of you look at the entries and say, that's not true as I remember it a different way. You are the very people I need to correct or add to the entries made. Maybe not everyones memory is accurate but it gives us a start. Don't just sit there write to me.

I have now made it easier with a contact form on the right hand side of the page so there is no excuse. I recently had a guy in his eighties in Australia write, so if he can manage it, so can you.

If you want my address to write by snail mail then let me know and I will send it to you.

Thanks in anticipation.

John - The Webmaster

Email your input to

Mrs Duffy's class - Wateringbury School 1970's

Photo Courtesy of Gary Randall

Nigel Newick (back row far left) Julie Randall (back row far right) Andrew Card (next row down, 2nd from left) Greg Ivy (same row, 4th from left).

Anyone able to add the other names? 

Greg Ivy laid and supplied all the carpet in my current house, excellent job - small world.


 Paul Skelton kindly remembers us when researching for his website as follows:-

Thought you might be interested in the latest piece of research I have picked up regarding Wateringbury.
The name Leney as you may know is quite prominent in Dover with their brewery, and also Wateringbury of course.
I don’t know for a fact that these are related to the main family, of Frederick or Alfred but the account may be of interest to you.

From the Maidstone Telegraph, Rochester and Chatham Gazette, 
Saturday 14 January, 1860. Price 1d.

Chas Leney, of Wateringbury, was indicted for having assaulted his sister-in-law, Ann Leney, at Wateringbury, on the 5th September last. The bill was found by the grand Jury at the last sessions.
Mr. Addison said he was instructed for the prosecution in the case, but he was happy to say the court would not be troubled with it, as the parties, being relatives, had very wisely resolved to shake hands, and be friends again.
Mr. Hawkins, Q.C., (especially retained, and with whom was Mr. Bushell) said he could only rejoice that the matter should thus have terminated, and he trusted the reconciliation would be a permanent one.
A verdict of acquittal was then recorded, and the proceedings terminated.

Not sure where I’m going to put this on my web site www.Dover-Kent.Com yet, but sending it to you should you wish to publish as well.


Paul Skelton


Dail kindly added the following:-

With reference to Paul Skelton’s post regarding  Charles Leney, and Ann Leney

Very briefly, Charles Leney was the first of two brothers who ran the Phoenix Brewery in Wateringbury. His sister-in-law Ann was the wife of Frederick Leney ,  Charles’ younger brother. Frederick Leney  remained in Wateringbury for the rest of his life. However, Charles eventually left the village in 1861, about the time his youngest son Alfred purchased a brewery in Dolphin Lane Dover, which also became known as the Phoenix.

A good account of  both the Leney’s family history,  and  Wateringbury’s Phoenix brewery  can be found in Dail's Book at the link below.

Vandalism in Wateringbury

 February 16th 1973 - Kent Messenger Cutting
How many street lights would you get repaired for £40 today and would it make the Kent Messenger.
Now is the time to own up if this was you!!

Order Photo Prints of the pictures on this website.

Prints of some of the photos on this website are now available to purchase at a small cost and can be printed in various formats. 
Click on the Photobox logo to see what photos are available. 
All personal photos have been removed.


Wateringbury - In the Steps of George Newman and Beyond

The second edition of a book about Wateringbury by Dail Whiting has now been published.
This edition, entitled 'Wateringbury - In the Steps of George Newman and Beyond', can be purchased from Wateringbury Post Office or online.
For more detailed information and pricing, please go to 
from where the book can also be ordered.

Wateringbury WW1 Memorial Booklets

Wateringbury WW1 Memorial Booklets
To mark the centenary of the Great War (1914-18), two memorial booklets have been produced giving details of  the men commemorated on either the Church War Memorial which hangs in the north-east corner of the church, or the old School War Memorial which now hangs in the church vestry.

These booklets can be purchased from the church

 or can be ordered and sent by post.
All profits from the sale of these booklets go towards Wateringbury church funds.

For more detailed information, please go to:


The Queens Head Wateringbury

A Business Card of the Licensee of The Queens Head Wateringbury 
Mr & Mrs F. Bills

Wateringbury School Recorder Lessons around 1963

Thank you to Christine Chapman (one of the first contributors to this website) for reminding me of her sister Jane in this photo and providing us with the penultimate name. Sorry Jane I cannot think how I forgot you were were in the class and photo sitting just in front of me.

So we now only have one boy with no name now, was that you front row second from the right or does anyone know who it is?

Back Row
John Gilham - Thomas McKirdy - Robin Pearson - Pearla Petrie - Gillian Apps - David Strouger - Peter Thompset - Kevin Pooley - David Sadlier
Front Row
Dawn Shippey - Jane Chapman - Tony Lawrence - Nevil Marshal - 
Gillian Austin - ?? - David Brotherwood

Wateringbury Public Houses

Public Houses in Wayeringbury

Paul has written to us asking for help as follows:-
I have been researching the public houses of Dover for quite a few years now and have published all my research on line at the following web site:- www.Dover-Kent.Com I have also done 4 talks on the subject at Crabble Corn Mill in River, near Dover and have a couple more lined up.

This last year I have decided to expand my research to include the entire of Kent, although I won’t be going outside of that boundary. (Didn’t realise that part of London today was part of Kent years ago, so have bit off more than I thought.)

Waterinbury is of course one of the many villages in Kent and I have just started to research the public houses in this village:=

A lot of my general research is done initially on the web, and once I gain the basic I tend to visit the local libraries for some more in depth research. of course local knowledge and kind people who help are a real boon as well.

If you can help Paul please contact him via his website which can be found here

From our Message Board

The following was left on the message board by Paul Reynolds which I though would be good to share with you all and Paul kindly agreed.
Hello all. I was born in Wateringbury in 1948. My mother was Dorothy nee Thorne, father Bill Reynolds. We lived at 12 Glebe Meadow. My mother kept in touch with a number of village people over her life. We left in 1954, but by some irony I had a job for awhile in the early 90's at West Malling Airdrome. Mrs Apps lived next door. my grand parents lived in The Garage Flat, opposite Dr. Severns House. I remember my mother talking about John Severn and the now famous Fighter Pilots who visited his house during the battle of Britain era. She had a friend Helen Long on Red Hill I believe. Her father Gus Thorne was in the Merchant Navy in WW1 and had the Cricketers Pub in Maidstone before moving to Wateringbury. My father lived for some years wih his Cousins in Pheonix Cottages Nettlestead. I remember the Bardens, Eileen, who married Sid Targett. I went to Peter Targetts wedding in Maidstone, a good old fashioned beery punch-up type. I do not remember anything of school or if I had school friends. I remember the Tramps and going Hop Picking. The Gypsy fights in the Pubs. There was a Flop House for tramps on the road to Teston. The Garage Flat was supposed to be built from the Old London Bridge Stones that formed the Gallows. It was a cold place full of huge black Spiders, the biggest ever seen. There were Oast Houses at the back of the Yard, and used to be very busy. For a small village there were lots of shops. Eric Boreman, Skinners, all people my Mother knew well. There was the usual village simpleton all the children were warned not to talk to. All I remember of those childhood days were the walks in the Orchards and lanes, the River Medway, and busy village life. Best regards to all of you.

The Pickett Family - Wateringbury

Another fine donation by Brian & Ann Skinner which reads as follows:-

Have attached the next batch of pics which relate to the Picketts. My wife Ann is the youngest of three daughters of Bert and Mabel Pickett.

Pic. No. 1 Shows Westbury Cottage ( On the Mereworth Road just passed David's nursery - Bijou Nurseries) where the three girls were born and it is thought the family lived there until 1936 when they moved to 1 Hoyfield Villas, Station Road. We recall that a few years ago the Kent Messenger included an article headed something like 'The Manor Born' showing that the cottage has now grown beyond all recognition.

Pic. No. 2 Shows an article about Bert which appeared in the 'House of Whitbread' spring issue 1938.

Pic. No. 3 We believe shows the Wateringbury cricket team and Bert 4th from the right in the back row. Judging from his apparent age we think this might date to the late 1930 s.

Pic. No. 4 Shows the Wateringbury football team and Bert 5th from the right in the back row and again judging from his age think this might date to the late 1920 s

Words & Photos Courtesy of Brian & Ann Skinner

Janet Whitlock (nee Barden) saw this entry and responded as follows:-

The Pickett’s featured a lot in my life.  Mrs Pickett and my mum Daisy Barden were very good friends and were very involved in the church activities at Nettlestead.  Mrs Pickett’s daughter Molly was the organist and choir mistress when I was in the church choir.  I have a photo of the choir with Molly outside Nettlestead church on her wedding day.  My mum and Mrs. Pickett both lived to a ripe old age and I remember calling to see Mrs Pickett when she was around 96 years old and living in a retirement apartment where the Telegraph used to be.  My mum was lucky enough to reach her 100th birthday and we celebrated this at the Wateringbury Hotel in 2004.

H.R. Skinner - The Butchers - Prospect Place Wateringbury

A fantastic donation to the website by Brian Skinner who's Grandfather & Father owned the butchers shop at Prospect Place, Tonbridge Road Wateringbury.

I will let Brian tell the story of the photos as follows:

Pic. No. 1 shows the butchers shop at Prospect Place. I have included another picture, Pic. No. 2 which has been edited for other purposes thinking you might find it useful just for identifying the main characters. In addition to my grandfather, Harry Roland Skinner it shows Edwin, my father and Lesley HRs nephew. The man on the left kneeling down is Fred Baker who continued with my father until They both retired. Fred lived in a cottage below the Telegraph (the Inn now long gone) and had two children Gordon and Brenda. they would be in their 80s now but may still be living in the village. Regretfully I do not remember the names of others shown in the picture and believe some lived outside the village

Pic. No. 3 shows an  advert, dated 1935, promoting Frigidaire and referring to H.R.Skinner & Son. By calculation it shows that the shop was making use of mechanical refrigeration as early as 1928 when block ice was the most common method used.

Finally Pic. No. 4 is of H.R. and his wife.

FOOTNOTE. Whilst putting this together it became obvious that the Legend ‘Christmas circa 1937’ marked on Pic. No. 2, must be wrong. The 1935 Frigidaire picture shows the signwriting over the shop front as ‘& Son’ so our picture (which does not) must be earlier, possibly prior to 1931 when my parents were married.

Regards Brian.

Courtesy of Brian Skinner

Fire at Leneys Brewery Wateringbury 23rd April 1934

 Courtesy of Dail Whiting

A FIRE occurred at Leney’s Brewery at Wateringbury, on St. George’s Day, 1934. Smoke was noticed from the garages, and the men on duty immediately raised the alarm. Luckily, at seven o’clock in the evening, there was quite a number of men available, who found the whole paint-shop well alight inside, and already spreading to the lorry sheds.
Together with several willing helpers, they showed cool common sense and concentrated on salving as many as possible of the motor vehicles. In the meantime, the work’s hydrant and hoses were brought into play.
Although the fire was burning fiercely, they managed to keep it from spreading as much as it must otherwise have done. Even so, they were unable to save that particular range of buildings: the whole of the painters’ shops, stables, and two Saurer lorries. The conflagration was fed by the oil and petrol, which had a nasty habit of exploding at inconvenient moments, and the damage done in the course of a few hours was very extensive.
A DISTRESSING feature was, that an ex-employee was living in a cottage nearby, which was in imminent danger the whole time. All his furniture was saved, and the complete destruction of his house averted—principally by the staff ; but it was only with considerable difficulty he could eventually be persuaded to leave his home, which threatened to be engulfed at any moment.
The Maidstone Fire Brigade were able gradually to get the upper hand, although only after many more hours’ work was the blaze really subdued.

Kent Messenger Cutting from 19??

Brian Maytum..also known as Bob, Julie Richardson, Jackie Boorman and Nigel Boorman.
Looking at the hair and fashion I would say this was around 1971. What do you think?

Glebe Meadow (Updated)

 This page was one of my early postings but I have since had some kind 
reminders of additional name and things that were a little different to 
how I thought I remembered them. I therefore thought I would post it 
again in an updated form.
 ---- <> ----

I moved out of New Cottages when I was seven after my Grandad died as the cottage we lived in was owned by Whitbread’s brewery where his father worked until he retired,  the cottage went with the job for him and his children for life.  We moved to a council house across the road in Glebe Meadow No 30 Glebe Meadow which was a relatively newly built and was directly on the opposite side of Bow Road. No 30 was a downstairs flat with a small garden at the front and back, my dad loved the garden and upstairs didn't so we had the entire garden allocated to both flats.

Above us was Mrs Irvine and her daughter Margaret, next door was Mr and Mrs Dalby, Bill & Eva, with their son Bernard, next to them were Mr and Mrs Seamark with their family of Diane, Angela, John, Ian and Garry,

At no 34 lived Bill Sharpe and his wife Dorothy. Their children were Monty and Jimmy. Mr Sharp was the local chimney sweep and vet as he would neuter the local tom cats! When he swept the chimney he would ask the kids to go outside and tell him when the brush came out of the top of the chimney. In about 1969 Bill and his wife moved next door to no 35  a new bungalow for the elderly. When the Sharpes moved Charlie and June Brotherwood moved into No 34.

Going up the road on the same side were more flats the bottom was Mr & Mrs Ken Muller who had one son Kevin, above them were the King boys John, Les and Michael who lived with their widowed mother.  In the adjoining flats were Mr & Mrs Cripps and I think Mr and Mrs Randall and their son Phillip. Next to the flats were semi detached houses the first of which was No24 where Mr & Mrs Foggin and their Son John and daughter Christine lived, the attached house (No 23) was Mr & Mrs Smith (Bunny and Dolly cousins of my Mum) and their sons Christopher, Clive and Graham, and daughter Karen.

At no 22,  lived  widow  Mrs Clark,  with children Frank the eldest and Anne.  Mrs Clark later married Mr Dunbar (a widower) who had a number of children. A couple of the eldest children were married and lived elsewhere. The children at home were Frank and Anne Clark, and Bobby, Maureen, Rosie, and Valerie Dunbar.  The Dunbar children often stayed with their sister June in Farleigh.

At No 21 were Mr & Mrs Jones and their two sons Nigel and Brian. That was the end of the road then with a small plot of grass where we would play football etc. I have been told that there was a story teller that would visit this piece of grass in the summer - do you remember? Across the grass and facing the main road (No 1) was Mrs Fisher and her son John who married and went on living in the house. Mrs Fisher was a piano teacher.

No 2 were Mr & Mrs Newick (Joan & Tom) with their sons Michael, David, Nigel, John and daughter Patricia. Before them in No2 were Tom and Eileen Shippey who later moved to No 17.

Across the footpath were Mrs Chapman and her daughters Jeanette, Christine and Jane and Louise in No 3 (thanks to Christine Chapman for her input on some names I had forgotten). Later in the same house was Delia Brooks and her family. After the Brooks came the Randall family, Mr Alf (nick name Chubby) Randall Mrs Rene Randall and their three children Julie, Gary and Pauline moved into number 3 on 22nd September 1968, Mrs Rene Randall still lives there some 46 years later. (Added by Gary Randall 1st June 2014).

Initially the Petrie family lived at no 4. They included Mr Petrie who was an officer in the navy his wife, then children,  George, Doris,  Brenda, Pauline and Eleanor. Soon after Doris married Arthur Brotherwood the Petrie’s moved and Doris and Arthur took over the house.  Their children were, David, the eldest, then Valerie, and  Joan. Later Maureen and Jill were born, but I think the family were then living on Bow Road and the Adams family (Brenda and Les with children Paul and Amanda (twins) Diane, Gary, Roland and Shane moved into No4 Glebe Meadow.

At no 5 lived the senior family of Newick.

At no 6 lived the Foster family Mr and Mrs with children, Beryl, Raymond, Janise, Pat, Barbara, and Christine who I remember getting knocked over after getting off the bus outside the Handy Stores one day.

Then coming back towards my house there was a gap and No 20 with Mr & Mrs Clarke (George & Joan) with their son John and two daughters Kay and Dail (Dail has kindly contributed a great deal to this site and is an expert on the village history writing several books on it).

 Living at No 19 were Mr & Mrs Sellman with their children Pamela, the eldest, Brenda, Sylvia, Roger, twins Keith and Sandra, then Andrew, and Paul. 

The next house was an end of four terraced houses out side which the Fish and Chip van and Ice cream van (Alpine's) always stopped. This was No 18.

At no 18 in the early days lived Mr and Mrs Fleming with daughter Jackie.  Jackie was a Tiller Girl.  When the Flemings moved out the Crayford’s moved in who were Charlie & Ethel who had five boys, Ron, Norman, Dennis, Tony and Nigel. Next door from  no 17. ...The Shippey’s  then moved from no 2,  to the Crayford’s house at 17, and one of the younger Newick’s moved into the Shippeys old house at no 2. 

At No 17 Tom and Eileen Shippey now lived (formerly lived at no 2)  with their children Diane, Anthea, Valerie, Dawn, Paul, Denise and Corrine.

Next door (No 16) was dead opposite my house where Mr & Mrs Marchant (Mick & Bella) lived with their two daughters Lavinia (Vinny) and Elizabeth and their son Michael who went on to be my lifetime best friend, I have some brilliant memories in this house which became my second home in my early years. Before I moved to the Glebe Tom & Mabel Walker (Mabel and Bella were sisters) lived with them but then moved to the Garden Shop on the Tonbridge road and later to a small holding at the top of Red Hill.

Next to Michael was (No 15) Mr & Mrs Peg & Jack Randall and their sons Bernard and Colin. At No 14 were Mr & Mrs Goodwin (Joan & Keith) and their family Ken, Mark, Philip, Wendy, Ruth and John. 

At No 13 lived Mr & Mrs Pearson (Jim and Marie) and their family Brian, Anne, Tony, David, Susan and Robin. Robin was a very good friend and my best man but has since moved to work in the Middle East and now has a home in The Philippines.

Then the road bends around the corner where Mr and Mrs Newbury and their son lived and I believe the Tompsets lived (No 11) next to them with their son Peter who I went to primary school with.  Previously Mr & Mrs Waghorn (Phyllis & Toni) lived with their Mum & Dad (Mr & Mrs Cyril & Elizabeth Oben) and daughters Yvonne (thanks to Yvonne for help with the names).  Later Bill and Millie Cowlard lived there until early 2005 with their son John and daughter Mary Jane (thanks to Mary Jane for reminding us).

No 12 was the Newbury's who were not there long and later Mr and Mrs Pooley moved in with their son Kevin and daughter Sharon. Before the Newburys were Mr & Mrs Shadwell with daughter Diane and son Roger, Yvonne and twins. Before the Shadwells were the Reynolds (Dorothy).

At No 10 and opposite the police houses were Mr & Mrs (Kit & ?) Apps and their family Sherry, Lynette, Gillian and son David, then came (No 9) Mr & Mrs Driver with their daughter Jackie Lucknow and her son Richard.

In the Police houses opposite lived Sergant Sadlier and his family one of his sons, David was a play mate. Next door was the village copper Tony if I am correct. I should remember as we always watched out for him on his velocet!

Going around the corner and up the front of the estate at no 7 lived Nell Hutchins (a widow) Children Vera, Margaret and Ken. ( Older son John was in the navy and married)........At no 8,  lived  Albert and Mary Marshall with children Anne and Barry.

My brother Brian came along almost as soon as we moved into No 30 and so we put in for a swap and moved to No 22 which was a three way swap where Mr & Mrs Martin and their daughter Ella moved into No 30 and we moved into No 22, I guess the Dunebars moved into the Martins house somewhere. In the years to come Mr Martin and Mr Dunbar died and I remember being very bothered that my dad was the only surviving dad of the three way swap. My Dad died a couple of years later!

Lynn Apps reminded me that her Mum and her neighbour Mrs Driver would hold a skipping rope across the road for the kids. This reminded me how little traffic there was in the road and how we would play football and in summer we would tie a string across the road to play tennis.

Summer holidays for boys meant finding some old pram wheels to make a cart with. A length of 4 x 2 for the main part of the cart with two other pieces of wood each something like two foot six pieces of 3 x 1 to mount the front and rear axles on, a nut and bolt to fix the front axle to the main length member of the cart, leaving it free to move as a steering device. Brian Jones was great a making carts, and would burn a hole through the wood for the bolt with a red hot poker as drills were not readily available. A length of rope fixed to both sides of the front axle and a wooden apple box with one end knocked out for a seat and that was a great cart.

My Dad was a welder by trade and worked at Maidstone gasworks, he made me a metal cart out of gas pipe which was just something else.

The Floods of 1968

 Do you recognize anyone in this boat?
I certainly recognize the two men in the front but cannot place their names!
I am sure these two are the Benham children who lived in the house behind at the time. Tony Benham owned the Mill Pottery out of picture to the left.

The River from Wateringbury Bridge 1960 ish

TOM SMITH The Bakery Wateringbury

Recently came across this receipt for my Mum and Dads Wedding Cake purchased from Tom Smith The Bakery Wateringbury. A Three Tier Wedding Cake for £2/5 shillings which was quite a lot of money in 1940. Interesting how a postage stamp was used to confirm the receipt of payment.

Steam at Wateringbury Station in the 1960's

The chap in the front I am told is Ken Philpot from the 
Railway Station Ticket office.

News Paper cutting

Published in the Kent Messenger on the 8th November 2013 this photo must have been taken in Wateringbury due to the distances on the sign post.
The genteman in the middle was Jack Saxby from East Peckham, confirmed by his son Geoff who is now in Victoria, Australia. Does anyone have any more detail about the people or location of the signpost?

Wateringbury School 1934/35

Photo Courtesy of Andrew Grigsby

Andrew Grigsby kindly shares a photo of Wateringbury School - 
Red Hill Taken around 1934/35.
 In the photo Andrews Dad looks about 5 or 6 years old and is in the front row dressed as a Pirate. Andrews father and Aunty were born half way up Red Hill in a house on the left.  He was born in 1929.

Andrews Aunt Dilly is also in the photo in the center of the second row 
dressed as a Gypsy lady. 
Interesting costumes maybe one would not be PC in today's world.
Can you help put names to the others in the photo?

The Picture is Wateringbury Bridge

The book is available as a Kindle Book from Amazon at £2
The connection between the novel and the photo is most apparent 
in the final chapters of the novel.