Thursday, 30 August 2007

Index to articles

Index to posted items

April 28
Site Introduction & Welcome
Photo of the Estate
May 3
Tommy Higginbottom's comments on past and present reunions
Memories from Jackie Homefarm Rd.
Yvonne Holt's Memories (under comments), Memories by Stephen Corsham
May 4
Photo of Cuckoo Senior Boys School
St. Anns, My thoughts by Jim Davis
May 5
Pat Sibley's memories
May 6
Photo of Jim Davis and Dottie Snelling
Phyllis Newton (Gooch) Memories
Photo of Yvonne Holt's St. Ann's Class
Ethel (Stevens) Damian Memories
May 7
Photo of Yvone Holt
John (Taggs) Battaglia's memories
More Pat (Young) Travers memories
May 8
Photo of Charlie Chaplin (Brian Holt) 03 reunion
Boys class of 1947
Pat (Young) Travers memories
May 10
Photo of 03 reunion (Lambeth Walk?)
Photo of 8 & 6 Kennedy Path
Photo of Molly and Terry Bransfield
Photo of Sheila Bransfield
May 11
Photo of White Hart Pub
Photo of Laurie Rd
Peter Stringers memories.
May 12
How to navigate this web site by Jim Davis Snr.
Does this make me a bad father by Jim Davis Sr.
May 13
Trivia from our time
May 17
Terry Finnucine and the Day's, 05 reunion
Terry Finnucine's memories
May 18
Chriss (Davis) Turley's Memories
(Under Comments)
Dot (Dalton) Berg memories
May 23
John Battaglia's suggestion for a coat of arms
May 24
Photo of Tommy in Army uniform 1956
1949 Football Team from Cuckoo Junior Boys
Tommy Higginbottom memories
(Under comments;)
Sally Ware's memories
(Under Comments;)
Steven Corsham's memories
Eileen (Connors) Venney
May 26
The Cuckoo Crest
St. Anns Choir by Pat Travers
Jun 2
Photo of Maria Battaglia's 1946 wedding  
(Budd) Wright's Memories of Cuckoo Ave. 
Jun 4
Sally Ware (Weston) Memories
(UInder Comments)
John Holdstock's Memories
Jun 5
Bob Stevens Memories
Jun 6
Photo of the Old Cuckoo Schools
John Battaglia's memories:
Spread the word
Jim Davis asking the whereabouts of Ron Clark from Brants Walk
Jun 8
Photo of Tommy, Kathleen Kennedy, Brenda Field & Barbara Kennedy.
Photo of Terry Finucine and Sheila Bransfield.
Photo of beer drinkers at the 05 reunion
Phot of Eric and John Corsham
Jun 9
On the Street where I Lived (sign onto the street and register)
Jun 10
Ron Ratchford Memories
Jun 12
My Family by Paul Harris
June 19
Ethels comments on Photo
Photo of Maureen ,Jackie,Ethel and Linda @2003 Reuion.
June 21st The rules of Conkers(official)
June 29th
War time girls  Florrie Higginbottom,Eileen Higginbottom and Maria Batlaglia.Express dairy milk wagon.
Paul Harris's Dad as a boy and Grandparents they lived on Harp Road.
Victory Party From Stephenson Road 3 photo's.
Victory Party Westcotte Crescent 1 photo.
Ron ratchford with family,winter in Austalia.
Sylie Smith memory's.
The wagon by John Taggs.
July 8th,
Rememberance for Brian(Tim) Holt.Our beloved ghost from the past.
July 21st Triva.Letter from Eff,JimDavis letter,
July 28th Slow Dance   
July 30th Common Sense.
August . Cuckoo's song by J.B.
Letter to editor Jim Davies.
Memory 's from Eff Stevens.
Two photo's of Old Cuckoo schools and Cuckoo Avenue in the Fall.
Cuckoo Jnrs.Football Team. Eileen venney.
Jims opinion.
Sally Remembers.
Face to face.
My hereos.
A river beyond by J.B.
Simple instructions by Jim Davis.
Effs comments.
Council tax.
Early emails from 2002.
Lost Cuckkooite in Canada.
No nursing home for me.
Dream river by Tagg.

Wednesday, 29 August 2007

Dream River.

Dream River

Dream River

By Tags


As children we once played by a stream

So forever a river runs thru our dreams


Thru Pitshanger and Perivale we float

In a park we see a boy with a toy boat


Flowing under Castle Bar train tracks

Hearing a Push n' Pull whistling back


A small schoolboy slips on stepping stone

While he fishes for white golf balls alone


By a gypsy caravan a herd of horses stand

While women make paper flowers by hand


On the hilltop sits Charlie Chaplin's school

From its clock tower our Cuckoo bird calls


A boy gathers conkers from under tall tree

Stuffs pockets that hang down to his knees


In the White Hart men play darts for a beer

From Greenford Granada hollering we hear


In the Churchfield a weeping willow sways

By the white rabbit a peacock tail displays


Close to a cave where Dick Turpin did hide

Under Hanwell viaduct our river does glide


Our Brent to the Thames now must roam

Clock chimes four its time we went home


From a top window of a red 55 bus we see

Lads in Pete's Caf√© drinking nice cups 'o tea  


Tuesday, 28 August 2007

No Nursing home for me.

No Nursing Home for Me

About 2 years ago my wife and I were on a cruise through the western
Mediterranean aboard a Princess liner.

At dinner we noticed an elderly
lady sitting alone along the rail of the grand stairway in the main
dining room.

I also noticed that all the staff,
ship's officers, waiters, busboys, etc., all seemed
very familiar with this lady.

I asked our waiter who the
lady was, expecting to be
told that she owned the line, but
he said he only knew that she had been on board for the last four
cruises, back-to-back.

As we left the dining room
one evening I caught her
eye and stopped to say hello. We
chatted and I said, "I understand you've been
on this ship for the last four cruises."

She replied, "Yes, that's true."

I stated, "I don't understand."
She replied, without a
pause, "It's cheaper than a nursing home."

So, there will be
no nursing home in my future.
When I get old and feeble, I am going
to get on a Princess Cruise Ship.

The average cost for a nursing home is
$200 per day. I have checked on reservations
on a Princess and I can get a long term discount
and senior discount price of $135 per
day. That leaves $65 a day for:

1. Gratuities which will only be $10 per day.

2. I will have as many as 10 meals a day if I can
waddle to the restaurant, or I can have room service
(which means I can have breakfast-in-bed every day of the week).

3.Princess has as many as three swimming pools, a workout room,
free washers and dryers, and shows every night.

4. They have free toothpaste and razors, and free soap andshampoo.

5. They will even treat you like a customer, not
a patient. An extra $5 worth of tips will have the entire
staff scrambling to help you.

6. I will get to meet new people every 7 or 14 days.

7. TV broken? Light bulb
need changing? Need to have
the mattress replaced? No Problem!
They will fix everything and apologize for your inconvenience.

8. Clean sheets and towels every day, and you don't even have to
ask for them.

9. If you fall in the nursing home and
break a hip you are on Medicare; if you fall and break a hip on the
Princess ship they will upgrade you to a suite for the rest of your life.

Now hold on for the best!
Do you want to see South America, the Panama Canal,
Tahiti, Australia, New Zealand, Asia, or name where you want to go?

Princess will have a ship ready to go. So don't
look for me in a nursing home, just call shore to ship.

PS: And don't forget, when you die, they just dump you over the side
-- at no charge.

Monday, 27 August 2007

Lost Cuckooite in Canada.

Hello to all,
I'm a first timer, just found this site by chance, had no idea it existed, but after reading some of your stories, and seeing some of the names, places, and things we all used to get up to on the estate, I just had to join in. I was raised on Hillyard ave. from birth in 1937 until 1954 when I moved to Canada. I went to the Cuckoo infants, juniors and seniors. Some of your comments on those school days, like Yvonnes back in April about teachers like Mrs. cummings, she liked to pull everyone around by their ear, she always wore her hair in a fringe. Nitty Nora the flea explorer, used to love to pull half your hair out with her fine toothed comb, so many memories. I often show my Grandkids the estate on Google maps, you can zoom in pretty close on the schools and houses, places like the flat roofed school on Brants Walk where we used to shinny up the drainpipe and get all kinds of balls that kids had thown up there, then we'd sell them back or trade for other stuff. We'd watch the girls doing handstands against the walls showing off their blue bloomers that came to their knees, but we still liked to watch. We'd play all the games like conckers, marbles, cigarette cards against the wall etc. Great memories. A few of my Cousins lived on Brants Walk, right next to the school, and we used to hang out together, we'd collect conkers from the trees on Cuckoo ave. Built an underground cave and tunnels alongside the river Brent with a bunch of other kids, it became quite popular with a lot of locals, and got bigger and bigger until it was destroyed by a bulldozer, or some other piece of heavy equipment that fell through when it was either doing some work in the area, or was called to fill it in, I don't remember now, but it was good fun while it lasted. We used to go to the Greenford Granada, and were members of the Greenford Grenadiers and sang the song."one for one and all for all the Greenford Grenadiers" watch Tarzan serials, Tom Mix etc. and hope they'd call your ticket to win a choc ice. We'd walk home along the Brent, looking for golf balls to sell back to the golfers, or take "cats eyes" out of the road markers, catch hedge hogs, all kinds of things. We were pretty much left on our own to do stuff from an early age, not like these days where all the kids activities have to be organized and constantly watched over.I didn't have a Dad and my Mum used to work at Lyons factory, and I used to always manage to meet her at Castebar station on the days she was allowed to bring home brocken chocolate mints from work, never tasted anything so good, a real treat back then. I remember ration books and queing up for hours to get food, no sorting through and choosing your veggies then, they just scooped them up, weighed them and dumped them in your bag, the bad along with the good. Anyhow, now that I've started, I could go on for hours, but I'll save it for some other time. I'm sure we all know some of the same people, probably played together, I hope to hear from some of you in the near future, Bye for  


Saturday, 25 August 2007

Early emails from 2002

This is the first early emails between Eff Stevens and Tommy when we decided to a get together the kids who grew up on the Estate for the first reunion..A little history from the the past.
Sunday August 11 2002
7.09 PM
Subject:  We should do it!
Hey guys, I have never had so much fun as in these past few weeks, talking over old times with you all has meant so much.  I have laughed and cried.
I think we should all get together and have a reunion somewhere, wouldn't that be great?   What do you think.
Ethel Stevens  (Eff, FO, Effie or Effo) 
Sunday August 11 2002
9.49 P.M.
Re: we should do it.
Fo and Go,
I am all for it, we should do it on the Cuckoo Estate.  See if we could rent St. Christopher's Church Hall, or the old Baptist Church on Cuckoo Ave. or something near by,.   Then we should pick a date, say in a year, and get word to all the people we all know, it would spread by word of mouth.  I bet we could draw over a hundred and fifty people, get a couple of barrels of beer and some wine and have a real old knees up.  I know fifty people myself who would show up, it would just take some organizing. 
Really enjoying your stories of days gone by, it's funny how the memories flow back once you get started.  Do you remember going to Ruislip Lido? It was a big lake in Ruislip.  We would catch the 211 bus.  They had a sandy beach and donkey rides on one side, you could also rent boats.  The other side had a swimming area with diving boards and floats.  I got the worst sun burn there one year, laid out in the sun and fried, must have been twelve years old.  The place would really get packed and you had changing rooms.  Once I found half a crown lying on the ground   I was so excited.  I was afraid someone would see me and take it away,  I do not think I ever had the much money before in my whole life. 
Do you remember when they would come to the school and a nurse would check your hair for lice and nits.  I can still remember the smell of the comb, it had Dettol on it, and they would dip it in the stuff and pull it through you hair, also they would check your teeth and if you had a cavity they would pull them out!  I still have my own teeth, it is lucky I came to America when I did or they would be sitting in jar beside the bed. 
Do you remember the old Grand movie house in Hanwell, a real dump, I remember some old guy trying to touch me up.  I kicked him in the shins and ran out.  I hated those dirty old bastards.  Another movie house was the Lido in West Ealing.  I used to hang out at a youth club in west Ealing, went there for a couple of years.  We used to hang out and play those big records the size of a dinner plate, Johnny Ray, I remember his song Cry, it was such a big hit.  I loved those years, so carefree, could not wait for Friday to go down the pub with the boy's and then meet the girls for a night out.  I was broke by Saturday, but my mum would give me back the money that I had given her.  She was so good to me.  I was the youngest of nine kids, I had six sister and two brothers.  I had a brother and a sister old enough to be my mum and dad.  I remember in the winter, wow, it was freezing in the bedrooms and we did not have coal to heat the upstairs bedroom.  I was about ten years I guess, my old sisters who were maybe seventeen and nineteen would let me get into bed with them, they would think I was asleep and they would talk about the boys and their courting.  If they only knew.  Well must get to bed, we had a family picnic today and had so much fun.
Regards Tom and Sue.

Friday, 24 August 2007

Council Tax Re-evaluers

Council tax re-evaluers want to charge us more if we live in a nice area.

That ought to mean discounts for those of us who live in rough areas.

We have a huge council house at the end of our street.

The extended family who live there is run by a grumpy old woman with a pack of fierce dogs.

Her car isn't taxed or insured, and doesn't even have a number plate, but the police still do nothing.

Her bad tempered old man is famous for upsetting foreigners with his racist comments.

A shopkeeper blamed him for ordering the murder of his son and his son's girlfriend, but nothing has been proved yet.

All the kids have broken marriages except the youngest, who everyone thought was gay.

Two grandsons are meant to be in the Army but are always seen out in nightclubs.

The family's odd antics are always in the papers.

They are out of control. ..........

Honestly - who'd live near Windsor Castle

Monday, 20 August 2007

Eff,s coments

John said in July:  there were some parents who had council houses who thought that they were better than other people on the same street and wouldn't allow their kids to associate with some neighbour's kids.
This wasn't the case for me.  John's statement reminded me of a couple of incidents, that I now find amusing, but at the time were quite devastating.
Story #1
Remember the outside air raid shelter, (was it the Anderson?)  Well after the war my Dad decided to make a Lily Pond out of ours.  It was quite beautiful.  It contained a few gold fish, water Lily's and some frogs, we even had a few ducks that swam in it.  We were so proud of it that  I invited Pat and Doreen Phillips from Kennedy Rd. to come and view the end result.  Pat, who was peering down into the water to look at the fish, lost her balance and fell in!   We pulled her out, and took her into our kitchen where my mum dried her off and gave her some dry clothes.  All the time poor Pat was crying and saying that her mother was going to kill her.  She was so scared that we walked her home.  When her mother found out what had happened to her, she said Pat could no longer play with me, as I was a bad influence.
End of a friendship and also end of the lily pond.  Dad had to fill it in.
Story #2
Pamela Cruz who lived on the corner of Kennedy Rd. and Upfield Rd. was also a good friend of mine.  One day I was outside talking to her while she looked down at me from her front bedroom window.  She was holding her pet cat.  I told her that my Dad said that if a cat falls from a height it will always land on all fours and not be hurt.  Well, Pamela, tossed her cat out of the bedroom window, and the poor cat let out an awful cry as it whirled through the air.  The racket brought Pamela's mother running out of the house.  She asked what was going on, to which Pam said that I had told her to throw the cat out of the window.  I was sent home, and Pamela was not allowed to play with me again, as again, I was a bad influence.
Story #3
I have all ready related how Franny Pocknee taught me and my sister Ena how to scrump apples up at the Scotch Common.  We took my friend Pat Porter, from Elfwine Rd, up there and showed her how, got chased by the police and brought home in a Black Mariah. Pat wasn't allowed to play with me again, because......guess what?   I was a bad influence.
Maybe that explains why I started hanging out with my sister Ena's friends as I was too young to influence them!
So as you can see it wasn't anything to do with snobbishness, just a poor misunderstood little girl.  :>(
Woe is me!!
Funny thing happened, concerning story #2.  In 1972 I ran into Pamela Cruz on a little Azorean island in the middle of the Atlantic.  After we was introduced and exchanged information on home towns, she looked at me and started laughing.  "I know who you are"  she said, "you are Ethel Stevens and you told me to throw my cat out of the window"  The thing was, which we both agreed on, was that I had never told her to throw out the poor cat, I had just related to her what my father had said.  Anyway, after we both had a good laugh, we renewed our friendship, and became fast friends for the two remaining years that we lived in the Azores.

Friday, 17 August 2007

Simple instructions to get around website

Jim Davis worked this out .A good way to go visit
Hi there everybody I think it is about time to share with you something else that is available on our web pages. Using this information along with what you already know, I believe it will make the use of the site a bit easier, and I hope more enjoyable. Now this is what you do.

Go to
Then in the green box on the right click on August.
Now what we have showing on the yellow part of the page is The index to posted items.
Scroll to the bottom of the page there you will see Subscribe to : Posts Atom.
Click on Subscribe to: Posts Atom, now you are on a page you can scroll down and view all the entries for that month.
After each entry there is a blue link back to the entry and comments on the home page.
You can repeat this on each month back to when the site was started.
Don't forget if you do not see a way back to the home page don't panic, just click on the blue link  after each entry it will take you back there. Go on have a look around
Good health to you all and take care.
Jim Davis.

Monday, 13 August 2007

A river beyond the Brent

A river beyond byJohn Bataglia

A River Beyond


Maybe it all started long ago, in our teacher Miss Irwin's class, in my first year at Cuckoo Junior Boy's school.

I sat at a desk in the front row and gazed at the beautiful sunlit painting on the wall.

It was quite a large picture, and it had been skillfully painted in oils by Miss Irwin's husband.

The scene was like something from the Song of Hiawatha by the poet Henry Wadsworth Longfellow. The poem, as you know, is about Hiawatha's departure, and the first two lines are,

"By the shores of Gitchie Gumee. By the shining Big Sea Water".

I'm sure that you must have heard it.

Miss Irwin's husband, the artist, may well have been inspired by this poem because in the scene was a lake or wide river, with tall fir trees in the distance and in the foreground there was an American Indian dressed in doeskin and moccasins, he was about to set out in his canoe. At least that's how I remember it, as a kid I was so fascinated by it.

Little did I know at the time, that one day I would also become an artist and eventually cross a big pond, the Atlantic Ocean.

Neither did I have any idea, that one day America would become my new home.

I don't have a wigwam or canoe like Hiawatha, but I am fortunate enough to have a modest cottage in the state of Wisconsin on the Rock River which flows through Lake Koshkonong, which is about mile upstream.

This river is considerably wider than the Brent and is full of fish, from Carp, Bluegill, Catfish to Walleye and others. There are plenty of Mallard ducks, Canadian Geese,

A few Great Blue Herons, Turkey Buzzards, Cliff Swallow's and even tiny Humming Birds etc. Also we have plenty of grey squirrels, chipmunks, some deer, a wood chuck and frogs etc. I haven't seen any bears nearby yet, but I think I saw a Bobcat early one morning.

My favorite time is in the Fall (Autumn), the reflections of the blazing foliage colors on the calm mirror glass sparkling water at sunrise is a site to behold.

It's much quieter then and most of the vacationers and pleasure boaters have gone home 'til next summer.

You may hear or see the occasional couple of fisherman trolling in their motor boats, or a lone kayak enthusiast paddling along, or sadly, you may hear the distant sounds of the duck hunter's guns echoing across the water.

Although the Rock River is quite deep, Lake Koshkonong is fairly shallow, but plenty deep enough for boating and skiing. It is however pretty big, about ten square miles, if you continue up the Rock River on the other side of the lake, you will eventually come to a bird sanctuary, Horicon Marsh, here the migrating "snow birds" gather, millions of various kinds of birds flocking and preparing to go, or returning from spending the winter in South Florida and other places.

I even go up to the lake in the winter, when it gets frozen in places and you can see some

men "ice fishing" through a hole they cut in the ice, in sub zero temperatures. Or hear the occasional snowmobile or see sitting on the bird feeder, a scarlet red Cardinal contrasted against the pure white snow.

Whoever knew that the lovely painting on the wall in my junior boy's class could represent my journey to far off land and a river….Beyond The Brent.   

Friday, 10 August 2007

My Heroes

A subject we all have fond memory's of.Mine started at a very early age when being a Greenford Granada Grenadier.We would all go to the Saturday morning matinee with our friends ,hoop and holla from the audience ,sing songs to the organ and stuff ourselves with sweets and ice cream if we where lucky.My first hero was Hopa long Cassidy.He and his wirily old side kick Gabbie Hayes would hunt down the bad guys,chase them all over the wild west and kill all the bad Indians and other vermin that came along.As I got a little older before my 10th birthday my heroes changed,they became my two older brothers Wally and John.They both where soldiers in the war ,Wally being captured in Singapore by the Japanese and having to endure 4 years in a prisoner of war camp and John who was in the Grenadier guards, being wounded at the battle of the bulge.Both returned safely and where very instrumental in my early life.John would come and watch me box at the Hoover boxing club and Wally and I would go with my Dad to watch Loftas Road in Shepherds Bush.Half time would be a great treat ,hot cup of sweet tea and a sausage roll followed be a eccesly cake did I spell that right.
Other hero's where Dennis Compton and Ray Evans the England cricketers and listening to the games for the ashes with the commentator Raymond Glen Denning you thought you where at Lords listening to the way he described it.No telly in those days.Also my hero's from Football where Tommy Lawton,Stanley Mathews,Stanley Mortenson,Tom Finney from the early 50,s and playing with the great Bobbie Charlton when we where stationed together in the army at Blackdown in Hant's when we where on the battalion team together,just seeing him as a youngster the same age as me was wonderful.Then came Bobby Moore and Jeff Hurst on the fantastic world cup team from 1966 I met them both when they came to Seattle with West ham and when they both played for the Seattle Sounders in the 70's.Hero's so many President Kennedy and Bobby Kennedy who did so much to change the U.S.A. before the assignations took their life's.President Bill Clinton even thou he could not keep is fly zipped did so much for this country the 8 years that he was president.I could go on and on but my greatest hero's where my Mom and Dad who raised 8 children with not one of them turning out bad,with good morale standards and learning to treat our friends and neighbors with respect.
Who where your hero's we would love to hear from you.
Tommy Higginbottom.

Face to Face



I think Jim has raised an important point with his Burka story, about not being able to see someones facial expressions during an email conversation.

One has to be very careful what you say in an email, as so much of it can be misunderstood when you can't see the other persons face at the time.

Even if you do know the person this can sometimes happen.

It happened to some friends of mine just recently.

Never in my wildest dreams did I ever expect to be having breakfast at the local greasy spoon with a bunch of policemen.

But pretty much every Monday I do.

They are husbands of my wifes schoolfriends, they are retired tough Chicago cops.

Actually when off duty, and retired as they are now, they are just regular guys like you and I. These guys would do anything to help you or anyone for that matter.

They would go out of their way to lend a hand if your car broke down, and you got stuck in a blizzard, on a freezing cold Chicago winter day, or night, for that matter, or anything else like that.

It's very handy to know such a bunch of good guys, especially in a town like Chicago!

However, I was quited shocked to hear that two of them are no longer talking to each other, because of some misunderstood email that one of them had sent.

Now remember these are grown men, who for most of their lives have been reliable back-up for one another in the most dangerous of situtations.

This all must sound quite adolescent, and actually it is, it was just a small matter concerning a fishing boat, and no harm was intended by the email.

It was unfortunately, how it was written and not really what was intended, and even though they have been friends for a very long time, it led to a misunderstanding simply because one guy couldn't see the other one's facial expression at the time.

It turned out that the sender was only joking in the email and thought he was just being humerous and that the other person would get the joke.

So as you see, Jim does have a very valid point, if you can't see someones face when you are talking to them, by email or in person, it can definitely be a hindrance to friendship if you are not careful what you say or how you write it. We are all only human, and all make mistakes sometimes, so I can see what Jim meant about the Burkas, lets all try and watch our p's and q's.


Cheers everyone....John

Thursday, 9 August 2007

Sally remembers

Sally (Ware} said...

I remember going down to see them with Angela my sister. We were a little bit afraid as we didn't know what to expect.We didn't realise they were just men like our Dad. Some time later two of them worked with my Dad and they would come to our house for Sunday dinner once a month.I remember one was a cobbler and he showed my Dad how to mend our shoes.Which is something my dad did for many years after. The other one made us bird tables with birds carved ontop they had string underneath with weights on and when you swung them the birds would peck. Does anyone else remember these.Also he made me a little milking stool but it had four legs as that was how they were in Germany. Guess what I still have it. All my children and my grandchildren have used it to sit on and to reach the sink to help wash up.It is still going strong.As my first Greatgrand child is due in Oct it looks as if it will be in use yet again lol.I have some school photos and as soon as my youngest son has time he will post them to you for me. Bye for now love to you all Sally

Jim' oppinion

Hi every body. All of the people I talk with to with regard to muslim women wearing the Burka (I hope the spelling is right) feel the same as I, they do not like it. For myself I would not give those people the time of day as far as having a conversation with them. I need to be able to look at a face to judge whether a person is being truthful or not. Please believe me when I say the last thing I want to do is to put people  off from contributing to our web pages. But if you will, I would like you all to consider this. If you do not want to show your identity then by all means continue to do so. But to my way of thinking hiding your name is no different than the person hiding behind a Burka. It is a barrier to friendship. Just by giving our name we are not disclosing any information that could be useful to anyone, that is a fact. So please take the time to consider whether you really want to remain anonymous or not.
Good health and take care.
Jim Davis

Cuckoo Jnrs. Football team.

Looking at the photo of the Cuckoo-junior football-team 1947. I noticed that one of the players was named as "Kenny Hayhurst". well. my brother married "Vi Hayhurst" his sister.
and they lived in Templeman Road.. Ken now lives in Spalding. Lincs with his wife "Sue"
I made copies of both pictures. and I sent them on to Kens sister "Vi" explaining all about the "Cuckooites-Site" she had never seen the pictures before and was really thrilled about them. she then sent them on to "Ken". didn't explain where the photo's had come from, and
early next morning. "Ken" was on the phone.couldn't beleive what he was looking at. she said he couldn't even remember the photo being taken all those years ago...he was so please to receive them.
I did explain all about our next reunion in 2008, so if I can get "Kens" e-mail address. I will send him all the details.
Looking forward to our re-union in April 2008.
Eileen Venney

Monday, 6 August 2007

Memory from Eff Stevens.

Thought I would send you one of my memories of the days following the end of WW2.

After the end of the war, my father was stationed in Kent with the R.A.F.  There was a large camp of German P.O.W.'s at the base and that Christmas they put on a huge Christmas party for the children of the servicemen.

When we arrived there were large tables set up with white table cloths and  wonderful goodies, which we children had never seen before. There were cream horns, chocolate √©clairs, cream puffs and all the little cakes and fruit that we had been deprived of during the war years.

After we had stuffed ourselves, Father Christmas got up on the stage, each child's name was called and given a present made by the POW.s. Mine was a child's deck chair, which I always treasured, and my sisters, who were older than I, both received slippers.

When the presents were distributed, a man with a trumpet stepped up on the stage and entertained us with song requests, while the P.O.W.'s who had been waiting on us, sat down at the tables and had their Christmas meal.

My Dad told me to go up on the stage and ask the trumpeter to play Lilli Marlene. I did as I was told, mounted the stage and I pulled on the mans jacket, looked up at him, and said "My Dad says, play Lilli Marlene" The man ignored me and I went back to my seat. My Dad said "Go up there again, and tell him to play the song" I was very nervous and really didn't want to do it,  but was more scared of my Dad than the man with the trumpet, so up on the stage I went again, and tugged on the mans jacket, while my Dad yelled from the audience, "Do as the little girl says". The trumpeter looked down at my Dad and said, "Don't you think that will offend them?" To which my Dad replied "Of course not, go ahead and play it"

Well what happened next was something that I will never forget to my dying day. The prisoner's stopped eating, all stood at attention and sang at the tops of their voices, their own song in their own language.. There wasn't a dry eye in the audience. Here was the enemy that we had been taught to fear, imprisoned, far from their homes and families, but just as vulnerable and human as we all were.

Lilli Marlene, my Dad told me, was the German marching song. The English Translation goes like this:

Tommie Connor, 1944

Underneath the lantern,
By the barrack gate
Darling I remember
The way you used to wait
T'was there that you whispered tenderly,
That you loved me,
You'd always be,
My Lilli of the Lamplight,
My own Lilli Marlene

Time would come for roll call,
Time for us to part,
Darling I'd caress you
And press you to my heart,
And there 'neath that far-off lantern light,
I'd hold you tight ,
We'd kiss good night,
My Lilli of the Lamplight,
My own Lilli Marlene

Orders came for sailing,
Somewhere over there
All confined to barracks
was more than I could bear
I knew you were waiting in the street
I heard your feet,
But could not meet,
My Lilly of the Lamplight,
my own Lilly Marlene

Resting in our billets,
Just behind the lines
Even tho' we're parted,
Your lips are close to mine
You wait where that lantern softly gleams,
Your sweet face seems
To haunt my dreams
My Lilly of the Lamplight,
My own Lilly Marlene

Letter to the editor

 At first sight the response to Cuckooites after a good start has seemed to tailed off somewhat. There off course can be many reasons for that but I feel the main problem is we are mainly dealing with old folk (me included). To use me as an example. As you know my son lectures on audio visual communication at University. For two or three years he kept trying to encourage me to purchase a computer. My answer to that was I have lived this long without one, so I have no need or desire to change now. Even having him behind me to sort out any problems I might run into, it still seemed far too complicated for my old dinosaurs brain. I was wrong and purchasing my Mac was one of the best things I've done. I fear that may be the common factor with most of the people Cuckooites is trying to reach. Is there an answer? I don't know but I hope so. I am throwing this into the arena so that people we do have can discuss various options and hopefully come up with a solution. I am not promoting what I am going to say now, it is just something I am throwing into the pot just to get the ball rolling. Are we too insular?. When I was at Cuckoo senior boys school we had kids from all over Hanwell, Greenford etc going there. Then Vincent's school was built and many of the kids were sent there instead, and from those that I knew most did not want to go. Were they Cuckooites, or  do only those born on the estate qualify? Do we try to cast our net wider, and yet at the same time within a larger group keep our Cuckooites identity. We already have a precedence for that regarding some of those who lived on the west side of the Greenford avenue.

Good health and take care.
Jim Davis

Wednesday, 1 August 2007

Cuckoo's Song By J.B.

Hi Tommy,
I hope you are well, it's really quite sunny and hot here today in Chicago, I hope it's nice and sunny back home in England, they need it after all the rain and flooding they have had lately.
The Cuckoo's Song....
    This tale is true and it happened just the other summer's evening at a friends house.
When we arrived, our friends told us that they were waiting for someone to bring an injured bird to their house and that it was to be collected by someone else, who was going to try and get some vetinary help for it.
Both parties had driven about 20 miles each way to see that this poor unfortunate little bird got some help.
When the poor bird arrived, low and behold, there nestled on a blue towel in a box was a lovely
Yellow Billed Cuckoo with sadly a possible a broken wing and thus no doubt a broken heart too.
I thought this to be a strange coincidence, the fact that it was a beautiful Cuckoo and not some other kind of bird and it caused me to wonder if there was any significance to this event.
My conclusion is that I think this may be a message to all of us Cuckooites, and the message is that we should all care, and particularly care about the fact that we are custodians of this planet Earth and share it with many other wonderful forms of life.
Also I think we should all care about our friends, feathered or not, and about our neighbours, like our parents and grandparents did, and care about the good deeds that some folks do, in particular I'm talking about Tommy and our fellow Cuckooites who have gone out of their way to create the Cuckooite's website for are the websites's yours to share...will you not contribute with some of your own stories or memories and help the Cuckooite's website to take off and fly and sing again.... above and beyond the wild blue yonder...and Beyond The Brent.