Richards Dairy

Drink more Richards Laindon Milk

By Patsy Mott information supplied by Mr & Mrs Dimmick

James Richards moved to Laindon in 1919 aged 13 with his three sisters Elizabeth, Rose & Violet and his parents James & Elizabeth from Bethnal Green in London. James senior bought Sunny Mead Farm situated at the western end of the unmade part of King Edward Road in Laindon. It was a dairy farm with extensive acreage and included a large double farmhouse, which was divided into two separate dwellings. The Richards bought the north side of the property.

In the early days the milk was delivered to the customers on the rounds by horse and sledge then later by horse and cart.

Photo:James Junior with Calf in sidecar winning first prize at Carnival 1929

James Junior with Calf in sidecar winning first prize at Carnival 1929

Carnival entry 1929 James age 23 

Photo:'Laindon Milk' from our own Farm

'Laindon Milk' from our own Farm

Mr & Mrs Dimmick

The personalised glass milk bottle from Sunny Mead Farm.

Maria Clements aged 17 came to Laindon in 1926 on holiday where she met James junior, the relationship progressed and they were married on Christmas day 1931 at St Nicholas Church.

Photo:Wedding Group outside Church

Wedding Group outside Church

Mr & Mrs Dimmick

 James senior.      Violet.      Brother of bride  

Rose.         James junior & Maria.    Elizabeth

Photo:Family Wedding Group outside the Sunnymead Farmhouse

Family Wedding Group outside the Sunnymead Farmhouse

Mr & Mrs Dimmick

Elizabeth died on January 31st 1937 aged 54 years. James junior eventually took over the farm in 1939 when his father died on 20th February that year aged 57 years.

After James & Maria married they moved into a bungalow that James built not far away still in King Edward Road called Clemrich, the name being a combination of the two family surnames. James & Maria went on to have three children Sylvia, James & Hilda.

Sylvia remembers the local policeman, a Sergeant Dunbar coming to inspect the pigs that James kept at that time at Clemrich. This bungalow was sold in 1945 when the family moved.

The dairy prospered although there were many local dairy farms around the area. The family sold most of the fields in the late 1940s and sold the milk round to a local family diary. More acreage was sold to a local farmer and landowner in the late 1950'. Sloper, Markham, Firman and Whife were four other dairies that served Laindon and the surrounding areas. The remaining land and farmhouse was sold to the local council in the early 1960s to make way for Ford’s Research Centre.

James died in July 1987 aged 80, Maria died February 2008 aged 98.

Sylvia Richards married John Dimmick in 1953 at St. Nicholas church. They went on to have three children.

John Dimmick worked in a local butchers in the High Road named Maulkins near St. Nicholas lane. He then ran his own welding company in Lower Dunton Road for 39 years from 1969 to 2007.

Mr & Mrs Dimmick still live locally and remember Laindon and Dunton and how it has changed both for good and bad. They, like many locals feel saddened at the way the area has been completely dismantled and engulfed by Basildon to the detriment of Laindon and it's inhabitants. There is hardly any sign that we ever had a High Road and a community.

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This page was added by Ian Mott on 28/02/2011.
Comments about this page (Add a comment about this page)

Maulkins the butchers flashed up a memory for me of a man called Reg who worked behind the counter there (surname virtually just disappeared as I write this!) and he had a son called Raymond who attended LHS possibly over 70 now?  Is he still out there?

By Andrea Ash (nee Pinnell)
On 09/03/2014

It is I agree, Mr and Mrs Dimmick very sad that old Laindon and most of its houses roads shops etc have gone, but its people and their decendants still live and I for one close my eyes and I am living there again, climbing the same trees, riding the same buses, chatting on the same corners, meeting the same eccentrics and hearing the same local stories.

No one will ever take that from me I have memories deep within that belong to me and that I cherish dearly and I think I can safely say the same for most old Laindoners. Buildings will rise and fall with time but there will always be us and our decendants "Old Laindoners".

By Gloria Sewell
On 08/08/2011