Showtime at 56 King Edward Road

By Pam Quarman nee Atkins

Does anyone remember the song and dance routines that Gloria Sewell and her 3 friends, the French (surname) sisters, from next door used to perform in her garden? I can't remember some of the names, can you help?

Photo: Illustrative image for the 'Showtime at 56 King Edward Road' page

Left to right

Back row:

1 Josie Barwick ?2 Linda Bartley3 Maureen Venables4 Betty Andrews.

2nd row: 

1 Margaret Durrant ?2 Keith Crew3 Jackie Sheppard4 Vanessa Crew

3rd row: 

1 Pam Atkins2 Pat Pattle3 Jennie Pattle4 Jeanette Barwick5 Christine Arthey

Front row:

1 Gloria Sewell2 Ann French3 Pat Brooks?4 Linda Brooks?
This page was added by Pam Quarman nee Atkins on 11/01/2012.
Comments about this page (Add a comment about this page)

Faye Lambert, I am Richard Haines and I was in Jeannie Barwick's class through Laindon High Road School. My class friend was Geoff Heather who your mum may also remember. Our teacher was Mr Rees. See if your mum can recall my name, we always got on well as I remember. She would definitely recall Jacqui Sheppard and Vanessa Crew in this photo.

By Richard Haines
On 01/12/2016

Hi.  I don't know if anyone still picks up this page? My mum is Jeanette Barwick (now Lambert), she turns 70 on New Years Eve, love to find some of her old friends. x

By Faye Lambert
On 01/12/2016

Hi Gloria, great to see this photo didn't we have fun with our shows. Great days, I think you have my sister Pat and I the wrong way round I was the one who always had ribbons in my hair, so I think that's me, don't recall many of the names of the other girls but remember the faces keep up the good work....

By Jean Pattle
On 20/03/2013

No. 4 is definitely Betty Andrews. There is a photo of her at my 12th birthday party in my sister’s article “Memories of Laindon” (6th photo down), where you can see she is definitely the same person. I should recognise her because we were in the same class for 9 years!

By Nina Humphrey(née Burton)
On 25/04/2012

Hi Vanessa long time no see "Stone" oh yes on the River Blackwater I remember it well, car park cafe, and little stony beach.

So sorry to hear about Kieth and mum but very pleased you have found another brother.

Pam, lovely to know you are happy I have gone a bit further afield I am now in Suffolk, but I am dying to get back to see everyone again hopefully in the summer a big meet, Great.

By Gloria Sewell
On 25/01/2012

Hello Vanessa, good to see you back on this website. In your absence we have at last picked you out on the big 1958 photo of Laindon High Road school (I got you wrong at first but was put right by Pam Atkins). Nice to see you in this little photo with Jacqui Sheppard as well. Sorry to hear about Keith he was so like you in looks, I can remember you two queuing for ice creams in about 1958. Funny, I can remember my dad also used to take us to Stone in our little Ford Prefect, bit cold for swimming over there. Please let the website know when you are coming back to the Essex area :-)

By Richard Haines
On 25/01/2012

Thanks very much everyone for your comments. I've been in Austrailia for so long that I've forgotten lots of memories, not going to blame age!!! 

Amazing to see the photo and I do remember the faces, I only have a few photos of Keith and I together as kids. He died suddenly in 1978 aged 30, a shock for us. Mum died two years later of cancer bought on by the trauma of his death. 

The good news is that three years ago I found out that I have a half brother living in Sible Hedingham, who I saw him in Paris recently. 

I would love to meet up with you all. Will be in London for couple of days in May on way to New York but not enough time then, perhaps later in the year.

Richard did you meet up with my Aunt Una and Eira at the Dunton reunion, they had such a wonderful time there. 

Regarding dads car he used to save up petrol rations and we would go to the seaside to a place called Stone. 

By the way short shorts are no go nowadays.

By Vanessa Crew
On 25/01/2012

Hi Gloria, I'm pleased that the photo brought back happy memories. I read your articles with interest, and I remember all the old landmarks. 

I didn't like school and left in 1962, aged 15, to work at Wagners until they closed down. I then worked at Bartons Bakery for a few months before starting at Yardleys, in 1965. 

I married Brian in 1972 and we moved to Basildon. Our son Alec was born in 1974 and is married to Emma. They have a son Iain who is 14 years old. I worked at Tesco Pitsea from 1983 until I retired. We moved to Vange in 1996 where we still live.

By Pam Quarman nee Atkins
On 17/01/2012

Gloria. A correction. My brother Alan and 'Weedy' Leonard were at LHS from 1963 to 1968. I miscalculated. Best wishes.

By Nina Humphrey(née Burton)
On 17/01/2012

Gloria. I think David married somebody called Pauline but I know nothing else about him. He had scratched a message in the brickwork on the side of their house (No 78) which said 'David Andrews was here 1957'. I wonder if that is still there? I believe Betty lives somewhere in Wickford. 

Yes, I do remember the Billingtons, can't remember any of their names at the moment. 

Do you remember another quite large family who lived off King Edward Road, the Leonards. Lily and Rose were two of the girls. They had a younger brother who was in the same year as my brother Alan who started at the school around 1959. For the first couple of years Alan only knew this boy as 'Weedy'. He was very slim and even his parents and the teachers called him Weedy Leonard. Alan eventually discovered his real name when he heard a register being called, it was 'Steven'.

By Nina Humphrey(née Burton)
On 16/01/2012

Yes, I do remember David Nina, sometimes a comment sparks off reels and reels of info. in my brain are they still local.

The Billingtons were also quite a large family along that streach of Devonshire , do you recall them, Susan was my age can't think at the moment of the other ones names. 

Richard I even suprised myself with that photo always thought I was far to fat as a teenager, but then don't all of us girls, even then.

By Gloria Sewell
On 16/01/2012

Gloria. In that case, you may well remember Betty's older brother David Andrews. He would have been a year or two older than you. Betty was the youngest of about 6 children. Betty and I used to walk to and from school together (or should I say run) and were in the same class from age 5 until 14 when I went into 4X. Best wishes.

By Nina Humphrey(née Burton)
On 16/01/2012

Well done Gloria, some more memories sorted. Yes your Revellers photo is very cute, fine legs and much appreciated. 

This seems to be a feature of Laindon girls, Vanessa had some short shorts as well.

By Richard Haines
On 15/01/2012

You are proberly Right Nina, I just feel Pat should be there somewhere, I am in touch, I will try to get her to take a look.

Yes I do remember the Andrews family now and yes she also should be there somewhere, whatever Nina great fun days. 

Pam are you still in Laindon ??

By Gloria Sewell
On 15/01/2012

Hi Gloria. Hope you are feeling better now. Love all the songs you mention. I'm pleased I got Linda Bartley and Maureen Venables right. I still think No 4 back row is Betty Adnrews. She lived next door to Maureen Venables in Devonshire Road and they were often together. Linda and Betty were both in my class and it certainly looks like Betty to me. Best wishes.

Editor: I will see if I can get Maureen to comment.

By Nina Humphrey(née Burton)
On 15/01/2012

Hi everyone sorry about the delay, I haven't been 100% never mind, I will start with myself and row 4 these are my thoughts open to contradiction (in a nice way of course) No. 1 is me i’m always picked out first must have left a trail behind me as a young un. I reckon No. 2 is Ann French, Pam (thanks for this fantastic photo by the way), two of the French sisters were very shy so I don’t think they would have done the shows. 

I can’t decide weather No.3 and No.4 are Pat and Linda Brooks, they lived next door to Pat Bartley in Devonshire Road. Around this time they exchanged with Tina and Evelyn Brewers parents to Harold Hill, so Andrea it could well be Tina and Evelyn, I just can’t remember when this took place. I do know I befriended Tina and Evelyn straight away by welcoming them with a packet of Spangles and an invite to our little gang and we remained pals for years so there is a choice there If my memory serves me right, though the Brooks girls had longer hair but lets see what others think.

3rd row is of course you Pam, then I think it is Jennie and Pat Pattle they should be there somewhere they always did the shows with us. Jean is a contributor to this site maybe she will help me out on that one, then as already said Jennette Barwick and Christine Arthey. 

I should say here that Jean Pattle was always allowed in my house with me when mum was not there so she was my partner in crime, we used to take mums nice clean copper all day Sunday and boil sheets with a Ricketts blue bag and use them for curtains. Poor mum, but my mum was the most tolerant sweetest lady ever (thank goodness).

2nd row Someone has put a ? and Clark but I am wondering if this is Margaret Durrant, who lived next door to Jean and Pat, then No.2 Keith Crew (sorry not Trevor), Jacky Sheppard and Vennessa Crew.

I liked being friends with Venessa and Keith not only were they great kids but their dad had a car and would often take us to school (Markhams Chase). Jean and Pats Parents had a TV and they used to let me watch it. Ann French's dad worked on a farm so they gave mum lots of fresh veg. Josie and Jennetts mum used to work with my mum and we would walk to the bus stop at the Fortune of War to meet them at night together. Tina and Evelyn were a bit of fashion icons for me them coming from "up the line" as we said.

1st row: I think first this is Josie Barwick, definitely Linda Bartley next and Maureen Venables so No 4 I am going with Pat Bartley as she was a close member of the "crowd". 

Pats mum and dad used to take me to the Winston Club with them and I can always remember their back room always being so warm and welcoming and the Greyhound dog they had that used to fight with my infamous, postman, paper boy, milkman leg biter dog "Snowy" also as reminded recently, by one of my 1950s boyfriends, a boyfriend chaser too (Sorry Colin). 

Everyone on this photo played their part in my early childhood which I have often said I would not change for the world

Now for the songs. "I wouldn't leave my little wooden hut for " I recall we made paper flowers for our hair and grass skirts from raffia. My dad was a great admirer of the music hall performers "Daisy Dormer" so I probably learnt this one from him. 

Guy Mitchell’s "she wears red feathers" was another one I know we used to recruit either Keith or my brother Fred to walk around the stage area in a tie pretending to be the bank man (don’t know if they will thank me for telling you that, but boys you were great).

All Al Jolson songs were a must but the one that sticks in my mind so clearly is Al Martino’s "Here in my heart”. I think we must have put on Red Riding Hood I know I was the Woodsman and I had to sing to one of the other girls who played Red Riding hood. I knew I could not hit the high note in the "so darling say that you can’t take this heart I give gladly" bit, so as I started that bit one of the others had to run on stage and "shout the wolfs coming". I don’t know if it worked or not or if I was left trying to scream out the line (picture it folks), I can’t remember that bit. I am chuckling to myself now thinking of it. Later I went on to join the Revellers, a local Concert party, which I so enjoyed being in. In fact I have sent webmaster some photos of me in the Revellers, if they are appropriate for the site and even though I say it myself not a bad pair of pins in those days what do you reckon Rich? 

Again Pam so many thanks for letting me see this photo again after all these years and helping some more of my deep memories return.

By Gloria Sewell
On 15/01/2012

Just a small observation in the listings for this picture, if the little boy standing next to Jacqueline Sheppard is Vanessa's brother then he is Keith Crew. Also the girl left of Jeannie Barwick with the ribbons is so familiar but I'm not going to do any wild guessing yet, I'm sure Gloria will fill us in when she resurfaces.

By Richard Haines
On 15/01/2012

If it is Arthy - would it be Christine? And a girl in the front row bears a strong resemblance to Tina Brewer - Gloria, come on, you'er the one with the good memory!

By Andrea
On 11/01/2012

I'm pretty certain the blonde girl second from left, back row, is Linda Bartley who lived in Devonshire Road and was in the same class as me. I think the girl far left, back row may also be a 'Bartley' although I can't recall her first name. Now a wild guess about the other two girls in the back row - far right, Betty Andrews, second from right, Maureen Venables (both from Devonshire Road), although not 100% certain.

By Nina Humphrey(née Burton)
On 11/01/2012

What a fantastic little photo with Gloria and Vanessa Crew, Jacqui Sheppard and Jeannie Barwick, the last three being in my class at LHR all the way through, made my day-cheers. Wonder who the others are?

By Richard Haines
On 11/01/2012
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