The Chapman Lighthouse

Some oil paitings by Harry Russell

Summer Rose
Russell ©
Hard by Chapman
Russell ©
Three Mast Clipper
Russell ©

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  • The Summer Rose was my maternal grandfather’s (‘Pat’ Fitzpatrick) leisure boat, he used to run trips from Canvey to Southend Pier (before I was born)… and in a neat tie-in, Harry Russell was my paternal grandfather!

    By Laurie Moses (10/10/2013)
  • Hi Laurie. I was friends with both Marianne and Avril and went out on the Summer Rose to the lighthouse with your granddad and Marianne to take supplies to the keepers. My partner for the last 26 years works for Trinity House so I’ve come full circle. Who is your mother?

    By Maureen Buckmaster (10/10/2013)
  • Hi Maureen, my mum is Avril, sadly Marianne passed away in France 6 years ago where she lived from her early twenties – (but it’s lovely to have French cousins)..

    By Laurie Moses (12/10/2013)
  • Hi Laurie, I was also a friend of Marianne when we were in Mr Groves class at Leigh Beck and remember often going to the FitzPatrick’s house in the ‘white houses’, next to the Bus Garage, to play. The FitzPatrick sisters were also part of the group of Canvey kids who used to travel on the train to go to school in Westcliff and Southend. There is one mystery you might be able to help me with, it concerns their cousin Michael FitzPatrick. He first appeared completely out of the ‘blue’ when although he didn’t know me(he’d only just arrived at the school) he stood in and protected me from some bullying at Leigh Beck, we became good friends for a short time until he went of to Australia on the ‘£10 Pom’ scheme with his parents. Then equally dramatically he re-appeared in my life in my first year at Westcliff High School when his parents came back from Oz. Although we were not in the same class we renewed our friendship, once more for a short time. I have no recollections of the reason for his departure on this occasion but vaguely remember his Mum was manageress Carlton Bakeries shop in Glendale Gdns, and there was a fire and they lost their accommodation. I often wonder what his next move was.

    By Graham Stevens (13/10/2013)
  • Hi Laurie. Please remember me to your mum. I was Maureen Thorpe when she knew me and we were at St.Bernards at the same time, although she is a couple of years or so older than me. I knew Marianne had gone to France to live but wasn’t aware she had died. I’m so sorry to hear that. If I remember correctly, your mum was a prefect and used to get annoyed with us younger girls for not wearing our berets on the train or eating in the street ( forbidden by the nuns in those days!)

    By Maureen Buckmaster (14/10/2013)
  • Hello Everyone! I am one of Marianne’s three children. I remember the top painting very well, but I don’t know where from (was this at my grandfathers house? Or Auntie Avril’s house?). Its funny to read about her childhood friends, she didn’t talk that much about her childhood years, but she did mention the long daily commute to Grammar School.

    By Joelle Onimus (15/10/2013)
  • Hi Joelle. Your mum was lovely. I can still see her face clearly and her smile. I used to visit her at home near the bus garage and I also went with your mum and granddad, Pat, in the boat to take the supplies out to the lighthouse keepers. He was always a very warm, friendly man. Your mum and I used to meet on the bus in the mornings which took us to the train station in time to catch the 8.20am train. If we missed the train we would be late for school and get detention. when we got off of the train we had a long walk from Westcliff Station up Hamlet Court Road and cross over into Canewdon Road. On the corner was a sweet shop where, if we had some money, we would buy sweets. Then we would stroll up the road to school. We always had to wear our berets, or straw boaters in the summer. If we were seen without them by a prefect or someone reported us we would get detention. Travelling home on the train we would often find the boys from Southend High School for Boys on the train. They would try to steal our hats and throw them out of the train window! They were happy days.

    By Maureen Buckmaster (15/10/2013)

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