Waterside Farm Sports Centre 1976

When the Red Devils dropped in

I moved from London to Canvey in 1976 on April Fools day of all days. I am sure you remember the year, wall to wall sunshine, very hot when the roads started melting and NO rain for weeks. (Excuse me while I dream of hot sunny weather and no rain…………….)

It was also during the hot summer of that year that Waterside Farm Sports Centre was officially opened. I recently found some old cine film that I took at the event and have copied the clip here and also extracted some still shots to show you.

I cannot remember a lot about the day but there were pony rides as you can see from the picture here taken in the field near Sommes Avenue, you can see the old green Eastern National bus passing by and in some of the pictures you can see the Benfleet Downs in the back ground.

The big attraction of the day was the ‘Red Devils’, the Parachute Regiment Freefall Team. I managed to take a lot of film of them coming down but not clear enough to show here. Unfortunately the old cine films are not as clear as the films that can be taken today.

If anyone can remember any more or has pictures please email in or put a comment below.

Comments about this page

  • Look forward to seeing the cine Jan – hopefully we can put a segment up on the site!

    By David Bullock (06/02/2009)
  • Hope you can Dave. I would love to be able to add it to this page. I do not have a program to extract a clipping from the DVD.

    By Janet Penn (06/02/2009)
  • Nice work including the video Jan – seems we are still a little limited with page layout options with media.

    By David Bullock (25/02/2009)
  • My father, R.C.Foyster, was Deputy Engineer and Surveyor for Canvey Island UDC – he designed Waterside Sports Centre and oversaw construction in his free time as his last contribution to the community. He sadly had to retire due to ill health before the centre was opened. Castle Point refused to acknowledge his efforts. A very sad state of affairs but a wonderful legacy to leave.

    By Helen (27/08/2018)

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