Leigh Beck School

The Year 1943

Leigh Beck School in 2006
(c) David Bullock
2004: Eastern National Bus Garage at Leigh Beck - Now the Bus Museum
(c) David Bullock

What a good idea for the site, especially for the old timers like myself. I know I am going back a bit but did any of you go to Leigh Beck School around 1943 as I did? After being evacuated to a place called Little Araden in Wellingborough during the war, my mum brought me to Canvey to live with my grandmother after she found out I was being ill treated. My grandmothers name was Lil Dowler and her bungalow was the only property between Leigh Beck school and the shops at the Point. I still remember the name of the bungalow called Third Acre. That time sticks in my mind because a girl in my class called Sylvia was on the roof of the bus garage and she fell through the glass roof and died instantly. I believe the headmistress was Miss Vincent.

I would like to hear from anyone who was there at the same time.

Comments about this page

  • I am Stan Pierce. I was at Leigh Beck Primary school from 1943 until going up to Long Road in 1946 at the age of 11.

    I remember Miss Vincent calling us into the assembly room the morning after the girl fell through the glass roof window that day. She said ” God took her ” and of course we knew instantly what she meant.

    Another time a girl was killed right outside the school gates when she walked out behind the bus she had just alighted and into the path of a car. It must have been the only car on the Island during the war. I can’t even remember seeing one.

    By Stan Pierce (01/08/2008)
  • Hello John.
    I seem to remember you as a sandy haired boy with freckles though of course the memory is not what it used to be. I remember your grandmothers bungalow too, wasn’t it on the corner of Southfalls road? I remember my friend Johnny Napper who no doubt you remember, was captured by the Boobyer brothers, Norman and Gordon I think they were called,and they tied him up in your grans shed with a plank over his head with a brick on it that would fall onto his head if he moved.

    I sneaked in and released him when the coast was clear.

    I used to live in the bungalow right behind the bus garage and could climb over the railings into school. Polly Vincent caught me at it one day and I had to sit out front at assembly and write lines (I must not be late for school) about a million times. I just remember the girl falling through the roof. Incidentally, my teacher at that time was Miss Kelly, and she was HOT, even at 5 I thought so. My mum used to say her and Miss Price were Hussies because they wore shorts. Those were the days.

    By Geoff Graydon (21/09/2008)
  • Hello Geoff, sorry I have not wrote sooner, but didnt realise the site was so popular, only rediscovered it when I looked up Leigh beck school on google, to see when the 75th anniversary was, and found out it is coming up soon on the 13th Feb hope to see some of you there. Yes I did used to live just up from Southfallsroad, next to the haystack and the old hay cart, my nan used to keep ducks and chickens, and they would just roam around the fields, I cant place you though, I used to go to the little wreck over the back to us, you must have gone there too, did you know a boy called Dereck Dilworth, a proper dennis the menace, always in trouble, I once remember going round to his bungalow, down Hallet road I believe,opposite Joe Overs the photographer, this day Joe was in his garden digging, and Dereck stole a couple of his dads condoms, and filled them with gas from the gas light in the house, he released them in the garden where we were hiding, and they floated towards Joe, one caught the side of the bungalow and burst right beside Joe, I will never forget the puzzled look on Joe’s face. Another time he took a saw down to the bridge half way down Hallet Road and sawed through the supports to the bridge, my Nan always forbid me to play with him. Hope to see you at the reunion Geoff.

    By John Cousins (29/01/2009)
  • Derek Dilworth’s father used to make sandals out of old tyres. In his twenties he drove a silver Jaguar car which my ex husband bought from him. He was always wheeling and dealing.

    By Maureen Buckmaster (18/12/2019)

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