Carol singing

“When about ten or eleven years old I used to go carol-singing in aid of the National Canine Defence League (I can’t really think what the reasoning was behind that, now!). The NCDL ran the dogs’ hospital on the corner of Miller’s Road and Robertson Road, just by the South Road Railway Bridge.

My patch was my own road, Cedars Gardens, plus Withdean Court Avenue. On the other side of London Road, it included Withdean Crescent, Surrenden Crescent and Peacock Lane. Peacock Lane was (and really still is) a country lane marking the boundary between Preston and Patcham, with the few houses set well back from the lane and the forbidding dark woods of Withdean park on the other side.

My favourite road was Withdean Crescent (my Aunt Ada once lived in a house – “Caxton” – near the bottom), as it was a relatively gentle climb up towards Surrenden Crescent, but my best “clients” lived in Surrenden Crescent, where I usually managed to obtain several half-crowns for my trouble!”

Comments about this page

  • I grew up in Preston village and spent my whole childhood (in the 60s) and teenage years among its leafy canopies. As a child I hid and made camps in the alcoves under the manor house (did you know they were there?). I slept the night in the Preston Park graveyard. I knew every nook and cranny of the park and to this day I still think of the park as mine. it was my kingdom; and it still makes my heart smile whenever I see it. I live in London but hope to move back to Brighton. It still has the magic and charm it had then. I still have dreams about the Clock Tower and was fascinated as a child about what it looked like inside.

    By Stephen O'Toole (30/03/2005)
  • I enjoy Martin Nimmo’s contributions to the My Brighton and Hove website but must take him to task re Peacock Lane marking the boundary between Preston and Patcham. This boundary is surely about a quarter of a mile to the south, running along the Preston side of St Bernadette’s School ?

    By Peter Booth (03/08/2008)

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