Childhood memories

I was born at 158 Wiston Road, My sister’s name is Barbara and my brother is Michael, both slightly older then me. I went to all Whitehawk schools from infants to senior, so I guess from 1956 to 1970. The headmaster was Bill Scanes, deputy I think was Mr. Rogers, there wasCobhill, Dirty Birty (bertwhistle), Simons, Wiggy – still thinking who else. I will come up with more names and more stories once I get my brain cells working. I do have trouble remembering my class mates names but here goes, David Redman, Ronnie Davies, Woolgar, Openshaw, Magee. I pretty sure sadly one died with a kite accident and power line, but now I don’t think he was in my class so sad, and John Reeves.

Our neighbours
We lived next door to Jennifer Hopkins and Alan Hopkins. Next door down was Mrs. Gunn and Mr. Harding, then the Toners Pat and a few more of them with whom we had constant arguments with as kids do. Kathleen Hussy, Carol and Alan or Alec Hussy lived across from us, as well as Billy Jones who used to practice drums all the time. There were other Dawson families but not related. Up from Jennifer Hopkins was Michael and Jennifer Dawson, their father’s name was George, he often had a drink and then sang a lot walking back from the bus stop.

Safe to play everywhere
I did love my childhood there, yes there were tough days, but more better ones that brought everyone together, and it was safe to play everywhere. If someone was out of sugar, bread or tea you could always rely on a neighbour who would help. I think as a kid I ran down Lintott Avenue a million times to get food for home from the four shops that were down there.

I must say what a fantastic site this is I am so pleased that I found it. Talk about a trip down the old memory lane. I still miss the hot steak and kidney pies at the Broadway café. I will add more but I will see if there is any feed back from here. Happy days indeed.

Comments about this page

  • Ah Bill Scaynes, The man from Devon. And Bengy.  Good memories indeed.

    By Jerry (11/12/2008)
  • Richard, do you remember any more about Mrs Gunn and Mr Harding – my great-aunt was called Alvina Gunn and my grandmother’s maiden name was Harding so I’m wondering if there’s a connection. When my grandmother died her address was given as 3 Wiston Road.

    By Nicki (30/09/2009)
  • Mrs Gunn lived with her common law partner Mr Harding. She had a daughter, I think, called Alison who married a guy called Mr Taylor I believe. Mrs Gunn had been married once. I do remember she had had a son that had died when he was quite young, long before I knew her as a neighbour. Hope this helps you.

    By Barbara Zammit (11/10/2009)
  • There was Chas Bartle, Len Darling, Dave Diprose. I remember smoking up in the store cupboards in the prefab classrooms – it was ace fun – oh yes Paul Yates French / English teacher – school dinners were 1 shilling (5p) - I used to walk up over the race hill in all weathers from 1961 to 1967 – good times – naff all money but fun.

    By Dave Deacon (09/11/2009)
  • Oh yes, Bill Scaynes. What a man. More like a dictator, but then he needed to be at that place. I used to commute in from Woodingdean and walk down the hill. If it was wet or icy I used to slide down on my case. I remember the boxing hut and ‘Bob’ the ice cream / cider lolly vendor who used to park outside in the summer. A message for Dave Deacon: We are having a reunion for our year, early December. Are you interested? Please contact me at

    By Bob Penning (13/11/2009)
  • We  had the reunion for Whitehawk school on 2nd Dec and a great time was had by all. Lots of renewed acquaintances. Forty four years had passed.

    By Brian Lockyer (03/12/2009)
  • Bob Penning, are you the same one that did art at Whitehawk with me and George Smith? Amazing if so. How are you?

    By Barbara (03/02/2010)
  • What an amazing site. It  brings back lots of memories.

    By Peter Bridger (07/03/2010)
  • Better late than never. Thanks to George Smith , Brian Lockyer and Bob Penning (Eddie Jordan lookalike) – I really enjoyed our reunion evening at Hangleton Manor last December. I am now semi-retired and enjoying more quality time to myself – loving it too.

    By DAVID DEACON (12/06/2010)
  • I just thought I would add a little of what I know about Wiston Road and Whitehawk Boys School, and see if it helps anyone. My Aunt and Uncle, Rene and Ernest Tester lived in the road, somewhere around number 150 (?), along with my cousins Edward (Ted) and Beryl. Later they moved to 24 Twineham Road. Ted lives at Woodingdean now, and Beryl lives at Steyning. There was also a Peter Dawson who lived in Wiston road and was at one time in the TA at Preston Barracks. As I attended Whitehawk between 1958 and 1963 I remember the teachers mentioned, along with Messers French, Herbert, Dance, John Basil, Hope, Hyott (not sure of this name but he taught woodwork), Ling and White.

    By Leslie Carter (07/12/2010)
  • I went to Whitehawk Secondary school. I left in 1971. Mr Hodgson was my tutor, and Mr Hodell was my headmaster, good time, fun days. I lived at Rifle Butt Road. I would like any info on Wiston Road when it was built, but mainly who lived at any time years ago at number 18 Wiston Road, relatives of mine live there now, and they are interested in who has lived at 18 Wiston Road over the years and their names and did they go to Whitehawk schools.

    By Gwen Walls (20/03/2011)
  • I lived at 242 Wiston Road from 1966-1975 and briefly at 54 as the chimney set on fire at no 242.  I remember the Tutts, they lived a few doors away from 54. Where we were at no 242 there was the Murrels and the Swayslands who lived next door and the Chalcrafts the other side. Sue and Shirley & Scott, their parents were Tom and Joyce. Next to them Gill and Bill Page who had two sets of twin boys Andrew and Mark and Colin and Christopher. Also the Macews and Anita Harris. Also remember the name Testers, Chrissy Murrel and a few others that are on the tip of me tongue. How annoying - probably remember later! The first house on Wiston Road near the block of flats end was the Georges, they had a son Russell and a daughter Susan. They were related to the Swaysland next 242. I think also the Talmeys lived in Wiston Rd. Oh - and Chriss Apse. There was a girl opposite me who was poorly, her name was Valerie but can’t remember her surname. It was great then being able to play out in the streets with all the other children and go to their gardens etc. We used to knock others’ doors and ask for biscuits, imagine that happening now! It surely wouldn’t. How it’s all changed since I lived their. Teachers at Whitehawk School I remember were Mr Scrase, Mr Cartlidge, Mrs Batty. Mr Shvenka (french), Mr Smith (history), Mr Levie, Mr Hodson and Mr Hoddell, the headmaster. Infants - Mrs Woods (reading class). Only remember her because I was in her class when I went down with meningitis when was 7yrs old.

    By Angie Ridpath (13/05/2011)
  • I lived at 115 Wiston Road from 140 to 1952. My neighbourswere: Tidy, Parks, Austins, Chapman, Ron Haywards, Hilton, Todd, Haywood, Funnel,  John Spriggs, Bert Jeffery, Blunt, Butterworth, Simmons. We as children had a great life, long summer holidays full of excitement and sunshine wall to wall. I got as brown as a berry, as they  say, but know one thought or knew about sun and cancer we just took our shirts off and played Red Indians. When I was 13 years of age I got a paper round, carried heavy loads wet or fine and also in snow My deliveries were part of Whitehawk Ave through to Twineham, that was before school, then an evening round which was a different route, all for five shillings a week and it went into a post office account. The name of the shop keeper’s name escapes me. Any one out there remember? Comments welcome.

    By James Guile (02/03/2014)
  • Hello again, this is the follow up. My Sister Jean Toye (nee Guile) was born at 115 Wiston Road 11th September 1942, now living in Heathfield East Sussex. My borther John was born 1st July 1938 at Linttot Avenuer, now living in Peacehaven Sussex. We all went to Whitehawk schools and survived the traumas, and have the scars to show for it! I remember the midwife coming to 115 for my sister’s birth, I went up stairs and the Midwife told me to go and get hot water, which I did as told – I think she wanted me to be occupied during my mother’s labour and screams. I hope my dear sister Jean reads this. I’m now living in sheltered accommodation in Wadhurst, East Sussex.

    By James Guile (04/03/2014)
  • We lived at 228 Wiston Road with my brother David from 1961; my father lived there until he died in 1995. I remember the big freeze 1963 when we could not get out of our road. Scrumping apples playing tennis and football in the street. Mr Trace was the woodwork teacher, Mr Simmonds was my form master. 

    By Philip Ancell (13/09/2016)
  • Hi all…in the late 60’s I dated a girl named Jennifer Dawson, who lived in Wiston Road…we dated for a few years before separating but I’d love to catch up with her to reminisce and see how our lives have panned out…I can remember she had a older brother, Michael and her fathers name George…she attended Whitehawk Girls School…thanks to anyone who can help.

    By Roy harris (14/05/2020)
  • Hi Roy. I lived 2 doors down from Jennifer and Michael Dawson at no. 158. My brother was also called Michael Dawson. No relation. I hope you have luck finding her, she, her mother and Michael were very nice her father was horrible.

    By B Zammit nee Dawson (02/10/2021)

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