[A Collage of Lavenham]

Lavenham Parish Council's Millennium Website

Last October my wife and I were once again able to visit Lavenham again but this time to stay a couple of days due to the kindness of our friends Danny and Julie of Church Street. It was wonderful to have dinner in their dining room in which I had enjoyed many meals when it was part of my Uncle Stan's house, now bearing the name of Blair House. Incidentally in those days my Uncle, who worked for Mr. Steed, rented Blair House for the princely sum of one half crown a week (12.5p). At that time there was no water laid into the houses and we took buckets to the street water taps. I was pleased to see that a few of these still exist and hope they are preserved. Also in those days there was no sewage system and a gallant gentleman came through the village with a horse-drawn tank and emptied the 'privvies' - what a job!! The milk was delivered from the Priory by a horse drawn cart with a huge churn on the back from which milk was ladled into jugs awaiting the milkman outside the house doors. Each jug usually had an ornate cover to keep the bugs away. I thought of this as I pondered on the corner of Bears Lane wondering what happened to the side door leading into what is now Danny and Julie's dining room. A quick check soon showed where it had been filled in.

On our visit we were lucky to purchase copies of Ranson's old Lavenham pictures from which I learned a lot I did not know. It seems these books are out of print and I urge anyone interested in this wonderful village to get them if they can. [Editor's note: These books are now both available from Lavenham Church Bookstall, priced at £2.50 each.]

Seeing the picture of the Guildhall on this site reminded me that during WWII it had different uses among which was a bathhouse where I had many a weekly scrub!

My grandfather Charlie Carter was born in Shilling Street although I don't know where but I know he ended his days in the alms houses next to Lavenham Church - no not those that are there now but much older and primitive homes. Nevertheless my Granny was still able to make a really great Yorkshire or Suet pudding several times a week (I can still taste them)! Who I wonder in Lavenham still has their 'pudden and gravy' first with the meat and taters to follow - not many I feel sure. They certainly do not take their Sunday dinner to be cooked in the baker's oven on Church Street while they went to church!! It ain't there no more!

Enough for this time about my memories.

Jack Ashby

[Collage Contents] [Collage Home] [Collage Tour] [Welcome to Lavenham]