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Showing posts from April, 2022

'The Arbury' - The Memories of Mr Cardinal: Part 4

Manor Nurseries staff c. mid-1940s - Gordon Cardinal, centre. Mr Cardinal's memories of Arbury in the 1930s and '40s continue. He was a charming man with an amazing memory. He worked tirelessly to record his memories for the Arbury Archive in the early 1980s, inspired by Arbury Is We Live!  His memories paint a wonderful picture of Arbury seventy+ years ago.. The Arbury By Gordon Cardinal Part 4 Along with the autumn came 'Sugar Beet' time. The beet would be ploughed out, and the beet would then have to be pulled out and knocked together, to clean off the soil, then thrown in a neat row down the field. That was 'Beet Knocking' - worth up to 1/- a day for a boy (5p). The men would follow on with a 'beet hook' to chop off the tops of the beet. The 'hook' was like an old sickle blade - cut down with the tip turned up at an angle - that was used to lift the beet off the ground, catch it with the free hand, and cut off the top. A good man could do tha

Main Streets of Arbury: Carlton Way - Part 2

So, via Sara Payne's Down Your Street visit to Carlton Way in 1981, our own memories, and our (mostly previously unpublished) transcripts from the Arbury 1980 project, we're back in the original South Arbury's main street for a further look at its history. Carlton Way did not, of course, arrive all at the same time. While Arbury School opened in 1956, the Carlton Arms public house wasn't built until the late 1950s, for instance. It opened in 1959 - complete with its cosy off licence. Happy memories from years gone by of being taken to the Carlton Arms off licence to buy crisps and fizzy pop on summer evenings in the late 1960s, and also to return Gran and Grandad's Guinness bottles to get the deposit back for 'sweeties' a few years later, make one of our Arbury Archivists go 'all misty-eyed' over this picture. The Carlton Terrace shops were a 1960s innovation. Looking back to the 1970s days of Dean's, Blackwell's, Yarrow's (Yarrer's

Old And New Arbury Meet - Manor Farm, Alex Wood Road and Arbury Court...

Numbers 1 and 2 Manor Farm Cottages stood in the middle of what is now Campkin Road. The back gardens ran across what is now Arbury Town Park. When they were demolished at the start of the 1960s, as work was beginning on North Arbury, one of the ex-occupants, who had many fond memories of life there, took his camera to record the cottages' demise. This striking photograph shows the cottages from the back as demolition took place. No 2 is almost no more, and No 1, for years the home of Mr Ernest Sale, who began and ran the Manor Nurseries further up Arbury Road towards Histon Road for decades, will soon follow suit. If you look at the bottom left hand corner of the print, you can see across Arbury Road and glimpse Alex Wood Road and Arbury Court. The original part of Arbury Court was then complete - but it was then in Alex Wood Road, which terminated at Arbury Road, and the supermarket and library buildings had yet to arrive. A stray thought, which sometimes crosses our minds, is ho

North Arbury - Arbury Road Junction With Campkin Road - 1955 and 1961

What a difference six years makes! These photographs show the same scene in 1955 and 1961. In 1955, we have the Manor Farm - with its Drive and lodge cottages - and the Manor Nurseries further along the road. In 1961, we have the beginnings of North Arbury. The cottages have just been demolished. Gazing out across the Arbury Field, in the distance were the railway tracks - now the Guided Busway. The massive extension of King's Hedges Road was still some years away and King's Hedges Road still led to the real and actual King's Hedges - north of the railway tracks. For North Arbury, the council planned to retain the trees lining the Manor Farm Drive near Arbury Road, edging the pavement along one side, but workmen accidentally cut through the tap roots and, after a couple of years it became plain that the trees were dying.

Main Streets of Arbury: Carlton Way - Part 1

A lovely photograph from the 'Cambridge Weekly News' showing the then Arbury School headmaster, Mr Barry Jones, and some of his pupils in 1981. In 1982, Campkin Road was described as the 'Hauptstrasse of North Arbury' by local journalist Sara Payne. Ms Payne's  Down Your Street local history articles in the Cambridge Weekly News were hugely popular and, for each one, Ms Payne visited a street in Cambridge and talked to the residents, collecting their memories for publication and producing a fascinating series of 'Then and Now' style articles. Our blog posts on the 'Main Streets of Arbury' will be a combination of material collected from Ms Payne's articles, and from the full, unedited transcripts of conversations with older Arbury residents for the Arbury 1980 project in our archive, most never before published. Down Your Street followed in the footsteps of a similar series in the local press in the early 1960s - by Erica Dimmock - and both no

An Off Licence In South Arbury Many Years Ago?

An enquiry from Ray: I find this blog a great resource. I have some ideas and will email you again ASAP. In the meantime I have a question. My Nan, who died six years ago, used to speak about going to an off licence in South Arbury when she was a young woman many years ago, and I don't think it was in the Carlton Terrace shops. Have you any idea where it was? Answer: Hello, Ray! Thanks for getting in touch. Quite right about Carlton Terrace - there was no off licence there years ago, but there was one at the Carlton Arms. It was through a door between the bay windows at the front of the pub. It had a lovely bell 'ting' as you entered - very full and melodic! One of us Arbury Archivers remembers being taken there by his mother in the late 1960s/early 1970s to buy fizzy pop, crisps, and something for Mum. He used to wonder where the person behind the counter used to appear from, not realising that the pub's bars were connected and the person was working behind them. Our

All Aboard The North Arbury Bus!

The North Arbury bus in the early 1970s, outside Bradwell's Court in Cambridge city centre. The driver had an enclosed cabin - these were the days of bus conductors, who came around with their ticket machines, collecting fares. We were particularly struck by the two elderly ladies at the front on the lower deck, gazing out of the window at the photographer. We wonder what they were thinking, and if they were heading home for a cuppa and that day's episode of Waggoners' Walk on Radio 2? A different world...

'The Arbury' - The Memories of Mr Cardinal - Part Three

Back to the Arbury 1930s/40s harvest... The Arbury Part Three By Gordon Cardinal The carts used were the two wheeled tumbrel carts. The sheaves would be pitched onto the cart with a long handled pitching fork as the cart moved from one 'stook' to the next. Whoever was leading the horse had to call to the man on the cart 'HOLD TIGHT!' as the cart began to move to the next stook - so the cry of 'HOLD TIGHT!' could be heard all around the Arbury fields. After carting the corn, some fields would be gleaned with a spring tied horse rake and gathered up for the farm chickens. Gleanings were the ears of corn not picked up by the binder. If you didn't want anyone to glean your field, two sheaves of corn were left standing in the field.  That was the sign for 'No Gleaning'. Some of the Manor Farm corn was stacked in a field along Arbury Road, but most of the small holdings stacked their corn in the Rick Yard. All the stacks were built square. One man would be

Beyond Wards... Where Is Stretten Avenue?

1960s advertisement: New Chesterton Window Cleaning, Stretten Avenue, Cambridge. Lovely e-mail from Sarah, who lives in Stretten Avenue in the Arbury electoral ward: Your site is very interesting indeed. I do know that the Arbury Estate exists outside of electoral wards, and have always seen the original estate, Carlton Way to King's Hedges Road, as the genuine article when it comes to Arbury. Of course, here in my area we have French's Chesterton Mill and Chesterton School and it is plainly not Arbury, just as King's Hedges Ward has nothing to do with the original King's Hedges (I have enjoyed your posts on the subject) and has everything to do with Arbury - Arbury Community Centre, North Arbury Chapel and the Arbury Town Park included. As you say, the Stretten Avenue district has its own history which dates back to the 1930s. I would like to know its history a little. On this side of Cambridge, historically we have Chesterton village and its surrounds (East Chesterton

Arbury Artefacts - Part One

Imagine the thrill of being on an archaeological dig at Arbury Camp. Well, we would have loved it. Just like Tony of Time Team ! But we didn't do any of that and now Orchard Park is there we can't. However, we can dig up artefacts from the original Arbury Estate and the Hall, Manor and Arbury Camp farms which predated it. Take a look at the exercise book at the top of this post and below. It's from the Manor School, 1978. The owner has asked that we blot out her name ('Don't you DARE show it!' she said), but it's still a real time capsule. Here was a John Travolta fan, a Fonzie (1950s retro style icon from Happy Days ) fan, a Liverpool FC fan.  And also somebody experiencing a couple of 'crushes' on local lads.  Those were the days. No World Wide Web, no mobile phones, no home computing. In fact, no school computing either.  Yep, for the vast majority of us computers were things which Dr Who tackled (all flashing lights and spinning spools) and also