May 31, 2019|Reports

“Tales my father told me: One man’s early life in Wickham” – David Houghton

You had to be pretty tough to go to Wickham School in the early 1900s. At playtime and lunchtime, rain or shine, the school was locked and the children had to play outside. Heating in the classrooms was not great either!

David Houghton shared his father Jack’s reminiscences on his childhood in Wickham with 47 members and visitors on Tuesday May 28th at our AGM. Wickham Fair was a big event in the children’s calendar, but so too was Empire Day and May Day, when children went round the village giving out garlands of flowers. Hoops, marbles and football were all popular playtime games and Sunday school outings to the seaside (Chapel not Church for Jack) were real treats.

Jack’s main memory of the First World War as a boy was being paid (very generously) by an American airman who had crash landed in Wickham to watch his plane for him while he got help. But the war ended his education early – after a year at Price’s school in Fareham his father, Ernest, took him out aged 14 to work on the family farm. Jack continued in farming, for 3 years in Canada and then in Denmead, and his son David followed in his footsteps until his own retirement a few years ago.

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