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Ann's Story.

Fond memories of early childhood days in Plumstead Common and the nearby woods around the mid 1950's era.


All of a sudden they were there; blackberries!
Jam jars were acquired from mum, who seemed to have jars on hand; no recycling then.
Off we would go, usually three or four of us kids from Sladedale Road and pick the juiciest and tastiest blackberries ever, excited at getting something to take home and everyone declaring they had picked the biggest one yet!
Scratched and stained hands; we'd take our haul home and mum would make apple & blackberry pudding or stewed apple & blackberry with custard..........Yum!


I remember my brother Colin showing us kids fossils in the stones on the Common. It was just too good to be true; I thought it was a trick.
Breaking open the stones by bashing them together and to actually see the sparkling crystal inside the stone, or the imprint of a shell, was the best natural history lesson I'd ever had.
After we realised the Common held treasures like these, we would go hunting for hours on the stone slide, situated on the first bit of the Common on the left going up Lakedale Road.
When we had explored the stones enough we'd run at full pelt down the steep stony hill causing a mini avalanche that would spill over onto the pavement, great fun.
I went back there years later, after our family moved to Manor Park in East London. The grass had grown over all the stones, hiding them, along with their hidden treasures.


Winter time was great when the snow lay thick on the steep slopes of the Common above the Ravine Lake, and if you had older brothers, as I did, they would have made a wooden sledge.
The neighbourhood kids would congregate on the Common and everyone took turns; no pushing or shoving, just good fun. Sliding down at breakneck speed with many bumps and occasional wipe out spills into the thick soft snow.
By this time your woollen gloves, two pairs of socks and wellies were well and truly soaked. The intense cold would grip you and, shivering, you would make your way home.
Mum would somehow get everything warm and dry and you'd be ready to go out again for more thrills, on those busy snow covered slopes of the Common.

Reminiscences of Ann Warner (nee Weightman)

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