Bygone Days at Watersplace Farm in the '30s

From the Waresider - The Wareside Parish Magazine

I can remember the happy days when I was a child taking my father’s lunch up the field to him at harvest time. Sometimes it would be fried egg and bacon in a sandwich, or cheese and pickle. He would also have a large can of tea which I would happily enjoy with him, sitting by the stack of corn made by the farm workers.

After the corn was cut by a horse drawn binder it was lifted up into shocks to dry. It was then collected by horse and cart and taken to the thrashing machine where it was separated, the chaff coming out one end and corn the other, into sacks which were hooked on either end of the machine. I used to lead the horse and cart to and fro for refill of sheaves of corn until the field was cleared. Sometimes the sheaves were taken up on an elevator to stack for winter use.

During the war there were land girls to help with the work. A Ministry of Information film crew came to the farm and I was proud to take part in the film, feeding and whistling the hens to come for their food. Last year I made a few enquiries into the whereabouts of the film and discovered that it was kept in the archives department at the museum in London. I was told that I would have to visit London to see the film, which might be difficult to find and only lasted three minutes, so I reluctantly declined their offer.

~ Jean Wren, Bakers End ~

This page was added on 01/10/2011.

Comments about this page

  • George and Emily Head were my great great grandparents. (John), my great grandfather Will(iam) was your grandfathers brother. He headed to East London with the railway in the late 1890s. My grandparents Bill (William) & Doll (Doris) i think would have liked to retire to Wareside but never left Leyton. They are both buried in Wareside churchyard.

    By Kevin Head (27/07/2016)
  • Are you any relation of Arthur Head? I think he was at Wareside school about the same time as me (1950-55)

    By Judi Friend (06/03/2016)
  • My great grandparents worked and raised their 12 children at Watersplace Farm. They arrived in the 1860’s (approx), their names were George and Emily Head. My grandfather David was born at the farm in Sept 1886, he left in around 1900 to go to Shenley,Herts. He married there and my Father Thomas George was born in Shenley in 1917. He took my sisters and I there for picnics when we were children, we  would walk for hours through the old estate. I emigrated to Canada in 1972, and always visit Watersplace Farm while in the UK. I have taken each of my three children there over the years and hope in the future to bring some of my grandchildren!! Always a special place in my heart as part of my heritage.

    By John Head (05/05/2012)

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