John Taylor

John Taylor (left) with friend John Fortey also from Great Witley
John Taylor (left) with friend John Fortey also from Great Witley

John Taylor was interviewed for the project in 2014. John’s father was the Maintenance Engineer for the Abberley Preparatory School although he went to Great Witley Village School from 1938. As a young boy he lived in the former Toll House at the bottom of the Bromyard Road. The Old Toll House (of which many photographs remain) was demolished to widen the road. Abberley School built a new house in its grounds for John’s family.

John Taylor enjoying a glass of wine at Witleys Oral History Celebration Event on 17th June 2017.
John Taylor enjoying a glass of wine at Witleys Oral History Celebration Event on 17th June 2017.

John tells many stories of life as a young boy playing in the village and on his bike in the tunnels leading from the Fountain at Witley Court to Martley. He also recalls the snow in the vicious winter of 1947 and the resulting landslide on Abberley Hill which was reported nationally.

John passed the 11 plus examination and went on to Hartlebury Grammar School. He now lives in Kidderminster and keeps in touch with close friends from the village school to this day.

 

 

Filename: Taylor_John_20140923_1_2_A.mp3 (11 mins 48 secs)

Start Topic Period
00:00 Living at The Old Toll House, Bromyard Road, Great Witley 1930s/40s
00:54 Moving from The Old Toll House when it was demolished 1940s
01:30 Playing with friends in the village area 1940s
02:02 Falling into the old slurry pit 1940s
02:15 Playing and cycling in the ruins of Witley Court 1940s
03:37 Taking bricks from the ruined Witley Court to build father’s greenhouse 1940s
03:55 Father growing tobacco for cigarettes in wartime 1940s
04:32 Fighting with schoolboys from Abberley Hall School 1940s
05:44 Lecture from the Rector on “birds and bees” 1940s
06:05 Suicide of Rector 1940s
06:30 Winter of 1947 1940s
07:20 Landslide on Abberley Hill caused by melting snow in the winter of 1947 1940s
08:30 Children playing with guns and knives 1950s
09:33 Breaking windows at The Hundred House with catapults 1940s
10:05 Being attacked by dog belonging to the then ,licensee of The Hundred House 1950s
10:52 Travelling workers from the Black Country coming to pick hops in the area 1950s
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