Monday, 21 November 2016

A little bit of Manchester in Peckham

Now I went looking for a certain house on Barforth Road which is on the northern edge of Peckham Rye Park.

A postcard home to Peckham
The house in question is an attractive semi on two floors, and I know that back in 1911 it consisted of seven rooms and was home to the Dansie family.

Mr George Dansie described himself as a corn seed dealer and he had been married to Marion Elizabeth for 24 years.

He died in 1938 leaving £1,300 and for now that is pretty much all I know but in time I will go looking for his shop and something more on his wife and his three children.

And it was one of those children that first drew me in to the story of the family and the house.

This was George who was born in 1890 worked in the family business and in the November of 1917 was in Manchester.

I have no idea what he was doing so far north but given the date he may have been stationed in the city or just passing through.

The picture postcard from Manchester
There are a few possible candidates in the army records of which one was in the Army Service Corps.

And on that November day he wrote back to his mother that he “will be writing a letter to you tomorrow” and that he had been “to two theatres last week” and was planning to visit another.

Now he had chosen a picture post card of the YMCA hostel in the heart of the city which may have been acting as a hospital, all of which raises some intriguing clues to follow up.

And more so for me.  I grew up On Lausanne Road, spent a year in a school in Nunhead and played in the park.  Of course all of that would have been a long time after George and his family lived in Barforth Road.

But I like the way that a little bit of my adopted city made its way down to Peckham.

Location Peckham & Manchester

Picture; the YMCA Hostel in Piccadilly, 1917 from the collection of David Harrop

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