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Author Topic: The Strand - Gillingham  (Read 44479 times)

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Offline afsrochester

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Re: The Strand - Gillingham
« Reply #10 on: October 30, 2009, 21:53:21 »
Thanks Numanfan. I was guessing around that time late 40's early 50's,

I do recall one of the boats being half submerged in the bottom left hand corner of the lake (nearest the river) It was there for quite some time I seem to remember.

Offline numanfan

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    • www.move2medway.co.uk
Re: The Strand - Gillingham
« Reply #9 on: October 30, 2009, 21:03:03 »
1950. From the book 'Images of England - Medway Towns'
www.move2medway.co.uk - take the journey

Offline afsrochester

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Re: The Strand - Gillingham
« Reply #8 on: October 30, 2009, 20:48:20 »
Hi Merc.

Do you have a date for the B/W photo at all?

merc

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Re: The Strand - Gillingham
« Reply #7 on: October 30, 2009, 20:28:20 »

Then and now.



Offline afsrochester

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Re: The Strand - Gillingham
« Reply #6 on: October 30, 2009, 20:01:27 »
Hi all.

Being born in the mid-50's in the Medway Towns, the Strand was always considered (amongst us kids) as a treat, without having the extra expense of train fares and admission charges to places like Dreamland.

Personally, I loved the Strand although the area you show looked very different back then. No murals painted on the walls for starters!

 The the paddling pool with its tall  "mushrooms" that threw out water like a leaking main water supply and behind it...............................the boating lake that always had a thin film of oil across the top! The wonderful Steam Minature Railway, the Police Car on the Roundabout that all kids used to fight over to get in, along with the fire engine, the two-man rope-pulled boat swings next to the roundabout, the tarmac-covered swing and roundabout area with all the grazed knees, elbows and hands,  the cafe,  and on top of all that, the smell of the Gasworks (we're talking Town Gas here). God, I can smell it now!

I remember going on the Boating Lake on my own, (that wouldn't be allowed now).  I must have been about 5 or 6 and getting a very bad blisters on my hand as the rubber handle on one of the paddles was broken, and then  having to go to the St. John Ambulance First Aid hut for treatment near the minature railway station, (does anyone remember if the station had a name?). I used the swimming pool (complete with shredded seaweed) extensively in the summer of 68. I was training for my Junior Life-Savers Certificate.

Colin, you have stirred up some very happy childhood memories!

Thanks.

WildWeasel

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Re: The Strand - Gillingham
« Reply #5 on: October 30, 2009, 19:23:18 »
I grew up in the 60's & 70's in Milner Road Gillingham so the Strand was a major part of my life, also for my kids in the '90s as Mum & Dad still live there
From memory the photos you have used to be a paddling pool and Boating lake (The boating lake was on the river side of the area, small two seater Paddle boats that you propelled by turning handles).
As my brother was smaller than me and couldn`t turn the handle as fast we just used to go round and round in circles. The water was not the cleanest, I would imagine it was filled via a sluice gate from the river at High Tide. Very smelly in the summer.
Close by there where also Swing Boats, swinging contraptions that you got going by pulling on ropes. With a bit of practice it was possible to get these things moving at a reasonable speed and attain well over 90 either side of standing. Elf n Safety would have a fit if we had them today.
Gonna try and find some Photos.

WW

Offline colin haggart

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Re: The Strand - Gillingham
« Reply #4 on: October 30, 2009, 19:03:15 »
I took these photos back in the summer.
I do not know much about the Strand, perhaps some one could fill in the details.
















rossco

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Re: The Strand - Gillingham
« Reply #3 on: October 30, 2008, 13:24:23 »
Good stuff WW! ;D

I remember the old bandstand and my sister going to watch some dodgy 80s band down there! My neighbour (Mr Taylor) used to run the mini railway. Then a mate used to drive it a few years back...

I used to be in the Sea Scouts so used the causeway quite regular for launching canoes/getting stuck in the mud!

Anyone else go down there for the lighting of the beacon?

merc

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Re: The Strand - Gillingham
« Reply #2 on: October 29, 2008, 22:09:19 »
I used to love the strand when i was younger. It's not the same now without the paddling pool and paddleboats.

I recently found this photo, but i can't remember what year it's from...50's,60's maybe ???


WildWeasel

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The Strand - Gillingham
« Reply #1 on: October 29, 2008, 21:46:15 »
Growing up in lower Gillingham in the '60,s & '70,s The Strand was a major part of my life...
Its a "park" on the river front alongside the Gasworks ...This was the site of the original Hamlet that became Gillingham ( See Ron Baldwins The Gillingham Chronicles for history of this..

I couldnt begin to imagine how many hours of my life I spent there.. As a young boy and teenager it was the place to hang out with your mates..In the 60's there was a boating pond ( Filthy water !) I seem to recall the boats had side paddle wheels which you worked by hand..
Next to that where what we called the Swing boats...Fairly l
arge contraptions like a kiddies swing but with ropes that you pulled to get them going...It was possible to achieve some alarming speeds and heights in these if you got it right... Health & Safety would have a fit if they were still there..
The Swimming pool is still there.... Open air ( one of very few Lido's left in the UK ) My first swimming lessons were there as we were marched down from Hillyfields School ( Ingram Road opposite the church )
Absolutley Freezing ( probably why I never learned to swim until I was in my mid 20's )

There was a bandstand and in there used to be  pedal cars that you could hire to drive around it..I always used to go for the "Jeep" My brother had the "Police car"
There was a Miniature railway,Pitch & putt course and a set of Tennis courts which were deserted except for a couple of weeks around Wimbledon when everyone dusted off their raquets an played the game again
After a makeover in the 80's they
built a Crazy golf course... Not really crazy...just a bit mad....

The river was great when the tide was in but just an expanse of mud  when it was out...This was good though as we would then go hunting for crabs amongst the rocks and Tank Traps...
If low tide was around midday the smell was unbelievable.... Still get it sometimes as I live in Rainham not far from the river and it brings memories flooding back

Sometime in the 70's British Railways ran an advertizing campaign to promote the Strand and attract visitors ....It had the Tag line
"Lets all go down the Strand, Have a Bonanza ! " which I reckon was ripped from a London Music hall promotion many years ago...
Of course me & my mate found this hilarious and would routinley go into the Cafe and ask for a "Bonanza" which really upset the staff....

Its all still there, a little different as they built a new bandstand in the 1970s (a concrete job that replaced the original one
...)

All looks a little tired now but I still go there often as it holds so many memories...I have pics of me as a kid in the mid 60's throwing stones from the shingle beach...and pics of my kids in the 90's doing the same with their Grandparents
Priceless...
More L8R
WW

 

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