'somewhere I will always think of as home'

By Maggie Whitaker

I was born in Kymswell Road, in Shephall in May 1970, and lived in the Shephall area of Stevenage until 2011.  I have such fond memories of my time in Stevenage, and it will always hold a special place in my heart, as that is where I was born and spent most of my life living.

As a child I attended Bandley Hill infants, (now known as Featherstone Wood school). I have such fond memories of my time there.  Mrs Fife was the Head Mistress, and she used to bring her dog Polly to school with her.  My teacher was Mrs Belcher, we went on school trips, one I remember was to a silk worm organisation.  We had lovely Christmas Parties, in the hall with long tables laid out.  I loved the paddling pool there too, in the summer.

Peartree Spring Juniors

I moved onto Peartree Spring Juniors, and my first teacher there was Miss Eales (she later became, Mrs Ford). I then was taught by, Mrs Lee, Mr Hedges and finally Mrs Whale. I loved that school, we used to go swimming in the school pool in the summer, but the water was always so cold…. In the winter we would travel to the indoor pool, at the Girls School.

My Secondary school was Barnwell, and I remember Mr Bowls, and his beloved purple track suit…

In the summer holidays as a young child, I would often go to Fairlands Valley park, with my brother, or friends, and we would hire a canoe or paddle boat, and play in the paddling pools for hours, those really were the days.  I remember when they added the Trim track, we would spend many hours using that, as we grew older.

Bandley Hill Adventure Playground

We would also play at Bandley Hill Adventure Playground and in the Donkey Park, back then there was a wooden sculpture that looked nothing like a donkey…. there was also an area by the swings, full of lilac bushes, where we used to play hide and seek, and some mud hills where we would ride our bikes over.

The Hyde shops were very different then too, there was a toilet block to the side of the Chinese Takeaway, a bank, Launderette, Hardware shops, Butchers and Greengrocers.

Shephall has changed quite a bit over the years, but it is somewhere I will always think of as home.

This page was added on 06/02/2013.

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  • I first moved to Stevenage in 61/62 and my parents bought a brand new semi at the Broadwater end of Shephall Way. I think it cost about £2000. Attended Longmeadow junior and then went on to Alleynes. Enjoyed fishing at Aston Pond.

    By David Jackson (18/08/2017)
  • Shephall was my childhood home too. Fond memories. I was born in 1973 and lived there until my parents moved to Westcliff-on-Sea in 1987. I lived in Chertsey Rise. Have fond memories of playing in the streets, riding my bike up and down the “first and second garages” between Chertsey Rise and Fallowfield. Obviously the Donkey Park was the main park we played in. Summers holidays seemed endless in those day…. playing football and cricket etc. I remember me and some friends trying to be Brazil 1982 (think Socrates, Falcao, Zico etc!). I remember Bandley Hill Infants and Juniors as well. Mrs Fife was headmistress of Infants for me as well. Mrs Sargentson was one of my teachers… but I cant recall the names of any other in Infants. For the Juniors (i was there 1981-1985) Mr Revell was the Headmaster. I has Mrs Felstead for 1st year, Mrs Samuels for 2nd year, Mrs Lake for 3rd year, and Mrs Samuels again for the 4th year. I seem to recall a good group of friends there (although memory is hard to recall now I’n 41!). But I remember Stuart Johnson, Gary Savage, Andrew (?sirname), Mark Ades, Craig (?sirname), Lee Varney. And some of the girls too: Claire Platt, Natalia, Jo Perry. The cycle lanes in Stevenage were brilliant. I remember even aged about 10, cycling all the way into town centre with my younger brother. It’s a shame for my children, but they cant do that where we live. Life was very different then. No internet! No shops open Wednesday afternoons or Sundays! You just couldnt believe that now. As a kid you were just happy with a ball and a bike. Christian Tam

    By Christian Tam (22/01/2015)
  • I was born in Valley Way but moved to Rowland Rd when I was about 2. As a teenage I used to play at the Canyon adventure play ground where I meet a girl from Shackleton Spring. We got married in 1978 at the regestrie office in the old town but 20 years later had our marriage blessed at St. Marys Shephall Green. I also was the Group Scout Leader at the 7th Scouts on Shephall Green which is where we had our wedding reception for both our weddings.

    By martin kent (24/06/2013)