When I was aged four, we moved to 18 Grantchester Road, or Dated Cottages as it was then known, as it had the year 1654 on the front in big metal numbers. It also sported an ancient plaque of the Sun Fire-Insurance Company, depicting a smiling face with rays of the sun coming out of it. With the English Civil War still going on at the time, perhaps they thought it prudent to get the newly built property covered by insurance. I hope they weren’t too disappointed when they got the policy through, and read the small print that excluded ‘acts of war and civil unrest’. Off the back bedroom there was a narrow doorway to some stairs that took you up to an attic that I had as a playroom. An enormous wooden beam ran right across the middle of the attic floor, somewhat restricting the layout of my Hornby wind-up train set. There was also an opening skylight; and by balancing on the raised foot-rail of the old feather bedstead that was kept up there for the occasional guest, I could reach out onto the roof and gather interesting clumps of moss. I remember a lone lady American tourist taking a photograph of the house, with me in my wellingtons posed in front. A few weeks later she sent me a copy of the photo all the way from America. American photography must have been years ahead of ours; because instead of just a plain square photo, all four edges of the paper were scalloped.
In around 1954, we moved next-door-but-one into Park Cottage, 22 Grantchester Road; the left hand half of the row of old thatched cottages opposite the church. There were, and possibly still are, three front doors; but even by then it had long since been converted from presumably three into two dwellings. An elderly couple, Mr & Mrs Hislop, lived in the other half.
Continue with the next part of Brian Goodliffe’s childhood memories of Trumpington in the 1940s and 1950s.
Front view of 18 Grantchester Road, from the entrance to Trumpington Church. Photo: Andrew Roberts, August 2008.
20-22 Grantchester Road from the entrance to Trumpington Church. Photo: Andrew Roberts, August 2008.
Looking east along Grantchester Road from the churchyard. Photo: Andrew Roberts, August 2008.
Trumpington Church from Grantchester Road. Photo: Andrew Roberts, September 2007.
Brian Goodliffe (front left), mother, maternal grandmother and brother, summer 1950, in the back yard of Dated Cottages, 18 Grantchester Road. The trees and bushes to the left are on the line of Campbell Lane. Photo: Goodliffe family.
Side view of Dated Cottages, 18 Grantchester Road, 1955, from the garden of Park Cottage, 22 Grantchester Road. Photo: Goodliffe family.
Brian Goodliffe’s mother, Jean, on the doorstep of Park Cottage, 22 Grantchester Road, 1956. The front door lock may have been an original feature, as the key was large scale, similar to a church key. Photo: Goodliffe family.
Park Cottage, 22 Grantchester Road, 13 July 1957, from Grantchester Road. With Brian Goodliffe, rear left (aged 13), Michael Goodliffe, front (aged 7) and one of the Parr family. Photo: Goodliffe family.
Dated Cottages, 18 Grantchester Road, 13 July 1957, from Grantchester Road, showing the Sun-Fire Insurance Company plaque and the 1654 date. With Brian Goodliffe, rear left (aged 13), Michael Goodliffe, front left (aged 7) and the younger boys of the Parr family. Photo: Goodliffe family.
A Goodliffe family photograph from early 1952, in the rear of Dated Cottages, 18 Grantchester Road, with father, Ron, mother, Jean, Michael and Brian, plus Trixie the dog. Photo: Goodliffe family.
Brian Goodliffe as a Trumpington choir boy, in the rear garden of Dated Cottages, looking towards the rear of other houses on Grantchester Road, 1953. Photo: Goodliffe family.