Nunhead on the Rye


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Joined Nov 25 2011
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Nunhead on the Rye

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Reply The-islander
12:51 PM on November 25, 2011 
A local Moderator.
There was once a man from Nunhead,
of his posts, it's better the least is said.
His too infrequent coming and going,
it's that shows so little of his knowing.
Of his neighbours that nearby, him live,
any respect from him of them will give.
I doubt if he's ever been inside a church,
I would not bother wasting time to search.
His choice of music is simply atrocious,
to listen to that he must be unconscious.
I say let live and let each do to his own,
but it obvious that he has not fully grown.
Reply The-islander
12:24 PM on November 25, 2011 
Having worked on the bombed damaged houses from 1945 for two years then continue to Prefabs later two storied sectional houses then new houses I have a little knowledge of time factor involved.
At most only a part could be built.
The claim to build a complete Prefabricated Bungalow in a day is not possible.
The sites that most of the London Prefabs were built on were occupied by former buildings, these remains having been removed and the cellars and basements plus the crater of the bomb itself filled in and compressed to a stable foundation, did take a considerable time as there was very little construction machinery in those days.
The preparation of the site of each Prefab had to be marked and a Datum set (height set to allow draining into local sewer ).
Nearly all trenches for drainage were hand dug by Irish Navvies, these were dug first and a pipe was positioned underneath to exit inside the solid foundation base where the toilet would be situated, to be connected later, the trench that was back filled over this pipe, a tool called a jumping Jack was held by an operator that jumped up and the weight of the machine compressed the clay then the hardcore of broken bricks then a layer of ballast, over this a membrane as a damp course, the base was a level single pour of concrete of six inches that was mixed on site in an 18/12 Mixer, and by wheelbarrow into the preformed base area made to shape for the Prefab that had been made by using reinforced steel lengths called formers these were secured in position with iron pegs and locked in position, and the height adjusted to true level again.
The damp course that had to be placed under the exterior walls was of bright copper, it protruded out and was bent down to protect the concrete base from water penetration, in those days there was always a night watchman on each site or this would soon have vanished, and no site had any hoarding to keep out the public.
The type of Prefab we had to erect was made of Asbestos, sections about four foot wide eight foot tall an inch and a half thick the windows Galvanised Crittel with small glass panes, a porch over the front door. Some of the inside cupboards were as to day quick assemble the interior doors had to be hung as they did not fit exactly the Cooker sink bath and toilet all fitted into their places, one fire place, the floor had to be covered in a liquid mixture that when spread out with a float tool found its own level as it dried out.
The sections of the bungalow came on several lorries, in those days there had not been many large lorries made, mostly old Ex Military ones, and all sections had to be carried across the site by several men, the men that put the parts together laid out the side sections on the ground around the base to make sure each one was the right one as the plan showed.
The usual way was to start at the narrow end stand one section of the end wall then a section of side wall, these supported each other, continue adding sections until a partition was needed this then gave extra stability, when all the walls were positioned the roof support sections were placed on top, the roof sections then lifted and manoeuvred into place, the chimney that had two outlets, the roof had to be covered in three layers of bitumen felt, each sealed together with hot pitch, these hung down into the gutters that had been fitted, a layer of small flint chippings was bedded onto the top layer of felt.
The electrics were in the sections and very small light switches in the door frames, the plumbing had to be carried out in the normal way, waste pipes went out through the wall, drains that took the rainwater and sewage had to be trenched across the site to the main sewer in the main road.
The Electric and Water had to be trenched to each Prefab.
The inside and out side painted, a number allotted and screwed under the letter box.
Concrete paths were laid again using the steel formers, and wooden fences erected to give each a garden of their own.
If you look at the time that all those men had to work at their own trade in the correct sequence not getting into each others way and allowing for concrete base and roof bitumen and paint to dry, you will understand the claim of a one day job is not accurate.
At this time I had taken up the offer of an Apprenticeship of Carpenter with Greenaway & Son the Lordship Lane Builder, and had to attend the then named Brixton School of Building once a week and evenings. The School later got a new name South London Polytechnic it was at Stockwell Green.
I am grateful of the opportunity that gave me the early footing to progress to become an Architectural member of Staff on Southwark Borough Council, on to Greater London Council, then to my eventual Rural Borough Council until I retired.
Reply The-islander
12:19 PM on November 25, 2011 
Getting there in 1945.

If you walked up to the junctions of Elland Road and Cheltenham Road and Peckham Rye,
at this the Terminus in the middle of the road, the arriving Tram driver is standing by.
He has reversed his driving position to return to the Thames Embankment and waits for you,
it is your choice to dismount at any place along the way, just pick a place it is what to do.

The red and cream painted double deck electric Tram, travels on a pair steel rails let in the road,
seventy eight persons are carried on the two decks making up the full capacity load.
To board a tram you have to mount the platform at the back, take the left entry to the left lower cabin,
or take the right entry to climb the curved staircase to the upper deck and choose the seat you are having.

Red leather seats that the backs can be reversed when the tram changes at its destination to return again,
buy your ticket from the Conductor to your destination for just a few Penny?s, shows a punch hole so plain.
The Conductor rings the bell that sounds in the drivers cabin to give the all clear to start and it moves,
the passengers start to feel the sway , as the tram wheels rotate in the sunken steel rail grooves.

Down the incline lumbers the heavy tram to Nunhead Lane junction with East Dulwich Road turning left.
halting outside the Peckham Rye Open Air Swimming Baths, to see the bathers from the top deck is best.
The high dive board has is full queue of divers waiting to take their turn to take that dive into the water,
those not so certain of their footing at the end of the diving board, makes those not so sure falter.

Goose Green is still that open green space, opposite where the Dulwich Swimming Baths is found,
just beyond is the junction of Lordship Lane and Grove Vale where our tram will be go round.
The large Cinema called the Odeon where you can see all the Films and News is on the left location,
a little further is the Railway Bridge crossing the road and the East Dulwich Southern Railway Station.

Dog Kennel Hill is a very steep hill, that has four sets of Tram rails set in the road here securely,
should a Tram blow a fuse and loose power, to slowly move back to the foot of the hill temporarily.
To start again on its assent to the top of the hill and bringing the passengers there without more event,
if you have experienced this happen while you are on board, your feelings then are quite unpleasant.
Reply The-islander
12:16 PM on November 25, 2011 
Sitting on the Rye

I am sitting here on the bench, on Peckham Rye,
watching as those people who are passing by.
The sun is shinning warm, but its quite breezy,
I feel content, in fact this vision it me pleases .

Into view are two large women pushing buggies,
dragging two young children wearing Huggies.
One of the ladies is large enormously fat,
the other one is at least twice the size of that.

They pause at my seat , as one child rants,
its obvious to me, that he?s filled up his pants.
Mum removes his Huggie, kid had a whimper,
she hangs thing on to the handle of my Zimmer.

No wipe of the behind or replacement is done,
left to wander around and dry out in the sun.
Soon his bottom is drying but getting crusty,
alright for them my zimmer?s going rusty.

Despite my plea of ?please don't come so near?,
the child?s hands grip my knee and started to smear.
Dirty brown finger marks on to my grey slacks,
it?s obvious that the discipline this child lacks.

The Huggie is caught in the draught of a passing bus,
it?s dragged away to follow in tow, away from us.
It?s recovered by mum who goes to the bushes,
who having no bag, there she discardingly pushes.

The flies are here now from his bottom to my bald head,
little brown foot prints left there that the sun?s burnt red.
The smell remains now, once here stays ever clinging,
even the birds have gone away, it stopped their singing.

The state I?m in, I want to have a wash, but where?
the toilet has closed down now and is no longer there.
I try think of an solution of what am I to do?
I?m going home by bus, I take my place in the queue.

Here comes the 78 the doors open, it?s famed Nigel,
who will do all he can to make your life hell.
Where is your Pass? You are not coming on here to sit.
look at your trousers the legs covered in shit.

I back out, the door slams shut, my zimmer is jammed I shout,
he drives away my zimmer is part in but most sticking out.
He overtakes a parked car, not allowing for the protrusion,
he now drives a Bendy door bus, just to add to his confusion.
Reply The-islander
11:21 AM on November 25, 2011 
This website is about Nunhead and all that is in it and those who live or work here