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Basildon Stories
The story of Basildon & District as they were 1937 - 1947 - Part 6
by Thomas Edwards


     Now we retrace our steps back along the A13 until we come to the overhead railway bridge.

     Passing underneath on our left side we come to Sandon Road where there is a cafe on the corner with a machine gun post in front of it. We cross this road and pass a wooded copse and the shops called "The Pitsea Parade", then Hickleys Garage and then what was once a small hospital for wounded soldiers of the first war, now an overgrown ruin. This is followed by an unmade road with a gas shop and "Alfs" market shop, another shop and Pitsea School playing field.

     On our right after passing underneath the railway bridge we come to Pitsea Nurseries and open greengrocery space, then 'Sharps' Fish and Chip Shop and an Antique Shop, two houses, a Confectioners Shop and "Pitsea Parsonage" a mock Tudor building set in its own grounds. It is Pitsea Conservative Club.

     Passing Pitsea School on our left side we also pass an old house which is Pitsea Doctor's Surgery. Then we come to Popes Avenue and Burn's Avenue, two unmade roads with a few bungalows and open fields beyond them Pitsea Motor Garage and the "Railway Tavern" built in the thirties.

     So on our right we pass the "Parsonage" and also some houses built in the thirties. We go past Tennyson Road and an open field and we come to Pitsea Broadway Cinema; we are in the heart of Pitsea itself.

     On our left we pass the "Railway Tavern" and cross Northlands Drive an unmade road leading to Nevendon. We come to Midland Bank and "Naps" the clothing shop an open space, then a shop which is also Pitsea Post Office.

     So on our right we pass Pitsea Cinema and come to some shops then Station Lane which runs on our right side to Pitsea Railway Station; also nearby is Pitsea Market. In the centre of this road stands Pitsea's War Memorial and across on the other side is a cornfield and Pitsea's rustic bandstand; crowning all on a steep hill stands St. Michael's Church which is 700 hundred years old and is floodlit by night.

     We pass more shops on our left side until we come to a junction going on our left up to Rectory Road; on our right the A13 goes on towards Gun Hill and Southend. As we pass the cornfield on our right we come to a modern building Barclays Bank and a footpath leading up to St. Michael's Church. Then we pass an old shop then Telegraph Cottages built in 1722 and then we pass another shop and come to Howard's Dairies behind the "White House" which was built in 1641 and was perhaps the first shop in Pitsea.

     We cross over at the junction and on our right is an open field with cows grazing and a small bomb crater; we come to Pitsea Police Station and so on passing many bungalows and houses until we arrive at a bend in the road and come to some shops on our left.

     We are now in Rectory Road. We pass a shop which is Wager's Dairy and also Pitsea Scouts Hall and the Rectory and Baptist Church. Then we cross over Wickford Avenue. Why it was named so I fail to understand. We carry on until we come to a bend and cross an unmade road which is Briscoe Road. This comes out near Nevendon; then a sweet shop and more bungalows straight along all the way to Holden's Shop and the junction at Burnt Mills Road.

     On our left we pass the shops and one was called "The Cabin" a delight for boys who collect foreign stamps.

     We pass some houses built in 1935 and then onwards passing bungalows towards the junction of Burnt Mills Road which leads to the left to Nevendon and to the right towards Bowers Gifford.

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Page added: July 2003
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