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John Stonehouse, Walsall MP, gave us Commons tour

By Black Country Bugle  |  Posted: August 24, 2014

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IN 1957 I was a 13-year-old pupil at Short Heath Secondary Modern School, which was located in Bloxwich Road North, Short Heath, Willenhall.

That year a school holiday was organised to London, as I recall, by Mr Eric Morgan, who was the geography teacher.

We travelled down by train and then got around London by tube and coach. We stayed at what I, as a very tall and gawky 13-year-old, thought of as a very posh hotel, the Frobisher Court in Kensington.

We were grouped several to a room and I think my room-mates were Lynn Bridgewood, Sheila Bate and another girl or two.

We enjoyed clubbing together and ordering coffee, brought up by a nice waiter, on the room phone, all very new to us. We had a radio in the room too, very high tech. in those days! I think we fancied the Maltese waiter.

We visited Buckingham Palace, well we stood outside and looked! We went to the Natural History Museum, to Windsor, around St. Paul's Cathedral and to what was then London airport, in the fog as I recall.

We had a trip on a river boat to Greenwich and we were taken on an escorted tour of the Houses of Parliament by our MP, the now somewhat notorious John Stonehouse.

We dined mostly at a café somewhere called The Princess Café. Breakfast was taken at the hotel.

The next year the trip was to Ireland, with a very rough crossing by sea and staying in a camp at Skerries, near Dublin, and then the next year to Scotland.

All very enjoyable and eye-opening. Does anyone remember these trips?

I'm 69 now and was called Christine Caddy back then. I left school in the summer of 1960.

Christine Jeffries.


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