Les Pearce
Husborne Crawley Pupil
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When I was a boy my Dad used to get up first to get the fire going in the old open range. That would warm the place up a bit and Mum would get us all up, washed, and dressed ready for school and we would often hear her say, "Now don't go out and play and get dirty because you've got to go to school.

We lived in an end house so we had three bedrooms. My eldest brother, Ron, had left home to join the army before he was 18, but it still left 8 of us living in the house and so it was a bit crowded. Mum and Dad had their own room and the boys had to sleep three in a bed in the other bedroom and the three girls slept three in a bed in the other.
There was always a lot of work to be done at home. When I got back from school, I might go and play football for a little while, and then, when my Dad came home from work, we used to have to help him dig the garden. Everyone grew their own vegetables at that time and we had allotments up the back of the houses. He used to say, "Come on, you've got to have an hour's digging before you can go off and play another football." So we'd go off and get a spade and start digging or weeding or pick up the potatoes he'd dug up.
Working on the allotments next to the Bull on Turnpike Road
Another job I remember was in the winter, sawing up wood. As it was generally dark, we would have a lantern and the wood was cut using a big cross cutter saw. Dad would be on one end and me on the other and he used to shout, "Don't push it, pull!". We never went short of wood because if you worked on the Estate you could get as much free wood as you wanted. We hardly ever used coal, it was nearly all wood. It was delivered by the Estate to your house, often by horse and cart. Sometimes it was already sawn up but often you'd have to do it yourself.