In case you are wondering -
©2019 Norman Cutting -
Whilst going through my extensive archive, all sorts of things have turned, up so whilst you think about whether or not to look at a selection of Berko photos, I found this from September 2009 which appeared in the next issue of the Parish magazine (other articles are available as I never throw things away!!)
The sixties keep getting written about as I suppose those who were there appear to
have the attitude that if you remember it, you weren't there. The latest one I've
heard about is a book by Jenny Diski and entitled 'The Sixties' -
They all seem to start from the time the author started at university and promptly got into the drug culture and then generally go into great detail on how their lives at university happened, what events they attended and who they roomed with. I get the feeling that not a lot of education went on either then or even now.
Being, (a most who know me) bitter and twisted and not being stupid enough to waste my time going to university, I thought we ought to start putting the record straight as far as our little town is concerned. The sixties in Berkhamsted brought big changes. Most of the town centre was knocked down and housing going up everywhere. This was the time when the railway was being electrified, commuter housing going up and the town expanding in an effort to catch up with the rapidly expanding new town of Hemel Hempstead.
You are going to have to forgive my recollections in some areas as I got hit by a
bus in 1982 which has resulted in gaps due to a bump on the bonce, so let's start
with the obvious. Durrents Estate was started just after I came to the town and,
naturally, my parents moved into one of the first council houses (remember council
houses?). Normal schools for us ‘ruff raff’ were Chapel Street and Gossoms End,
then to Park View or Victoria and then to the 'bi-
In the early 50's most of the town had gas street lighting, a Sainsburys, the major
retailer was the Co-
Before we get to the sixties, what else sticks in my mind? Well, the High Street
had nasty yellow street lighting installed in the early 50's. You couldn't walk down
the High Street without having to stop and natter to at least half a dozen people.
Sharlands was the alternative to the Co-
Don’t worry, I’ll be back!