Saturday, 2 February 2013


It is no secret that most my formative years were in Orpington, Kent. So the discovery via Facebook that there was now a site devoted to the history of Orpington was around came as something akin to a happy event.
Orpington is famous for a couple of events - like it was the last place hit by a German V2 rocket. This was up by Kynaston Road and the only person killed was a Mary Millichamp who was the last civilian casualty of the Second World War.
1962 - and Eric Lubbock won the seat for Orpington from the Conservatives. Many record this as the start of the resurrection of the Liberal Party.
And no one can forget that this is the place that was the origin of the Buff Orpington chicken.
One of the most intriguing photos on offer is an ariel view of my old school. The huts are missing so the photo has to be pre-1955 but the chimney is prominent and I had fun testing my knowledge of which classroom belonged to which teacher.

This site, though in the early stages will always be a work in progress as both the oral and photographic images build up a picture of both past and present.

I still wander down the High Street from time to time.

The doorway (and read nothing into this) where I first met my wife has gone - but not the shop. Divito's the coffee bar where I hung out has gone and my old school is now a housing estate. Gone too are the old air raid shelters that stood for so long after the war in Spur Road one of which was home to a branch of the Young Conservatives.

And as my wife reminds me there was the celebrated 'Iron Curtain' - The Who and Tina Turner - Swinging Blue Jeans but not The Rolling Stones all played live there.

The Orpington History Organisation can be found at - and they have a Facebook page.


Oscar Case said...

Interesting, I'll have a peek.

Anonymous said...

Ahhh Divitos my place to hang out, and dancing at the Civic Hall, not the IronCurtain