The Memoirs of Fred Collins 1928 - 1946
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The memoirs cover the early years in the life of Fred Collins who was born in The Three Fyshes Pub in 1928. H is father Frank together with his mother Ada ran The Three Fyshes. Frank also owned part of Tander’s Close where he kept cows and behind the Inn he established a garage for the maintenance and repair of vehicles as well as operating a transport business. The Inn had a petrol pump on Bridge Street and in Mill Lane you will find the current incarnation of the garage in the form of Turvey Motors which is still owned (2019) by Fred Collins.
The memoirs tell of life as a young boy growing up in a rural village, the games they played, the rhymes they sang and the larks they played on others. At the age of 5 Fred attended the local infant school, with its emphasis on handwriting a severe discipline. Fred recalls that people were very superstitious and he provides many examples of how this was manifest together with many of the old sayings one could hear in the village.
In 1939 Fred went to Bedford Modern School as a fee payer just as the second world war started. He tells of life at the school during the war and how the village was affected, particularly when evacuees arrived from London. But the war also brought opportunities, particularly for his father’s transport business.
In 1946 Fred joined the army, his parents moved to Northampton and The Three Fyshes had a new tenant in the form of Captain Tom Behan. After a spell in the army, for four years he would travel to Turvey from Northampton to work for the family transport business finally declaring Northampton his home and the fact that he was now a “townie”.
Names mentioned in this memoir:
Frank George Gearcase Simons
Places named in the memoir:
Bedford Modern School