Hackford Road

An Overview…

What do Vincent Van Gogh, Roger Moore, elephants and typefonts have in common? The answer is…Hackford Road – this street has a rich and varied history.

Hackford Road is mainly residential, it runs north to south and is crossed by Caldwell Street and Hillyard Street. Hackford Road stands where there was once open countryside and in historical documents is often referred to as part of Stockwell.

Above – Southern Lodge, 1849 a country retreat- in the mid 1800’s Hackford Road was still very rural and idyllic

Hackford Road was originally called St Ann’s Road, it is unclear exactly when the name was changed but from looking at maps it seems that it was in the 1860’s. The first appearance of residents was in the building of small houses and shops at the north end of the street in the 1820’s, none of these buildings remain but can be seen below.

Above – The north eastern side of Hackford road in 1909. These houses stood where Cleveland House and part of the Caldwell Gardens estate now stand.

The second wave of building was further south along the street when both sides were lined in the 1840’s with a variety of cottage and villa style housing each with their own quaint name such as Caroline Cottage’ and ‘St Ives Cottage’. These cottages would have stood on undeveloped open land between Brixton Road and Clapham Road for the first few years of their existence. By the 1880’s the cottage dwellings on the lower west side of the street and some on the east side were demolished and the familiar terraces that stand today were erected (see picture below)

From examining Kelly’s Street Directories spanning 1870 to 1910, electoral rolls and the 1871, 1881, 1891 and 1901 Census I think that the terrace on the west side of Hackford Road (see photo above) was built in the 1870’s as houses, not as purpose built flats as with many streets in the area. The terrace first appears on records in the late 1870’s and retains mostly the same tenants and the same house numbers until the late 1890’s. There is a change at some point between 1898 and 1901 as by the Census of 1901 all tenants that had previously been living in the terrace were gone. The numbering of the terrace changes too, going from what had been 44, 46, 48 etc to 44a, 44b, 44c and so on, clearly indicating flats. I think that the terrace of houses was converted into flats, very unusual for the late Victorian period but possibly done as the owner of the street realised that there was more money to be made from flats.

From looking at census information the addition of the terraced flats brought a more mixed class of people to the area, the remaining cottages housed the more wealthy while the terraced houses generally were home to more working class and lower middle class people. Professions included music teacher, decorator, milk carrier and nurse. A proportion of these households still had servants however. Shops at the north end came and went as did a pub called The Star which stood until early 1900 before being swept away.

Reay Primary School was built in the early 1900’s and was originally a school for boys. The school was built on the site of shops to the north of the street and was once bordered by a block of stables belonging to the local rag and bone men at the corner of South Island Place. By 1910 most of the terraces of Hackford Road had been converted into flats which housed many music hall actors, actresses and vocalists. The area took on a liberal and younger feel, Hackford Road along with Morat Street and Cranworth Gardens even became known to house women working as prostitutes.


Above – Reay Primary School

Throughout WW2 Hackford Road got off quite lightly, it was damaged by nearby falling bombs and blast but in general it was not damaged to such a devastating effect as with surrounding areas. The southern, more industrial part of the street beyond the intersection with Hillyard Street received the most damage. In the post war years Hackford Road took on a shabbier appearance, many of the cottages and terraces were run down and occupied beyond their natural capacity. In a move to regenerate the area the local authority built the Caldwell Gardens housing estate alongside Hackford Road while private developers had their eye on flattening many of the early victorian cottages on the south eastern side of the street. This move was thwarted in 1973 when Lambeth Council declared 63 to 79 Hackford Road a conservation area stating –

‘The Victorian villas No.s 63-79 Hackford Road are the subject of a planning application which would involve their demolition. It is considered that the loss of these properties would be regrettable since they form part of the original development of stockwell”

The conservation area imposed strict building and alteration rules on this part of the street see here for the full guide to the Hackford Road conservation area. Hackford Road now stands as a mixture of housing styles, 1870’s terraces, 1840’s villas and 1950’s council blocks. At the southern end past Hillyard Street there is a large 1990’s residential block of houses and flats along with commericial units and the Type Museum.

Hackford Road On Maps…


The map above is “Laurie and Whittle New Map of London with its Environs, almost all of the streets that we know so well had not yet been built including Hackford Road, the area was mostly open countryside.


“Pigot & Co.’s Metropolitan Guide & Miniature Plan Of London from 1820″ shows the area eleven years later. I have added an arrow pointing to the first appearance of Hackford Road on a map. Along with the surrounding streets it is unnamed at this point. It seems that Hackford Road began being built north to south. No buildings remain from the period.


“Cary’s New Plan Of London And Its Vicinity” shows the area another twenty eight years later in 1837. The unnamed shape on the map 17 years earlier now bears a name, St Ann’s Road, the original name for Hackford Road.


Laurie’s Map of London shows Hackford Road 7 years on from the previous map. It is clear that many more houses have been added. The houses that you can see here on the right hand (east) side of the street still stand today. They are detatched houses of different architectural detail. The left (west) side was also a line of detached houses however they no longer stand.


This is Cross’s New Plan of London 1861.Hackford Road is still called St Ann’s Road.


The map above is a Lambeth Ward Map from 1876 showing the division between the Vauxhall Ward (light blue) and the North Brixton Ward (pink) Hackford Road has lost the name St Ann’s Road and is now labelled with it’s modern name.


Charles Booth’s Map of London Poverty research took him to Hackford Road in 1895. The Map above is from 1898 and shows how Booth graded the street. The key to what the colours mean can be seen to the right of the image. For more information on Charles Booth and the classification of poverty see here.


Hackford Road can be seen here on this 1918 Ward Map. It is remarkable to note how much the area has built up over the years, especially when scrolling up to the 1809 map when this entire space was empty.











In September 1940 the government started to collect and collate information relating to damage sustained during bombing raids. Hackford Road emerged relatively unscathed in comparison to surrounding areas however it did take quite a few hits and sustained quite a bit of blast damage as you can see above. I will post more about Hackford Road in the wars over on ‘Our streets at war – A street by street guide’ shortly.

Hackford Road in photographs…


The photo above was taken in 1910. Note the children playing in the street and the iron railings outside of the houses (these were removed in the metal salvage drive in WW2)


The above image is roughly the same view as the 1910 photograph, not much has changed except the addition of cars, wheelie bins and garden walls.

Vincent Van Gogh…

At the age of 20 Van Gogh arrived in London to start work at an art dealership in Southampton Street and from August of 1873 he lived in 73 Hackford Road. Van Gogh came to work in London for the art dealer Goupil & Cie in Covent Garden. He walked to and from work each day, with his career as an artist looming in the future. The house was owned by a Mrs Ursula Loyer, who lived there with her daughter.

It was Mrs Loyer’s daughter Eugenie who Van Gogh reputedly first fell in love with. His love was documented in letters dotted with Keats’s poems of love and desire. His advances were however totally unrequited and he became obsessive and a nuisance to the quiet Miss Loyer. He was soon asked to leave and find new lodgings in Kennington.

Eugenie Loyer

There is also a sketch of Hackford Road, shown below, which includes number 87, this was in the possession of Eugenie Loyer’s grand daughter, Mrs Kathleen Maynard, and it is now in the Van Gogh museum in Amsterdam.

The Hackford Road sketch is the earliest surviving drawing from Vincent’s English period.

Number 87 was recently put up for sale at auction with many original features still intact. It sold for £565,000 and in addition, to commemorate the fact Van Gogh lived here, the Van Gogh Museum of Amsterdam produced a gold medal and presented it to the current owners. This will be given to the new owner. See the video below for a viewing of the property…

 Durand School…

What is now known today as Durand Academy was once two schools side by side, Kennington Secondary School and Durand Primary School. Roger Moore was a pupil at the primary school here in the 1930’s when it was known as Hackford Road Elementary.

The above image is from Durand School in 1921 – it was found here.

British History online tells us the following (written when the school was two separate establishments)

Kennington Secondary School, Hackford Road

This school occupies a plain three-storey brick building which was built for the London School Board by H. Hart of Southwark, whose tender for a school for 996 children was for £10,249. The architect was T. J. Bailey and the date of opening was May 9, 1887. The south wing was added in 1894.

Durand Primary School, Durand Gardens

This building adjoins Kennington Secondary School and was erected for the London School Board in 1888 as a Pupil Teachers’ School. The contractor was H. Hart of Southwark, whose tender was for £6,230. The architect was T. J. Bailey. The building was later used as a secondary school for girls, and a second floor was added in 1906, Bailey being the architect. The south wing was damaged in the war of 1939–45 and has since been rebuilt under the supervision of Mr. Richard Nickson.

Above – A boys science lesson in 1908, Below – A girls science lesson, the same year


Price & King’s Veterinary Practice and Quarantine Station…

This large building was constructed in 1885 and whilst today it houses the Type Museum it was originally built for Mr Thomas Price’s veterinary practice and quarantine station, later known as Price & King’s. This large rectangular building was built with high ceilings and lofts, specially adapted to be able to house and treat large animals such as elephants and giraffes. It was also one of London’s main quarantine stations for performing animals coming in from abroad, some at the time were very famous, such as The Great Lafayette’s lion.

The above images are from the Daily Mirror, Thu 28 Nov 1912, the accompanying article reads:

‘It is not generally known that in Brixton is situated one of London’s most fashionable hotels. It is run by Messrs. Price and King exclusively for animals, and here one may meet quadrupeds with the bluest of blue blood in their veins, four footed actors and actresses and many other notables. (1) Lady Saza the human monkey, breakfasting in her private apartment. (2) Miss Ella and one of her lions. (3) Baby Jumbo and his valet pay a call on a zebra. (4) Baroness Lutzell with her clever horses and dogs. (5) Hanky Panky, the well known actor, who appears in ‘Everywoman’ being groomed. Baby Jumbo and Baby Jimbo, The Daily Mirror elephants, now amongst the hotel’s distinguished guests, are looking on. 

Sadly on a few months prior to the above article and images on Sunday 24th March 1912 disaster struck and a terrible fire broke out – read more about it in the Hackford Road ‘In the news’ section here.

The Type Museum …

Hackford Road boasts the world’s most significant typographic collection in the building that was once Price and King’s veterinary practice.  The site around the museum was Hackford Road’s industrial part, once housing a sausage making factory, a parking depot area for hackney cab’s and Pickford’s removals. The museum houses examples of the art and craft of typography from the last 500 years. More detail on the occupancy of this building here.

The lost businesses of Hackford Road…

To find out more about the lost shops and businesses from 1881 to 1928 on Hackford Road – click here

0 Responses to Hackford Road

  1. Pearl Catlin says:

    I was at school at the same time as Roger Moore. We both lived in Albert Square. He was a few years older than me but we all used to climb trees and play together. I thought one part of the school was called Brixton Central and it was this part which got a direct hit in the blitz. We were sent to Vauxhall (next to a laundry) and to another school near to the Oval where the Headmaster was a Mr Gerard. I remember headmistress Miss Drinkwater and many teachers Miss Boswell, Miss Harrison and one who lost her husband in the fighting. There was a French teacher called Miss Spencer. There was also a male teacher called Mr Taylor. Opposite was a sweetshop and a grocer run by Syd of questionable gender but very nice to us kids. We had been evacuated to Brighton – bombed out and then on to Egham – bombed again whereupon my mother brought me home again to Albert Square.
    I wish I could trace my friends from those day but being girls they changed their names upon mariage (unlike me who became an actress and never changed my name even after I married. Too confusing for getting pay cheques.
    I thoroughly enjoyed reading this site.

  2. jackie says:

    i went to both schools durand and reay school back in the 1955 as i only lived in liberty st so 2 min to walk to school reay school a little longer my grandfather was a lolypop man at the crossing for reay school just by there there was a sweet shop we used to by sweets there oh so long ago

  3. Pearl Catlin says:

    I recently revisited this area. I was horrified at the block of flats built opposite the St Helen’s school site at the top of Robsart Street. What a terrible piece of planning permission was this. Right on the site of Syd’s grocery shop. I can hear him now “Bay-con – lovely Bay – con today”

    • Charles Webb says:

      I can remember Syd’s grocery shop which I think was very near Kennington Secondary School just on the opposite corner. It did a good trade with the kids from school.
      Just out of interest your post was on my 80th birthday.
      Best wishes

  4. Charles Webb says:

    I attended Hackford Rd or Kennington Secondary School from 1946 until 1950
    A favorite teacher I remember a MR Everett who was also the music teacher helping me to a love and appreciation Classical Music. Also a geography teacher who was very Welsh called Mr Daniels.I can also remember the school houses of Churchill, Stevenson, Faraday but for the life of me I can’t remember the 4th house. Not a bad memory for an 80 year old.Happy Days! I would be delighted to hear from any other pupil of the school and chew the fat. i used to live in Dorset Rd Kennington. I now live in Perth Western Australia. Charlie Webb

    • Peter Garwood says:

      Hi Charles,
      I also attendeded Kennington Secondary School but after you from 1956 until 1962. I do nt have any good nostalgic memories during my time there and do not think it gave its pupils a very good educatoin, perhaps it was better in your time there. I remember it as a rough and ready type of school where only a very basis education was taught. I suppopse the school just reflected the area in which it was located which was also a rough and ready area. I lived in nearby Hillyard Street and was very glad to leave the area.and I now live in rural North Devon.
      I have visited my daughter recently who also lives in Perth Western Australia and I think its a great place to live.

      • Charles Webb says:

        Hello Peter
        I just happened to click on this sight having forgotten all about the post I made back in Nov last year. Low and behold I found you reply to that post. Good to hear from you and that you are living in North Devon, such a lovely place. My brother-law lives Biddeford where my wife and I have visited often in the past few years so we know the area quite well .
        You mentioned that your daughter live here in Perth, we live in Caversham which is at the edge of Perth.
        When I was at school at Kennington Secondary I don’t remember it being rough but was very strict. I lived in Dorset Road until I went into the army in 1953. My email address is charliew@iinet.net.au and would love to hear from you at anytime.

    • gerald farrant says:

      Hello Charles,

      Read your comments with some interest I went to Kennington Secondary from 1956 to 1962 my two brothers also went to the school during the same time as yourself they were Allan & Derek Farrant. I also recall Mr Daniels but not with any affection he had become rather old and very grumpy. When you attended the school Mr Hills was the headmaster and as I understand a man you did not lip. Our head was Mr Fawcett a real do gooder or as we see nowadays somebody always wanting to give the offenders their human rights. I became quite close to two you would have kown Mr Robin and Mr Smith deputy head and also Mr Davis. I used to live in South Island Place in a prefab do you recall those ? I lived in Los Angeles for a while and travelled a lot of the US. I was moved to Africa in the early 1970s but hated it I returned home and got married. Audrey and I brought up our two sons in Epsom Surrey and they did not go to a school like Ken Sec it had become in my opinion a failure. They both went on to become commissioned in the Armed Forces one is also a barrister the other works for one of the largest Assie Companies. We have now moved recently to Axminster in Devon and got away from the congestion of London. By the way I also remember the shop on the corner and he used to sell Weights Cigarettes single to the boys in the school today he would be prosecuted. I hope you are well in Australia a country I have never visited but I know I have a lot of relations there who run cattle and sheep stations.
      Best Regards
      Gerald Farrant

    • Arnold Kremenstein says:

      Dear Charles,

      I attended Kennington Secondary School from 1951 to 1956. I remember both Mr Everitt the music teacher and Mr Daniels the Geography teacher. I also remember Faraday (red, I think) and Stevenson (yellow) house.
      Mr Daniels took us for football in Kennington Park.
      Other teachers that I remember:
      Mr Davis – English ( and French?)
      Mr Robins – French
      Mr Haley – History, very expressive.
      Mr Rivers – Biology (at South Lambeth Road)
      Mr Fawcett – headmaster (after your time, I think)
      Mr Brown – English Literature

      I used to walk down Hillyard St to school each day and remember that on the right hand side there were pre-fabs for the whole length of the road.

      We used to play cricket in the playground, and one day I was batting and took a swipe at the ball. The ball caught the edge of the bat and sailed over the very high fence and crashed through a window. An old lady started screaming, very embarrassing. Happy days!!

    • Charlie Coyle says:

      I used to go to this school (circa 1962/3). The masters wore old style gowns and mortars. The only teacher I can recall clearly is Mr Gallagher. Only due to his infamous Gallagher punch to the back of the head! Other teachers who come to mind are the French teacher who wore his pants up to his arm pits and the brilliant music teacher Mr Beecham.

      Charlie Coyle – Brisbane

    • Anthony Sully says:

      Charles, This is 5 years on from your post I am 79 and I attended Hackford Rd and then the Reay School between 1946 to ’49. I was good at football and I thought Bobby Tambling (Ex Chelsea and England) was in my year there. I also remember a boy called Peter Borringer.

  5. Alan Charie says:

    I was at Kennington secondary school, in the late 50,s-early 60,s, dont recall it being rough ,I do remember I was in Stevenson House we had to wear yellow gym kit, Mr Fawcett was head master, I mostly enjoyed my time there

  6. ALEX Richie says:

    Joshua Haley, the greatest history teacher that ever lived, at Ken.Sec.
    What he didn’t know about the Romans wasn’t worth knowing,
    BOUDICCA and not BOADICEA he instilled in us.
    Googled him at Godalming Library in Surrey.He lived there.He died in 1975.A great man.
    Used to send me homework in the post during school hols, would you believe.My parents agreed to it, Of course, it wasn’t obligatory.
    And wanted it completed and posted back ASAP.Or else!
    They were all university men, unlike today’s rabble.

    • Terence Thomas says:

      Hello Alex,
      You don’t say when you were at Kennington. I remember Josh very well. He got me through A level Brit Con and Economic history and with A level Geography ( courtesy of Mr Wilson’s teaching), I managed to get into university (Essex) in 1966.
      Without the brilliance of Mr Haley and the encouragement of other teachers ( Adamson, Masara et al ), I would never have achieved this.
      I am sorry I did not keep in touch with the school and certainly did not know that the world’s greatest history teacher had died in 1975.
      Best wishes
      Terry Thomas

      • Rodney waters says:

        Hi Terry.i just read your post on the Hackford road sight and it brought back a load of memories.i seem to remember that you had a penchant for Tonik mohair suits,a different colour for each day of the week,lol.I also remember all those teachers,Haly,Adamson,Richie,Lovell,Massara aka bomber,Hot dog smith,Galleghar et al,quality teachers all.On a more personal note your dad used to drink with mine in the tap House in Larkhall Lane.Hope you’re keeping well as I am,retired in South Carolina.

        • Robert Lawrence says:

          Hi Rod
          Remember me Bob l used to live in Hackford Rd, You used to be friends with with me lan Dargo Alan James
          John Arnie l haven’t seen you since you lived in Stockwell Cassell Hse, l believe how’s gogsy AKA Eric Burdon.
          Get in touch Rod please

        • Seymour Young says:

          Oh yes, I remember those teachers too. They were all good teachers and I look back on my school days at Kennington Secondary with much affection.Mr Haley was my form teacher. I loved the way that Mr Gallagher used to read to us in the English Lessons. Mr Massara’s trousers were a bit short round the ankles but he was a good French teacher as was Mr Lovell. Adamson and Richie were English teachers. I remember them wearing their black gowns. I miss those days. How quickly life has passed!

        • Terence Thomas says:

          Rodney, Sorry in late reply….yeah., the Tap House Lark Hall Lane .
          ..now closed about 10.years ago.
          Spent a lot of time in Costa Rica where I made a lot of American friends….effectively lived there in the 1990s …..
          If you have the time tell me how.you came to.retire to South Caroline. Very best wishes – Terry Thomas

        • Terence Thomas says:

          Rodney, Sorry so.late in reply….just seen. Yes, the old Tap…closed 10.years ago.
          I.spent a quite a bit of.my life travelling and lived in Costa Rica in rhe 1990s where I befriended a lot of Americans
          How did you end up in the states? If you have the time do.tell how you are
          Very best wishes Terry Thomas

        • Terence Thomas says:

          Hello Rodney,
          Sorry about delay. I write to.in bad times and hope.you and your family are in good health and safe.

          How did you make your way to South Carolina . Long way from Kenn.Sec and Lark Hall Lane.
          Best wishes

    • Kenneth Goff says:

      Can’t argue with that Alex. Certainly a stand out teacher. I was there 1959-62

    • Seymour Young says:

      Hi Alex, you are right Mr Haley was a great teacher. He was my form tutor (1A) when I started at Kennington school in September 1960. I was the only black boy in the class.

  7. Tony Strong says:

    I went to Kennington Secondary during the 60’s, and largely have fond memories of my time there. Although I initially attended Hackford Road, I ended up at the Cormont Road annex. Although my academic achievements were very few, I did end up as School Captain. Being School Captain did instil in me a sense of responsibility, commitment and taught me early organisational skills which were to prove useful later in life.
    Teachers I remember are:-
    Mr Fawcett, headmaster who was always polite and charming, and invariably seem wearing his gown. I still have a dictionary I received as a school prize which bears his signature.
    Mr Adamson, deputy headmaster who specialised in English Literature. A year or so before I left school he emigrated to New Zealand where I believe his daughter lived. I remember his office always smelled of pipe tobacco
    Mr Haley, whose enthusiasm for history certainly rubbed off on me. I remember a day trip to Hampstead where we toured the old area looking at various historic connections. My other memory of him was as a strict disciplinarian, who was very free with use of the cane.
    Mr Turner, my very few, form master in the first year who was very adept at throwing the chalk duster as any inattentive pupil, and was also very skilful in the use of the slipper.
    Mr Heath, science master who had a large urn in the science lab in which he used to boil the water for the staff room.
    Mr Massara, language teacher. He too was very strict, and could often be heard shouting “that boy” to attract their attention.
    Mr Beech, who if memory serves correctly me was head of the ‘juniors’.
    Mr Stephenson, who I believed taught English. He was a kindly man, a little bit like ‘Godfrey’ from Dad’s Army. When I finally left school he sent me a telegram wishing me all the best in the future.
    Mr Gormley, who did metal work. His wife was Teresa Gormley MP.
    Messers Daniels and Gallagher come to mind, but just vaguely.
    The names of other teachers don’t readily come to mind.
    Pupils that I have fond memories of include Tony Heuer who was Head Prefect, and a life long friend until he passed away. Henry Curniffe, Vice School Captain, who I believe returned to the Caribbean to join the police force in his home country.
    As for me I ended up as a Forensic Manager with the Metropolitan Police, New Scotland Yard, before taking early retirement in 2007. I’m now a professional tourist!

    • Terence Thomas says:

      Hello Tony,
      I must have been a couple of years ahead of you. I remember the teachers you name with extreme fondness and gratitude for what they did for me.
      Josh Haley managed to get me through two A levels (at good grades) and through Mr Wilson’s teaching I managed ( just about ) to pass A level Geography.
      With the three A levels I was accepted at Essex University and went there straight from Kennington in 1966. The school captain at that time was called Chavezco (Charlie) and the vice-captain was a chap called John Roberts.
      I believe that was the year that I left for university ( 1966 ) when John Adamson left for New Zealand.
      Josh Haley was a brilliant history teacher who had taught generations of working class – as you will remember Kennington was a fairly tough school
      in a working class area. The dedication of most of the teachers was fantastic – there were exceptions who looked upon teaching as a job without any apparent motivation to see that their pupils reached full potential. But this was a problem in all secondary modern schools at that time.
      I was very fortunate to have had the great encouragement of Haley, Wilson, Massara, Adamson and a young temporary teacher called Harris who himself had attended the school some years before and had also obtained a degree from London University. He also left in 1966 after a brief spell of teaching in his old school.
      Oh well, a nice breakfast walk down memory lane.
      Best wishes and you just remember me.
      Terry Thomas

    • Terence Thomas says:

      Apologies for the obvious errors in my message.

    • Kenneth Goff says:

      Hi Tony – I was there up to 1962. I remember several of the teachers you named and in particular Mr. Turner. The chalk duster parted my hair a few times and who could forget his size ’16’ slippers! Mr. Massara French teacher. Mr. Beach, if I remember correctly, was my form teacher and also took Maths? The one everyone remembers, of course, is Mr. Haley, a true Lion.

    • Seymour Young says:

      Hi Tony, Tony Curniffe was a friend of my sister. As far as I know he was a policeman in England until his retirement.

    • Henry Curniffe says:

      Tony Strong……henry is on henry.curniffe at btinternet.com.

  8. Kay Stiffkkaystiffay stiff says:

    The corner shop opposite Hackford Rd boy’s school was where we could buy blue penny Lolly’s & large slabs of honeycomb. A treat to buy on Friday with pocket money.

  9. M.D. Richards says:

    Hi lived on Hackford Road No.47 from very early 50s until aprox. early 60s . Three families in each house ,. Attended Durand , Ray Schools . Moved to Brixton Road Lambert Road , not the same . Know as Little Mick . Now live in South Yorkshire .

    • Keith Sanford says:

      Hi Mick
      My name is Keith Sanford ,I lived at no.57, and was friends with Michael and Adrian Wijsveld, Tony Porter , Paul Luckhurst and my cousin Colin Dixon
      Not sure if you will remember me, but mentioning “ Little Mick” I am sure you lived a few doors from the Wijsveld
      I know live in Surrey but did visit Hackford Rd last year, and nothing has changed,except the house prices, Colin’s old house was up for sale at £1.2m
      Hope you are well

  10. Bern Brazil says:

    Hi ,Bernard Brazil is my name . I attended Kenington school about 58 – 60 , I had come to London from Dublin in august of 58. I started in class 3t1 and I believe my house was faraday. My Irish accent was the cause for a lot of Micky taking, but my school mates were great and I was talking like a cockney in no time. I can remember Mr Adamson,his name the would be the one the pupils were told to find and ask for cane and book. I think the geography teacher was Welsh, he was also the sports teacher and when he held the boxing tournament you were not invited you told you would be taking part. The school had a great sport side to it. One name that comes to mind who done well in football was Lennie Glover, played for Charlton and then went to play for Leicester city . I remember marking him in a game down in Morden. We used to get bused out to Morden on Friday,but if it was too wet we would walk to Kennington park and play on the cinders. I had some great pals at that time , mesers Saunders and Baker, always up to no good, but in nice way. Bill Penston another skilful football player, Scot McGregor I do believe he had his blazers made to measure and John Moxon we got on well together well we where the only two West Ham fans in the class.

    • Dare Burridge says:

      Hallo Bern, came across this site by chance.
      Don’t suppose you remember me I was (one of the scruffy ones) with you in 3t1. I have a class photo taken about 1958 you are sat in the front row . I remember Bill Penston Spurs supporter Alan Palmer Arsenal me a Chelsea fan for ever!!
      After Hackford Road I went in the Royal Navy in 1961. Ended up in the 70’s bricklaying. The last twenty-six years been living in Germany.

  11. Dare Burridge I remember you but it’s a long time ago you lived in the last house of durand gdns I used to walk through the gdns on the way home to stockwell station we had moved to Morden. So you went in the RN ? I travelled the world living in Africa and the US in Los Angeles. I have 2 sons in the RN one was an commissioned in the Royal Marines the other is a Commander in the RN. As you guess I sent them to a different type of school to Kennington. I hope you are well in Germany I now live in Devon !

  12. Roger Bolden says:

    I went to Kennington Secondary in 1956 having failed the 11-plus, but made better progress thereafter before leaving in 1961 for Norwood Technical College and A-levels. Among the teachers I well remember the “Josh” Haley, “Emily” Emmerson, “Adolf” Adamson and “Charlie” Robins. Like the others who have commented Haley was an amazing History teacher – he stood there and the words just flowed out without the aid of any notes. On one occasion he had reason to quote from King Lear with “Out vile jellies!” – probably just to shock us. Robins was the Maths teacher who revealed the beauty of the subject to me. He could also speak fluent French when required. He had one finger missing. Massara was the one, if my memory is not deceiving me, who had his trousers up to his armpits. I think his nickname was “BOMDAS” rather than “bomber” because he was very enthusiastic about “Brackets Of Multiplication, Division And Subtraction” and the consequent mnemonic. Francis Steptoe (really!) was the Music teacher who, willingly, fostered my growing interest in classical music. Mr. Heath was useless as a Science teacher whilst, at the Wyvil Road annex we had Science teacher Mr. Roberts who was wonderful. An ex-RAF pilot who carried the burns of a crash from his flying days.
    Less prominently we had the Art teacher Mr Jackson (occasionally referred to as “Jacko” by his less discrete colleagues) who carried a slight speech defect and Mr Terry who took us for Technical Drawing in the little building in the playground. Infuriatingly I cannot remember the names of the two woodwork teachers but I still have a stool, money box and small bookcase I made under their instruction.

    • David Clark says:

      Some good memories. I started at Kennington Secondary School a couple of years before you in 1954. My memory is not great, but I have very fond memories of Josh Hayley who was a fantastic teacher and gave me a continuing interest in History. ‘Charley’ Robins took us for maths and remember him admonishing us with ‘If you don’t work hard now, you will finish up working in the back of a van!’, pointing at you with stub of his index finger. He got me really interested in maths and as a result I finished up becoming a Chartered Engineer.
      We use to go to the Wyvil Annex for Science (Mr. Roberts) and biology (Mr. Rivers).
      In 1955 I went on a school trip to the Lake District and I have a group photo of all the lads with Josh Haley and another teacher I recognise but cannot name.
      The names of all the teachers you mention are very familiar, and thanks for the memories.

      • Alan Molineaux says:

        Hi David
        Have just picked up your posting dated December 2019 and everything including your name fits in with my memories – but the dates don’t. Could you have started at Hackford Road in September 1951 (you say 1954) and went on the Lake District holiday in 1953 (you say 1955)? That’s when I started there and remember the holiday very well. Would be great to hear from you.

  13. Ray Doyne says:

    Like others I stubble on this site, nice to see there’s some off us still about! From what I can remember I was at KCSS from 1958 to 1962, in classes 1E, 2E, 3T1 (at Cormont) and 4G1. Class mates I remember were Howard Nobbs, Ron Grimond, John Walker, Anthony Schcaire (the first coloured boy in the school) Jack Thrip, Charlie Simson, Ian Homes, Michael Hubbard, Harry Rushworth, now I’ve run out of their first names, so others were lads call Walsh, Green & Greener, Perry, Petite (he got me caned by the head master and my name put in the punishment book!) & Dowset.
    Teaches I remember fondly were Mr Hales for making history very interesting and H.D.Smith (known at hot dog) for caning us all at the beginning of each lesson!

    • Terence Thomas says:

      Remember Harry Rushworth – big chap ( less politely, very over weight)….lived in flat near Stockwell station. Think he joined his father as a market trader – had a sister.Mother was Irish. He had a friend – shoet and had a prominent nose – think.his name was Harper
      I was a year behind….

    • Raymond Doyne says:

      Moving on from my previous message, a little disappointed that none of my old classmates have been in touch, but is was a long time ago and some unfortunately maybe not be around!
      However I wonder re our woodwork lessons, who were the two teachers and where was the annex, all I can remember it was not far from the Cormont road site the other side of Myatt field park

  14. Alan Molineaux says:

    I was at Kennington Secondary from Sept 1951 to July 1956 and it’s great to hear the memories on all of the postings. The name of Josh Haley comes up a lot and I’ll echo all the wonderful things that have been said about him – he was brilliant and full of enthusiasm.

    In 1953 Josh and Rex Gloster (PE and games) took a party of about 15 of us to the Lake District for two weeks staying in a hostel at Newlands nr. Keswick. They were both great company and it was all very relaxed which kickstarted my lifelong love of the Lakes. There talk of a pillow fight against another school planned for one night and Mr Gloster stayed up all night sitting on a chair in the corridor to prevent it taking place. That was dedication to duty!

    An earlier posting mentioned the four houses – Churchill, Faraday, Stevenson ……and the one he couldn’t remember was Alexander (green) and that was my house.

    There was another successful footballer who went to the school and that was Alan Dicks who played for Chelsea (reserves mostly) and then went on to manage Bristol City. I was a ball boy at Chelsea from 1953 to 1956 and the few midweek games they had were often a problem as they were played in the afternoon (no lights in those days). I’m ashamed to say I’d often have a severe stomach ache/cold/sickness on those afternoons. It still beats me as to how I got away with it every time!

    Mr Brown our English teacher was another really good bloke and I even wrote to him after I’d left school in 1956 as I’d heard he was retiring. True to form, he wrote back.

    Someone mentioned the Welshman Mr Daniels who also took games and, I believe, played rugby for London Welsh to a pretty good standard. He’d often take the school football matches on a Saturday morning which was very noble of him. He did have a fiery temper though which he displayed at the annual Sports Day in Kennington Park one year when some poor boy dropped the shot on his foot.

    The woodwork teachers in my day were Mr Fisher and Mr Oliver. I was very cheeky to Mr Fisher one day and he threw me , literally, down the stairs whilst shouting “get out you snotty little sod, and don’t come back”. I couldn’t complain though, it was my own fault.

    Great days.

  15. Jeff Bellamy says:

    I don’t think for one moment that anyone will remember me. I attended Kennington Secondary School from 60 to 65 when I left, aged 16, to work in a firm of solicitors.
    Teachers I remember are:
    Mr Fawcett – Headmaster
    Mr Adamson – English
    Mr Emerson – English
    Mr Masara – French
    Mr Lovell – French
    Josh Haley – History (a legend)
    Mr Wilson – Geography
    Mr Heath – Science
    Mr Roberts – Science
    Mr Meredith – Biology
    Mr Jukes – R.E.
    Mr Ritches – English (I think)
    Mr Beach – English & Maths (Lower school)
    Mr Gallagher – ???
    Mr Robins – English (He had a stump where one of his fingers had been. He would use the stump to drill into your head if he thought your attention was waning!!)

    I rember Rodney Waters, in my last year at the school.

    The teachers were all dedicated and although some were a little eccentric, or odd, they did a good job. Compared to the quality of teaching these days I think we were pretty lucky.

    I’m semi retired these days and live in rural Cambridgeshire. I’m a school governor and you really can’t believe how inept some of the teachers are,

    Best wishes,

    Jeff Bellamy

    • Seymour Young says:

      Hi Jeff, its Seymour. Mr Gallagher did teach English. I know because I used to love his English lessons!

    • Seymour Young says:

      Hi Jeff, no one has mentioned Mr Goldsmith. He also taught English. I remember him well as he would not tolerate even so much as a whisper in his lesson. Nice bloke though!

    • Seymour Young says:

      Mr Jewkes and Mr Gloster the PE teacher omitted from the list.

    • Terence Thomas says:

      Rodney, Sorry so.late in reply….just seen. Yes, the old Tap…closed 10.years ago.
      I.spent a quite a bit of.my life travelling and lived in Costa Rica in rhe 1990s where I befriended a lot of Americans
      How did you end up in the states? If you have the time do.tell how you are
      Very best wishes Terry Thomas

      • Rodney Waters says:

        Hi terry
        Likewise sorry for the delay in replying,don’t get on this site very often. The reason i moved over here is simple,my daughter came here to work in 06,stayed and eventually married an American guy my son met his future wife at the wedding and he now lives and works here.He presented us with a fantastic grandson just over three years ago so it was a no brainer that we would retire here.Best move i ever made.
        Hope this finds you well

    • Terence Thomas says:

      I remember your name ….but not too.much more.
      I.left in 66 at the age of 18 …upper 6th.
      Oh well, the site here brought back good memories from a past time.
      Terry Thomas

  16. tom dow says:

    Dates, 50-52-52, left at Christmas. Mr. Hill, I think, was headmaster when I started mid term..had moved from Chigwell back to London, supposed to attend Archbishop Tennyson but had Hated Buckhust Hill Grammar School and my Mum was fine with me choosing secondary…it’s where me mates went.
    Mr Haley also did the life saving classes up to Bronze Medal.
    Daniels was barrel chested and would walk on the proper side of the stairs, bowl students over when they were in his path.
    Peter Smith was my home room teacher for second year.
    I played one game alongside Stanley Dicks, he also played for South London. His cousin Alan did play for Middlesborough before going into management.

  17. Tom Dow says:

    I did leave a comment, thought I had but no sight of it; perhaps did something wrong when subscribing.

  18. Dorothy says:

    How wonderful about Vincent Van Gogh. My son who studied art at Glasgow School of Art then st Martins London lived in london. Now in California. I visited London often. If only i had known vi cent lived here. I do hope the house will be brought back to its original glory.

  19. Dawn Driscoll says:

    Just discovered this site. Hackford Road was my first home, from 1957 to 1964. Lived in in a first floor flat in Talbot Mansions, no. 8 Hackford Road. I remember the black and white tiled entrance to the front door. My brother was born there in 1960. I think our block was next door to the Reay school. Does anyone remember a paper yard that was to the rear of the buildings? I can’t find any mention of it anywhere and looking at a map, I can’t imagine exactly where it was. I can still ‘see it’ in my head, looking back, when sitting on the draining board in the kitchen, while my mum was trying to scrub dirt off me with Vim! I went to Durand Gardens infants school.

  20. David Clark says:

    Some good memories. I started at Kennington Secondary School a couple of years before you in 1954. My memory is not great, but I have very fond memories of Josh Hayley who was a fantastic teacher and gave me a continuing interest in History. ‘Charley’ Robins took us for maths and remember him admonishing us with ‘If you don’t work hard now, you will finish up working in the back of a van!’, pointing at you with stub of his index finger. He got me really interested in maths and as a result I finished up becoming a Chartered Engineer.
    We use to go to the Wyvil Annex for Science (Mr. Roberts) and biology (Mr. Rivers).
    In 1955 I went on a school trip to the Lake District and I have a group photo of all the lads with Josh Haley and another teacher I recognise but cannot name.
    The names of all the teachers you mention are very familiar, and thanks for the memories.

  21. Frank Englefield says:

    I went to Kennington school 1955-60 I played football with Lenny glover I do remember we had German music teacher as regards mr Hayley Bill as we called him I got history knowledge from him mr fawcett was headmaster my form teacher we called budgie because he always wore a greenish jacket mr Daniels l believe played rugby for wales

  22. maurice white says:

    i to went to hackford road school as we called it from cowley primary in gosling way in 1958. i also went to morden to play football and cricket by coach, i had a bad injury playing in goal, my mate norman kirkham tried to get me up but it was a hospital case. he had a bad accident himself while carrying fireworks in his jean pocket, saw him years later selling newspapers outside the oval tube. they took us to manor place baths to learn to swim just once still cant swim. i remember Michael penny in my class he was very tall and a boy i think called david whose father ran a little shop at the end of hackford rd in Caldwell street. we had a boy in our class i think his name was rory Gathercole his family had a boat on the thames i remember when he fell overboard and drowned we all had to line up outside in hackford road as the funeral went by.

    • Richard Wilson says:

      Hello Maurice, I am Richard Wilson and was in your class. I remember your name and also that of Norman Kirkham, (Jim) who I also used to go around with. I also used to go about with John Mullane’s (Known as Drainhole). I also like you remember the funeral for poor Gathercole and standing outside the school with our class and the teachers and other staff at the school when the funeral went bye. How could I ever forget that event. It is a long time ago now and detail is difficult to remember but I spent time in Robin Tyrell’s class and Mr Heath’s science class. I was also a friend of David Davenport. Years ago through “Friends Reunited” I got to meet up with Alan Wakefield who was in our class….I also had some email contact with Frank Oxley another class mate. I remember going to Morden for cross country running or football in the winter, in some bad weather it was hell running on all that mud…… I’m not sure if you receive an email with my comments from this website and you may not visit the site again, but It would be great to be in touch to discuss our time there further, maybe over a pint. I will keep an eye on this site if you want to reply…….Cheers Richard

    • ALAN WAKEFIELD says:

      I remember you Maurice we were in the same class, I was at Morden playing football when you had your accident. I remember Kirkam, Gathercole. Jimmy Burns Tony Cobbly, Korsnofski. Good memories of school life.

    • Terence Thomas says:

      If it is the Norman I think it was, I regret he died some years ago. I remember him from a school. Trip to Belgium circa 1963. I was in year below Norman.
      I remember seeing him selling papers at Stockwell Station around 1965.
      I think if it was the same bloke, he was considered a hard nut, to use the term of the times.
      He was related to a family who lived near me called Panetta… his aunt called Liz had married the father of the family and they had a cafe down Wilcox Rd…… He had older brother who also died.
      I am pretty sure we are talking about the same bloke. Long time ago now.
      Terry Thomas

  23. SUSAN ROSE says:

    Hi My Father was born in 1921 and his brother 1923. They lived at 61 Hackford Road with my grandad. Their surname was Blaikie. My father was a variety artist. My grandad dies in 1960. I remember going there as a child. But can’t remember whether it was a flat or house at the time. As I was only young. My dad went to Archbishop Tennyson school Kennington. If anyone has any further info about that era of the road. I would to hear about it. Thanks

  24. Michael Lambert says:

    Hi! I’m Mick Lambert. Reading these post’s has brought back some memories, I was at Hackford road if my collections are right from 57 to 61. The names of some of the teachers mentioned has stirred some recollections, Mr Adamson (Deputy Head) joined the staff not long after I had started at the school, his office was on the landing between the ground and first floor of the righthand stairs, we all avoided that stairwell as best we could. Mr Gallagher (English Teacher) he was adapt at using the wooden chalk duster but his favourite item for dishing out punishment was the wooden pencil holder (for 6 of the best). Mr Terry (Technical Drawing) I still remember and use frequently his advice on the vanishing point when you draw a picture. Mr Roberts (English Teacher) I remember him from the Cormont Road annexe where he encouraged us to produce a weekly newsletter for the school.
    There were 3 annexes Wyvil road for science and biology, which was normally a half day session once or twice a week, Cormont Road at Myatts Field, again once or twice a week whole day sessions and finally there was an annexe just of Camberwell Station Road, where the woodwork class was held, like metalwork we seemed not to get enough sessions
    Highlites of my time there were, watching a boxing competition, me taking a part in a school play where my only lines were “That’s all because of a Hackford Road Education” and the visit to the school of an ex-Boy, Jess Conrad.

  25. Rachel says:

    Hi all! Bit of a long shot here…

    My grandmother, Marjorie Jessie Butler (born in 1927) seems to have grown up in this area if the 1939 register has her dad in the right place – 49 Hackford Road. She’s not on the register as far as I can see, so I’m wondering if she was evacuated. I can’t ask her, as she unfortunately passed away in 2017, but if her name rings a bell to anyone here, I’d love to know!

    Thank you 🙂

  26. Alan Molineaux says:

    Does anyone remember Ken Preston, he left Kennington secondary (Hackford Rd) school in 1950 or 51. he was a great sportsman at both football and cricket but never had the chance to take it up professionally. He wasn’t a big lad, but as hard as nails although he was always fair. He represented the district at cricket and played at the Oval clearing the ground with an almighty hit in a most entertaining innings.

    Sadly, Ken died two weeks ago and his funeral is Friday 20th August. Great guy and it was a pleasure to know him.

  27. Graham chubb says:

    Hi I had two brothers who went to kennington.school.
    Hackford.road.Len 58 to 62 Robert 60 to 64 . When I started September 64 .
    Hackford.road was no longer part of kennington.comment.road became the mane
    School.John Ruskin st. Became the annex near kennington.park
    Mr Fowcett.still the head John Ruskin st. Head was mr Robert’s I was there 1st 2 & 3 year
    Mr Tyrol .mr ritches.mr Kay he like to throw the board duster across the room.
    My last year was Cormont.Road 4 g1 mr Gloster there was another annex crowford road for wood work John Ruskin st had a woodwork room I remember mr Robert’s coming in
    To the woodwork room there were boys firering. Ink nibs with lastick. Bands at people
    He made the hole class turn out the pockets about half the class had rubber bands.
    He sent them to one side of the room and caned the lot of them made them bend over the bench and took a run on each one .he had a bad temper I remember one boy spoke
    In assembly he sent the boy to his office to get his cane and caned him in front of the whole school I think maybe he went through a lot in the war.any way still had a good time at kennington school

  28. Graham chubb says:

    Hi I had two brothers at hackford road Len 58 to62 Robert 60 to 64 when I started September 64 hackford road was not the main school any more it was not part of kennington.cormont road was the main school mr fawcett was the head the new annex
    Was John Ruskin st near kennington park mr Robert’s was the head there my 1st 2 and 3 year teachers were mr tyral mr ritches and mr Kay he like throwing the board duster across the room I remember mr Robert’s coming into the wood work room saying some boys were firering ink nibs with lastic bands at people he made every one empty the pockets the ones with rubber bands were sent to one side of the room and told to lean
    Over the bench and caned about half the class he like to take a run at them he look tired after that I remember one boy spoke in assembly he sent the boy to his office to bring his
    Cane and caned him in front of the hole school I think he bad times in the war.
    My last year was cormont road in 4 g1 mr gloster they did have another annex for woodwork Crawford road I still had a great time at kennington school

  29. John chandler says:

    I was there 1953 to 58.i lived in royal road behind kennington park.i remember headmaster was fawcett.history was haley.2smiths and one was hot dog smith.think his initials were hd.woodwork was Mr oliver.i loved woodwork and ended up being a builder .now live in essex.best mate was Dougie Goodwin now living in New Zealand.other names Georgy Welch Ray rose .Tony McGuiness.we all went to boys club at the oval and played in football and cricket teams.great school enjoyed it all.

  30. John Burton says:

    Hi. I attended Kennington Secondary from 1960 to 1964 when it moved to Myatts field. I did a few weeks at the new site, helping Mr Lovett set up the new metalwork shop, before joining the navy. All the masters names come back. Al with a couple of exceptions were great. Mr Masirea was sarcastic I just couldn’t take to him, l remember he ‘had a fall down the escalator at the Oval tube station’. Remember how when he picked up a piece of chalk he would give it a couple of strokes down the board before examining the end of it. I was told by another master that was because once somebody had drilled out the end of the chalk a put the head of a red match in and it had ignited as he wrote on the board.
    I’d read an article about Van Gogh living in Hackford road so te last time I was in London (2014) I went to have a look. When I was at school the Van Gogh blue plaque was on a house on the North side of Hillyard street towards Brixton Road. At the time nobody was very interested, in fact the only blue plaque was across the road from the school about 8 houses from the corner, and that was for some music hall artist. Now I see they have turned one street into the Van Gogh gardens.
    I remember that I always thought it strange that the metalwork shop and woodwork shop were on the top floor of the primary school building.

  31. Donald Schloss says:

    Hi All,

    Can someone tell me when Kennington Boys School in Cormont Road, London, SE5 came about and the annexe on John Ruskin Street, London, SE5 please?


    X Kennington Boy, now Kennington man 👍🏿

  32. Terry Beckwith says:

    I went to Kennington SecondAry Modern from 1951 to 1955.
    Now in my 80s, I have forgotten a fair bit. However I clearly have memories of certain teachers. Mr Haley the history teacher, on February 6th 1952, he came in to the classroom to solemnly announce the death of King George v1, I assume he was fully expecting us scallywags to greet the announcement with sadness, and respect. Where what actually happened was that upon hearing this news all the boys burst out in cheers, and laughter
    The sad,disillusioned, and furious Mr Haley immediately said that he would cane every boy. Of course this never happened, on reflection I can sympathise with him, however I’m sure he didn’t fully appreciate that us boys have just survived a horrible world war, some, including myself had dads who paid the ultimate sacrifice, with widowed mums who received little support to bring up the family. Thus we were all anti authority, with absolutely no affinity with the Royal Family. I also remember another teacher, one who hasn’t been mentioned thus far, Mr Goodwin. A lovely chap, who gave me a lot of encouragement, and credit.

  33. Raymond Doyne says:

    Well as I’m coming up to being 75years young next’s month, it will be 60years, since I left Kennington County Secondary, so I wonder how many of them are still around, the ones I still remember are:
    Howard Nobbs
    Michael Hubbard
    Ian Holmes’s
    Jack Tripp
    Ron Grimond
    John Walker
    Charlie Stimson
    Harry Rushworth
    Michael Perry
    Alan Weeks
    Anthony Schcair
    Now for the ones, where I can’t remember their first names:
    Green & Greener
    Sorry if I’ve spell, any of names incorrectly and didn’t remember your name!
    And FYI I was KCS, between 1958 and 1962
    Looking forward to hearing from any of you
    Kind regards Ray Doyne

  34. Rob Smart says:

    Anyone remember John Smith, done a bit of boxing and lived in Bonnington Square, went to KSS in 1949-53. Was due to go to the Melbourne olympics in 1956 but split his hand in a warm up fight in Swindon.

  35. Sandra May Adams says:

    I read all your comments with very great interest.
    I went to the Reay from 1954 until 1960, I guess, when I left for secondary school. My name is Sandra Adams. Before that I was at Durand Gardens infant school.
    I had suddently thought of the headmaster, E.L.G. Barraball who had been very kind to me when I was harrassed by boys after school, and started digging on the internet.
    At some later stage I had a boyfriend, Peter Doggett, who went to the boys’ school. I think some of his friends went there too, Peter Smith and Mick Slattery. They made a band together and Peter played drums.
    I was interested to notice that so many of you went abroad. That’s odd because nowadays I don’t think most people do. I also went abroad and stayed out of UK until forced to return, to help my mother.
    Thank you all for posting, really enjoyed learning about you.

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