Flashback: A Chigwell showjumper, the salvation of Ilford High Road and campaigners’ Central line victory


Flashback - Credit: Archant

A look back at the biggest local stories from this week 20, 40 and 60 years ago.

1957:A Chigwell 14-year-old showjumper was backing her chances of being placed at the national Horse of the Year show despite bookies giving her just a 100-1 chance.

Speaking from her home in Manor Road, Chigwell, the youngster told the Recorder that anything could happen.

She said: “Everything has to be right. You have to approach the fence at the right moment, take off and land at just the right second.”

The young rider, who was facing off against more than 100 other juvenile riders in the competition, rode her own ponies, Acton Lass and Nippy III.

And the keen rock and roll fan and Elvis Pressley admirer, stood to win a grand prize of £150 if, against all odds, she took home the top prize.

1977:The opening of two superstores to breathe new life into Ilford’s shopping centres rejuvenated hopes of a christmastime shopping bonanza.

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Boots and Littlewoods announced this week that their giant new High Road department stores would open on October 20 and November 9 respectively.

The projects represented a multi-million pound investment in the town centre at a time when concerns were rising its economy could not compete against the nearby centres of Romford and Stratford.

The Greater London Council also pledged £8.5million to help convert the High Road into a pedestrianised shopping centre.

1997: Central line commuters won a much needed victory when it was announced that London Underground would not be permanently closing entrances at two of Redbridge’s stations.

Instead of being bricked up, plans were drawn to install automatic ticket barriers at Woodford and South Woodford stations by Easter 1998, complete with CCTV cameras.

The revelations came from a letter sent by Central line manager Geoff Thackwray to Liberal Democrat councillor Ian Bond, who had organised a resident’s campaign when fears began to circulate the busy entrances might be closed permanently.

Transport bosses had previously closed the entrances to combat loss of revenue due to fraudulent travel, as the gates could not be manned throughout the day.