Tag Archives: 1924

1924 Fracas at the Bucks Head

“SABINI BOYS” AGAIN.
ROWDY SCENE AT MITCHAM.

Arising out of fracas at The Buck’s Head, Mitcham, on the previous day, Ernest Charles Straney, thirty-four, of Lollard-Street Kennington; Edward Wiggins, twenty-six, of Brixton; and George Wiggins, twenty-five, of Lyndhurst-road, Chadwell Heath, were charged before the Croydon County Bench with having been disorderly and assaulting Major Poole, M.C., licensee of the house, Mr. S. G. Leney, manager, Police-sergeant Constable, and Police-constable Siviour. Blows with fists, kicking, and biting were alleged.

Mr. Stanley Smith, prosecuting, said that six men arrived in a taxi, and appeared be such a rough lot that the licensee asked a constable to stand by. Straney left the saloon bar and went into the dining-room, and began strumming the piano. As soon as he was asked to return to the bar, where the men had ordered drinks and smokes, the row started. Major Poole was injured on his right arm, which would have to be X-rayed.

Major Poole, in his evidence, said one of the men boasted of being a pugilist. Leney was struck violently on the face while carrying a pile of plates.

Police-constable Siviour and two other police witnesses said they drew their truncheons and used them, owing to the violence of the prisoners. Whilst struggling on the ground Siviour said he felt himself being overpowered and struck George Wiggins on the back of the head, which for a time made him unconscious. At The police station, where they were taken in a lorry, George Wiggins threatened to kill the witness, and added, “We are some of the Sabini Boys.”

Police Inspector Perkins, in asking for a remand, said that the men no doubt had come to Mitcham for a purpose, and the matter might turn out to be much more serious than appeared at the moment.

The Bench granted the application, and allowed bail to the prisoners in their own recognisances, with two sureties each of £20.

Source: Illustrated Police News – Thursday 22 May 1924 from the British Newspaper Archive (subscription required)

Walter Mays Ltd.

The Abbey Cork Mills of Walter Mays Ltd was built on the site of William De Morgan’s pottery, Colliers Wood, in around 1890.

1950 OS map

Walter Carden-Mays born December 1865 in Camberwell. He married in 1888 and died on 21st January 1941 in Surrey. The ‘Carden’ part of the family name was dropped at some point, and his company was known as Walter Mays Ltd.

Listed in the 1925 street directory as Walter Mays Ltd. (Abbey Cork Works), 150 & 152 Byegrove Road.

1924 aerial photo. The site for Colliers wood underground station can be seen bottom right. The cork factory is on the left of the High Street.

1934 OS map rotated to show same view as aerial photo above


Ad from Flight Magazine of 1938 :

and directory listing from same:

WALTER MAYS, LTD., Abbey Cork Mills, London, S.W.19 (Liberty 3764).—” Everything in cork “; carburettor and oil indicator floats, gauge glass washers, gland packings, strut sealing corks, anti-vibration mats, composition cork jointing to D.T.D.219A, laminated and plain.

In an entry on Grace’s Guide to British Industrial History from 1939 about suppliers to the aircraft industry, cork joints to specification DTD 219A were widely used for petrol tank gaskets and packings.


The Stone Cottage of the Surrey Iron Railway stood on the Walter Mays Ltd site for over 150 years.


Mitcham Military Service Tribunals

As reported by the Mitcham and Tooting Mercury, 16th June 1916, an employer of a cork business in Colliers Wood, appealed for his son. Although not named, it is likely that the company was Walter Mays Ltd.

Exemption was asked for a skilled mechanic, by the owner of a cork manufacturing business in Colliers Wood. The employer said the man was very valuable in his present employment and he will be practically impossible to replace. A large proportion of their manufacturers were for government uses. He employed about 17 men of whom are only three were eligible. He pleaded that his son was capable of doing almost anything in the business and his departure might cause the closing down of the business.

Three months exemption.

In the Mitcham and Tooting Mercury, 2nd November 1917, the company and employee are named in an appeal.

Mr Walter Mays, cork manufacturer, of the Abbey Cork Works, High Street, Colliers Wood, asked for a exemption for Mr T.W.S. Cavey, age 41, B1, motor driver and mechanic, residing at Birdhurst Road, Colliers Wood.

Applicant: An exemption for so long as the man remained in his employment. He was engaged in delivering all Mr Mays’s important Government contract work. The average mileage was 250 miles a week.

Counc. Baker : I suppose it is all Government work that Mr Mays does?

Applicant: Oh, yes, it is most important.

The appeal was disallowed.

In the 1919 electoral register a Thomas William Sherrin CAVEY was living with his wife Florence Louisa in 28 Birdhurst Road. He died in 1950 as stated on the Find-A-Grave website, which also says he was a Music Hall performer known as Stirling Fred.


Maps are reproduced with the permission of the National Library of Scotland.

Rumbold Villas

Houses from north to south, between Aspen Gardens and Arneys Lane, off the west side of Carshalton Road, south of Mitcham Junction.

They were built in 1923/4, possibly by Joseph Owen. The houses south of Arneys Lane to the junction with Goat Road, were originally called Tramway Terrace, and were built earlier than 1894.

1894 OS map

1894 OS map

1932 OS map

1932 OS map

R.M. Chart valued the completed houses and loans were made by the Mitcham Urban District Council to purchasers under the Small Dwellings Acquisition Act, 1899.

No. Borrower Property Value £ Loan £
2 J. JORDON 750 675
3 P. PERRYMAN 730 500
4 G. MARLOW 730 655
5 F. ALLEN 725 650
6 L. BURKILL 725 600
7 K.T. TODD 730 655
8 J.B. ROWAN 900 800
10 H.L. GOFF 790 710
13 A.F. FERGUS 725 600
14 S.A. STOLLS 725 600
16 V.H. BARMBY 725 650
17 J.R. GASK 740 665
18 E.H. GRUBB 740 615
19 S.K. BUTTON 725 650
20 A. CRIPPEN 725 575
21 R.G. WILKINS 725 600
22 E.H. JENNER 725 650

Source: Volume IX, Mitcham UDC Minutes, Finance and General Purposes Committee, 1924.

Note that JORDON may be a typo, and probably should be JORDAN.

The name possibly came from the nearby Rumbold Farm, as shown on this 1866 OS map.

1866 OS map

1866 OS map

The 1924 electoral registers gives occupants for numbers 12 to 22.

12, Agnes HALE and Thomas Hargrave YATES
13, Alexander Forrester and Caroline Sophia FERGUS
14, Sidney Arthur and Lily STOLLS
15, Sidney Randolph and Grace Kathleen SELF
16, Victor BARNBY
17, John Reginald GASK

19, Sidney Kenneth BUTTON

22, Edmond Frank and Kate JENNER

In the 1925 electoral register, the names Rumbold Villas and Tramway Terrace have been dropped.


Maps are reproduced with the permission of the National Library of Scotland.


Minutes of meetings held by the Mitcham Urban District Council are available on request from the Merton Heritage and Local Studies Centre at Morden Library.

Park Avenue

Road off east side of Streatham Road, presumably built at the same time as Caithness Road.

1911 OS map

1911 OS map

In the 1915 street directory, houses on the west side were numbered odd from 1 to 109 and on the east side, even from 2 to 108. Included with residents were:

10, William Archelaus L.M.S.S.A.Lond., physician and surgeon
42, John Felix Laker, French servant’s registry office.

See Merton Memories photo from 1924.

World War 1 Connections
Captain John Henry William Forster

Rifleman Hubert William Joslin

Corporal Reginald Henry Osborne

Maps are reproduced with the permission of the National Library of Scotland.

Montague John Stenning

He had a grocery and provisions shop at 34 Church Road, at the corner of Church Place, opposite the Bull pub.

1959 clip from Merton Memories

1959 clip from Merton Memories photo 50966 Copyright London Borough of Merton

Listed in the 1930 and 1938 directories as

Stenning Montague J. grocer, 34 Church rd

An indication of when he started trading from number 34 can be found in the advertisements of the Mitcham Parish Church Magazine. His first ad appears in the July 1924 issue, and in the January 1924 issue the shop has the name W. B. Trowbridge.

July 1924 ad in Parish Church Magazine

July 1924 ad in Parish Church Magazine

January 1924 ad in Parish Church Magazine

January 1924 ad in Parish Church Magazine

In this 1974 photo, number 34 is derelict, but part of ‘MJ Stenning’ can be seen on the railings near the ground.

alt='Image courtesy of Collage - The London Picture Library - http://collage.cityoflondon.gov.uk'


1974 Image courtesy of Collage – The London Picture Library – http://collage.cityoflondon.gov.uk

1924 Comedy of vacancy at Lower Mitcham School

SHY AND SILENT APPLICANTS.
COMEDY OF SCHOOL VACANCY.
Five men replied to an advertisement for assistant master at Lower Mitcham School, and were invited to interview the managers. None appeared.

Further invitations were sent – three of them. There was no response. The Clerk, Mr. W. J. Dickisson, then sent postcards to the three asking them attend an adjourned meeting, but all replied that they could not so.

In desperation Mr. Dickisson wrote to one man inquiring at which hour of the day he could attend. There was no reply till Tuesday morning, when the man wrote to say that he could not leave his present job.

This little comedy was recited at a meeting of the managers on Tuesday. The Clerk said that a candidate from Odiham wrote say that the train did not start in time for him to catch it (loud laughter)
A member: There is no station there.
The Clerk: That is probably the reason (loud laughter).

Source: Gloucestershire Echo – Wednesday 03 December 1924 from the British Newspaper Archive (subscription required)

Fair Green Public Convenience

Built in 1924 at a cost of £1066 18s. 6d., which was the nearest tender to the Surveyor’s estimate of £1064. Adjusted for inflation, this is the equivalent in 2016 of around £60,000. It was decided in May 1924 that it should open from 7 a.m. to midnight.

Photo possibly taken in the 1950s

Photo possibly taken in the 1950s

From the minutes of the Mitcham Urban District council
Volume April 1923 to March 1924
Highways and New Streets and Buildings Committee
Tuesday, 12th February, 1924
Page 533

18. Public Convenience: Fair Green.-
The following tenders were submitted:-

Contractor Address £ s. d.
W. A. Taylor Pitcairn Road Mitcham 1187 17 5
A. F. Simpson South Norwood 1178 0 0
F. & G. Foster and Co. Norwood Junction 1158 0 0
S. Dale Mitcham 1128 7 7
H. Bacon and Son Coulsdon 1097 0 0
H. Hann Colliers Wood Mitcham 1066 18 6
A. A. Secrett Ltd. Wallington 1035 0 0

Surveyor’s estimate, £1064
Resolved, That the tender of Mr. H. Hann be accepted.

From the minutes of the Mitcham Urban District council
Volume 10
May 1924 to April 1925
Public Health and Burials Committee
Page 18

5. Public Conveniences : Fair Green. – It was Resolved, That the Open Spaces and Recreation Grounds Committee be asked to consider as to the hours during which the new public conveniences on the Fair Green shall remain open.

From the minutes of the Mitcham Urban District council
Volume 10
May 1924 to April 1925
Open Spaces and Recreation Grounds
Friday, 9th May, 1924
Page 28

14. Public Conveniences : Fair Green – It was Resolved, That the public conveniences upon the Fair Green remain open from 7 a.m. to midnight.


Minutes of meetings held by the Mitcham Urban District Council are available on request from the Merton Heritage and Local Studies Centre at Morden Library.