This week I’ve been chatting to a number of people about their childhood in Worcester.

One former resident, Laurence Davison, has written a fascinating account of his early years growing up in St John’s, long summer days filled with time outdoors, climbing trees and football in the street. Days that were filled with their fair share of mischief too!

Laurence, who now lives in Berkshire, was born in 1957 and spent much of his childhood living in Claverham Close.

He recalled “There were at least twenty children of similar ages, for my two brothers and me to mix with.

“We played in the road a lot, racing and skidding our bikes, playing endless games of cricket at the cul-de-sac wall which still bears the scars of a wicket carved into it.” 

“Pitmaston Park became our playground where we climbed the trees, played games such as hide-and-seek, ‘1-2-3’, British bulldog, and football with a heavy leather, often waterlogged ball. Sometimes we played ‘footy’ until we could no longer see the ball as dusk descended.”

Laurence remembers many of the local shops too, a few of which are shown in the images here. 

“For my brothers and I, pocket money started at 3d a week, each year increasing to about 2/6, enough to buy a good supply of tooth-rotting sweets from our nearest corner shop in Vernon Park Road.

“Walking from Claverham Close into St Johns, we had a convenience or confectionery store every 100-200 yards:  Vernon Park Stores, Taylors, ‘Doc’ Hollidays, Cordells, Mutters, Richardsons.

“No wonder Mr Pimley the Dentist was perfectly situated a 100 yards further down, after that lot! “ 

No doubt with all those sweets, there was plenty of energy to burn and Laurence also recalls some of the mischief they all got up to: “We would often push the limits of what we could get away with.

“Sometimes we used nylon fishing line to secretly pull a door knocker from a distant hiding place, then watch the hapless adult curse after finding nobody there!” 

These tales of childhood and many more are being made available via the Worcester Life Stories website – thank you so much to Laurence for sharing them!

If you would like to share your memories of life in Worcester, we’d love to hear from you.

Worcester Life Stories is a collaborative project bringing local people together through shared stories of the City of Worcester.

It is co-led by Dr Natasha Lord, Herefordshire and Worcestershire Health and Care NHS Trust and Sheena Payne-Lunn, Worcester City Council and funded thanks to National Lottery players.

For further information or to share your stories visit, our Facebook page or Twitter @worlifestories.

You can also email or call 01905 721133.

Or why not search for We grew up in Worcester on Facebook and join the conversation there?