22 Hamilton Road - Part 2
SECURITY FAMILY FREEDOM AND FUN.
By BRIAN LAWRIE
Why I have sub-titled this page “Security Family Freedom and Fun” when growing up as a young boy on the “Oxhey Estate” during the late 1940,s and early 1950,s when almost all of us lived with very little in the way of possessions.No television,no computers,no hamburgers,no fizzy drinks and everything else we think we need to be happy today.We had a family at home,at school and at play.The majority of us were sent of to school with some form of breakfast by our mums. If we came home from school at lunch time (or we stayed for school dinners) our mums were there with more food and again when we came home at the end of the school day our mums were there again and as if by magic more food appeared,and later our dads returned from work. Our mums and dads did not have “partners” but a husband and a wife,we had an identity and knew where we belonged and felt wanted loved and needed.
At school we were expected to behave and conform,but individual achievement was encouraged and rewarded with praise.The discipline from home was carried on by our teachers who not only taught us but in the main genuinely cared about our academic artistic and sporting achievements and health and welfare.We were expected to learn,pay attention and were swiftly corrected if we stepped out of line.Wrong doing was punished by a dressing down,detention,the slipper or the cane, and no we did not live in fear of punishment,we knew that wrongdoing had a penalty and in the main accepted this as in most cases the “punishment did fit the crime”. Due to these standards we were generally proud of our schools and our teachers.Home and school gave us two levels of security and care,both vital to our well being.
We lived in neighbourhoods were we knew our parents friends and school friends parents, who if you visited their homes or came across you outside at play said hello and if you were misbehaving again corrected you and you were expected to obey. I can still hear these same people saying. If you do not stop that now “do you want me to tell your parents.” A saying which still brings a touch of fear when I recall it,as having your parents embarrassed by their friends reporting your sins could lead to serious reprocussions when you returned to you own home.Our home, our school and our neighbourhood now gave us three levels of childhood security.
Now I look back, yes I for one felt needed, secure and cared for and loved in my childhood, without even realising at the time any of these emotions.Visible and invisible ” kids insurance” brought about by good parenting,good schooling a caring neighbourly environment.