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Harringay, Haringey - So Good they Spelt it Twice!

Horace Walter Smith

This is Horace Walter Smith, my Dad’s older brother.
Born in the 1889 and grew up in the family home in Priory Road in the shadow of Alexandra Palace.
He died in 1959.
I first remember Uncle Horace and Auntie Maud living in Brownswood Road in about 1949 they moved to the nice big house in Seymour Road. Uncle Horace was a fascinating man who’d lived a very varied life. He was a soldier in the Great War and served in the Home Guard in the Second World War.
Between the wars he worked for Cooks the travel agents, sometimes in the Paris office, as he spoke French very well. When war broke out he stayed in Paris until the Germans were about to take the city. The French staff in the office were instructed to make their own way home. The British staff each were given a suitcase filled with a ledger and a large amount of cash and travellers’ cheques then told to get back to Britain by any means. They did, and all the money was returned to head-office.
On returning to England, Horace joined the Home Guard and continued working for Cooks until his retirement.
He’d walk up Green Lanes every Saturday morning to see us in Woodberry Grove, have a cup of tea, chat with Dad about DIY (both very good with their hands) and then walk home.
His abiding interest was the railway, steam it all was then. He had a particular interest in signalling.
A quiet kindly man and I wish I’d taken more notice of his wisdom. I too now, am interested in steam railways.

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