Lowe Family

Memories of the Lowe Family

My maternal grandparents, Fred and Alice Lowe lived at 24 High Street adjacent to the garage yard for many years. Fred had worked as a plate layer for the railway.

They had two daughters, ‘Tid’, my aunt and in 1917, Ena, my mum. My mother attended the school in the High Street, and after leaving school, had worked as an usherette at the (now gone) cinema on Mansfield Road.https://edwinstowehistory.org.uk/local-history/buildings/cinema/

During the war, she met my father Owen Roberts who was a trooper with the Household Cavalry stationed at Rufford. They married in St Mary’s church, Edwinstowe on the 1st January 1940-41.

My mum and dad, then moved south to Farnham (where my dad came from) in Surrey where they had 3 sons, Roy in 1942 David (me) in 1945 and Keith in 1946. I have fond memories of our visits to see my grandparents in the 1950’s. We would come up on 2 motorbike and sidecar outfits. One was my dad’s and the other his mate Charlie Cole.  They would park in the ‘garage yard’ next door.

My grandparent’s neighbours were Mr. and Mrs. George Whitworth, Mr. and Mrs. Harvey and Phyllis, Charlie and Paul Tyndall in the end cottage.

On our visits, the neighbours would help with housing us all, and I think my mum and dad stayed in a house somewhere near where the pet shop now is.

I recall the name Woodhouse who I believe may have been a school friend of my mums.

I remember going to a shop somewhere further down the street on the same side as the cottages to get a bottle of stout for my gran on occasions (how times change). We boys would go to the fish and chip shop (where I think the butchers now stand) to get a ‘four penny mix’ for tea. I recall a sweet shop opposite number 24 and slightly up the street.

High Street – WS Lowes’ Garage Kirkstall Cafe on the right.

We would play in a much quieter forest and even in the Major Oak before the supports were installed, I have vivid memories of that every time we visit now.

I think some of the forest roads near the green may have had base Tarmac or similar then too.

Back to the cottages. –
At the back of the cottages was an alley and hard up against the garden bank were brick ‘sheds’.
Which house the toilet (I think) and storage including the tin baths and maybe the hot water boiling tubs. There was only a cold tap in kitchen in most cottages then.
Between the ‘sheds’ were steps leading to the veg gardens beyond and in my grandad’s garden he had a large summer house style shed which had a barber’s chair. Men would come for a haircut and sit on benches admiring the veg growing and sharing advice whilst waiting their turn. I remember sitting on the wall between the garage yard and the cottages back alley.

Early in the mornings, we would wake to the sound of the miner’s boots as they marched to Thoresby pit.

We would wash in a bowl with a big jug for the water back then. I can remember also turning the handle of the clothes mangle for my gran.

We visited Thoresby pit once and went to the winding house where Phil Tyndall worked. My dad went in the cage with others down the mine. I can remember the air pressure difference in the winding house.


I also remember going to the fire station but I think it has moved further down the road now. My grandad must have been a retained fireman because I can remember wearing a gold fire helmet which was placed on my head.


The Fire Brigade was Captain Stanley Lowe

My grandad had an allotment where he spent a lot of time. There were always others there and there seemed to be a lot of chatting going on.  I thought the allotments were closer to where the bungalows now stand opposite forest corner.

Charlie and Phil Tyndall were keen cricketers and I believe Charlie was a green keeper for the club and maybe an umpire.

After my mum and dad passed on, my dad in 2000, and mum in 2007 we had the opportunity to bring mum home and her ashes were scattered in the church yard. Since then, we’ve come every Easter and put flowers on the grave of Charles Lowe.

David Roberts