Village for a thousand years
Richard Cuzens says
As children, we all played in the cherry orchards of Mr Lay – his farm ran right down to the railway line leading into Didcot. My mother along with other mum’s in the village used to sort the cherries reds, whites and splits which obviously were split cherries and so second quality. The orchard ladders were wide at the base and narrow at the top – carrying them was an art we learned as we got stronger (16yrs +). We used football rattles to scare away the birds – the farm workers used 12 bore shotguns and early in the morning gas powered bangers could be heard. Later as my sisters and I learned to drive, the farm tracks and roads provided us with our first taste of driving (under instruction by our father Gerald). Jenny even managed to reverse our Morris Oxford estate car into one of the trees. I think I am right in saying that some of the cherries went for export, I do remember the cherry baskets, and the light weight boxes made from poplar wood. Happy days of summer in a cherry orchard are my fondest memories of Harwell. Richard Cuzens, son of Gerald & Peggy Cuzens, Homeleigh, High Street Harwell OX11 0ER – 1961/2 until college in 1977.
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