"Highlight of the Year"

Outing for old folk of Crays Hill

I came across a newspaper cutting of a group of old people going on an outing in a charabanc to Southend on Sea for a day at the seaside. These outings were organised by the church and the coach was hired from Ms Kershaw and was driven by Gus Kershaw of Wickford.

Even during the First World War charabancs carrying trippers from London to Southend came through Crays Hill and as they chugged up the hill they were seen by the local children as a means of making pocket money by running alongside shouting, “Throw out your mouldy coppers.”

Such behaviour prompted Rev. Trousdale, who probably saw them as future highway men, to write in the parish magazine in August 1915, “It would be hard to find a village that offers a more degrading sight than Crays Hill on a summer Sunday morning, well dressed children and badly dressed children for the occasion rushing with shouts and yells to beg for pennies from the passengers who come up by the motor buses to Southend.”

Bill Revening, who wrote this article adds “I would imagine it had little effect as we were still doing the same thing in the 1930s”

The poor photo was  taken outside the grounds of St Marys Church Hall in 1920.

Ready for the day trip outside St marys Church Hall 1920

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