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A picture from the turn of the 20th century showing the Forge, the Bakery and Well House farm.

The Blue Anchor Public House (as was).  This particular licensed premises closed in the 1960s and is now a private residence.

St. James' church.  This picture was taken sometime at the turn of the 20th century.  The church was declared redundant in the 1980s and is now a private dwelling.

In the 1980s the number of heavy goods lorries passing through the village was a serious problem before a weight limit was eventually introduced. As no other vehicle was involved, this particular accident was investigated by the police for the lorry being driven too fast whilst overloaded. The lorry damaged the lampost seen in the background and demolished another.  Luckily, nobody was injured.

Photo: Mr. A.N.Jones

Every Boxing Day, morris dancing would take place outside the King's Head.  This was a West Tilbury tradition dating back many years. Sadly, the Rumford Morris Men no longer dance here. This picture was taken in 1979.

Photo: Mr. P. Woloschuk

For many years during the 1700s & 1800s mineral water from wells in West Tilbury was bottled and sold for medicinal purposes. It was claimed to be a "curative" for many types of ailment and sold widely.                                                                 
This is the only known example of this style of bottle seal.  Bottles of the water were sold as "Tilbury Alterative Water" by the proprietor of the well, Richard Hunt Esq..

From the Martin Dunne collection of West Tilbury Village memorabilia
Photograph © Martin Dunne

Lieutenant Colonel E.A. Loftus O.B.E. T.D. DL M.A. B.Sc. FGS

Ernest Achey Loftus was born at Hull in 1884. He is in the Guinness Book of Records for being the longest continuous diarist, having kept a detailed journal for 91 years (1896 to 1987).  A teacher at Palmer’s School, Grays from 1906 he also served in the T.A. and later during the First World War.  After that he was Headmaster at Barking Abbey School.  He married Elsie Cole and lived for many years at Polwicks in West Tilbury.

His continued service with the Territorial Army earned him the rank of Lt. Col., as well as the Territorial Decoration. In 1929 he was appointed Deputy Lieutenant for Essex. He served briefly during World War Two.

At the age of 70, he retired as a teacher in Britain and became an Education Officer in Kenya, Nyasaland and Zambia. He died at Harare, Zimbabwe, in 1987 aged 104.

He is shown here in his Essex Regiment uniform sometime in the 1920s.  

 Photo: Mr. Peter Leewood

This picture shows the pond next to Well House, possibly at the turn of the Twentieth century.                            

Photo: Mr. Peter Leewood

This picture shows the pond viewed from the other side and looking toward the church.  This picture was also believed to have been taken at the turn of the Twentieth century.  Closer examination reveals the traction engine gently steaming in the barnyard.  You can also see a lady seated on the pondside bank and dressed in the fashion of the day.           

Photo: Mr. Peter Leewood

Many years ago West Tilbury had its own handbell team which carried on until the late 1960s.  The team disbanded and the bells were placed in the care of the local church until that was declared redundant.  Since then there is no record of where the bells ended up. Here is a picture of the handbell team thought to have been taken in the 1920s or 30s.

Photo: Mr Peter Leewood

Mr. Steve Goodchild took over The King's Head, on the Green at West Tilbury recently.  He was kind enough to pass on some old photographs that revert back to a time in the village when there were annual coach trips and a darts team.  Can you identify any of the people in the photographs?  If so, please e-mail the village hall website or drop in for a drink at the pub and tell Steve.  This picture was probably taken in Clacton, which was a popular seaside destination for 'charabanc' outings.

This picture is possibly the darts team.  The photographer was from East London so it was probably taken somewhere within the region during the summer.

This group is ready for the off and pictured on the Green.  Mr. and Mrs. Duncan MacGregor with their dog are in the front row and Mr. & Mrs. Ernest (Jack) Graves are seated behind the three girls at the front.

This is an intriguing picture, taken in the 1950s or 60s of a local group on a trip.  A number of those in the picture are wearing buttonholes or corsages.  Was this a wedding or other special event?

This picture was taken in front of the King's Head with everyone smartly dressed for their outing.  Mr. MacGregor is there, resplendent in his suit and buttonhole flower as is Mr.& Mrs. Graves on the right of the third row.  Standing at the back on the extreme right is the coach driver in his white coat.