56 thoughts on “The Kings Head Hotel

  1. Does anyone remember any residents from Charge Place? My dad and his family (Deatons and Trowsdales) lived in no.2 next to what was at one time a shop. Did Charge Place link on to Webster street? I can’t find it on any maps from the 30’s or 40’s.

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  2. Hi Kevin McCullough! I think we are cousins?? I’ve read a few of your comments, and when you mentioned my other cousin, Kenny Ferrell, I knew for definite. There are a few Kevin and Michael McCullough’s in the family of my Mam’s various siblings. Mam was Patricia, her brothers being Mick, Teddy, Francis, Edward,and sisters were Emily, Nellie, and Betty. The surname was always a matter of contention, as half of the family spelled it with one ‘U’ and the other half spelled it with two. McCullogh/McCullough. My maiden name is Bates.

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  3. Mick, It’s a good job it wasn’t dark, or the good Sarge would have probably hauled you off to the cells for the night and confiscated your bike.

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  4. Same Sarge Elliot once pulled me up at the top of Dunmail Rd and told me to walk my bike home as it had no lights on, this would have been mid day! Didn’t dare argue the fact that you didn’t need lights in daylight.

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  5. That was Sgt Elliott all over. Going to work on my bike through the town he jumped in front of me near to Church Road. I braked violently nearly going over the handlebars. He said, ‘I’m only testing your brakes’. Years later he was stationed at Crook, full of steep banks. There was a local firm which had a ‘sand quarry’ and they delivered heavy loads in large lorries which had to go through Crook. He still had the habit but this time it was these lorries especially on the steep banks, which thinking back he could have been killed at any time. He was known as a real horror on the streets but at home he was a softie. When glancing through his window you could see him knitting.

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  6. Sergeant Elliot! boy there was a scary cop. When I was a kid in Newtown, every kid in the area was petrified of him. If he came within 100 yards we scarpered quicklike. To be honest, we need more cops like him now, who have the ability to put the fear of God into those up to no good. A belt round the lug from Elliot was enough to put anyone on the straight & narrow.

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  7. Copper Elliott, now there’s a name that evokes a memory. One day when I was a fourteen year-old butcher boy working for Billy Baldwin’s I came roaring down a bank, John Surtees style, with a full load of meat on the front end when Copper Elliott jumped out in front of me and held his hand up for me to stop because I was going too fast. Which I couldn’t do, because the brakes didn’t work, and I knocked him down. The good sergeant wasn’t overly pleased about this turn of events, and neither was Billy Baldwin when Elliott reported me, as he considered it my responsibility to keep the bike in good order.

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  8. I would like to have helped with stories from Jimmy Robson about Billy but we lost touch many years ago and I do not live in the Stockton ares any more. But still have great memories of hanging around Sloans and the High St and the Jubilee on a Sat night. We used to get regularly moved in the High St by a certain Sergeant Elliot!

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  9. According to boxrec.com Billy had 2 pro fights against the same guy in 1947, both down south, won one, drew one. So I suppose he could say he retired undefeated.

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  10. Billy (The Boxer) Russell was a true gentleman and taught his great friend David (Blackie) Fletcher how to box properly. Billy Russell must be well into his 80s nowadays, but a real character. I’m not sure how many professional fights that he had but he used to tell us how he was also a boxing booth fighter at fun fairs.

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  11. Remember Billy well, he seemed to hang around the Dovecot/High Street corner. He walked on his ‘tip toes’ and as some commented he looked as though he was shadow boxing.

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  12. I remember Billy the boxer from the early 70s from the cafe in Ramsgate, forget the cafe name now.
    We used to go in for egg, chips & peas after a few jars on market day.

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  13. Heather Wilkinson, what a suprise to learn that Billy the Boxer is still with us, that makes me happy. I’m sure there are many contributors to this site that remember Billy and can provide some insight to his life. I was one of those teenagers who ‘hung’ around the town, particularly the Snooker Hall; but in spite of all the warnings from my folks, priests, neighbours etc I turned out o.k. and did pretty well for myself with life. Billy was a permanent fixture in the Town, ‘shadow boxing’ wherever he was. I never really knew his true history but he used to tell me he was a famous boxer once, fighting against such greats as Randy Turpin, etc… not sure about that though. Billy always seemed happy and was considered ‘punch drunk’ but let me tell you when it came to playing snooker for money he didn’t miss a trick. Perhaps Dave Day can get Jimmy Robson to tell some stories about him playing against Billy. I do remember one major incidence when my cousin Kenny Ferrel played against Billy and the outcome of the bet was under dispute, my cousin Kenny decided to take Billy on at what Billy did best… ‘fisticuffs’!! Not really a smart idea on my cousins part. Needless to say the cops were called, both arrested and both ended up in the Stockton Court system; the good news was that Kenny lived. Most of the time though Billy was fearsome to look at but a ‘pussycat’ in his dealings with all of us young ‘punks’.

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    • Billy Russell had two fights as a professional lightweight against Billy Barratt in 1947, the first was 6th March at the Drill Hall, Bournemouth which he drew & the second was 27th March at Bermondsey Baths, London which he won on a knock-out in the 5th round. Randy Turpin was a middleweight.

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  14. Re Kevin McCulloughs comments about Sloans snooker hall and Jimmy Robson playing snooker against Billy the boxer. Billy is a resident in the care home I work in and has difficulty speaking but his face lit up when I mentioned the names. I wondered if anyone has any photos of Billy or any stories about his colourful life.

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  15. Two names have been mentioned that brought back many memories for me. First Blackie Fletcher – someone said he had a reputation; he sure did, he was known in the town as real hardcase. But he and I were friends and he was always good to me. Several times he ‘saved my hide’ at the Jubilee Dance Hall. Maurice Harper and I seemed to get into jams there often and Blackie always saved us.
    In fact the greatest ‘fisticuffs’ I ever saw was Balckie versus the famous Keith Higgins on the stairs of the front door at the ‘jube’. It seemed to go on forever with no one coming away victorious. Someone mentioned Jimmy Robson, he and I were also friends, we went to school at Darlington together, then to the St. Cuthberts club, and also to Sloans together. Jimmy was an exceptional snooker player, I think he won the North of England championship once. I loved to watch him play on table one, he took money from everyone including Blackie, Billy the Boxer, anyone he played. I think the only one who could sometimes match him was Norman Walsh, another friend and great player.

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  16. The other person to make up the 4 hand in dominos was Geoff Payne. When they played it was for real money. You could win or lose £100 in a nights game.

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  17. Morley Herdman is living in Norton in a flat somewhere opposite the Malleable Club. His father, a dental mechanic, later had premises above what was Mother Hubbards shop on Norton Road in Tilery. His brother was also a dental mechanic and did work for Jimmy Armstrong who had a dental practice on Durham Road in Newtown. They would meet about twice a week in the back room upstairs in the Brown Jug to play dominos.

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  18. The Herdman family moved to Stockton from Consett around 1955 when Dad Jack opened his dental technician’s clinic on the corner of Lawson Street, and the cross street Charge Place, which linked to Webster Street. The last time I saw Morley was when after he had left Stockton Grammar and had a second hand book shop on Nelson Terrace opposite the old technical college building, circa 1964. I didn’t know him by any other name and his family always used ‘Morley’. He did have a brother, Wesley, who worked for Stockton Council I believe and a sister who lived opposite with her family.
    Does anyone know what happened to Morley and if he is still lives locally?

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    • Thanks for your post. Did Jack open the clinic in the shop unit on the corner of Charge Place and do you know when Charge Place was knocked down? I have some pictures of no.2 and the shop on the corner taken from probably the 60’s. I’ll try and post them if I can.

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  19. Dave Day, that’s the very same David ‘Blackie’ Fletcher. He worked at Head Wrightson as a riveter, caulker and chipper and moved to Ashmore, Benson and Pease South Works in the mid to late 60s. I was an apprentice draughtsman at that time, and David worked with my Dad in the same tough, noisy boiler yard trade. I remember his brother called Keith, but I’m not sure if he passed the 11+ as the memory dims with age. His youngest sister, Shirley, did attend Grangefield Grammar though. David did indeed marry Ross Wegg from Yarm, and they lived there together until his tragic death.

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  20. Morley Herdmans father and mother moved to Windmill Terrace Norton when the houses were demolished. His brother is Wesley(Wes). As long as I have known him he has been Morley.

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  21. I remember Blackie Fletcher as he used to play snooker regularly against one of my mates, Jimmy Robson who lived in Grove St, when we all hung out in Sloanes billiard hall by the Empire. He also worked at Head Wrightsons where I worked. I got to know him well a few years later when he married a girl I knew, Ros Wegg. His brother Keith went to Grangefield I think. Was the folk club in the Old Royal as I remember a modern jazz club meeting in there?

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  22. Morley Herdman preferred to be called by his first name at Stockton Grammar, where we knew him as Charlie. It seems odd to hear of him called by his middle name.

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  23. Michael, Colin Calvert was a Grangefield Grammar student and did indeed live in one of the two huge Villas situated at the Yarm Lane end of Lawson Street. He was an amazing athlete and gymnast. He and his parents moved to Raby Road around 1960. The Fletcher’s lived in Webster Street, again at the Yarm Lane end. There were quite a few in the family and I think that Butch was the oldest son. Thay all attended Mill Lane School. I can’t remember all of the kids but Ian and David were the twins, then there was Molly, Dorothy, Pat, Pauline and Shirley was the youngest. Pat and Pauline were not twins though, but all the girls were very good looking. Dorothy was best friends with another Lawson Street girl, Maureen Hammerstead, who lived in the very last house on Lawson Street and she attended the Fairfield Secondary Modern School before it was merged with Stockton Grammar.
    Tragically the twins Ian, and David both died about 10 years ago, within months of each other and of natural causes.

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  24. Lawson Street and Webster Street. I knew Morley very well and his friend Colin who lived at the Yarm Lane end. Also ‘Blackie’ (Dave) Fletcher who had quite a reputation and his sisters two of which were twins Pauline and Pat Fletcher. During the ‘teddy-boy’ era it sometimes was quite nerve-wracking walking down these streets.

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  25. I was born in 92 Lawson Street in 1948, to Gwen (nee Davies) and Harry. I have a brother, Harry (1933) living in California, USA, and a deceased sister Gwen (1938). We were all born in the same house at the Dovecot Street end and attended Mill Lane School. My maternal grandparents lived in the same house too, whilst my paternal grandparents lived in Ewbank Street. It was a very close community having aunt Violet living in 94, aunt Carrie in 96, aunt Louise in a house across the road and just a few doors down towards The King’s Head pub. Uncle Fred, aunt Liz and uncle Jim all lived in the adjacent Webster Street. I remember the Laverick family and Jean and Alan, who eventually moved to Hardwick. I remember that Bill Fenwick was tenant The King’s Head pub, and had a son Peter and a daughter Patricia. Also Jack Herdman had the dental technicians clinic, at the Yarm Lane end of Lawson Street, and his son Morley was a really good friend at school before he moved on to Stockton Grammar. I used to go to Billy and Hilda Lenham’s house a lot and knew David who was older than I, and his sister Norma was my sister’s best friend. There are just so many stories to recall here about Lawson and Webster Street and I am proud of where I was born, felt safe, and grew up around all the good, honest and hard working people who lived there.

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  26. My maternal grandmother, Elsie Lenham (later Gower) lost her mother at the age of about 15 shortly after the birth of her youngest sibling Tom. She raised Tom and her younger siblings at 42 Lawson Street.

    After the war, she met my grandfather in Yarm and moved to Corringham in Essex. Tom married a Margaret and continued to live in the area. Coincidentally, their sister Margaret married a man named Tom (so there were two Toms and Margarets in the family), and moved to the West Midlands. Margaret is the last of the Lenham siblings.

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  27. Would it be possible for the daughter of Elsie Lenham [my late fathers sister] to pass on her e-mail details to me through Picture Stockton. I am interested in any photographs of my fathers family which she may have.

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  28. I am the daughter of Elsie Lenham. All my holidays as a child were spent at 42 Lawson Street with Hilda and Vera (Uncle Jack’s widow). The last time I was in Stockton was for Hilda’s funeral and the only one left is Margaret whom I am in touch with.

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  29. Just noticed all the remarks about the Stockton Folk Club in the Stork and Castle. This pub was in Brunswick Street, we went a few times, always packed houses. I lived in Lawson Street, No 28. Jean Laverick did you have a brother called Alan, it seems to ring a bell.

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  30. Regarding Stockton folk club it was based in The Stork & Castle for many years (Lawson St?). Monday night, it was the place to be with The Fettlers providing most of the music. It used to be ‘heaving’ especially if a current big folk name was appearing.
    If John Bond is a brother of Nigel whom I knew quite well, great voice and used to have Malcolm Ellis accompany him on the guitar.
    Upset the purist’s one night by singing the Bee Gee’s ‘I just gotta get a message to you’
    The landlady was Eve and her partners name was Ken… Oh happy days.

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  31. I was born in 61 Lawson St, my father was Bill Lenham and mam was Lilly nee Moody. My fathers family lived in 42 Lawson St opposite the Kings Head. Tom Lenham was his youngest brother. Faith Hope and Charity Church at one end, Pub in the middle and a Pawnshop at the other end. I spent many happy hours in Kings Head playing solo with friends past and present.

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  32. Sue, Your Mam is quite right I had and still have blonde hair although she has mixed up my Mam with my Aunty Edie (Davies) that lived at 66 my Mam was Hilda and Dad Harry. I remember Mrs Dunill as the shop-keeper next door but one.

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  33. My mam remembers Jean, her Mam and Dad rented no 64 to her family! They were called Stanley and Lily Dunill who also had the shop after buying it and possibly number 64 off a Miss Downs. She remembers Jean as having very blond hair and her mam was called Edie?

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  34. My family (Harry and Hilda Laverick )only rented No 64 I believe that it was owned by the people who owned the little shop that was run from the front room of the house next door but one.

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  35. My family came from Lawson Street and my mother FRANCES WILSON (nee DUNNILL) says she knew Hilda well until she moved to Billingham? My mother”s mam and dad were Stan and Lily who had the general store and Lily”s mam and dad also lived in the road (Herbert and Mary). My mum is thrilled at this site and she remembers many of the names mentioned here! She is now 80. She married Les Wilson (my dad) who very sadly died this year in March.

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  36. Does the Name Thomas Lenham ring a bell with anyone? This was my father who I believe was born in Lawson Street along with, Hilda, Arthur and several more.

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  37. On my grandfathers death certificate,dated 21/1/1929 his son Matthew Lavelle is named on the death certificate as the person notifying the death to the registra. His address is given as Kings Head Hotel Stockton on Tees. I don”t know if this is the same Kings Head Hotel in Lawson Street, and it is rather a long time ago now, but does anyone know anything about Matthew Lavelle? I did not know of his existence until my husband started doing the family tree, but he would have been my uncle, half brother of my mother. Wish we had started doing this earlier as neither of my parents are still alive so there is no one to ask about this uncle I never met.

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  38. jean”s parents must have bought no64 from my parents. it was my grandmothers house till she died.we moved to redcar, just after my sister margaret was born in 1945.i would like to know were the photo was taken

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  39. Is this where stockton Folk Club was for a time? If so, where are all the folk club stories on this site? The folk scene was enormous in the seventies and is still going strong today at the Sun and the Pot and Glass. I remember my brothers and I doing a gig there, singing unaccompanied fox hunting and other rustic stuff plus sea shanties upstairs with our fingers metaphorically in wor ears and beach boys downstairs in the interval, and there were a number of other venues for the Stockton folk Club – the Talbot is the only other one I can remember. There was a folk club at the dovecot for a long time, and the area produced some superb signer/songwriters and instrumentalists, my brother Peter, Ron Angel and Vin Garbutt in the first category, Eddie Walker and Nick Haig in the second, and I”m sure other people will remember others. Graham Miles, who wrote so much now almost traditional material, is a nationally renowned songwriter and worked on some of the famous Radio Ballads of Ewan McColl and Charles Parker, and The Wilson family, of whom we Bonds never let it be said,of course, also have a massive standing in the folk world. I”m sure each of these pubs, the King”s Head, the Talbot and the Sun has wonderful folk tales to tell. let”s have them out in the public domain.

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  40. My father was William McKenzie McLaren who lived in Lawson street, married to Lily Cheeseman. My grandad on the McLaren side lived in Thornaby. My great grandfather came from Campbelltown in Scotland. Don”t know anything about the Nugents though.

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  41. Hi Ray, Interestingly my family were related to both the Nugents and McLaren”s. Who was your father and grandparents on the McLaren side. I come through Mary Ann McLaren who married into the McGarrity family and they in turn married into the Nugent”s. All lived at various times around Lawson Street.

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  42. I lived at 25 Lawson Street, with my mum and dad and sister Jean, 4 doors away from the Kings Head. I remember my mum going into the Kings Head occasionally to bring out a jug of shandy for us to have with a meal as a treat, My mother was Lily McLaren nee Cheeseman of which she had 13 brothers and sisters all living locally. One of her sisters Annie was blind and was the first person in Stockton to have a guide dog.

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    • Hi a friend of mine was looking for Ray and Jean Mclaren that lived at 25 Lawson Street. They used to come down to Herefordshire, Ewyas Harold, Allensmore for holidays. It was a few years ago but Pam can remember them well x

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      • There is a strong possibility the McLaren you mention could be Ray McLaren who was a barber, he may still have a shop of West Row in Stockton.

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  43. Lawson Street was special to me I was born at No 64 in 1946 followed by 3 brothers and a sister. My Dad was born across the street at No 43 I remember my Gran and Grandad living there until they died. Also living next door was my Aunty Eddie and Uncle Tom and 3 cousins, quite a family affair. My Mam and Dad had many a happy hour, I imagine, in the Kings Head. I can remember the fish and chip shop opposite the pub and the shop on the other corner of the cross street at the Webster Street end. We all moved to Hardwick in 1958.

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  44. Hi Lynn. We lived in Lawson street in the 1950″s, moved before the demolition. The doctor”s surgeries are at the Yarm Lane end of Lawson Street/Webster Street. Number 72 was at the Dovecot Street end and houses were built on that section. Best of luck with your family history, that is one of my vices too.

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  45. My grandfather, Jimmy NUGENT grew up at 72 Lawson Street. He and his parents and siblings were there in the 1891 and 1901 census. I believe that where #72 used to stand is now a doctor”s office building.

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  46. I was born in No.18 Lawson Street about the time when the second war started. I started my first school the year before we moved to thornaby to live . Maureen Baldwin

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  47. The King”s Head pub was on the route from my leaving home in Hutchinson Street and walking to Holy Trinity Youth Club in the church institute in Yarm Lane. I was seventeen and would call in and slowly sip a half of bitter and that made me feel like a man of the world.–Pathetic!

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  48. This certainly brought back memories. This was a home from home for many of the local residents, most of whom lived in Lawson Street. My Dad was one of them……..I have a photo of him serving behind the bar! Our house was across the road from the pub No.26, (I think). I’d be really intersted to find out where the photo here was taken from, as we had to move out when the area was being re-developed.

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