Taken in the garden of 43 High Street, Eydon.
In the background on the left is Thomas Kench carpenter's workshop and attached to it down the slope is their office. Then there was a W.C. and small scullery on the back of 45 High Street. At the time of the photo the occupants of No. 45 would have been the Garrows, a London couple who 'escaped' to the country from the London bombing during World War 2.
Hope Douglas, generally known to everyone, even in her retirement, as Nurse Douglas, was unmarried and worked in the villages of Woodford Halse and Eydon as the District Nurse in the 1950s and early 60's doing house visits for the whole range of medical services for patients at home from pre-natal and ante-natal to care for the elderly and was even known to drive pregnant women to the hospital if necessary. She was always prepared for any emergency with her little "black bag" which went everywhere with her. She was a Nurse of the "old school" and expected patients and their offspring to do what she told them in no uncertain terms.
During her earlier District Nursing days in the area she lived in Townsend, Woodford and worked in conjunction with the Doctor who had his surgery in that village with a weekly surgery in a room at 32 High Street, Eydon.
Thinking ahead to her retirement, she saw the opportunity in 1958/9 to buy 43 High Street from the Cleaver family who had lived there for many years and she continued her nursing duties from there until she ceased work. Hope was a staunch Methodist and became a regular attender at the Chapel in Eydon and at meetings of the Women's Fellowship.
In her retirement, she had a horse which she stabled locally and could often be seen out gently riding along the local roads. In 1969 it was the care of her horse that caused her to buy and move into 45 High Street, which included part of the Thomas Kench yard, so that her horse could be stabled in part of the former carpenter's workshop close to home and No. 43 was then sold.
She left Eydon in late 1991 or early 1992 when she went into a Nursing Home at Byfield where she died shortly afterwards. Nurse Douglas came from an interesting family whose story has been told in our publication 'Service, Sun and Settlement'.
Image lent by Caroline Bedford