JOHN PITMAN

JOHN PITMAN, AGED 83, INTERVIEWED AT HIS HOME NEAR MATLOCK.

I was born on Jan 1, 1935 at Five Oak Green in my grandmother's house which was next door because my grandparents bought Stream Cottage in about 1928. My parents married in 1930 in Capel church and I came along in 1935. In between they had built what was then called Orchard Bungalow though whether it still exists I don't know. It was on the Sychem Lane side of Stream Cottage right at the edge of their property and it was set back. It had quite a long front garden. It was timber-clad. Both my parents had connections with Canada and it was a bit of a Canadian influencer that rubbed off. It was cedar and I was born there and baptised at Thomas a'Becket. I visited the church in 2017 and I'm very impressed with the opening times and the way the graveyard has been catalogued.I knew pretty much where my grandparents' grave was, not far from west door, but I had been there a few years previously and not been able to identify it, partly because everything was overgrown.My grandparents moved to the village I think when they bought Stream Cottage in 1928. My mother was born in Beckenham and I know they lived in Chiswick. I don't know where my grandfather got the money to buy Stream Cottage I have a vague recollection of him having been a meat porter at Brentford market so I don't know how he got the money from that.My grandmother was a school teacher at the Hall school in Salisbury and at one point she was the head teacher, probably the only teacher, in a village called, Salford in Oxfordshire. I think that must have been pretty much immediately before they moved to Five Oak Green but I don't honestly know.I've no idea really why they came. Maybe it was the idea of running their own business by doing some farming, fruit, poultry, that sort of thing --- a rural life and maybe they thought if there was to be a grandchild it was the best place to bring him or her up. No other children. My mother had a sister. She never married. I am the last one of the Pitman line. My wife and I did not have any children. Mum and dad took over the running of the farm/smallholding. My grandparents moved into the newly-built bungalow and my parents had the old house.