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In Remembrance of George Raybould

20 September, 1893 ~ 2 March, 1964
Newcastle–under-Lyme, Staffordshire, United Kingdom


Born 20th September 1893 at Newcastle-under-Lyme, Staffordshire, England. Died 2nd March 1964 at Harpenden, Hertfordshire, England... Read more >
George 's Home Page  |  About George  |  Memory Book  |  Photos  |  Candles & Flowers  |  Videos

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The Picture Gallery presents a cavalcade of George Raybould's life and times seen in photographs, memorabilia and ephemera. He was born at the end of the Victorian era on 20 September 1893 and died during the reign of Queen Elizabeth II, on 2 March 1964.

He grew up in the early years of the Twentieth Century and we see interesting echoes of his parents and his siblings; his education, which ended at a very early age, as was common in those days; and his active role as a youth in Primitive Methodism.

Woven throughout there are pictures of George's long career from 1910 to 1954 when he became a highly-respected horticulturalist and florist, working in shops in a number of towns in England, including Yeovil, Brentwood, Brighton and London.

Of course, when we are very young we do not know what "travels, doings and things will happen to us," as the essayist John O'London wrote many years ago. We have no suggestion of "the possibilities and problems" that we may encounter on our journey through life. But, as a very "laid back" person, George took everything that happened to him in his stride.

He had two marriages; sadly, a very short first one to Lilian Crozier with whom he had a son, George Jnr., and a daughter, Lilian Mary. Tragically, his wife Lilian died in childbirth in 1919.

Then in 1922 George married Kathleen Amy French, with whom he had a daughter, Jean Elizabeth and a son, Vilven John. George and Amy had a very happy marriage for 42 years.

After he died in 1964 at 70, the proverbial Biblical "three score years and ten," his widow Amy lived on for another 36 years, passing away at the grand old age of 98.

George's life unfolded against a backdrop of some of the major historical events of the Twentieth Century; we see pictures of his First World War service in Salonika, Greece, and twenty years later his role on the "Home Front" in London during the Second World War.

During the severe economic Depression of the 1930s, George, (as did many people in other walks of life all over the United Kingdom), helped keep going the business of Rassells, the well-known Florists & Gardeners in Kensington, London.

There were many happy events in his long career as a florist, including the Coronations in 1911 and 1953 when George and his colleagues decorated their florists' shops in great style to celebrate. He was a patriot through and through.

The Gallery has images of the varied collecting and absorbing interests that George had all his life. It ends with his and Amy's "first" retirement to Devon, and then their later venture, coming out of retirement to run a public house at Pangbourne, Berkshire with their daughter Jean. They then “finally” retired to Hastings.

The Picture Gallery has been compiled by George's younger son Vilven John, in association with his wife, Heather.

The Gallery complements the detailed Biography of George which you are invited to read on this website. It was written by Vilven John, in association with Heather; invaluable input was provided by George's eldest grandson, John Lindsay Raybould, and his three sisters, Helen, Christine and Barbara.

This Memorial Matters Tribute is dedicated to George Raybould's family and friends who affectionately remember him. And in addition, we very much hope that members of generations who will not have known him personally, will draw inspiration from this celebration of a life very well lived and appreciate the unique personal legacy that he left.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 17, 2011
When George Raybould was born in 1893, the elderly Queen Victoria (seen left in this splendid "real" photograph) was on the British throne. She became Queen in 1837 and died in 1901 when George was 8.

The whole Nation went into great mourning following the beloved Queen's death after such a long reign. There was hardly anyone living who could remember a time without her.

Queen Elizabeth II (right) ascended the Throne in 1952. The charming picture postcard shows her in Coronation Year in 1953. She was the Queen in 1964 when George passed away.

George actually lived during the reigns of six British Monarchs. After Queen Victoria's, he then lived through the reigns of King Edward VII (1901-1910) and King George V (1910-1936).

Then, as many people know, the year 1936 was unique in British History because it had three Kings, - George V, who was followed by his eldest son who became Edward VIII. However, he abdicated the same year.

King Edward VIII was succeeded, also in 1936, by his brother who became King George VI. He reigned until he died in 1952 and was followed by his eldest daughter who became Queen Elizabeth II.

At the beginning and the end of his long horticultural career, George Raybould, when he worked in Yeovil and London respectively in 1911 and 1953, decorated two florists' shops, Lock's and then Rassells, to help celebrate the Coronation of King George V and some 40 years later that of his grand-daughter Queen Elizabeth II.

Pictures of both the shops are shown later in this Gallery, as are some souvenirs of the Coronations that George kept.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 17, 2011
This photograph was taken about 1911, when young George was working in a florist's shop in the Springtime in Somerset, in the West of England.

George's career as a florist was just beginning, so what could be more apt than being surrounded by daffodils. They remind us of the lovely words of the famous "Romantic Lake Poet" William Wordsworth in his ever-popular poem:

"I wandered lonely as a cloud
That floats on high o'er vales and hills,
When all at once I saw a crowd,
A host of golden daffodils."

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 17, 2011
Mid 1930s, middle-aged George, now well-established in his horticultural career, is seen in his element pruning in his garden in South London. He is puffing away on his customary cigarette and wearing his trademark straw boater. In Winter he replaced his boater with a bowler hat (a derby)!

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 17, 2011
By 1951, after many years successfully working in floristry and gardening in a number of leading firms around England, George Raybould had worked at Rassells the Florists & Horticulturalists in Kensington for 21 years. The proprietor, Miss Rassell, made an early-morning presentation to him in the shop when his work colleagues gathered, as well as members of his family, including his wife Amy and their 12 years' old son, Vilven John.

One of the highlights of the memorable Anniversary occasion was George receiving this beautifully-designed GPO Greetings Telegram from some twenty of the national flower growers and wholesalers at the famous Covent Garden Flower Market in Central London where he was much-respected.

He was very well-known throughout the Market because he regularly bought stock there for Rassells for many years ... going usually as early as 6.00am.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 17, 2011
In celebrating George Raybould's interesting life, this very traditional, English 5-barred gate in the County of Buckinghamshire (seen in this photograph taken by Tim, one of his three grandsons), would have given him much pleasure as a man of the soil.

It reminds us of the very moving words in the famous poem "The Gate of the Year” read by King George VI in his Christmas Day broadcast to the British Nation and to the Empire in 1939, shortly after the outbreak of the Second World War:

I said to the man who stood at the gate of the year
"Give me a light that I may tread safely into the unknown."
And he replied
"Go out into the darkness and put your hand into the hand of God
That shall be to you better than light and safer than a known way."

The writer of the poem was Miss M. L. Haskins who was a popular tutor and lecturer at the London School of Economics from 1919 to 1944. The Covent Garden Flower Market is very close to the LSE, so it is nice to think that George Raybould and Miss Haskins may perhaps have occasionally passed each other in the street.


So let's now go back to George's roots among the famous "Pottery" towns in Staffordshire and remember his Mother and Father, Hannah Elizabeth and William Raybould.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 17, 2011
A lovely 4 by 6 inches sepia studio portrait of George's Mother, Hannah Elizabeth Raybould, taken in the early 1920s by W. Parton, photographer at Newcastle-under-Lyme, Staffordshire.

According to a copy of the actual enumerator's notes made at the British Census of 1901 (consulted for the creation of this Memorial Matters Tribute to George), his Mother was 42 in 1901, so she would have been in her early sixties when this photograph was taken.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 17, 2011
A lovely 4 by 6 inches sepia studio portrait of George's Father, William Raybould, taken in the early 1920s by W. Parton, photographer at Newcastle-under-Lyme, Staffordshire.

According to a copy of the actual enumerator's notes made at the British Census of 1901 (consulted for the creation of this Memorial Matters Tribute to George), his Father was 33 in 1901, so he would have been in his early fifties when this photograph was taken.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 17, 2011
A colourful, chromolithography-printed, 12 by 9 inches certificate for "Regular Attendance During the Year Ending October 31st 1904" awarded the young 11 years' old George by Edward Mason, Head Master of Friars Wood Council School, Newcastle-under-Lyme.

The dramatic historical scene on the left shows King John being forced by the Barons to sign the famous "Charter of Liberties” document called the "Magna Carta" some 800 years ago, on 15th June 1215, in a meadow at Runnymede. It is a highly-venerated historical place by the River Thames near Windsor Castle, maintained by the National Trust in perpetuity.

What an inspiring picture to give a young lad.

As the guardians of Runnymede, the National Trust says that Magna Carta became an important symbol of individual liberties and rights. "It has undeniably been a great inspiration to many, directly influencing, for example, the Constitution of the United States and the UN Declaration of Human Rights."

Later on, George and Amy were to be strong supporters of the National Trust. They were also quite active in both Liberal and Conservative party politics, so it is not surprising that they treasured George's certificate that he had kept safely since his childhood. Their son Vilven John is now its custodian.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 17, 2011
George was a keen reader of books, magazines and newspapers all his life.

This photograph shows a lovely little book that 8 years' old George was awarded in January 1901 at the Higherland Primitive Methodist Sunday School, Newcastle-under-Lyme. Entitled "Memoirs of Bob the Spotted Terrier Written by Himself’’, with fifty illustrations by Harrison Weir, it was published in 1891 by the famous British firm of George Routledge of London, Glasgow, Manchester and New York.

Keeping such books are among the nicest tangible memories of our childhoods. George treasured this book all his life, and it then passed to his widow Amy and then to their younger son, Vilven John.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 17, 2011
Another "Certificate of Merit" the 12 years' old George received "for Regular Attendance (Never Absent) for the School Year 1904-5", signed by Edward Mason, Head Master of Friars Wood Council School, Newcastle-under-Lyme.

This beautiful 11 by 9 inches certificate has famous dates in British History (including 1066 the Battle of Hastings and 1837 the Accession of Queen Victoria). In the lower left corner is a small painting of King Alfred the Great (849-901) "at study."

Teaching History was very important in English schools in Victorian and Edwardian times, and George greatly enjoyed the subject all his life, passing on his enthusiasm to his family and friends.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 17, 2011
In February 1908 George was awarded this hardcover book at the Higherland Primitive Methodist Sunday School, Newcastle-under-Lyme. Entitled "King Edward VII. From Childhood to Present Day" it has an attractive colourful and strongly-embossed front cover, and was published in London by the firm of Miles & Miles.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 17, 2011
This is the bookplate in the prize book on the life of King Edward VII, awarded to George in 1908, that is shown in the previous photograph.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 17, 2011
As described in his Biography in this Memorial, George grew up in a strong Nonconformist family of Primitive Methodists. As a young man he was known as a "Boy Preacher."

This impressive 8 by 6 and a half inches "Primitive Methodist Church Centenary Motto Card" provides a unique memory of George as a 13 years' old boy attending in 1907 the Anniversary Centenary Meeting of the foundation of Primitive Methodism at the very same spot where it began in 1807 on Mow Cop, Staffordshire, a small hill 1100 feet above sea level.

This Motto Card was the official Centennial souvenir published by the Primitive Methodists nationally and it is over-printed "Higherland Sunday School, Newcastle-under-Lyme Circuit." There was even a picture postcard version printed of this Motto Card so people could send them to relatives and friends.

George's signature is at the foot of the Card, which shows in the two little vignettes the faces of Hugh Bourne (1772-1852) and William Clowes (1780-1851), the Founders.

They were evangelical Christians very much in the spirit of John Wesley, the famous 18th Century Founder of Methodism. The tiny picture between them is of Mow Cop.

The Primitive Methodist brethren eventually joined British mainstream Methodism in 1932.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 17, 2011
This is a photograph of George's own treasured souvenir plate dated 1907 commemorating the 100th Anniversary Meeting of the foundation of Primitive Methodism on Mow Cop (seen in the small picture at the top of the plate).

George attended the big centennial gathering on Mow Cop to celebrate the "camp meeting" at the very same location in 1807 that led to Primitive Methodism's foundation by Hugh Bourne (left portrait) and William Clowes (right portrait).

This lovely plate (10 inches in diameter) is a good example of "underglaze transfer printing." It was made by the Staffordshire pottery firm of Wood & Sons of Burslem in 1907 to commemorate the Centennial. Cobalt blue was for many years the most fashionable and desirable decorating colour for much commemorative china made in England.

Making, issuing and collecting such plates is a long-standing and continuing British tradition to celebrate special occasions such as this one for the Primitive Methodists' Centennial and for other major national events.

Over the past 200 years, to commemorate British Royal events such as marriages and jubilees, many souvenir plates and cups have been produced in the "Potteries" in Staffordshire and George had a small collection of them.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 17, 2011
So, as we have seen in the previous pictures, 1907 was a very big year in young George's life.

Known as a "Boy Preacher," on 28 May he was one of the primitive Methodists' 100th Anniversary preachers at Yeovil in Somerset. George's name as a preacher appears in this actual Yeovil Centennial Celebrations' programme lower right in the picture.

It was a remarkable achievement for a 13 years' old boy to take an active part and preach on such a special occasion. It helps us to understand how his character was formed at a very early age.

The programme is a rare, fragmented piece of what is called "ephemera" that has fortunately survived in George's family for over 100 years. It is the type of document that is invaluable for researching family and social history, so when any source material like this "turns up" it is imperative that it be treasured and well kept.

Several days after preaching in Yeovil, young George travelled North by steam train and on 31 May 1907 he attended the famous 100th Anniversary meeting of the foundation of Primitive Methodism on Mow Cop in Staffordshire. He often spoke about this in later life to his family so it obviously made a big impression on him.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 16, 2011
Is this a portent of things to come for the 14 years' old George Raybould and a sign of his determination to succeed? This "Certificate of Merit" was awarded to him by the Borough of Newcastle-under-Lyme Higher Education Committee for the 1906- 07 session at the Hassell Street Evening School "For Distinction in Arithmetic, Reading and Book-keeping."

This impressively-designed 8 ½ by 11 inches certificate is signed by Mr. Edward Mason, Head Master. George's family remembers him speaking very favourably about Mr. Mason over 50 years later. Was he perhaps one of those delightful "Mr. Chips-type" schoolmasters who, early on in so many young pupils' lives, played influential roles in their personal development?

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 16, 2011
A "Character Reference" letter for the 17 years' old George addressed "To all whom it may concern." Written and signed in beautiful copperplate handwriting on 29 April 1910 by the Reverend John E. Leuty, the Minister of the Newcastle-under-Lyme Primitive Methodist Church, it reads as follows:

"Mr. George Raybould has been known to me for some years, and he is a Youth of considerable promise. I can testify that he is capable and industrious; trustworthy, honest, and alert. Whatever he takes in hand he does it with his might and yet keeps his head. At any kind of business he ought to make his way, and give satisfaction to his Master. I have heard nothing but words of praise from his present employer. He is highly respected by his companions for his integrity & uprightness; his qualities of friendship and sociableness make him welcome everywhere. He is an abstainer from intoxicating drinks and can be relied upon to carry out to the best of his ability the duties allotted to him."

Reverend Leuty's encouraging remarks about George are a good example of such letters echoing down the generations from far away eras that genealogists, biographers, and all those interested in their family histories, are really pleased to have.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 16, 2011
A striking studio portrait of George Raybould, taken in his early twenties. This is one of the earliest photographs we have of him. Photographer and location unknown.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 16, 2011
In 1911 the 18 years' old George was working for Lock & Son, Farm and Garden Seeds Merchants, at Yeovil in Somerset, in the West of England. This is a good example of a very sharp "real photograph " picture postcard which shows him outside Lock's shop. Probably only a very few of this card would have been printed. He sent it to his Grandma Hall in Newcastle-under-Lyme on 13 July 1911. It shows how George and his colleagues decorated the shop window to celebrate the Coronation in Westminster Abbey on 22 June of King George V and Queen Mary.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 15, 2011
More reminders of 18 years' old George working for Lock & Son, Farm & Garden Seeds Merchants, at Yeovil in Somerset. Top left is a "real photograph" picture postcard showing him outside Lock's shop. He sent this postcard to his Grandma Hall in Newcastle-under-Lyme on 13 July 1911. On it (top right) he wrote "Dear Grandma, Just a card to let you see what we did for the Coronation .... the window near the door all worked in seeds." He is referring to the Coronation in Westminster Abbey on 22 June 1911 of King George V and Queen Mary who are shown in the vintage picture postcard above.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 15, 2011
Some early 1900s' vintage comic picture postcards that were sent by, and to, George from his brothers and sisters, ... and his cousins and his friends and his aunts (as Gilbert & Sullivan would say!). As described in George's Biography in this Memorial, sending postcards was the most important means of communication in the early 1900s in Great Britain, all over Europe and in North America. They were an easy and economical way for people to keep in touch. In the larger towns there were even several same-day deliveries!

Top left is a postcard sent in September 1909 to George by his "ever-loving cousin Ethel" in Oldham. On the card she asks "Are you having your Photo taken? If you are I shall want one."

Top right is a card sent in 1908 to George Raybould's Father William from "Arthur" when he was on holiday at Blackpool, the favourite English "seaside town" on the North-West Coast. With its long pier, a very tall tower, miles of sandy beaches, donkey rides and Punch & Judy Shows, what more could a holidaymaker want?! Arthur was obviously greatly enjoying himself because he wrote on this card to his pal William "Dear old Will. Just a line to let you know it is grand weather and we are enjoying it grand."

And all the drawings of the people in the jolly postcard below) help to explain why Arthur was having such a fun time. But as the card is entitled "LAST (Tram) CAR TO BLACKPOOL" we are right to wonder if everyone will be able to get on!

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 15, 2011
More Raybould family comic picture postcards that have miraculously survived that were sent in the early 1900s. Top left is a card sent in 1909 to Mary Ann, one of George's sisters in Newcastle-under-Lyme, by her cousin Ethel.

Top right is a card sent by Dora, their cousin, "with best love" to George's elder brother John William Raybould in 1910. Sadly, John was killed just five years later during the First World War at the Battle of the Somme in 1915, aged 22. George mourned his brother's early death all his life.

The comic postcard (below) entitled "You can do a lot of things at the seaside you can't do in town" was sent to George's sister Mary in 1914. It reminds us that for the tens of thousands of men and women (who worked long, low paid hours in the often dreary factories in England's industrial towns) their holiday week at the seaside was among the highlights of their year, along with the celebration of the annual religious festivals such as Easter and Christmas.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 15, 2011
In 1914, as the First World War broke out, life changed dramatically for millions of people including the Raybould family. "Your Country Needs You" -- the First World War recruiting poster, featuring Field- Marshall Lord Kitchener, was one of the most famous and effective advertising campaigns of all time. The poster said "Don't imagine you are not needed. EVERY MAN between 19 and 38 years of age is WANTED!" Tens of thousands of men voluntarily and enthusiastically responded, including George in 1916.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 15, 2011
A sepia studio portrait taken in 1916 of George in his Royal Army Veterinary Corps uniform. Horses were still very much used in the First World War, although it did see the arrival of new mechanised weapons called "tanks."

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 15, 2011
A beautiful sepia studio portrait taken in 1916 of George in his Royal Army Veterinary Corps uniform, with his wife Lilian holding sweet-faced baby Lilian Mary, and 3 years' old George Jnr. standing in front of his Father. Sadly, Lilian was to die only a few years later in childbirth and this could be the only photograph of her that still exists.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 15, 2011
Postmarked 20 March 1917, this is a postcard George sent to his sister Mary Ann from Woolwich Barracks, near London, when he was in the Royal Army Veterinary Corps. On the card he wrote: "My Dear Mary, Thanks for letter. We have just had the order to clear. We are going at 1.30pm. Will write later to let you know. Yours in haste, George."

As a member of Britain's Armed Forces he does not say where he is going. This was, of course, one of the basic rules when writing such cards in case an enemy agent should intercept and read it. He was, in all probability, about to go by train to an English Channel port, then by boat across the Channel, and then by steam trains 100s of miles away to Salonika in Greece, to take part in the so-called "Balkan Offensive."

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 15, 2011
A 1917 First World War aerial photograph of the destruction in Greece of Salonika, where George served in the Royal Army Veterinary Corps. What a long way from home and his family and friends it must have seen to George, a 24 years' old from Newcastle-under-Lyme, who had never been abroad before, as well as to all the other 1000s of British troops in Salonika taking part in the so-called "Balkan Offensive."

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 15, 2011
Lower right a "real photograph" postcard of George in his Royal Army Veterinary Corps uniform among the ruins in Salonika in Greece in 1917. Later he fell ill there and he told his family many years later that he heard his nurses say one day that he would not be alive next morning. So he said himself "Oh yes I will be!" and he lived nearly another fifty years.

Top left, as Royal Army Veterinary Corps Private 19624, this is George Raybould's "Certificate of Transfer to Reserve on Demobilization" dated 12 March 1919. Notice his year of birth is given as "1887." His actual birth year was 1893 but he was so eager and patriotic to serve he said he was 6 years older. Many other young men enthusiatically did the same thing in order to enlist.

The Certificate is written in the name of "George Edward Raybould” which is what he called himself during his War service. His elder son George Jnr. said that "when his Dad joined the Army in the First World War he realised that all his comrades had 2 initials while he only had one - 'G'. So quick off the mark he soon invented a notional second initial - 'E'!"

His younger son Vilven John said that his Dad told him that his initials GER reminded him of the Great Eastern Railway!

Note that the Certificate says he was to rejoin at Woolwich "In case of emergency" after the War. Like 1000s of other young men undoubtedly he hoped that this would never happen. The First World War was called "The war to end all wars." What a sad indictment of humankind that this was to be so far from the truth.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 15, 2011
Two of George's demobilisation certificates issued to him in 1919 at the end of the First World War. Top is his "Certificate of Employment During the War" saying he had been Private 19624 in the Royal Army Veterinary Corps. There is a note on it wisely saying "A soldier is advised to send a copy rather than the original when corresponding with a prospective employer."

Dated 5 November 1919, the lower certificate is for George’s "Returned Great Coat." It has an admonitory note on it saying "This form must be presented, with your great coat, before the expiration of your 28 days demobilization furlough. If this is lost, no duplicate can be given to you."

Documents such as these that have survived until to-day are called "ephemera" and they provide important sources for studying the fascinating minutiae of ordinary people's lives.

It is exciting what often survives 50 or 100 years and suddenly turns up in an old album, in a drawer or in a battered old suitcase that has been handed down for generations. Such material is invaluable to find when family histories and genealogies are being researched and compiled.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 15, 2011
After the First World War ended on 11 November 1918, George was not demobilized as Private 19624 from the Royal Army Veterinary Corps until 11 November 1919, according to this document, his "Soldier's Demobilization Account." It says he left the British Army with "Earnings" of 10 pounds 14 Shillings and 10 Pence, after having paid the Army an amount outstanding of 11 Shillings 5 Pence Half Penny! He was paid 3 Shillings a day for 28 days' furlough on leaving the Army.

Once George and the millions of soldiers who had served their Country as best they could in the War had returned to what was called "Civvy Street" one wonders what emotions of hope and fear, joy and sadness entered their minds as they walked through their barracks' gates for the last time.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 15, 2011
George and his brothers and sisters attended the Higherland Primitive Methodist Sunday School in Newcastle-under-Lyme, Staffordshire. This is a beautiful colour- printed 12 x 10 inches "Certificate of Merit for Regular and Early Attendance" awarded in 1903 to John William, George's elder brother who, as a Royal Fusilier, was to be tragically killed during the First World War at the Battle of the Somme in 1915.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 15, 2011
"Their Name Liveth for Evermore." The poignant wording on the Loos Memorial in North- East France to George's elder brother, John William, who was killed in the First World War at the Battle of the Somme on Wednesday 29 September 1915, age 22. All his life, George mourned his elder brother's death at such a tragically young age. Many, many families the length and breadth of the British Isles suffered the same grief and heart-wrenching emotions.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 15, 2011
The awful loss of a generation of young men during the First World War had an immense impact in many ways for many years on subsequent British life. The haunting words seen here by the poet Laurence Binyon have helped provide some comfort to mourning families and friends down the years.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 15, 2011
In the early 1920s, after returning from War service with the Royal Army Veterinary Corps in Salonika, Greece, George worked for David Russell & Son, Nurserymen & Seed Merchants in Brentwood, Essex. In his mid 20s, he is seen on the right in this photograph, standing outside Russell's elegant, glass- fronted shop with its slender cast iron columns. The large selection of plants and flowers is very impressive.

One day, Kathleen Amy French, a young lady who lived with her parents on Marshall’s Farm at Margaretting, came into the shop. Some time later she and George were married on 2 March 1922. How romantic to fall in love with someone working in a florist's shop, because, as we all know, so many different flowers portray "The Language of Love."

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 14, 2011
2 March 1922, the Wedding of George Raybould and Kathleen Amy French. They were married in All Saints Church, Maldon, Essex. This is a photograph of family and friends in the Wedding Party. George's Father William Raybould is in the front row, 3rd from the left. George's Mother Hannah was not there, possibly because she was ill. Amy's parents, Elizabeth and William French, are in the front row, on the right.

The best man was George Willett, 6th from the right in the back row. George Jnr. is standing in front of George and Amy; he is smartly dressed as a page boy on this his 8th birthday. He was the son of George Snr. from his first marriage to Lilian, who had tragically died in 1919 after the birthing of their 3rd child, who also died.

It must have been quite a cold day because most of the ladies in the Wedding Party are wearing heavy coats trimmed with fur. The photograph was taken outside a local public house where the reception was held. The hostelry was run by a member of the family, George Box (back row, 5th from left) with his wife, Agnes (on his left). She was one of the four sisters of Amy, who also had three brothers.

It is interesting to see the advertisement on the left hand window for "Dunville's VR Whisky", as it was only 21 years since the old Queen Victoria had died. Her eponymous whisky would undoubtedly have helped keep the cold winds of March at bay!

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 14, 2011
A charming sepia studio portrait of George and his young family taken in 1923 in Chelmsford, Essex. Amy is holding their baby Jean Elizabeth. Sitting by Amy's side is Lilian Mary age 7. George Jnr. age 9 is seated next to his Father. Mary and George Jnr. were the children of George's first marriage to Lilian Crozier, who tragically died in childbirth in 1919.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 14, 2011
A charming photograph, taken in about 1926 probably at Newcastle-under-Lyme, of George Jnr. and his sister Lilian Mary with their Grandad William Raybould and Grandma Hannah Raybould.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 13, 2011
A delightful snapshot taken by Amy of George and their little 4 years' old daughter Jean Elizabeth (and the family dog) in about 1927 in the backyard of their florist's and greengrocer's shop in Moulsham Street, Chelmsford, Essex. The scene looks quite Dickensian with the variety of brick-built houses and other buildings, the traditional wooden, black weather-boarding on the sides of the buildings, and the tall brick chimneys.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 12, 2011
An early 1920s' treasured Raybould family photograph (measuring 9 inches by 7 inches) taken by E. Payne showing an impressive display of bouquets designed and exhibited by George at an Annual Flower Show in the Corn Exchange in the Essex County Town of Chelmsford, where he and Amy had a florist's and greengrocer's shop on Moulsham Street after their marriage in 1922.

Making bouquets, garlands and wreaths such as these were always among George's specialties, as well as designing and making impressive exhibition pieces such as large floral windmills; one of which he made in the mid-1930s when he worked at Balchins in Brighton is shown later in the Picture Gallery.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 12, 2011
Proud Father George with his and Amy's baby daughter Jean Elizabeth aged 3 in 1926.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 12, 2011
In the late 1920s George moved his family to Brighton, a famous seaside town on the South Coast, by the English Channel. There, as described in his Biography in this Memorial, he worked for Balchins, a leading firm of florists.

The curious building in the picture postcard (below) is of the famous iron and glass-roofed 63 feet high "Dome" built in 1805. It was in there that George built the huge, award-winning replica in flowers of a Sussex windmill shown later in this Picture Gallery.

The picture postcards top left and right show Brighton's famous late Victorian, iron- built 1,719 feet long Palace Pier by day and night. Opened in 1899, it still stands as a unique, well-loved period feature of the popular seaside town.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 11, 2011
In the right hand snapshot, George and his young daughter Jean are enjoying traditional donkey and horse rides by the promenade along the beach in the late 1920s. In the left hand photograph he is sitting next to Jean on the Palace Pier. As so often happened, Mother Amy was the family photographer which is why she is not in many of the photographs.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 11, 2011
A late 1920s' photograph of almost painting-like ethereal quality of what George always said was his major lifetime floral display achievement. Working at Balchins, one of Brighton's leading florists, he designed and made this huge award-winning floral windmill that dominated an Annual Flower Show held in the magnificent early 1800s' 63 feet high, glass-roofed building called "The Dome."

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 11, 2011
Another late 1920s' sepia photograph showing George’s dramatic floral display that he made while working at Balchins, Brighton's leading florists .... a replica in flowers of the War Memorial at Brighton, surrounded by wreaths.

The scene would have been very moving for everyone who saw it because the personal family tragedies of loved ones lost during the First World War would have still been very fresh in many people's minds. Such floral tributes would inspire thoughts in "A nation's memory and veneration, among the radiant, ever venturing on." John Masefield (1878-1967)

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 11, 2011
George with his Father, William Raybould, and his Mother, Hannah Raybould, a photo taken in the mid 1930s. Seeing George standing proudly with his parents, how true the timeless words ring out "Honour thy Father and Mother; that thy days may be long upon the land which the Lord thy God giveth thee." (Exodus 20:12)

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 11, 2011
A very happy snapshot taken by Amy in Trafalgar Square in London in the early 1930s. It shows George with their daughter Jean with one of the famous pigeons on her hand. With George is his sister Mary Ann, everyone's favourite Auntie, wearing one of the characteristic "cloche hats" of the period. Both the grown-ups are also holding pigeons on their hands .... we can almost hear the old lady in "Mary Poppins" quietly singing "Feed the birds, Twopence a bag!"

In the immediate background is one of the four famous fountains in Trafalgar Square, so named to commemorate Admiral Nelson leading the United Kingdom's victory in 1805 over the French Emperor Napoleon at the Battle of Trafalgar. In the far background is impressive South Africa House, completed in 1933 and still the home to-day in the United Kingdom of the High Commission of South Africa.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 11, 2011
The spectacular iron and glass "Crystal Palace", and its large 200 acres' Park, was a favourite destination in South London for many years for millions of people young and old, including the Raybould family.

Designed by the talented Sir Joseph Paxton, the Palace originally housed the Great Exhibition in London's Hyde Park in 1851. The building was then physically removed and rebuilt on a commanding hill at Sydenham where it proudly stood from 1854 to 1936 when it was tragically destroyed in a fire.

The dramatic 1,600 feet length of the exterior is shown in the picture postcard top right, while the immensity of its interior, with its 168 feet high, tree-lined, fountains-embellished Central Transept, is shown in the postcard below right.

The snapshot top left shows George and his daughter Jean in the early 1930s sitting in front of one of the huge replica Egyptian sphinx on the Crystal Palace's steps. As well as having popular midway (funfair) entertainments, the Crystal Palace Company from the outset had a strong educational mission, creating for instance inside the Palace very accurate replica "Courts" displaying the art, architecture and sculptures from distant eras, such as those of the ancient Egyptians, Greeks and Romans.

Someone described a photograph as "A Moment in Time" and that is exactly what the little family snapshot taken by Amy is, top centre. It shows George's and Amy's 7 years' old daughter Jean in a "cloche hat" sitting by one of the fountains at the Crystal Palace.

The photograph was taken by Amy on the day that Jean played her violin in the Crystal Palace in a huge London Schools' concert with 100s of other youthful violinists.

This reminds us that the Crystal Palace was Great Britain's main centre for music- making for nearly a hundred years, featuring mammoth-sized choirs and orchestras (and speaking of mammoths, the Crystal Palace's grounds even had the world's first Dinosaur Park!)

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 11, 2011
This would have been a sight very familiar to George in 1935 as he went about his business in London: buildings in Fleet Street, with St. Paul's Cathedral in the distance, patriotically decorated to celebrate King George V's and Queen Mary's Silver Jubilee Anniversary of ascending the throne.

George was a keen reader of newspapers. Until the 1980s Fleet Street was known as "The Street of Ink" where most of Britain's major daily newspapers were written, edited, typeset, designed and printed on huge presses, and then trucked each night to London's many mainline railway stations for speedy delivery all over the country .... to be read at millions of breakfast tables next morning. An impressive logistical feat, even by to-day's standards.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 11, 2011
A cheerful snapshot taken by Amy in the late 1930s of George with (left to right), his daughter from his first marriage Lilian Mary (also known affectionately as Cis), daughter Jean, and Mary’s friend Gwen, in the garden behind Rassell's Florist's & Horticulturalists shop at 80 Earl's Court Road, Kensington, London, whose staff George joined in 1930. After the War, this was the area of the shop's grounds where George and Donald Rider, his long-time associate at Rassells, created one of London's first “Garden Centres.”

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 11, 2011
An interesting photograph taken in the mid 1930s of George Raybould Jnr., then in his early 20s. The son of Lilian and George, born in 1914, he was a highly-skilled electrician and an enthusiastic early wireless and television pioneer when they were in their infancy.

From the attentive look on his face, young George is obviously working on an early wireless set with all its myriad of valves. What an incredible long way we have come in communications since Guglielmo Marconi sent out the first wireless signals across the Atlantic between Cornwall, (England) and Newfoundland in 1901.

George Jnr. was to progress so well in his career that he served as a civilian in the Admiralty during the Second World War as a technical "boffin," working on highly-secret communications' technology.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 10, 2011
A cherished photograph of the Wedding of George Raybould’s eldest son George Jnr. to Ruth McKinnon on 27 December 1938 at Beeby, Leicestershire. Ruth's Father, the Rev. Archie McKinnon, is on her left. Mrs. McKinnon is in the front row, far right. George Jnr.’s Father George Raybould Snr. is in the back row, far left. George’s wife, Amy, did not attend, probably because she was pregnant with Vilven John.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 9, 2011
Amy and George with baby Vilven John born 12 March 1939. Photograph probably taken in the garden of their house at New Eltham, South London, Kent.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 9, 2011
A mid 1930s, characteristically cheerful snapshot of George working on a flowering shrub growing on a trellis in his and Amy's garden at New Eltham, South London.

George is smoking his customary cigarette and wearing his trademark straw "boater" hat. His practice for many years was to exchange his Summer and Spring boater for his bowler (derby) hat in Autumns and Winters!

He continued this tradition right to the end of his career at Rassells the Florists & Gardeners in Kensington, London, until he retired in 1954, having become a well-known figure on account of his hats, his leggings and his gardener's blue apron .... as well, of course, because of his huge amount of self-taught, practical knowledge of many aspects of horticulture that he was always delighted to share with anyone interested.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 9, 2011
Rassells, Floral Contractors, mid 1930s' business card. George worked at Rassells from 1930 to 1954, rising to become the Managing Director. Rassell's phone number still has "0481" in it but a lot more digits in front. The designation "Western" disappeared many years ago as the modern age of information technology marched on!

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 9, 2011
An evocative pencil sketch of Rassells the Florist's & Horticulturalist's shop drawn by Gordon A. Cockerell. George Raybould joined the firm in 1930 as Buyer and Shop Foreman and rose to be Managing Director, retiring in 1954. The Raybould family lived in a split level flat behind the shop and on the upper floor.

The picture shows Rassell's shop located at 80 Earl's Court Road, Kensington where it has been in business since the late 1800s. Although Gordon Cockerell drew his pencil sketch in 1953 the appearance of the shop has changed very little since the 1930s. As is often said "Every picture tells a story" so let's take a few moments and look from left to right at the fascinating details:

Far left: a helmeted London "Bobby." They are still called “Bobbies,” so nicknamed after Sir Robert Peel who founded the Metropolitan Police in 1829.

Next left: the cinema poster board on the iron railings outside the shop where each week's new movie being shown at the Odeon Cinema nearby in Kensington High Street was advertised.

Centre: Rassell's clock, a well-known landmark in the Earl's Court Road.

Do look at the many"Mary Poppins-type" early Victorian brick chimney pots on the roofs of the houses around Rassell's shop in Pembroke Square.

Centre: Rassells' large, glass-fronted windows display many floral treasures of Mother Nature on sale inside the shop... from Spring flowers to Autumn bulbs and Christmas garlands. They remind us of the lovely words: "Kind hearts are the garden, kind thoughts are the root, kind words are the blossoms, kind deeds are the fruit."

Top right. Spot the old-fashioned "H" television aerial attached to the chimney pot. BBC Television began transmitting again after the War ended. George and his family first had television in 1947 when they watched the Wedding in Westminster Abbey of the then Princess Elizabeth and Prince Philip. Then in 1953 the Raybould family's small downstairs living room was packed with neighbours who came in to watch Queen Elizabeth's Coronation on 2 June on BBC Television.

On the right, the glass-fronted and glass-roofed tiny conservatory says "Antiques." For many years Rassells rented this part of their shop to Mr. and Mrs. Pessiakoff, who had an antiques shop there until they retired.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 9, 2011
After War against Nazi Germany began in September 1939, Britain's Coalition Government under Prime Minister Winston Churchill launched a nation-wide campaign to get people to grow more food so the country could become much more self-sufficient feeding itself in case of a naval blockade of the British Isles by the Germans' "U-Boats."

The two Wartime posters (above) asked the public to "Lend a Hand on the Land" and to "Dig for Victory." Drawing on his expert gardening knowledge, George Raybould, well-known at Rassells the Horticulturalists in Kensington, was one of the organisers of the public vegetables' growing scheme in nearby Kensington Gardens.

The scene in the postcard lower left of sheep quietly grazing in Kensington Gardens dramatically contrasts with the photograph of nearly 250 years' old St. Paul's Cathedral surrounded by flames and smoke on the night of 29 December 1940 when many areas of London were destroyed or damaged in devastating fire-bomb air raids during the Germans' "Blitz" on the Metropolis.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 9, 2011
During the Second World War, many older and available younger men and women became Air Raid Wardens, or took part in fire fighting following the bombing to help the often hard-pressed, regular firemen. George was a member of the Royal Borough of Kensington's Fire Fighting Party and his identity card is shown lower right. At top right is a photograph of two Air Raid Wardens in their very recognisable black helmets.

Lower centre are two snapshots of George taken by Amy in 1940 on the tennis court at the back of Rassell's Florist's shop in Kensington with daughter Jean and baby Vilven John .... and the family cat!

The pamphlets in the photograph were issued by the British Government during the Second World War for civilians on what was called the "Home Front" to read and then to follow the instructions very carefully. They cover "Fire Precautions in War Time," "Your Gas Masks," "Masking Your Windows," and general "War Emergency Information and Precautions."

Anyone and anywhere ... streets, railway trains, track, and stations, buses, lorries, cars, factories, shops, schools, hospitals, offices, churches, port facilities, farms and homes up and down the land .... might be attacked by the Nazi enemy from the air. And tens of thousands of such places in many parts of the British Isles were bombed during the six long years of the War, with many people killed or wounded and many buildings destroyed or damaged.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 9, 2011
Along with many 1000s of civilians who helped the War effort throughout the British Isles, George was a member of the Royal Borough of Kensington's Fire Fighting Party formed to assist the regular Fire Brigade in the aftermath of bombing. This is his certificate of authority dated 25 October 1941 giving him "the powers of entry and of taking the steps for extinguishing fire or for protecting property or for rescuing persons or property from fire."

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 9, 2011
During the Second World War George's and Amy's daughter Jean was an Airwoman in the WAAF (Women's Auxiliary Air Force) formed in June 1939 for duty with the Royal Air Force in time of war.

Members of the WAAF played an important role throughout the War as "plotters" in the Operations Rooms on RAF airfields all over the British Isles where the planes of Fighter Command were stationed. For four weeks in the Summer of 1940 the "Battle of Britain" raged through the skies. All incoming raids were plotted by radar and the information gathered was placed 24 hours a day by WAAFs like Jean on huge maps, such as those shown top right.

This vital information was then processed by Controllers and senior RAF officers so that orders could be given to the appropriate Squadrons to fly to attack the Nazis' planes throughout the War.

The photograph (below) shows Jean with some of her WAAF and RAF colleagues. The very evident comradeship and camaraderie reminds us how essential it is in times of continuing stress and possible calamity.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 9, 2011
Jean wearing her Wartime WAAF uniform. The picture top right is what was called a "Polyphoto" when the photographers would take a large number of images in quick succession while the "sitters" moved their heads into various positions!

The photograph lower right shows Jean (in uniform) with her Father George, her Mother Amy, and her two years' old brother Vilven John, at Taplow, Buckinghamshire in the Autumn of 1941.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 9, 2011
The little snapshot at the bottom, taken by Amy, shows George holding his and Amy's baby son, Vilven John, outside Knockholt, Kent, a country railway station about an hour's journey south from London. It was taken in 1939, about the time of the outbreak of the Second World War on 3 September, when England and France declared war on Nazi Germany following German occupation of Poland.

George's "National Registration Identity Card" lower left and the booklets in the photograph remind us that almost overnight everyone in the United Kingdom was put on a war footing. Nearly all aspects of daily life came under Government control from how much clothing people could buy to where and when they could travel by railway trains. All this far-reaching direction was accepted by the population in a national spirit of co-operation in the face of extremely daunting odds.

During the Second World War most of Britons' food and clothing was rationed by the Government. It had to be bought on a "Points System" to ensure scarce supplies were available to everyone on a fair shares for all basis. Lower right is one of George's ration books, dated 7 July 1941.

The fear of German air raids was very great and it soon turned into harsh reality all over the country. Two Government wartime pamphlets to help people cope are shown in the photograph. "The Protection of Your Homes Against Air Raids" would have been invaluable to millions of families like George Raybould's, as well as to the 1000s of volunteer Air Raid Wardens and local authorities' employees helping the civilian population survive the Blitz and other aerial attacks.

Many families like the Rayboulds would have read the pamphlet top left, issued by the Ministry of Home Security, on "How to put up your Morrison Shelter" in their living rooms. These strong steel shelters, that doubled as dining tables, helped save thousands of lives when air raids took place as families such as the Rayboulds got into them to be protected.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 9, 2011
Early 1940s' wartime scenes in Central London that would have been very familiar to George and his family and to 1000s of Londoners. This series of photographs was published by Photochrom Co., Ltd., and shows the widespread damage after the "Blitz" by German bombs in 1940 and 1941.

Fortunately, as the lower photo shows, a major landmark, Sir Christopher Wren's majestic 250 years' old St. Paul's Cathedral, survived the bombing during the War, dramatically personifying the indomitable spirit of the Nation.

This spirit was powerfully conveyed by Prime Minister Winston Churchill in his many speeches. As he said in one famous speech "St. Paul's Cathedral was only saved by heroic exertions .... The city was like some huge prehistoric animal ... mangled and bleeding ... yet preserving its life." Then in his characteristic growl he said "Good Old London!"

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 8, 2011
A cutting from a London newspaper dated Monday 16 September 1940, published during the Blitz. It provides a chilling visual reminder of the damage caused by the Nazis' bombing on world-renowned St. Thomas's Hospital, situated on the south bank of the River Thames across Westminster Bridge from the historic Houses of Parliament.

The storyline in the cutting reads "First pictures to be released of bomb damage at St. Thomas's Hospital, London. A direct hit was made on the hospital during a night raid last week. There were many casualties." George's and Lilian's daughter Mary and her friend Gwen Lewis worked all through the War at the Hospital. They, along with the doctors, nurses and other staff, worked very hard to keep it open, despite heavy bombing which destroyed three ward blocks.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 8, 2011
At the top is an early 1950s' photograph of George's elder daughter Mary (left) and her friend Gwen Lewis standing with a very small sick baby outside St. Thomas's Hospital in London where they worked all their careers. Mary was eventually appointed in charge of the non-nursing staff in the Children's Ward. Gwen was Matron's Personal Assistant for many years.

Historic St. Thomas's Hospital can be seen in the background of the real photograph picture postcard (below) across the River Thames from the Houses of Parliament, a short tram ride over Westminster Bridge. George and his family would have been very familiar with this scene for many years from the 1930s when they went to visit Mary and Gwen at St. Thomas's. The last London trams ceased to run in 1952.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 8, 2011
VE Day on Tuesday 8 May 1945 was one of the most important dates in the history of the United Kingdom, and for the countries of Europe, the British Empire, the United States and all over the World. After six long years of unremitting war and a huge price in devastation and death, Nazi Germany was finally defeated.

The joy on the occasion was shared and celebrated by millions of people in dozens of countries. In London, the front page of The Daily Telegraph published on Wednesday 9 May 1945 carried a huge photograph (left to right) of Princess Elizabeth, Queen Elizabeth, Prime Minister Winston Churchill, King George VI and Princess Margaret standing on the famous balcony in front of Buckingham Palace before 1000s of cheering and happy people.

George's 21 years' old daughter Jean was among the crowd with a group of her friends outside Buckingham Palace on this memorable night when "The lights went up all over London" after six years of darkness.

George pushed 6 years' old Vilven John in his wheelchair up to the top of the Earls Court Road, where they then turned right and went all along Kensington High Street to Barker's renowned department store and looked in awe together at the floodlit shop and its illuminated display windows....a memory never to be forgotten for the rest of their lives.


Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 8, 2011
The Daily Telegraph's headlines on 9 May 1945 said it all!

Nation's VE Outburst of Joy: All-Night Celebrations
Royal Family 8 Times Out On Palace Balcony
Mr. Churchill: 'No Greater Day in Our History.'

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 8, 2011
During the Second World War BBC Radio was a vital source of information and entertainment for millions of people living in the United Kingdom. It was also a huge source of information and inspiration for many more millions of people living in Nazi-occupied Europe, often listening clandestinely in their homes on equipment hidden in their basements and attics.

George and Amy were keen listeners to BBC Radio broadcasts during the War. BBC Television was off the air for the whole of the War. This is a photograph of one of the most historic broadcasts of the Twentieth Century, showing Prime Minister
Winston Churchill addressing the Nation and the World on BBC Radio from Number 10 Downing Street on Tuesday 8 May 1945, "VE Day"...."Victory-in-Europe Day."

Like many millions of their fellow Britons, George and his family listened rivetted to Mr. Churchill's voice on VE Day coming out of their radio in their tiny living room at Rassell's Florist's shop in Kensington, London. Later that day, thousands of people joyfully thronged Piccadilly Circus, Trafalgar Square, and the wide open spaces in front of Buckingham Palace to see the Royal Family and Prime Minister Churchill appear on the famous balcony.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 8, 2011
"Victory-in-Europe Day" - VE Day- on Tuesday 8 May 1945 was celebrated with great enthusiasm in many places, large and small, throughout the United Kingdom, including in Abingdon Road, a couple of minutes from Rassell's Florist's shop where a patriotically-decorated "Street Party" was held for local children, as these "real photograph" postcard views taken on the day show.

George's and Amy's 6 years' old son Vilven John can be seen in the top photograph under the Union Jack, wearing a cloth cap, with an "X" marked above his head on the postcard by his Mother! Many of the children's Mums and Dads and Aunties and Uncles who organised the party were neighbours and Rassell's customers.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 8, 2011
Young and old at the Abingdon Road VE Day street party enjoyed the simple pleasure of watching a clown run along the street with a bucket of water on his head! For many of the children born just before and during the War this would have been a real treat.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 8, 2011
A lovely snapshot taken about 1950 in London of George and Amy, with their son Vilven John and Mary, George's daughter from his first marriage to Lilian.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 8, 2011
A delightful, early 1950s' Christmas-time, coloured photograph of Mary, George's and Lilian's daughter, wearing her traditional uniform, sitting in her room in the Staff Quarters in Riddell House at St. Thomas's Hospital, located a short tram ride over the River Thames across Westminster Bridge from the Houses of Parliament.

As the photo shows, Mary continued her Father's long and cherished family custom of putting up Christmas decorations. The Annual Nativity Play performed by the staff and friends in the beautiful Chapel built inside St. Thomas's Hospital was always well done and very moving.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 8, 2011
A lovely photograph of "Three Generations of Rayboulds" taken in about 1950. Centre back is Grandfather George, with on his left his son George Raybould Jnr. and in front of him his Grandson John Lindsay Raybould. On the left is the Rev. Archie McKinnon, Father of George Jnr.'s wife Ruth. The photo was taken in the garden of George's and Ruth's house at Seven Kings, Essex.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 8, 2011
Rassells the Florists & Horticulturalists of Kensington, London, where George worked from 1930 to 1954, rising to become the Managing Director, has been a major supplier of Christmas trees over many years for hundreds of homes. As these photographs show, the outside of the shop regularly looks very seasonal as Christmas- time approaches.

George Snr. and his son George Jnr. always had a great enthusiasm for Christmas. As talked about in the Biography of George Snr., there was for many years a friendly rivalry between them as to who could put up the most elaborate decorations!

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 8, 2011
A charming photograph taken by Vilven John outside Rassell's Florist's & Gardeners' shop at 80 Earl's Court Road, Kensington in the late 1960s some years after George had passed away in 1964.

The photograph features on the right Miss Marjorie Rassell, the proprietor and daughter of the later 19th Century founder of the firm, Charlie Rassell. She ran the company for many years and George worked closely with her from 1930 to 1954.

On Miss Rassell's right is Donald Rider whom George hired in 1935 as his apprentice. Highly-talented, Donald became George’s indispensable right-hand man after the Second World War, when he returned to the firm after serving in the Army in the REME. After George retired in 1954 Donald took over running the firm with Miss Rassell. After she died in the 1970s he was the very successful Managing Director for many years.

Other staff members in the photograph are left to right, Bill Evans, Alan Cawthorne and a lady whose name is not known. They were all a great team.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 8, 2011
13 October 1951, a photograph of the presentation certificate, hand-written by one of the Royal calligraphers, (who was a customer of Rassells the Florists & Horticulturalists in Kensington at the time) given by Miss Rassell to George Raybould on the occasion of the 21st Anniversary of him joining the staff.

The inscription reads: "Presented to George Raybould Esquire by Miss Rassell in appreciation of the inestimable services rendered by him over a period of 21 years. We the undersigned in expressing our esteem and goodwill trust that he may enjoy every happiness in the future."

The certificate was presented by Miss Rassell, along with an inscribed gold watch, at an early morning ceremony in Rassells shop, attended by George, Amy and Vilven John, and members of the staff. The certificate is signed by 12 members of the staff, including Miss Rassell, Donald Rider and Mr. Mullins. The gold watch is now a treasured heirloom in the Raybould family.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 8, 2011
The report in The Kensington News in October 1951 of George's 21st Anniversary presentation ceremony for working for Rassells. Enjoy. There is a very satisfying feeling for people interested in their family history of actually reading and handling an original newspaper cutting about a major event like this associated with a loved one's life.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 8, 2011
George, when working for Rassells the Florists in Kensington from the early 1930s to the early 1950s, was a well-known buyer of flowers in bulk to sell in the shop. The flowers were grown by many national wholesalers who brought their stock to London’s historic Covent Garden Flowers, Fruit & Vegetables Market.

This is an early 1900s' charming Tuck's "Oilette" coloured picture postcard showing the famous flower market, a sight little changed half a century later, and one familiar to George, often very early in the morning because Covent Garden Market was in full swing by 6.00am!

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 8, 2011
Situated in the heart of London from the 1670s to the 1970s, the famous Covent Garden Flowers, Fruit & Vegetables Market served many generations. In the background of this photograph is an architectural scale model made by Timothy Richards of the handsome Floral Hall at Covent Garden where much of the flower buying and selling went on, and where George Raybould regularly went as a buyer for many years.

The elegant glass and iron facade of the Floral Hall seen here was designed by E. M. Barry in the 1860s. It was heavily influenced by Sir Joseph Paxton's spectacular Crystal Palace that housed London's Great Exhibition held in Hyde Park in 1851.
The model figures recreate a scene at Covent Garden that would have been familiar to George Raybould. It includes a traditional flower seller, reminiscent of Eliza Doolittle in Bernard Shaw's play "Pygmalion" that was much later turned into the popular film "My Fair Lady."

The London street lamp was illuminated by "town gas"; many such lamps survived until the 1960s when they were still lit by old-time "lamplighters" who went round the streets turning them on and off with hooks on the ends of long poles.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 8, 2011
When George Raybould was the Managing Director of Rassells the firm had many famous customers who bought flowering plants and shrubs for their town gardens. Among them were David Lean (1908-1991), the Oscar-award winning film director, and his wife, the famous actress Ann Todd (1909-1993).

This is a photograph of an original letter that Amy kept that Ann Todd wrote to George in the early 1950s. Read the complete transcript below and get first-hand flavour of the artistic temperament!

Social and family historians treasure items of ephemera such as hand-written letters like this because they are very useful (and often highly entertaining!) biographical source materials.

"From Ann Todd. Dear Mr. Raybould,
I just want to thank you so very much for our garden. It looks really lovely and so many people have admired it, and we have filmed it in colour to keep for good. I hope you have forgiven me for being so horribly short on the telephone to you. I am not usually like that! But the gardener knowing nothing about marguerites and planting the geraniums practically on the road, coupled with people arriving to stay, and knowing I had been round three times to you nearly three months ago to arrange it (in) lots of time made me blow up -- but alls well that ends well and the front of the house couldn't look more lovely.
Yours Ann Lean."

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 8, 2011
In 1951, as George and his family would know and experience, London hosted the Festival of Britain on the South Bank of the River Thames. Held on a dramatic waterfront site almost opposite the Houses of Parliament, the Festival was described as a "Tonic for the Nation," coming after the rigours of the Second World War. It was a great success. Among its visitors were King George VI and Queen Elizabeth, seen in the picture postcard (on the right).

The stamps on the envelopes were issued by the GPO to commemorate the Exhibition. The envelope (lower left) was sent from the Festival of Britain on 19 September to 12 years' old Vilven John Raybould (from himself!) to 80 Earls Court Road, the family's home address at Rassells.

The 4 pence stamp (lower right) has the famous four-pointed star emblem with Britannia, designed by the London-born Abram Games for the Festival of Britain; it is regarded as one of the best logos created in the whole of the Twentieth Century.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 8, 2011
Top right is an early 1950s' photograph of George's elder daughter Lilian Mary (left) and her friend Gwen Lewis with a small sick baby, standing outside historic St. Thomas's Hospital in London where they worked all their careers.

St. Thomas's Hospital can be seen in the background of the picture postcard top left, across the River Thames, a short tram ride over Westminster Bridge. George and his family would have been very familiar with this scene for many years when they went to visit Mary and Gwen at St. Thomas's.

A model of one of the trams of the period is shown in the left foreground. The London trams ceased to run in 1952 when Vilven John and his Mother rode on one over Westminster Bridge as 100s of Londoners turned out to say an emotional goodbye to this very popular form of public transport that had been around for many years. By a strange fluke, a light bulb fell on Vilven John's head from its fixture in the ceiling of what was called by Londoners "the top deck" of the tramcar. No damage was done to his head and everyone had a good laugh!

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 8, 2011
A charming Raybould family photograph taken about 1950 in George Jnr's and Ruth's garden at Seven Kings, Essex. Back row from the left: Grandad George; his wife Amy; George Jnr. Middle row from the left: Vilven John, Ruth with baby Barbara in her arms, and Ruth's Father Rev. Archie McKinnon. In the front are George Jnr.'s and Ruth's older children Helen, Christine and John Lindsay.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 8, 2011
A sweet photograph of George and Amy taken by their son Vilven John about 1954 near Scarborough, a seaside town on the North-East Coast of England by the North Sea, where they went for their Summer holidays several years.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 8, 2011
George and his colleagues, as did many other shopkeepers up and down the United Kingdom, enthusiastically decorated Rassells the Florist's & Horticulturalist's shop to celebrate Queen Elizabeth II's Coronation on 2 June 1953. The envelope (lower left), with the postmark dated 3 June and "Long Live the Queen" on it, was sent to Rassells at 80 Earl's Court Road.

Looking at these pictures, we can almost hear the crowds cheering Queen Elizabeth II on her Coronation Day. Perhaps as her gilded coach left Westminster Abbey where the Coronation took place, or as she and Prince Philip returned to Buckingham Palace afterwards and stood on the famous balcony. We can see them in the centre photo on the balcony, in a souvenir miniature copy of The Daily Telegraph newspaper, acknowledging the cheers of the tens of thousands of people in front of them.

People came from all over the United Kingdom to be in London on Coronation Day so London Transport and British Railways issued special free guides and maps of their systems (top right) to help the tens of thousands of visitors and residents alike eager to see the new Queen.

During Coronation Year thousands of young people grew flowers to beautify the towns and the countryside. In London they grew nasturtiums, as can be seen from the certificate (below right) issued by the London Flower Lovers' League.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 8, 2011
A commemorative envelope with a special 4 Pence stamp issued by the GPO to celebrate Queen Elizabeth II's Coronation in Westminster Abbey on 2 June 1953. Postmarked 3 June it was sent by Vilven John to himself (!) at 80 Earl's Court Road, London W.8., the family's address at Rassells the Florists where his Father George was the Managing Director. George and his colleagues splendidly decorated the front of the shop to celebrate the Coronation.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 8, 2011
December 1954, George Raybould's letter of farewell (top right) that he sent to his customers at Rassells telling them of his retirement, thanking them for their business, and inviting them to continue patronising the firm. The Milestone Hotel in Kensington was where Miss Rassell hosted George's and Amy's retirement dinner and presentation. The sweet little photograph of them holding hands was taken by Vilven John at Scarborough in about the same year.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 8, 2011
30 December 1954; George's retirement from Rassells the Florists & Horticulturalists of Kensington, London. This is the menu of the Dinner in his honour, hosted by his long-time employer and colleague, Miss Marjorie Rassell, and given at the Milestone Hotel, almost opposite Kensington Palace in one of London's most famous public parks.

The menu is signed by all the guests including Miss Rassell, Donald Rider, George's wife Amy, their daughter Jean and their son Vilven John, and by many members of the staff.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 8, 2011
January 1955, in the middle of deep Winter snow, George, with Amy, Jean and Vilven John, moved from the heart of London, after he retired from Rassells, to live at Yelverton in Devon in the West of England, between Plymouth and Tavistock. Wild Dartmoor ponies such as these watched the new arrivals with much interest!

When this colour photograph was taken many years later, with the little village of Yelverton in the distance, it was a typically foggy day on Dartmoor, which is still called "England's Last Wilderness." Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, the creator of the famous private detective Sherlock Holmes, located one of his most well known stories "The Hound of the Baskervilles" on Dartmoor.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 8, 2011
Amy's snapshots of her and George's early 1900s' house and garden at Yelverton, Devon, located between Plymouth and Tavistock on the edge of Dartmoor, where they retired to an idyllic life in 1955. Ever the gardener, George was in his element in the large garden, with lots of trees and many chickens. Bodkin, the elkhound, was the family's companion in sunshine, rain and snow.

One year a highlight of life at Yelverton was a Summer visit by George Jnr. and Ruth with their four young children John Lindsay, Helen, Christine and Barbara, George’s grandchildren. All the young people, including Vilven John, enjoyed performing elaborate "theatricals" on the lawns in a quiet and leafy very rural setting, never to be forgotten by any of them. As Elizabeth Akers Allen poignantly wrote:
Backward, turn backward O Time, in thy flight;
Make me a child again, just for to-night."

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 7, 2011
George, photographed in his element, keeping busy in the heavily-wooded garden of his and Amy's house at Yelverton in Devon, where they retired to in 1955. Bodkin, his affectionate elkhound, kept George company all the time. Amy was good at and enjoyed taking photographs so that is why she is in so few of them.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 7, 2011
In 1956 George came out of retirement in Devon, at the keen request of his daughter Jean, to become the landlord of the historic, half- timbered "Cross Keys" public house at Pangbourne, Berkshire, by the River Thames. This was so Jean could manage it because in those days women were not allowed to be licensees.

George is seen here standing beneath the sign over the front door, which had his name inscribed above it as the landlord. Jean had many years experience in the British licensed and hotel trade that she very capably drew upon at "The Cross Keys."

Because George had many years' business experience dealing with members of the general public, Jean and her Father made a good team to successfully run "The Cross Keys" for several years.

The traditional "horse brass" on the right was given by the patrons to George and his wife Amy when they retired in December 1958. Perhaps inevitably, the very long hours became too much for Amy and George to cope with, particularly because of his increasingly poor heart condition that had developed during the Second World War when he ran Rassells by day and did War service by making ammunition at night.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 7, 2011
This photo shows the Raybould family outside "The Cross Keys" pub in 1958. Left to right: George; his daughter Jean, who ran the pub, drawing on her extensive experience in the English licensed and hotel trade; George's wife Amy, and their son Vilven John.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 7, 2011
This delightful, illustrated article entitled "Melody Inn" about George was published in the Summer 1958 issue of "The Hop Leaf", the quarterly house journal of Simmonds Brewery, Reading, Berkshire, which owned "The Cross Keys" public house at Pangbourne, Berkshire.

The magazine's page shown here features George top left, landlord of "The Cross Keys," playing for his customers one of his treasured musical boxes, amazingly an American-made "Regina Record Changer" dating from the 1890s -- of course, the "discs" in those days were metal, not vinyl! In the photo (below) Jean and Vilven John are seen looking at more of their Father's collection of musical boxes, which included a cat that rose "magically" out of a hat!

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 7, 2011
One classic children's book has a very strong connection with Pangbourne where "The Cross Keys" pub is located. "The Wind in the Willows," published in 1908, has remained a favourite for generations of children and adults alike. It's author, Kenneth Grahame, lived by the River Thames, first at Cookham and then at Pangbourne, where he died in 1932.

Much of Mr. Grahame's classic story of an endearingly human-like group of animals (Badger, Mole, Ratty, and of course the often-naughty Mr. Toad, all seen in the picture) was set among the nooks and crannies along the River Thames' banks, so familiar to Mr. Grahame.... and to George Raybould and to his family.

Many people may not know that Mr. Grahame's "Day Job" was Secretary of none other than the prestigious Bank of England. Not many laughs there!

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 7, 2011
2 October 1959, the Wedding Day in Old Hastings, (one of the five famous Mediaeval "Cinque Port" towns on the Sussex Coast), of George's and Amy's daughter Jean Elizabeth to Claude Grant Nelson. Left to right in the photograph are: Vilven John, George's and Amy's son; Joan Jackson, a friend of Jean's; Grant & Jean, and Amy & George Raybould.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 7, 2011
The Wedding on 22 July 1961 in the 13th Century Great St. Mary's Church, Sawbridgeworth, Hertfordshire, England, of George's and Amy's son Vilven John to Heather Spyers, daughter of David & Nora Spyers. Both pairs of parents attended the joint Anglican-Congregational Marriage Service, along with many members of their families.

Many friends of the Spyers family also attended from the small town where Heather's Mother and Father had lived for a long while and were very active and highly-regarded in the local community, especially as Elders in the Congregational Church.

In the photograph (left to right) are: George Raybould; bridesmaid Helen Raybould; best man Shaun Calway; Amy Raybould; Vilven John Raybould; Heather Raybould; Nora Spyers; bridesmaid Jenny Leonard; David Spyers.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 7, 2011
During their Ruby Wedding Anniversary Year in 1962, George and Amy visited All Saints' Parish Church, Maldon, Essex, where they were married on 22 March 1922. They are seen here in front of the splendid, stone-arched doorway in a photograph taken by their son Vilven John. The list of known names of the past Vicars of All Saints' goes back amazingly to the year 1244.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 7, 2011
An early 1960s' photograph (lower left) of George and his wife Amy, with their daughter-in-law Heather and son Vilven John, taken in the terraced garden of the family's house in Fearon Road, Hastings, Sussex, during George's second retirement after ceasing to be the landlord of "The Cross Keys" pub in Pangbourne in 1958.

On the right is a poignant letter that George wrote to Heather and Vilven John in Hastings in January 1963, a year before he died. In it he says he was pleased that Amy "seems able to do all the work, snow clearing, coal getter in and shopping and general factotum." Because his health was already failing he said "I manage to do a bit of dusting and fiddling about and playing." But then he brightened up and said "I won three games of darts running the other day (against Amy, who had a very straight eye) and I have given myself a Certificate of Merit."

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 7, 2011
A delightful photograph of George and Amy taken in the early 1960s in the well-wooded garden of the house they retired to in Sussex on Fearon Road in Hastings, an ancient town on the South Coast, by the English Channel. Which brings to mind an English joke: many years ago a newsreader on BBC Radio is reputed to have said, when reporting the weather, "Fog in Channel. Continent cut off!" Of course, the construction of the Channel Tunnel changed all that!

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 7, 2011
One of the Raybould family's favourite photographs of George. It was taken by his son Vilven John about 1962 in the sitting room of George's and Amy's house that they retired to on Fearon Road in Hastings.

George is playing a traditional English public house board game called "Shove Halfpenny." The object of the game is to see how far each player can "shove" (push!) down the wooden board his or her halfpennies by strategically knocking his or her opponent's halfpennies out of the way. Players shove their halfpennies with the flats of their hands and the pressure used governs how far they travel (not the players, the halfpennies!)

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 7, 2011
Probably the most poignant photograph in the whole of George's Memorial Picture Gallery is this Easter card shaped like an open book that he sent to Amy in the 1950s, with the message on it "With All the Love in the World. Best Wishes, xx George xx."

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 7, 2011
George Raybould's British passport photograph taken in 1963. Those who knew him will remember what a kindly face he had, with lots of character in it. As Henry James wrote "What is character but the determination of incident? What is incident but the illustration of character?"

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 7, 2011
The 13th Century St. Nicholas Parish Church, Harpenden, Hertfordshire, England, where George's funeral service was held in March 1964. He was buried in the Town Cemetery nearby in a peaceful grove of shady trees.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 7, 2011
The shared tombstone of George and Amy Raybould in the Town Cemetery, Harpenden, Hertfordshire, England.
George's memorial reads "In Loving Memory of George Raybould, died March 1st 1964 aged 70. God Whispered Peace Be Thine."

His wife Amy lived many years after him until she was 98 in 2000 when her ashes were placed on his grave one peaceful Sunday afternoon during an inspiring, short open-air service conducted by Reverend Dr. Laurie Blaney, husband of Barbara, one of George's grand-daughters. The service was attended by a large number of members of her family led by Amy's and George's daughter Jean and their son Vilven John.

Amy's memorial reads "In Fond Remembrance of his Wife, Kathleen Amy died August 21st 2000 aged 98."

The words "Their Very Memory is Fair and Bright" on their joint tombstone were written by Henry Vaughan in 1655, a renowned 17th Century Welsh metaphysical poet.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 7, 2011

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 7, 2011
A beautiful panel of a Victorian stained glass skylight, featuring two kingfisher-type birds, that was bought in the 1920s by Charles Rassell and installed in the ceiling of the flat the Raybould family lived in above Rassell's Florist's shop where George worked from 1930 to 1954.

Donald Rider very sagaciously had the delicate skylight restored and protected with a dome in 2009.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 7, 2011
This tranquil photograph of some of the trees among the famous "Chiltern Beeches" in Buckinghamshire reminds us that George greatly loved the English countryside, with its soft hues, ancient hedgerows, stout, often historic trees and traditional five- barred gates. The photograph, taken by Tim Raybould, one of George's grandsons, reminds us that the beech is regarded as the "handsomest and most gracious of all Britain's native trees," as Bertram Lloyd put it.

George loved trees in all their shapes and forms, and particularly their many shades of green, which he always said was the most diversified colour in Nature's wonderful palette in parks and gardens large and small. The charming words of the poet Louise Seymour Jones apply to George Raybould so well:

"Who loves a garden
Finds within his soul
Life's whole;
And sees beyond his little sphere
The waving fronds of Heaven, clear."

This photograph brings nearly to the end Memorial Matters' Picture Gallery on the Life and Times of George Raybould (1893-1964) , and it provides a good opportunity for us to reflect on his legacy.

Just as beech trees, as Bertram Lloyd said, "shine and glisten with a hundred tints like the play of colours in a royal opal," so the Book of Ecclestiastes reminds us that as "One generation passeth away (so) another generation cometh." So George Raybould was very proud of his large family, two sons and two daughters, whose early lives have been pictured and chronicled in his Picture Gallery; now we conclude with some photographs of them in their later years.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 7, 2011
A lovely late 1960s' photograph of George Raybould's eldest son, George Jnr., with his wife Ruth and their children, John Lindsay, Barbara, Helen and Christine. It shows them continuing their Grandfather George's much-loved family tradition of having a beautifully-decorated and lit Christmas tree in their home at Seven Kings, Essex.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 7, 2011
Top: early 1950s, Vilven John setting off to school in London from his home at Rassells the Florists in Kensington where his Father George was Managing Director. Bottom, Vilven John photographed in almost the same spot happily visiting Rassells about 50 years later and enjoying the beautiful selection of potted flowers for sale. Shortly afterwards he was diagnosed with a rare neurological disease, Chronic Polyneuropathy, that affected his peripheral nerves and his limbs.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 7, 2011
On the left is a studio portrait of Heather and Vilven John, with their sons Tim (left) and Simon (right), taken in 1970 in West Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada.

On the right is a photograph of Tim and Simon with George's wife Amy, Grandma Raybould, taken in the early 1980s in her flat at Gosport, Hampshire. Because George died in 1964, sadly he did not live long enough to see his two grandsons. However, Amy lived many years after him until 2000, so she was able to spend time with them in both Canada and England.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Apr 7, 2011
An early 1980s' photograph of Amy, with her and George's daughter Jean and her grand-daughter Caroline. The photograph was taken in Jean's and Grant's book-lined bungalow at Lee-on-Solent, Hampshire.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Mar 26, 2011
Top photo: George's eldest son, George Jnr. and his wife Ruth in later life, happily picnicking in East Anglia, a lovely part of England where they lived for many years and enjoyed so much.

Lower photo: George's eldest daughter Mary with Gwen, her close friend for 60 years; in later life they are seen here on a coach trip with their friends May and Rita sitting behind them. For such older English ladies who did not drive, this was an ideal way to have traditional "Days Out" and they thoroughly enjoyed lots of them over a period of many years.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Mar 26, 2011

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Mar 26, 2011
Early 1920s, George (on the right) with a colleague outside David Russell & Sons, Nurserymen and Seed Merchants, Brentwood, Essex. What a magnificent display of flowers and plants the shop has, inside and out.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Mar 25, 2011
A lovely photograph showing a very smartly-dressed George, early in his career as a florist, in the Springtime.

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Mar 25, 2011
About 1962, George and Amy enjoying their very wooded garden during their retirement in Hastings, Sussex

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Mar 25, 2011
About 1962, George and Amy, in close-up in their garden at Hastings. Note the fine crop of runner beans behind them!

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Mar 25, 2011

Uploaded by V.J.R.   Mar 25, 2011

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