Winston Finch was born and grew up in the house he lives in. For many years he worked and lived on the farms around the area, now he’s retired, he has returned to his house. He talks about some of the things he got up to as a lad.
“From the corner there (Coltishall Lane) right up to the old Chapel – where that little bungalow is for sale, where I used to go, that used to be apples, all in lines they grew, and there used to be a hedge there and we used to nip through now and again and borrow an apple. That was me and my brothers – I had 8 brothers and 1 sister. There was an old house out there and they used to do the pruning, with the currant bushes, and we used to spend hours over there, just watching them.
“The bit of land over there [opposite Alex Sirkett’s house now] was sold for £50, that’s going back in 1956 I think, there was a little hole in the shed and we used to sneak in there and go up and look around and see what they do, but they used to let us go in – cos that was interesting. And we used to sit up in the tree and wait for the policeman to come past on his bike. He used to live at Coltishall, and we would wait for him to come past and shoot him with our popgun – only acorns of course – and he say “I know you’re up there and I’ll wait until you come down”. Then you’d get a bang round the head and you’d come home and tell your father and get another one off him.
“We never went hungry though times were hard. There were 11 of us, including mum and dad, and only dad working. We made our own fun. In the school, when we were about 14, we used to go down on Wednesdays for dancing – I went to Tunstead school til I was 15. My younger brother and Rex had to go to Hoveton school and they used to catch the bus on the corner. And one day, they had a bottle of cider, and they drunk it and couldn’t stand
up – of course, they lay in the ditch all day – mother had thought they’d gone to school so they weren’t missed.
“Tunstead football pitch used to be on the corner – I used to play football there, and then it got moved to the over side, by the big house which went down to the crossroads, where Ted Brestow’s pushing the barrel. We called him that because he [Ted] used to keep coming down to the pub and have a drink, and he used to play one of them squeezeboxes and they buried him with that. That was his wish, to be buried in Tunstead churchyard.
“For the coronation, we got a mug or a New Testament – the girls got the bible and we got the mug.”