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Guestbook - September 2004

The Guestbook is not just about finding old friends, you might also want to post questions about the local area or make comment on a visit to Coventry and Warwickshire. If you would like to post a message to the guestbook please send them to :

NOTE : For any enquiries where someone is trying to find someone else we feel it better if you do know the people being sought to ask them first before passing on any information about them - remember they may not want to be found!

  My name is Clive Owens and I was born in Newey Road Coventry in 1950. My family migrated to Australia in 1955.

I am looking for information on my father's musical life in Coventry. He was known as Jack Owens and his band was the Star Orchestra. His regular gigs were the Hippodrome and also Greens Ballroom.

He did own a music shop pre 1950 but it was burnt down. The date of this event I cannot provide. Among his friends musically were Ted Heath and also Glen Miller. During the war years he made regular broadcasts from India on the BBC to entertain the troops.

Dad had a friend in Coventry named Harold Stanley, who was also his agent . He lived across the road from us on Norman Place Road just down from the Wallace Hotel.

It is a shame that these memories are not in our family to share with my sons. It would be nice for them to know of their Grandad's accomplishments.

As far as I am able to understand there were many paper articles written over the years circa 1930 to 1950 and they would be precious to have.
Apparently recordings were made too, as a relative in the UK whilst gardening became aware that they were listening to Dad's music on the radio.

Unfortunately elders have left us and taken their knowledge with them, thus, the need to look for other sources. I am looking for suggestions as to where to begin to look for information.
CONTACT Clive Owens
  I was a pupil at Keresley Newlands High School in Coventry from 1965 to 1970 and during that time was taught by a Mrs Huxtable who took me for english and history. She made a great impression on me and I would love to know where and how she is these days. I would be absolutely delighted to hear from her!
CONTACT Linda Blakemore [ne Clements]
  I am looking for an old friend Michelle Freeman.

We went to Whitley Abbey School in c 1990. Michelle used to live in Tarquin Close, Willenhall, Coventry.

I now live in Great Yarmouth.
CONTACT Jessica Ward
  Does anyone know the names of the members of the early years of the Binley Choir - especially in the fifties and sixties?

I think my late father-in-law was involved.  I would love to know more.
  I spent many happy days at Tile HIll Wood School, until I left in 1966.

On the leaving day of our year quite a few photographs were taken, mainly outside Stanley Block - I think? Others were taken inside in one of the classrooms and I still have them all.

I was in Mrs Lisicka's ? [never could remember how to spell her name] House. She was an inspiration to me for future life. Firm but fair, and definitely a friend.

Mr Arnott was our maths teacher, definitely a wee bit eccentric. Miss Trew, our music teacher was a lovely lady. Years later, I met her again with Miss Bufton [geography, and they were then a couple] when they needed new glasses, as I ended up working in Ophthalmics.

Miss Bailey was the gym mistress - she would be classed as the bully she was, in this day and age. Miss Stanley was the Head Mistress, and Mrs Bailey was deputy head.

When we were studying for our exams, we were allowed 'free periods', and a choice as to what we did with that. Boys from Woodlands were invited to come to Tile Hill Wood to do cookery, and we could go to Woodlands and study woodwork - needless to say at that age we didn't need encouragement!

At Woodlands we were taught by a Mr English - who couldn't handle girls at all. Nevertheless, I still managed to build a coffee table before he had a nervous breakdown.
CONTACT Gillian Parnell [ne Egan]
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