Monday, July 28, 2008

Tracing back my childhood, via Google Maps – Part 4: Oxfordshire

My father got another job when I was about thirteen, all the way south in Oxfordshire, just outside the historic town of Wallingford. The position was as an instructor for Turners Court, a residential educational establishment for delinquent boys.

Again, a house was available for us on-site, just up the hill at No. 2 Brixton Hill. (Several more houses have been built since then; all that was there in the 1980s were the semi-detached pair of homes at the bottom. We lived in the rightmost of the two.) It was next to a small wood of beech trees, which provided endless fun for my brothers and I.

About a year or so later a house on the grounds proper was vacant, and we moved into it, it being much closer to my dad's work and a much newer house. (The only change to this area since I lived here is that each house has had a 2-car garage built for it. Originally everyone shared a row of rather ramshackle garages approximately where the big trees just north of center are now. We were in the house second from the right.) I believe the address was No. 3 Turners Court.

The school itself appears to have been razed to the ground since we left; no trace of the residences or classrooms remain. Houses have been built over most of it. It's not surprising, since after my dad had worked there for a few years the establishment was bankrupt and closed down. I imagine it was sold for housing.

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