Author Topic: Smoggy days  (Read 123 times)

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Offline KenM

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Smoggy days
« on: 03 February, 2019, 11:57:32 AM »
Hi all, can anyone recall the really bad smoggy day when Newham came to a standstill?
The visibility was almost zero, the buses along Silvertown Way were crawling, with the conductor walking in front.
I was working at T&L Plaistow Wharf & the slow walk home to Custom Hse took ages.
It must have been in the 50s but when exactly?

Offline harry

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Re: Smoggy days
« Reply #1 on: 03 February, 2019, 08:28:08 PM »
Hi Ken I remember those fogs and remember riding my bike all the way from Jupp Road Stratford to Varley Road and remember actually walking the bike most of the way as you could only see about six foot in front of you .
I had a white silk scarf round my nose and mouth and when i got home ytou should have seen the soot etc that I would have been inhaling on that journey!!!.
I think that might have been around 1952 as that was when lots of people died because of the effects of the smog our nan being among them.
I thought I would reply to your post as I think most viewers got lost in a similar smog??
Regards Harry.I.

Offline MickG

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Re: Smoggy days
« Reply #2 on: 03 February, 2019, 10:51:32 PM »
I remember in 1962/3 there was an absolute pea-souper of a smog where all traffic including public transport and trains came to a halt. At the time I was a telegram boy on a motorbike working out of Telephone House in Woodgrange Road. Although there had been fogs before, none were as bad as this. The smog lasted several days and gradually got worse as time passed. I remember initially we were still out delivering telegrams as a rider can see far more than a driver in a car, bus or lorry. We soon became aware that wherever we went, we had a stream of traffic following us. It was a case of follow the leader.

We eventually bought gauze masks to wear over our face and noses and even after a short trip, the cotton wool had turned jet black. The smog was so thick, in many cases it was not even possible to make out the glow of the street lamps above out heads. In the end, even the motorbikes were grounded and the air was considered too dangerous to let anyone go out on foot.

I seem to recall the smog was so think, even pedestrians were bumping into each other.

 I think it was the last time we had smog in London.

Offline DougT

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Re: Smoggy days
« Reply #3 on: 10 February, 2019, 09:21:22 PM »
I also think it was the last time we had smog in London as I think the Clean Air act came in very soon after. The smog seemed to last for ages although I think it was only 4 or 5 days at the beginning of December. It was my first year at work and I think we were allowed to leave the office 30 minutes early. At the time my mother worked in Caters in High Street North and one evening the boss kindly offered her a lift home in his car. I think she said it took the best part of an hour to drive from Myrtle Road to Strone Road where the boss abandoned his car and decided to walk the rest of the way home to Woodford. Around 3 weeks after the smog we had the very heavy snowfall which disrupted life for 5 or 6 weeks.

Offline Bob L

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Re: Smoggy days
« Reply #4 on: 12 February, 2019, 10:01:51 PM »
Hi Mick

I think I remember this smog. I was in Park infant school at the time and we were all kept in until an adult came to collect us. I remember cars had fog lamps (I think that is the correct name) fixed to the front bumper.