I knew Aynho was my Mother's family home but we lived in Hillingdon, Middlesex and in the 30s money was short and very few trips were made. So this was very special. My Mum, my little brother Alan and myself travelled I know not how but I presume train, along with our next door neighbour "Auntie" Edna Hughes and her daughter Betty. We stayed in The Great Western public house and I remember a big room with a piano that extended behind the main building. There were also stables and the picture shows Betty (the bigger girl) and myself and a man with a carthorse behind us. We had been given rides on this huge (to our eyes) horse and thoroughly enjoyed it. I wonder who the man was, does anyone recognise him?
Betty and Barbara
The picture below shows Betty and I along with Alan (in the beret) and a taller, blonde girl who seemed to have been delegated to look after us kids. I cannot remember her name, again does anyone know her?
[--?--], Barbara, Betty, and Alan
In subsequent years I learned that very close to the pub was the canal but we never knew it! My Mum must have been afraid that we would end up in it so all walks and games were held well away from the banks and we remained in ignorance of such a fascinating occupation as watching narrow boats pass by.
Many years later my brother, Jack Wrighton and I visited Aynho searching for family history and were trying to locate Mrs. Stevens the Parish Clerk. Unfortunately, she was not at home but her next door neighbour popped out and informed us of this and asked why we were looking for her. On being told we were seeking information about the Wrightons she invited us in for tea and we learned that she was Nancy Taylor Shergold and her father had been Albert Taylor the Signalman at the Station. As my Grandad was Charles Wrighton the Stationmaster, Nancy knew the family well and had played with my Auntie Madge my mother's youngest sister.
We eventually ran Mrs. Stevens to earth at her father's house and he was able to tell us more about the Wrighton family.
It was not until I started doing Genealogy that I learnt that Aynho had been the Wrighton home for generations. Grandad had joined the G.W.R. and I think his first station as a porter was Pewsey as that was where he met and married my Grandmother, Edith. Then the family lived in Bledlow from 1899 until 1918 where most of the seven children were born, after which Grandad was promoted to the bigger station of Aynho which coincidentally was his family's home. It was there that they grew up and from where the older girls were married including my mother in 1930. It was not long after that that Grandad retired and they went to live in Bourne End, Bucks. in a much smaller house than the rather imposing Stationmaster's house in Aynho! But by then there were only two girls left at home. Grandad died in 1954 and Grandma in 1963 at the grand age of 93.
On another visit with my husband we again used Mrs. Stevens' access to Parish Records and she also, very kindly, sent me information that had not been available when we were there. I have happy memories of the kind folk of Aynho.
During his 23 years of retirement my grandfather was never idle, he kept over 200 hens, cultivated a huge vegetable garden and had over a dozen walnut trees and many apple trees. Before and during the war everything was pickled, preserved, jammed or bottled.
I well remember sitting on the garden bench slicing runner beans by the pound to be salted in a large earthenware tub! We, living in the suburbs of London, appreciated donations of eggs, stewing hens and twice a year a roasting capon from Grandad.
Here endeth my memories of Aynho.