Books by Jenna Publishing

Book Summaries

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Lest we Forget is the story of Beckenham and the Great War gained from the Beckenham Journal (BJ) between 1914 and 1921. A comment in the BJ of 14/10/1916 reads as follows:

"No charge is made for inserting information about men on service killed, wounded, promoted or in receipt of merits. All the BJ is interested in, is that when the war is over, the roll we have been trying to keep since its outbreak, will remain an historical record for the use of generations to come."

We offer our sincere thanks to the writers and publishers of the BJ and hope that our readers will find this account deserves a place in history.

The Trees & Shrubs of Croydon Rd Recreation ground was compiled for the Friends of the recreation ground in celebration of its 120 years in 2011. It includes a taste of history, a month by month record of the most notable trees and shrubs all in full colour, three walks to identify the trees and shrubs with plans of the shrubberies and a Latin/common name index.

Hats Off! celebrates the 90th anniversary in 2009 of the present Langley Park School for Girls that started as the Beckenham County School for Girls in Lennard Rd in 1919 and moved to Park Langley in 1959 as the Beckenham Grammar School for Girls.

Monks Orchard and Eden Park tells the story of the area of gentle, wooded hills with numerous north-flowing rivers, populated since the Bronze Age. In the late 1700s, its proximity to London drew the attention of rich landowners, keen to establish their mansions here in the Manors of Beckenham and Foxgrove and the Estates of Burrell and Langley. This book is now out of print but there are copies in the Bromley Local Studies library.

Beckenham's 30 Glorious Years relates the history of Beckenham when it was a Borough in its own right from 1935 to 1965. It had an exceptional Fire Service that was recognised during the London blitz as much better than those of the surrounding districts. Ironically this led to the eventual amalgamation of all those districts into the London Boroughs and Beckenham's consequent loss of control of its own affairs.

The Story of Beckenham Green's 36 pages contain many images, with four pages in full colour. The Green occupies an area of two acres of open land near Beckenham Junction station. This oasis of calm was created from the destruction caused by two flying bombs in July 1944. Post war havoc failed to rebuild what had been Beckenham's main shopping centre for the previous 40 years.

Beckenham the Home Front 1939 to 1945 tells the story of life in Beckenham & Penge during WWII through the eyes of local people who have contributed their memories. Their brief sketches throw a brilliant light on the courage and perseverance of the people. Fireman's widow Mollie Bowles says, 'I think we were all aware of the danger the firemen faced. The bombs fell virtually every night and the men were constantly on duty tackling fires, saving people.' In 2014, we shall be publishing Beckenham's story of WWI.

The Beckenham Trilogy of Roads, River and Memorials combines the three separately published earlier books that had become out of print. The map of the rivers appears on the back cover and the Memorials section has been extended to include the Blue Plaques and notables like Robert Borrowman, Percy Jones, Charlie Hoare, Arthur and Alfred Baker and the families Crease and Manger.

The Harvington Estate on South Eden Park Rd grew from a mainly Victorian group of large houses with their stables and lodges that were built in the 1870s. There were two earlier houses constructed in about 1834 to the north. These were Eden Lodge and Eden Cottage, later Eden Manor. Of these seven houses only one, Oakfield, remains intact today although there are still four lodges, those of Eden Lodge, Harvington, Homewood and Chalfont. Harvington is being altered (in 2013) to become a two storey house, largely unrecognisable as its original.

The Cators of Beckenham & Woodbastwick. Quaker John Cator from Ross on Wye rose to financial success in London as a timber merchant in Bankside, Southwark. His descendants married into the world of the landed gentry. When John retired to Bromley in 1762 it was his son John who expanded the family estates, acquiring land in Beckenham eventually used for the construction of superior housing on the Cator Estate. The choice of Betty Cator by Elizabeth Bowes-Lyon as one of her eight bridesmaids on the occasion of her marriage to future King George VI shows a measure of the family's success in climbing the social ladder. The actress Celia Imrie recently on 'Who do you think you are' is descended from John junior's brother Joseph Cator.

The Club In March 1884, a notice was posted at the back of the newly built Public Hall opposite St George's church inviting the gentlemen of Beckenham to become founder members of The Club. They would meet for billiards, cards, smoking and reading as an alternative to using the local public houses. Members meet today to play snooker and to chat in the bar. The book traces the club's little known history through its Presidents, the first of whom was Sir Frederick Prat Alliston.

In Pursuit of the Perfects. It represents some 25 years of ongoing research of the name Perfect (Parfait) by Andre Perfect and me. The name originated in France from where French Protestants fled to England in three waves in 1572, 1598 and 1685 to escape persecution. Many owners of the name Perfect or those who like me have the name somewhere in their ancestry have submitted their stories to us so that the book contains over 60 family trees and is copiously illustrated with photographs and Andre's cartoons.

The weavers of Eastcombe My maiden name of Ridler takes me back to the rascally homebased weavers of Eastcombe, Gloucester in 1687. Although this book is now out of print, contact with any with the name of Ridler in their ancestry would be welcome.

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