Did someone say fog?
The article about the Great Smog of 1952 [Behind the Headlines, February] reminded me of a day that has stayed in my memory for over 60 years.
During the 1950s I lived in Greenford, Middlesex, and attended a convent school in Northfields some distance away. Late one afternoon our
headmistress decided we should go home, as a thick fog was developing. Strict instructions not to loiter!
After a long wait for a bus that did not appear, I decided to walk a mile or two towards West Ealing. Plodding along in my navy-blue felt hat, sensible laced shoes and cold skirt, I made good progress as there were few people about and hardly any cars.
Arriving at West Ealing I considered climbing the hill to the station, but I had insufficient money for a ticket on the little one-coach train to Perivale.
Turning onto the Uxbridge Road I saw a double decker emerge from the gloom. It stopped at the bus stop, and the conductor said they were hoping to get to Hanwell Bus Depot. As that was a few miles nearer home, I climbed on board and went to my favourite seat upstairs at the front. Looking out, I could see nothing! No road below, and only the dim outlines of buildings or the odd branch of a tree.
The bus set off for Hanwell at a creeping pace, and eventually arrived at the depot where I caught a No. 92 heading out, into the near-darkness on its way to Wembley.
The bus plodded on, eventually reaching Greenford Shopping Centre where it stopped to pick up a number of worried-looking people carrying huge bags of shopping. Next stop was mine.
When I finally reached our street, I was met by our cat Twinkle. We walked down the road together and he clearly knew where he was going!
Later that evening my father arrived home, having come from Acton where he worked as a printer. He and others had decided to take turns in guiding their bus by walking in front of it. Christine Reeves Editor replies: I’m glad our article brought back such vivid memories!
Christine shared her memories of a journey home in London’s fog