Your Gazette: How paper gave us pocket money

Thurrock Gazette: Your Gazette: How paper gave us pocket money Your Gazette: How paper gave us pocket money

FOR many people, delivering their local paper is a first job.

And for three brothers - delivering the Thurrock Gazette back in the 1930s was how they began earning pocket money.

Bob Mayes, 88 and his older brothers, Les, 91, and Stan, 93, all delivered this paper. This week, the trio feature in our Your Gazette piece.

The three men were born in Thurrock - Bob and Les have lived here all their lives, while Stan moved to East Gravesend in 1955.

We asked Bob about him and his brothers, what he loves about Thurrock, his time delivering the Gazette and what he loves about the paper.

What can you tell us about you and your brothers?

My elsest brother Stan was born in Argent Street in 1921. He now lives in East Gravesend after serving in the Merchant Navy, pre and during the war.

My brother Les was born in 1922 in Rosebery Road, off London Road. He was in the Royal Navy throughout the war and now lives in Corringham.

I was born in Wallace Road in 1925. I was in the Home Guard (Dad's Army) until I was called up for the army in the 1st Batallion Essex Regiment. Before and after that, I worked at Thames Board Mills - between 1942 and 1980 - until I was made redundant.

What memories do you have of Grays and Thurrock?

I'm happy to have seen Grays pre-war and post-war. It was a lovely place, with four cinemas - the State in George Street, the Regal in New Road, the Empire in the High Street and The Ritz, which is now Mecca bingo in Quarry Hill. It was wartime, but they were happy days and I have very fond memories of the place.

If you could change one thing about the borough now, what would it be?

I would change it back to how it was 60 or 70 years ago. You used to be able to walk around at night and think nothing of it, whereas you wouldn't do that nowadays.

Do you have fond memories of being a paper boy and how did you come to do it?

Yes - I was about 13 or 14, it was called the "Grays & Tilbury Gazette" back then. Before that, I sold bread rolls from Bairds in William Street. But really, delivering the papers was the only way to earn a bit of pocket money.

And finally, what's your favourite thing about the Thurrock Gazette?

Getting and reading about local news.

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