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Roadworks in Gloucester Road, Coleford

A photo of Gloucester Road, Coleford

Some of the vehicle registration numbers are: Lorry - KDF 456,DiggerTDD 417, Anglia Van 3352 DG, Austin? van 936 DCJ, Mini behind stop sign ?G 549B?.
On the door of the lorry is ?? *KEAR & SON, CONTRACTORS, COLEFORD 313?
The building on the far right is the Lamb Inn.
The Mini dates the photo to 1959 or later.

Harry Elsmore in middle, he was foreman for Kears.

*Thanks to Clive Mason who added: "... The lorry belonged to S J Kear a local civil engineering company, My uncle Frank Bradley was foreman for them.Mr Kear was a local magistrate.I worked for them at a new school build in Lydney ... Another memory flashback,the driver of the digger,s name was Jim and he used to be a butcher from Bream".

Mike Jones added: "... Brings back old memories. The machine is a Priestman Wolf - I bought it off Kears about a year after they shut down - that would have been around 1982. As well as the backhoe configuration shown in the picture It had the full range of equipment - crane; dragline and skimmer. I still have the manuals, test reports etc.. ".

Bill Nash added: "I remember the digger and truck.. as they were used in the building of our house which was finished in 1959. Eric Kear my uncle ran S J Kear and Sons. I am surprised the digger lasted until 1982.. unless the one I remember was a traded in for the one shown here. I used to play on it..... wouldn't be allowed to do that in todays health and safety environment!!!!!! Dating the picture, the Anglia van was not released until 1961. I suggest the mini number plate is 4 numerals two letters... Ours was 6318AD!!!!! (it was red so not this one!!) see http://www.oldclassiccar.co.uk/registrations/reg-letters.htm ) I would put it about the time the new Police Station and Magistrates Court were finished as the bank in the left foreground is yet to be turfed. I believe S J Kear & Sons may have built that too!! Kear's certainly built the community Centre which was in recent times knocked down".

David Dowle added: "I think Bill Nash is right and the new police station is just out of picture on the right. The other possibility is that it's associated with the development of Bells Place. The entry to that is roughly where the van is in the middle distance and before the pub".

Dave Nash added: "Nearest, the shop with the blind drawn over the window was Kear's jewellers.Then a bit further up, directly across from the Austin van, was A.R. Miles wholesale sweets and tobacconist.Then further up the road were,Bollom's dry cleaners which always seemed to be staffed by Mrs Joynes and she still lives in the house next up the road.Then we come to Hodges electrical which was the sign in black and white longways.This is now the Balti hut.Then finally on that side we can see was Malsolm's shop which sold Sunday papers as Smith's and Fletchers in the Market place did not open on Sunday. Also,directly behind the cab of the lorry was Gerald Smith's photography premises.This was later taken over by his son Paul and is now a private house ... the driver of the lorry who was Cyril Adams... is stood directly above the horizontal arrow and is the man with the white collar standing out above his jumper".

Jane Bowskill added (March 2024): "... Cyril Hodges was my uncle born 1920.I remember the shop with the vertical sign well.I think Cyril, Nancy, Michael and Ann lived in a flat above the shop and moved to Boxbush Road in the 1960s. Nancy had a wool shop and Ann a hairdresser in St John Street, .... My father , Dennis Hodges ,died aged 45 in 1974 of cancer. He attended Bell's Grammar School and Durham University and there is a plaque in the cathedral of the forest at Newland bearing his name".

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