Revisiting old family photo spot 75 years on

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Robert William Wright, from Redditch, Worcestershire, sent in this letter after a recent visit to Worthing:

“I enclose a black and white photograph of me and my family, taken on Worthing beach, just adjacent to Heene Terrace. It was taken in 1939, shortly before the Second World War.

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“Pictured (left to right) is our mother, Ivy Wright; sister, Jean, 10; brother, Peter, 3; sister, Lorna, 8; and myself, Robert, 4, with the long curly hair.

“The German invasion was threatened. Shortly after that, the beach was cordoned off and mined, and the pier was blown up, to prevent Germans from using it.

“Our father, William Henry Wright, was a police inspector with the West Sussex Constabulary at the time, and we lived in the Police House at 108a, Heene Road – long since demolished.

“With the invasion by the Germans threatened, father, who had fought in the trenches at Ypres in the First World War, had the onerous task of officially handing over Worthing to the German Commander – a duty which he, luckily, did not have to perform.

“When visiting old friends in Findon Valley, my wife took two colour photographs of me in exactly the same spot, as near as we could judge it.

“It was good to see the imposing terrace still standing, keeping a watch on our coastline.

“We had hoped to provide an updated photograph of our family, but excessive distances prevented it.

“Sister Jean, 85, lives near High Wycombe, Buckinghamshire; sister Lorna, 83, lives in Alverstoke, Hampshire; Peter,78, lives in Montpellier, in the south of France; and I ,79, live in Worcestershire.”

• If you have any memories or photos you would like to share, send them to James Connaughton, via email to, send them by post or pop into Cannon House, Chatsworth Road, Worthing, BN11 1NA. Telephone 01903 282351.