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Lorries laden with Potatoes at either Gosberton or Donington

In this photo we see a line up of lorries laden with potatoes somewhere in South Holland. Looking closer, it looks like the name Walter Smith is on the vehicles so it could be W.Smith Ltd of Gosberton.

Walter Smith (Cressy) Ltd  were a big company who operated from Cressy Hall, Gosberton before they then moved to Donington.

So does anyone know where exactly that this photo was taken ?


AOS P 2725 potato lorries south holland. looks like walter smith so possibly of gosberton

Vistor comments

28 Responses

  1. I drove for walter Smith for 15 years COMETS DODGES LEYLAND BEAVER AEC EIGHT WHEELERS we used to get around a bit North Scotlang ELGIN FORFAR PERTH KIRRIEWMORE DEVON for swedes avery good firmto work for, we were nicknaned MEN OF STEEL MEMORIES N ow 87 Good Mates DEN PROCTER

  2. The picture was taken at Cressy Hall Ithink about 1954 roughly about the time I driving a FODEN for LAmbert Bros Bicker.I have copy of the original fleet on an MORRISS OILS of SHREWSBURY I think the first man in the front could be either Fred Wright or Pete Wardby, I drove at the DONINGTON KINGS CROSS Depot about five years later with DOUG TASKER, TUBBY CULPIN FRED FAVEL CURLY WOLF, Clary Graves was the manager Maurice Cook salesman Benny Craven finances Pam Young office lady typist HAPPY DAYS a book could be written about the whole company WALTER SMITH was a true Gentleman, Wilf Sheppard took over the running of the lorries I Painted the first SUPER COMET it was driven by DOUG TASKER

  3. I have this photo and it is Pete Waudby on the left of the photo who sadly died 1st November 2010.
    He often talked about his days at Walt Smith and his days driving up to Scotland. They were obviously happy days for him as well.

      1. HI there Maria I drove a lot of miles with Pete, lots of laughs,, lots of hard GRAFT, one of the strongest men I ever new, HAPPY memories 88yrs now but nice to think of the WALT SMITH DAYS,

  4. WalterSmith/CF Turner/Lambert Bros/ Lentons / Cooper Bros/ They all had really good fleets of lorries [TRUCKS OR TRUCKERS] It doesnt feel right. They all had good quality lorries, taking potatoes/veg and the like all over England/scotland/wales Anglesey. All good mates, we drove together /in digs together,snow and ice fog and SMOG , THAT WAS A KILLER, in more ways than one, but all having a certain pride of not turning out or getting there,FLAT TYRES , everyone helped,It isn,t the same today, once out the yard you were your own boss in a sense, no tacho/ you appreciated as a DRIVER with a capital D,,lovely memories, you could write a book.

    1. Den,did you ever come to the Burton on Trent,Wholesale Market in the mid 1960s and later to the firm of R G Bridges Ltd and the Sales Manager was Alan James,must be my age now but we had a couple of deliveries a week from Walter Smith,mainly of Potatoes, cauliflowers, sprouts,etc.,and Strawberries when in season,all the drivers were nice gents and I enjoyed the 75 mile trip down occasionally to Donington,expecting to pick up produce from the yard not realising you had to find the farm where the produce was,load and back to the office for
      Paperwork before starting back to Burton,in Winter and very dark nights with frosted up windscreens after delivering locally in Burton,start time of 7am but still it was a job not the best of pay for the long hours worked !

      1. Does anyone remember Ken the driver of Walter Smith of the 1960s/1972 when I led the Burton Wholesale Market as a driver,Ken was a nice guy and despite his size always very cheerful and helpful at 6am having travelled from Donington,Nr Spalding.
        I am hoping that other drivers come to mind eventually, I was just browsing the net to see if the firm still exists in Donington.

        1. Hello Lawrence, so nice of you to comment,I drove for Walter Smiths for 15 years and remember delivering to Bridges, sadly KEN (tubby) passed away a few years back, one or two drivers still about, as you say it was hard graft, but we could earn good money!! I drove their first artic, and I would do repairs in a quiet time, I left and went to MACHINS but would have gone back the next week, but I wouldn,t swallow my pride, 89 now but still remember my days there with affection, the last 22 years I drove for Benton Brothers Sibsey another good firm, PS I attended KENS funeral it was quite a big one, he was in his seventies,

          1. Thanks Geoff for your reply and hope you are keeping well and nice for your reply, sorry to hear of driver Ken passing away ! I found all the drivers decent guys and always helpful and agree it was hard graft with all the mileage and hours you used to do,and myself during the early Summer months when the soft fruit and Strawberries were in season, Bridges did not think you had a family or home to go to for the £25 wages for over 40 hours,then on
            Sunday I had to do Coach driving to make ends meet.
            I left in 72 to the local power station things got that bad with Francis Nichols,and doubled my wages of £55 for 37 hours and no hassle,I was sorry to leave having acquired a lot of friends in the time of 7 years at the wholesale market,and coming down to Walter Smiths and Sly’s occasionally, no satnav at the time I think this company was a lot further to travel to ? If I am wrong Geoff its showing my age and memory at 78.
            Anyway look after yourself and I do appreciate you and Denis getting in touch and sharing the past with myself, I am still driving my car and have to consider a trip down to South Holland and Spalding before getting too old.
            Keep well and look after yourself,
            Regards Lawrence

  5. HELLO LAWRENCE & GEOFF, Sly Brothers were at Cowbit area, the man who drove the Vulcan was the father of the now Swineshead based MASON BROTHERS Who have now taken over PF BOOTHS TRANSPORT. I started driving at 17 in the same yard which Masons are now based in 1945!! and spent my whole life on distance work, my first lorry come cattle waggon was ADO 405 a Bedford six tonner, previous I drove for Hubberts Bridge coal Company and two of my friends also drove when they were 16 how times have changed ! not always for the better I think, not the freedom we had ?

    1. Thank you for further information gents,I may be providing false information not intentionally this Sly firm was around Holbeach,and I remember them sending me to Holbeach St John late one December afternoon for a part load of produce and had real difficulty in finding the farm with getting dark and no one to ask,so deserted area !
      I remember returning via Spalding and Bourne to get a bearing for Burton on Trent,I could never work out if it was a produce firm or transport company ? Bridges dealt with them mostly during the Strawberry season,with potatoes and veg making up the load.
      Looking back I used to dread this journey thinking it was a pickup and return, no such thing you was given basic instructions to where the farm was,and not much help to load once found !I am sure it was Sly’s or Sly Brothers around about Holbeach area.
      I agree with you about times have changed not for the better, around here the mines and pipe and pottery works have gone,power stations and all heavy industry,plus the local wholesale markets are now Birmingham and Derby,the local market in Burton we supplied closed years ago,we have an ample supply of Charity Shops and Supermarkets but little of real jobs for the young and older people, my son works for Volvo UK as a fitter on what I know as HGV,doing a round trip daily of 64 miles for a job !
      Luckily we had a job to go to,even though it was hard graft and pittance for wages but nevertheless met some nice folk along the way.

    2. Hello Den. Did you know my uncle Tommy Thompson he lived in Barns road. Also my dad Vic Thompson he was a mechanic for Harold Hare at Gosberton till 1965 when we moved to Lincoln. I have restored a 1948 beaver as in the picture above.you can see it on Google images just type in DHH678. Would like to see any pictures if you have them. Cheers Alan Thompson

    1. I think I may be related but I think his name was Frank Smith who unfortunately has now passed away. He was my great uncle and he had a brother called John (my grandfather) and sister called Margaret. My grandfather used to tell me stories about living at Cressy Hall as a child but unfortunately he is no longer with us.


  7. I used to deliver potatoes into E A and C Bradley in Stratford market in London. In the 70’s. Walter Smith’s potatoes we’re always there, not sure if delivered by their own lorries.

  8. My husband’s father drove for John Taylor (Gosberton) Ltd in the late 1940’s and early 1950’s. Unfortunately my husband’s father died when he was only 2 years old but he wants to have a replica model of his father’s truck painted in the colours of the company. We have several photographs of the truck but they are black and white photographs so we are not sure on the colour. We have been told by an elderly relative that he thinks the trucks were painted in orange and black but he is not overly sure. Can anyone possibly help?

  9. Worked for GJBarkworth Sometimes borrowed Bob Stantons AEC Mandator No power steering H ow would they cope today

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