Memories of the Hippodrome, Wood Street

Part of Wood Street, Stratford-upon-Avon in 2012.
© Copyright Jeremy Bolwell and licensed for reuse under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 2.0 Generic license. Originally uploaded to

The Hippodrome was a large performance space, in which many people gathered to celebrate sports such as dance, boxing and even wrestling. this mostly took place on Saturday evenings. A particular memory of an ex-mayor of Stratford includes those of John’s  boxing days….

Started boxing at 12

I started boxing when i was 12, and went once a week to train. At 15, I entered my first competition. Over my entire boxing career, I won 82 matches and only lost one. A particular memory of mine was in one match in the hippodrome, where i took a blow to the jaw that caused me to fall to my knees. My last match was at age 32.

After my boxing days, I joined the army, where i was deployed to the middle east, in the time of the Egyptian war. My boxing days helped in defence during the army.

After the war

After the war, I returned to Stratford, I noticed huge change in the area, so attended a council meeting. My input attracted a lot of positive attention and resulted in me being asked to run for a council role. One of the men on the council, helped me run for the role, and insisted that I knocked on every door, to promote my campaign. This resulted in my running of 23 years.

This story was created as part of an intergenerational digital inclusion project, in conjunction with Orbit Heart of England, with the assistance of students from Stratford Girls’ Grammar School.

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