by Julie Ozwell, Woodhill Properties Limited

My familiarity with the houses on your Estate started when I was about 11 years old, in the 1950’s. My father, Herbert Collins, would tour around his Southampton properties and take me with him. During the working week, he would be at his office in Carlton Crescent, but on Saturday mornings, he would get out the ancient Austin and do an inspection. If he saw any untoward paint colour or anything unapproved, he would knock the door and ‘have a word’ with the resident. Of course, many residents knew him and wanted to chat. He would incidentally point out to me important design features – it must have been satisfying for him to see the culmination of many years work and it was good training for me!

I remember too, answering the door at home, 38 Brookvale Road, to a resident with a parking grievance (nothing changes!) and being told by my father in no uncertain terms, that he was not available and the man should call at the office in business hours.
His ideas were of his era, Victorian and early twentieth century, but his designs have stood the test of time, making this area a very pleasant place to live in the twenty first century. I hope you agree.

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