The famous children’s author lived in Bourne End in Bucks 1929-38 and Beaconsfield from 1938-68.
Link with the Chilterns
Lived in Bourne End in Bucks 1929-1938 and Beaconsfield from 1938-1968.
Enid Blyton was born in East Dulwich, London, the eldest child of Thomas Carey and Theresa Blyton. Her father worked for a cutlery firm and was a well read man with many interests. The family soon moved to Beckenham where Enid was educated. In 1910 her parents separated.
Though at first planning to study music, Enid started writing in her teens but her work was first published in 1911. In 1916 she became a trainee-teacher and at one point opened her own school. In 1924 she married Hugh Pollock, a book editor and in 1929 they moved to Old Thatch Cottage in Bourne End. Enid and Hugh had two daughters, Gillian and Imogen. During the 1930’s she spent many holidays in Dorset and many of her books, including the Famous Five series are set in that area.
In 1938 the family moved from Old Thatch to a mock Tudor house in Beaconsfield, now demolished for a housing development. It was named Green Hedges following a competition in a children’s magazine Enid edited called ‘Sunny Stories’. There is a model of her house in the Bekonscot Model Village in Beaconsfield. Blyton Close off the Penn Road is named in her memory.
In 1943, following a divorce, Enid married her second husband, Kenneth Darrell Waters, a London surgeon, who died in 1967. After his death she suffered increasingly from Alzheimer’s disease and died in a nursing home in Hampstead in November 1968.
Over 40 years she wrote well over 600 books, and although there was in later years some criticism of her writing for racism, sexism and snobbishness, she was one of the most successful story-tellers for children of the 20th century. Her books were, and still are, popular all around the world and have been translated into nearly 90 languages, the most widely read being the series on the Famous Five, the Secret Seven and Noddy.
Enid Blyton: The Biography by Barbara Stoney, published by The History Press Ltd.
What you can visit
The Chilterns Country Little Marlow Walk goes past Old Thatch, Coldmoorholme Lane, Bourne End, Bucks SL8 5PS . However it is not open to the public.
Bekonscot Model Village, Beaconsfield