In 1992 retired local hairdresser and historian Gordon Wellard published an updated version of his mammoth work ‘The Story of Camberley 1798-1987 The Victorian village that became a modern town’
In the foreword to the original, written in 1988, he described how he had gone about the process of doing the research. He began by talking to old residents and scouring written resources. Then he describes how speaking to one person often led on to another and he calculated that he had contacted 54 people during the years and he mentions many of them by name. He also mentions the help given to him by both the Surrey Heath Local History Club, Surrey Heath museum and the museum curator of RMA Sandhurst.
His father, Percy, arrived in Camberley 1909 when he established a hairdressing business at the London Road end of the High Street. I have included a photograph of how the building (number 8) looks now. Percy had trained at Harrods, in London, and thought that the small town could provide him with enough work to set up on his own. He bought a small gentlemen’s hairdressing business (that included umbrella repairs…) and opened for business as soon as he had returned from his honeymoon. Despite being the only ladies hairdresser within 15 miles, he still had to cycle to some clients.
Gordon took over the business in 1947 after training in London and serving in the Navy during WW2. He also wrote a number of other local books, which I have illustrated above, together with a photo of the author from one of them. I believe he died in 1997, aged 83.