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Cecil Amor is the Founder Chairman of Bridport History Society. His background is in design, techonology and engineering, being a Fellow of the Institution of Electrical Engineers and a European Design Committee Member.
Or was it ‘cursed’? Imagine a night in a tent near the jungle far away from civilization, hearing native drums, possibly heralding an attack! Was it a quotation from Rider Haggard or Rudyard Kipling? During the war we were urged Read more »
Most of our towns have a Mayor and Council, although they may not have the powers they once had. We all like to see them in their robes on civic occasions, even if it is the local carnival! We may see the Mayor and Deputy, Town Crier, Mace Bearers, etc. In Bridport the Borough Arms were granted in 1623 and the first mace was made in 1676, the second in 1693 and both bear the initials of the Bailiffs of the time and are carried from time to time.
I was a choirboy and bell ringer in our village church, but when our venerable old priest retired he was replaced by a younger man. I found the new Vicar’s sermons boring, as they were rather like some politician’s speeches, full of words and no content, mainly consisting of the repetition of “Paaarh” (Power). When I started work, studying for a qualification was a contractual requirement and I used the three evening classes each week as an excuse to stay at home on Sunday to complete the homework.
One of my childhood friends had been orphaned and came down from London to be ‘adopted’ by relatives living in rural Wiltshire. As I was also an only child and my parents were regular churchgoers, it was considered that I might be suitable to play with him. He was a year or so older and from more affluent parents, and was able to teach me to roller skate and to build Meccano, (which may be why we both went on to qualify as engineers).
I am a ‘Moonraker’, born in Wiltshire, but with a Dorset Mother and grew up a couple of miles from the supposed Moonrakers site, a large pond at Devizes. The story is that about 200 years ago, smugglers were there at night with their contraband when they heard that the Excise Officers were hard on their heels. The smugglers threw their barrels of goods in the pond and held them under the surface with hayrakes.
This was a humorous phrase on the radio some years ago in affluent times, probably relating to the cotton and wool mills in the north of England. It may have resulted from the depression of the 1920s and 30s, but Read more »
Our Dorset dialect poet William Barnes wrote of Beaminster – ‘Sweet Be’mi’ster, that bist a-bound – By green an’ woody hills all round , .. ..Noo bigger pleace, noo gayer town, beyond thy sweet bells’ dyen soun’, .. But was Read more »