Marshwood+ August 2020

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Getting Savage Give your with Davide immune system and Kristina a boost Page 44 Page 56

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Š Driky van Hensbergen Photograph by Robin Mills

The best from West Dorset, South Somerset and East Devon

No. 257 August 2020



COVER STORY Robin Mills met Driky van Hensbergen in Stoke Abbott, Dorset

’M

© Driky van Hensbergen Photograph by Robin Mills

oving back to Dorset, my childhood home, after a busy life in Bristol until very recently, it seems like life has come full circle. I was actually born in East Sussex in 1988, but in the mid 80s my parents had moved to central Spain, to a house in beautifully wild country near Segovia. My Dad’s a writer and art historian, and he wanted to write a book about Spanish food, so although I was born in England, from the age of about three months I lived in Spain. When I was four we came back, and lived at Burcombe Farm, North Poorton. In the contrasting scenery of the mountains of Spain, and a remote valley in West Dorset, I began to become immersed in the natural world at a very young age. I was encouraged in that direction by my Mum, and my friend Harry and I would explore the countryside freely as 4 year-olds. Spain of course is completely different; dry, hot in summer, and there are vultures, wild boar, and wolves in the area. And here there’s the sea, where I love to swim, so I’m lucky to have a sense of place in both Spain and England, as my family still have the house in Spain where we spend summers; this year is the first time we won’t be going. When I was seven we moved into Bridport, to Victoria Grove, which is where we stayed until I left home. Both my grandfathers were scientists. One was a soil scientist, working all around the world, including the Bolivian jungle at Tel. 01308 423031 The Marshwood Vale Magazine August 2020 3


Driky van Hensbergen

the time the army were looking try and influence the government for Che Guevara. His group and the EU to tighten loopholes was once arrested because in legislation around the importaone of them had a beard and tion of illegal and unsustainable looked revolutionary. He was timber. It was good experience of definitely an inspiration to me, the intricacies and complexities of so my interest in science does working with governments, and I seem to have jumped a generatravelled regularly to Brussels, Paris, tion as the rest of my family and to Cambodia where I met all my are artistic. I have an uncle counterparts from around the world. who’s a zoologist, and my It was mid-austerity, around 2013, youthful enthusiasm for aniwhen the government was cutting mals led me to decide that was a lot of funding to Defra who were what I wanted to be, without heavily involved in this work, so at knowing what becoming one times it was quite dispiriting. entailed. I took science subTwo things happened while I was jects at school, but didn’t get at WWF, which were connected. One great A level results because I was that I came back to Bridport © Driky van Hensbergen Photograph by Robin Mills to give a talk to students at Colfox wasn’t always very focussed on work. I decided I wasn’t quite school; the other was that I realised ready for university, and took a year out to go travelling with I wanted to work much more closely with people and issues friends, spending five months volunteering in Chile, first on a at the grassroots. I had had enough of meeting with governsustainable forestry project, then another project monitoring ment minsters and civil servants and producing policy papers puma populations, working with an ecologist tracking pumas that were thrown out into the ether with a hope something on horseback, my first real experience of nature conservation good would happen in five years’ time. I wanted to feel the in action. There I met David Macdonald, the founding direceffects of my work first hand. So that was when I decided tor of Oxford University’s Wildlife Conservation Research to set up the charity, Action for Conservation. I had realised Unit, a globally respected leader in the field of conservathat none of the big conservation NGOs were targeting their tion. We’ve stayed in touch over the years, and 10 years on, campaign at teenagers; a lot of work was aimed at young chilhe’s now the chair of the charity I run. We also visited the dren, then for whatever reason nothing after the age of 12, in Amazon rainforest, then went to New Zealand, worked on the expectation that they would somehow maintain interest a sheep station, an avocado farm, and then hopped our way through their teenage years, and environmentalists would pop back to the UK. It was a formative year for me, I’m sure I did out the other end. I felt that these were the very years when a lot of growing up. they could connect with nature and be empowered to take acI then spent three very happy years studying Zoology at tion to protect it, on a scale that was meaningful to them. So, Bristol University. I love Bristol as a city, and I’m really glad at the talk at Colfox I was quite nervous and unsure whether I went there instead of London. I found a love of learning the students would engage with the issues I planned to talk through that course, and got a good degree. Moving back to about. But what I found was interest, inspiration and loads Bridport I spent a year helping a friend, Nick Hill, with local of energy right through the room. I came away thinking that conservation work for the Dorset Wildlife Trust, all good if we can only mobilise all these young people, that will be an hands-on experience, helping me find my way to whatever amazing thing and we stand a chance in turning the situation came next. That was when I decided to do a Masters in Biodi- around. versity, Conservation, and Management, at Oxford, which Twenty to thirty years ago people were more connected to took a year. I learned a huge amount that year, particularly the natural world around them, but in many ways unaware of from the cohort of other people on the course, who were the global changes already taking place. Now, largely through from all over the world, and started getting interested in the internet, people are hyper-aware of issues like climate environmental policy, corporate sustainability and business change and species extinction, but often can’t name the spepractices which were driving environmental issues. After the cies that live in their street or the fields nearby. So, there’s a Masters course I got a job as sustainability advisor for the UK disconnect between the environmental improvements that Timber Trade Federation. can be made close to home, and the cumulative impact this My next job was for WWF, a massive global organisation, can have in tackling the bigger issues. Working with some as Forest Policy Manager in their UK office. Our job was to of the people I’d met on the Masters course, and building a

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network of volunteers, we began the work of the charity by going in to more schools to give talks, and that laid the foundations for what we do now. It is a challenge to keep a young person’s interest in environmentalism as they get older and other responsibilities occupy their thoughts and lives. But our mantra has always been to try and sow the seeds for the next generation of green builders, business people, politicians, and engineers. In other words, anyone can be an environmentalist. Alongside that we need to be a much, much more diverse and inclusive movement and this means creating opportunities for young people who don’t encounter these issues and making the sector more relevant to them and their lives. In 2016 I left WWF to run the charity full time. It was also the year my wife Sophie and I got married—and moved house. We had appointed trustees, including the writer, Robert Macfarlane. I had asked him for donations of his books as prizes for our crowdfunding campaign when we founded, and made a point of going to collect them in person, so I was able to really pester him about becoming a trustee. He has been a real friend and source of support, as have all our wonderful trustees, and works very hard for us despite being a very busy person. We are now a national charity with three offices across the country, Bristol, Manchester and London, with a team of paid staff and a large network of over 100 volunteers delivering our programmes. We offer workshops at schools to support students in taking action for nature, and organise residential camps taking young people of different ages into National Parks and giving them a fully immersive and transformative experience. To maintain the inspiration a young person may have experienced on a camp when they get home, often back in the city, we mentor all camp attendees for a further year, helping to drive a youth movement for nature. Our latest ventures include an online programme for young people stuck at home during lockdown, and the Penpont Project, the world’s first, world’s largest, youth-led nature restoration project in the Brecon Beacons, a collaboration between 20 of our young ambassadors and the landowner and tenant farmers on a 2000 acre estate. Recently, I have been finishing a book for young people called How You Can Save the Planet, that will be published by Penguin early next year. In it are step by step guides to taking action wherever you are, and the stories of 13 young people around the world who have, often in quiet and humble ways, done something wonderful for their environment. And Sophie and I had our first child, Ludo, seven months ago, so we’re glad to be in Dorset for the start of his young life. Life after the pandemic will be different for all of us. Let’s hope it can be greener.


UP FRONT Growing up in a pub, when my father was also the village undertaker, gave me a unique opportunity to listen to people speak when they had let their guard down. As we all know, a couple of drinks or an emotional experience can often make people more relaxed about speaking their mind. Most of us have an in-built tendency to be slightly careful about how much we give away about our deepest thoughts, and although some cultures and societies are more open, in this country there is a tendency to hold back. However, after a few drinks in the pub, and also, oddly, after a funeral, those directly affected tend to be a bit more open. So in my youth I had many occasions where people confided in me or happily passed on stories they might not otherwise have disclosed. I don’t fully know why. It’s easy to understand the alcohol effect but why we let our guard down at highly emotional moments or times of crisis is hard to fathom. I’m told it’s caused by a chemical reaction in the brain—which doesn’t really explain much if you’re not a scientist. I remember once in the late 70s getting beaten up after a concert for wearing a Rock against Racism T-shirt. The kicking didn’t bother me much—thanks to a couple of fellow concert-goers I escaped the worst of it— but the embarrassment of how I blathered away to a friendly policeman afterwards has never left me. I think I may have bored the poor man near to death with a breathlessly extended life story, which I liberally laced with pop psychology and an abundance of intense youthful philosophy. In that case, my outburst was explained as adrenaline rather than alcohol, but I still cringe when I think of it. The coronavirus pandemic seems to have had a similar effect. This same honesty and need to open up about the state of the world we live in appears to have affected many people. Families with long-held conflicts—often based on nothing more than misunderstanding and jealousy—have found themselves talking to each other in a way that they never could have before. The same goes for friendships. Long-held grievances, again based on not much, have often been forgiven. And many friendships have been rekindled across the globe. One of my daughters explained that it is because of the collective experience—as we’re all going through it, we are all likely to be more open. It’s surely something to be encouraged. It would be nice to add politics to this list of outpourings of honesty but we seem to have run out of space…

Fergus Byrne

Published Monthly and distributed by Marshwood Vale Ltd Lower Atrim, Bridport Dorset DT6 5PX For all Enquiries Tel: 01308 423031 info@marshwoodvale. com

THIS MONTH 3 12 14 18 20 24 30 34 36 37 39

Cover Story By Robin Mills A Letter from France By Margery Hookings Down the Track By John West Notices from Local Groups Bridport Camera Club By Tessa Gilks Anthony Hurst By Fergus Byrne Beer Quarry Caves By Steve Rogers The Tolpuddle Six By Cecil Amor News & Views Laterally Speaking by Humphrey Walwyn Audio Interview Kathy Crouch by Seth Dellow

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House & Garden Vegetables in August By Ashley Wheeler August in the Garden By Russell Jordan VJ Day By Derek Stevens Property Round Up By Helen Fisher

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Food & Dining Rosemary Ice Cream By Lesley Waters Chilled Pea Soup with Smoked Salmon By Mark Hix Tackle Tingle by Nick Fisher Grilled Apricots and Peaches, Couscous, Mint, Serrano Ham and Pine Nuts By Davide Del Gatto and Kristina Gustafsson Minted Baby Potatoes, Peas and Crème Fraîche By Peter Gordon

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Arts & Entertainment Angles of Inspiration By Fergus Byrne Galleries Rural Voices By Louisa Adjoa Parker The Lit Fix By Sophy Roberts The Mayflower Generation Review By Bruce Harris Humankind: A Hopeful History Review By Antonia Squire

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Health & Beauty Steps2Wellbeing By Ellie Sturrock Boosting your Immune System By Mary Ryan Services & Classified

“Stealing a rhinoceros should not be attempted lightly.”

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Editorial Director Fergus Byrne

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Cecil Amor Davide Del Gatto Seth Dello Tessa Gilks Helen Fisher Nick Fisher Richard Gahagan Peter Gordon Kristina Gustafsson Bruce Harris Margery Hookings Mark Hix Anthony Hurst

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Russell Jordan Robin Mills Louisa Adjoa Parker Sophy Roberts Steve Rogers Mary Ryan Ellie Sturrock Antonia Squire Humphrey Walwyn Lesley Waters John West Ashley Wheeler

The views expressed in The Marshwood Vale Magazine and People Magazines are not necessarily those of the editorial team. Unless otherwise stated, Copyright of the entire magazine contents is strictly reserved on behalf of the Marshwood Vale Magazine and the authors. Disclaimer: Whilst every effort is made to ensure the accuracy of dates, event information and advertisements, events may be cancelled or event dates may be subject to alteration. Neither Marshwood Vale Ltd nor People Magazines Ltd can accept any responsibility for the accuracy of any information or claims made by advertisers included within this publication. NOTICE TO ADVERTISERS Trades descriptions act 1968. It is a criminal offence for anyone in the course of a trade or business to falsely describe goods they are offering. The Sale of Goods Act 1979 and the Supply of Goods and Services Act 1982. The legislation requires that items offered for sale by private vendors must be ‘as described’. Failure to observe this requirement may allow the purchaser to sue for damages. Road Traffic Act. It is a criminal offence for anyone to sell a motor vehicle for use on the highway which is unroadworthy.



Moonrakers kitted out

KAY Luckraft, who is a singer with the popular classical choir Lyme Bay Chorale, and also a founder member of the Lyme Light Singers, was only too happy to make some shawls for the Moonrakers in preparation for when they can perform again. Kay said it was a pleasure to do something productive for another local singing group and she is looking forward to seeing the Moonrakers in action in the future. The group modelled some of Kay’s shawls out in the open at their recent socially-distanced mini-rehearsal. Lyme Bay Moonrakers are a local group of women and men singing shanties and songs of the sea, both traditional and new ones written by members of the group. If you fancy singing with Lyme Bay Moonrakers, visit their website at www.lymebaymoonrakers.org or email lymebaymoonrakers@gmail.com

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A Letter from France Released from lockdown by the change in Government measures, Margery Hookings made the journey to France complete with dogs and cat

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’m writing this from the Occitanie region of south west France. I came over with my husband on a Brittany Ferries sailing the day after travelling restrictions were lifted on 4 July. This was also the day the pubs were allowed to re-open. That night we stayed at an AirBnB in Portsmouth, ready for an early morning sailing the next day. As we walked our dogs into the city, looking for a fish and chip shop we’d been told was nearby, we could see the bright lights of bars and takeaways. We heard the whoops and hollers of young people out and about, having fun. It was like A-level results day in Bridport, with groups of eighteen to twenty-somethings, enjoying new-found and longed-for freedom. There were security guards, some of them wearing masks, on the door of every bar, letting people in only when the same number of customers were leaving. Socially-distanced drinkers sat around tables, grinning as if they’d been awarded Olympic medals. Out on the balmy street, the mood was euphoric. No-one was wearing a mask. The next morning at the ferry terminal, everyone was wearing masks. Crossings to Caen were allowed only if you had a cabin. The dogs and the cat had to stay in the car. Passengers were instructed to stay in their cabins unless going to the cafeteria for time-slotted lunches. Social distancing was insisted upon, as was the wearing of masks in public places. Down through France, customers were not allowed inside service stations unless they were wearing masks. After a long journey in which we ran out petrol and the cat escaped (thankfully returning half an hour later), we finally reached our destination, a small village in the south west of France. We didn’t have to quarantine but decided, out of respect for our neighbours and to be on the safe side, to keep a low profile for two weeks. We knew how we’d feel if the shoe were on the other foot and how

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angry we were when some second homeowners broke lockdown restrictions by spending Easter in our west Dorset village, while responsible visitors stayed away. Other than dog walking in the early mornings and a bit of shopping at the supermarket, we have very much kept ourselves to ourselves. At E Leclerc, we donned our masks and took a sanitised trolley into the supermarket, using hand wash along the way. Not everyone in the store was masked—it’s about fifty percent—but social distancing is the norm. France, one of Europe’s hardest-hit countries, has recorded more than 200,000 infections and over 30,000 deaths since the start of the pandemic. The statistics did not stop politicians greeting each other with the customary kisses on the cheek. When a picture showing this was published, the public was furious. ‘You do wonder what’s the point if they can’t set a good example themselves,’ a neighbour said to us over the garden wall. As I write, the lockdown has been almost entirely lifted. But, like everywhere else, the virus is still here. There are a rising number of cases in the north-west and in eastern regions, particularly in the north western department of Mayenne, which has now prompted stricter rules on mask wearing across France. As from Monday 20 July, face masks became compulsory here in all enclosed public spaces, including shops where previously owners were able to decide themselves whether customers should wear coverings or not. Anyone caught without a mask faces a fine of €135. Currently, people can travel freely all over France but are urged to think about whether the trip is necessary. The roads are quiet in France at the best of times but now they are even quieter. Masks must be worn at all times on public transport. Kindergartens, primary schools and secondary schools are open and attendance is mandatory. High


schools and universities have put distance learning in place. People are being told to protect themselves by washing their hands very often; using single-use tissues and them throwing them away; coughing or sneezing into arms or tissues; not shaking hands or greeting people with kisses on the cheek; keeping more than a metre away from others or to wear a mask if social distancing can’t be respected. Overall the outbreak is broadly under control across France. But a number of public health officials have warned of a potential second wave, and the government has begun stockpiling hundreds of millions of masks. In the popular town of St Antonin-Noble-Val, which nestles on the bank of the River Aveyron, the popular Sunday markets have been incredibly busy, although the wearing of masks is obligatory. But, sitting, in the shade having a lunchtime beer, you could be forgiven for thinking things were almost back to normal. It’s fete season here in France, heralded by Bastille Day on 14 July, which would normally see hundreds and thousands gather for fireworks displays across the land to commemorate the start of the French Revolution in 1789. But this year, things were strangely muted. Large gatherings are frowned upon, although the traditional gourmet market in our village still went ahead on 21 July. Folk usually sit on long tables to eat their food bought from the various stalls on the perimeter and chat with friends to the sound of a woman singing traditional French songs accompanied by a barrel organ. This year, the tables were set up separately, to comply with social distancing rules. There were fewer people than usual but it still felt very busy, largely in part because it was one of the only ones for miles around not to have been cancelled. French borders with other EU member states have been open since 15 June. Our plan is to head for Italy and Greece in September by car, but who knows what tomorrow brings?

Above: 2019 and Below: 2020. The sun still shines but the seating arrangements have changed at this traditional gourmet market in France

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Down the Track John West on the story of West Bay’s Railway

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Photographs courtesy of Gerry Beale

est Bay Discovery’s new exhibition ‘Down The Track’ features the story of the railway line that ran from Bridport to West Bay. This year marks the 90th Anniversary of the closure of the passenger service that ran for 46 years. The freight service continued to 1965 when the lines were finally taken up. There are still reminders of the railway line in West Bay. The station building, despite years of neglect and many other uses is restored, and along with the accompanying train carriage is now the popular Station Kitchen restaurant. The route of part of the railway line is now an attractive cycle track and footpath to Bridport. The Victorian era was a period of development and there was a great enthusiasm for building railways. There were many options for connecting Bridport to the railway line but when none materialised a group of Bridport Businessmen set up the Bridport Rail Company and the first train ran down the line from Maiden Newton in 1857. Plans for the West Bay Extension It wasn’t long before local businessmen saw benefits in extending the line from Bridport to West Bay, then known as Bridport Harbour. A railway offered the prospect of transporting goods, such as sand and gravel quickly and would

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also support their plans to redevelop the harbour as a seaside resort So on the 21st July 1879 the Bridport Railway Act enabled the Bridport Railway Company to construct a two-mile extension from Bridport to Bridport Harbour and work started in February 1883. The decision was taken that the station should be named West Bay – a name thought to be more attractive to visitors. At the same time plans were made for the erection of an esplanade and sea wall on the west side of the harbour along with modern residences. This scheme started with the building of Pier Terrace. The West Bay railway station itself was an unusual design with passengers only being able to access the building from the platform side. The letters BR on the building denote Bridport Railways. The canopy originally stretched over the whole width of the platform (there is currently a model of the station on display at West Bay Discovery Centre). Work on the line suffered delays, including a navvy’s strike over wages, which were around 2s 6d a day, and a flood. However, following an inspection the line

was finally judged to be of “suitable construction and stability” and opening was planned for Monday 31st March 1884. Opening Day Opening day saw a carnival atmosphere in Bridport, a great number of passengers travelled down on the first train to West Bay at 7.32am. Overall, 5,100 first day tickets were issued, including 1,100 very excitable Sunday school children who were each given a bun and an orange. The children were however bitterly disappointed that due to the wet weather they were not allowed out of the train, which promptly returned to Bridport. There was grand public luncheon and later a band entertained the people in a field near the station. Obstacle races, bucket-of-water races and climbing the greasy pole were well contested and confectionery vendors set up nearby. Ships in the harbour were bedecked with flags and evening bonfires were lit on the cliffs. With a final cost of £23,000, the West Bay line was up and running. The passenger service operated with five trains down

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to West Bay and back each day. Reports suggest that passenger numbers did not meet up to expectations. In 1916 with many staff enlisted in the Great War, the line temporarily closed to passengers. The freight business was still very busy with millions of hemp lanyards produced in Bridport being used by the services along with hay nets for Army horses, ropes and camouflage nets and twine. The decline of the branch line In 1919 the line reopened but now it faced serious competition from the new motor buses that were able to run between Bridport and West Bay without having to start or finish at a station. In the years that followed it also became clear that West Bay would not become a tourist resort to rival the likes of Bournemouth and Weymouth. All there was to show for the previous grandiose plans was the building of a few houses and other buildings to service the holiday trade. Despite assurances to the contrary, on Monday 22nd September 1930 the passenger train service between

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Bridport and West Bay was quietly withdrawn. The freight service continued, the Second World War bringing extra business. Shingle was taken from the beach at West Bay for use in airfield construction and train loads of nets were dispatched to the military. Eventually only one train a week ran, and the West Bay line was finally closed to freight traffic on 3rd December 1962 and in 1965 the rails were finally removed. The West Bay Discovery Centre’s exhibition highlights stories of the Bridport to West Bay line and those who worked on it. Railway historian Professor Colin Divall has acted as the Centre’s advisor on the exhibition along with Gerry Beale author of The Bridport Branch who has loaned some amazing photos and other material. Brian Jackson, joint author of another book on the Bridport branch has also supported us. The Bridport Museum have kindly loaned artefacts for the exhibition. Wild and Homeless Books in Bridport can supply copies of The Bridport Branch along with a wide selection of other railway books.


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August

LOCAL EVENT NEWS

August 1, Trinity Manor Garden visits at Trinity Manor care home, Bradford road, Sherborne, call on 01935 815972 to book in. August 4, 18, Honiton Walking Club Honiton Walking Club are delighted to be restarting walks for members on existing Club Tuesdays 04 and 18 August following UK government rules and guidelines. Although the current walk programme is still suspended please check out the Honiton Walking Club website for details of local walks! https://sites.google.com/site/honitonwalkingclub/ home/honiton-local-walks and their Facebook page https:// sites.google.com/site/honitonwalkingclub/home for lots of interesting tips and information! August 12, Forde Abbey Folksy Theatre presents Shakespeare’s hilarious comedy, The Taming Of The Shrew at 7pm. Filled with Folksy’s wonderful live music, bold characters and downright silliness, this hilarious production is not to be missed! Bring along your picnics and folding chairs to enjoy this socially distanced open-air performance on the front lawn. Admission is £12 for children, and £15 for adults. You can buy tickets on the gate, or in advance from: www. folksytheatre.co.uk August 19, Furleigh Estate Nordic Walking in the Vineyard: Get fizzical at Furleigh Estate. Socially distanced, evening Nordic Walking class with Julia and Paul from The Garden Studio from 5.30pm. Cost £10 per person including loan of poles and glass of fizz to finish. See furleighestate.co.uk/events to book. August 20, Bridport Millenium Green AGM of Bridport Millennium Green, 6.30pm for the Trustees, followed by the Friends. It will be held in the open on the Green, members and public are welcome to attend, although there is only a maximum of 30 as the event has to be socially distanced. Chairs provided. More details Sandra Brown 01308 423078. Chard Camera Club It is anticipated that the club will remain closed during the month of August a period that they normally use as a holiday period but will use the time for distancing purposes under the current situation. Further updates as

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they are made can be viewed on the clubs website www. chardcameraclub.org which is updated on a daily/weekly basis. Enquiries can be made by calling the members secretary Joyce on 01460 66885. Chard Royal Naval Association The association will remain shut down til further notice awaiting direction from their Head Quarters giving the go ahead for form of resumption. Any queries can be made with the branch secretary Mr Gary Pennells on 01460 77978. Marine Theatre Marine Theatre: The Show Must Go On. Like all live performance venues, the Marine Theatre in Lyme Regis is currently closed, given the restrictions of the Coronavirus crisis. While pubs, shops, and cinemas may be reopening, live entertainment is still not possible indoors under current rules. To keep in touch with its audience, the Marine has staged online events, such as the Sunday Sessions and a screening of the play written to celebrate its 125th anniversary last year. The Marine is also looking at whether a few outdoor performances are safe and viable this Summer. The Marine has been able to weather the crisis through its small reserves, generous public donations, and grants. It is possible that socially distanced live events may be allowed in the medium term. However, even at one metre distance, the capacity of the arts venue would be reduced by two-thirds, which is unlikely to make most performances financially possible. As a result, the Marine is reviewing costs and raising money, while looking forward to the lifting of restrictions that will make live performances more viable in the historic building. Members of the public are donating to its reopening fund, details of which are on its website at marinetheatre.com. Director Gabby Rabbitts said: “We are working hard to raise funds and reduce costs, so we are confident that we will open again in the coming months. Like everyone, we are in an evolving situation where public safety is a priority and restrictions are out of our control. That makes it hard to predict a reopening date. I’d like to personally thank all those that have donated to our reopening fund, which is really helping us. Better times will come when we can welcome our volunteers and audiences back to enjoy music, comedy, and other performances, along with all the wonderful socialising that comes with those things.”


Calligraphy Courses. Jenny Trotman plans to start a new Beginners’ Calligraphy course soon at her upstairs studio in Dorchester. 5 fortnightly lessons on Saturday mornings, 10 am – 12. Small groups, no more than 5 people £60.00. Tea and coffee as well! Phone: 01305 – 264568 for more details and to enrol. Bridport Museum Bridport Museum’s ropemakers are going ‘rogue’ this Summer. Whilst the Museum is closed they will be making rope outside each Thursday during the school holidays when the weather is good. Come along between 11.30 and 1pm on 30 July, 6, 13, 20, and 27 August at 3 September on the Arts Centre forecourt alongside Bucky Doo, and watch them twist their magic: you might even get a piece of rope to take away! For more details and times visit the website www. bridportmuseum.co.uk or follow the Museum on Facebook and Twitter @bridportmuseum. Seaton Garden Club Seaton Garden Club has had to make the decision to lockdown the Club until January 2021 when hopefully meetings and outings can resume. Forde Abbey Gardens Forde Abbey Gardens, Plant Nursery and Gift Shop. Over the past few months it’s been all hands to the trowel, and the family along with Jo and Clem have been working away in the garden to ensure it is looking its absolute best. They invite you to come and enjoy the fruits of their labour in the fresh air and wide open spaces of the garden. Along with the shop and plant nursery full of seasonal inspiration, open daily from 11am. The loos are open, and they will have measures in place to ensure that all safety guidelines are followed. Open daily, from 11am. Tel: 01460 220231.

East Devon Ramblers East Devon Ramblers are going to start walking again in groups of no more than six, including the leader. All walks need to be booked with the leader prior to attending a walk. Information about the walks that are on offer can be found on the East Devon Ramblers website. www.ramblers.org.uk/ east-devon. Lipreading & Managing Hearing Loss Classes are run by Ruth Bizley, a qualified teacher of lipreading to adults, and usually take place in Honiton, Bridport and Exeter. These sessions came to an abrupt end just before lockdown, when groups could no longer meet face-to-face. Since mid-April Ruth has been running sessions via Zoom every Thursday, with a choice of morning or afternoon. To try a Zoom session, or to be kept up-to-date with information on classes, contact Ruth by email: ruth@ bizleyart.com or text/phone 07855 340517. West Bay Discovery Centre Until 31st October. Exhibition ‘Down the track’. Looking back to a time when the railway ran between Bridport and West Bay. Open Wednesdays, Thursday & Sundays 11 am - 1 pm and 2 pm -4 pm. Please check website for opening times as they may be subject to change. Admission free, donations welcomed. Further details. http://www. westbaydiscoverycentre.org.uk/

Beaminster Museum Beaminster Museum plans to reopen for the 2021 season on Friday 2nd April 2021 at the earliest. Please check website for the latest information – www.beaminstermuseum. co.uk. It is hoped that the museum may carry on with some activities in alternative premises while the Museum itself is closed. Volunteers will continue to carry out curatorial and research work while closed. In the meantime, questions about the museum’s artefacts can be sent as usual using the details on the Contacts page of their website. AVDCS Axe Vale & District Conservation Society are sad to say that all of their August and September events have now been cancelled. They will not be planning their usual Autumn/ Winter programme of events but, if it is possible to hold some, they will publicise them individually with as much notice as possible.

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Out and About

WITH BRIDPORT CAMERA CLUB

B

ridport Camera Club is a group of male and female photographers, from all walks of life, with eclectic interests and a lot of enthusi-

asm. As with a number of other organisations nationwide, the club’s 2019/2020 programme of meetings was largely suspended but, where possible, ‘meetings’ are still being arranged by the programme secretary, Chris Hilton. And if there ever was a silver lining to a cloud, it is the ability to invite speakers from all over the counry and World to present via the internet, when before the choice had been limited by travelling times and distances. In April and June, webinars were hosted where talks were given by Sam Gregory (samgregoryphotography.co.uk) and Simon Roy (www.simonroyphotography.co.uk) respectively - both acclaimed photographers in their fields. On July 15th, the club hosted an online talk by Tom Peck. The title of

Photographs: Opposite page: The Programme Secretary By Carol Tritton Above: DJ Suezz By Jonathan Pritchard

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the talk was ‘The Photographic Sublime - how artistic traditions of the Sublime influence photography of the past, present and future’. Tom combined works by artists such as JMW Turner, renowned photographers through history and his own work to create a thoroughly thought provoking and inspiring evening. When normal club meetings eventually resume we really hope that Tom will be able to come and present a talk to the club in person. (www.thomaspeckphotography.com). Meetings earlier this club year included talks by Homer

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Sykes, a social photographer from the 60s whose work is in the V&A and Maria Falconer, a professional dance and movement photographer. More practical events involved evenings where club members were encouraged to bring their cameras to ‘play’ around with low-tech lighting set ups and, had it been possible - a food evening where a food photographer would present was on the cards for later this year. An example of the kind of photography that is produced can be seen in the galleries on the club website


www.bridportcameraclub.co.uk. where one can view winning entries of recent competitions namely, ‘Landscape’, ‘Monochrome Portrait’, ‘Low Light’, ‘Movement’ and ‘Covid-19 in Bridport and beyond’. If you are interested in finding out more about how the club operates and what kind of photography is produced, visit the club website www.bridportcameraclub. co.uk where upcoming club events are announced, and where you can see galleries of recent images. There is also an active Facebook page where one has access to

regular informal photographic challenges. As and when social distancing is relaxed, events will be arranged for club members to participate in, but till then, remember—photography is an ideal hobby to practice in times when people have to stay away from crowds!

Photographs: Opposite page: Swaying Temples by Paul Barrow and Brewery Cauldron by Andy White Below: Blowing smoke By Andy Webber

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A Life

ANTHONY HURST Compiled by Fergus Byrne

‘I owe an enormous debt of gratitude to my mother Peggy Hurst who told me much about my family and even after his death talked so much about my father Gordon. Although I remember Gordon as a person in my very young life, I was alas too young to really know him and to be able to recognise and then to value his wonderful qualities. Peggy had met him while training to be a nurse at University College Hospital in Gower Street, London. He was one of her patients. When they started to go out together to concerts and plays and walks in London parks, this was pretty daring – nurses were not supposed to form relationships with their patients. They married and Gordon practised law and they went on honeymoon to Switzerland. Not long after I was born we embarked on World War II and life became quite difficult. I remember watching doodlebugs – flying bombs – flying overhead and huge waves of bombers filled the sky. I remember the sound of air raid warnings and the all-clear – in fact, the sound is quite vivid even now. I remember the Anderson shelter – a big bunker in the garden. The Morrison Shelter was really our dining table with a steel sheet on top which we all used to sleep under at night in case the Germans dropped a bomb. One night a bomb dropped nearby and blew our French doors into the garden and there was glass everywhere. I was too young to be frightened. I remember Lyme Regis best of all – my grandparents’ home. Hole Cottage was paradise and where I spent most of my childhood because it was safer to be down there. Sometimes Peggy and Gordon were able to be there too. I played in the fields and helped on the farm down the road. I remember haymaking with horses and carts with the Hallets. I remember the rabbits running out in front of the scythes and the

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cart. The horses were huge shire horses. I remember the American soldiers who were all over Dorset as they prepared for D Day. They had jeeps and used to give me chocolate. My grandfather (Grampy) kept chickens which ran wild everywhere and I was once attacked by the cockerel which frightened me. Hole Cottage was the former gamekeeper’s cottage on the Woodroffe estate. Old man Woodroffe was very good to Granny and Grampy. Hole Cottage was very primitive – no electricity or running water. Water came from a well in the garden and I can remember the excitement when a tap was installed in the wood – but we still had to carry the pails into the house. The loo was the Ivy House in the garden. The place was always full of creepy crawlies and I didn’t like staying there very long. I used to have a bath in an old hip bath in front of the fire in the drawing-room. Every evening oil lamps were lit and we went to bed early, the whole house creaked and I was often frightened in the dark. Aunt Nancy said she once saw a ghost at the cottage – a man hanging from a beam in the barn. Apparently a man did hang himself there in years gone by but she had a vivid imagination and she may not have seen it. I never did, fortunately! Every evening a lovely white barn owl would come swooping down the drive as regular as clockwork and roost in the barn. I was once accused by Granny of telling a fib about something. I immediately dived under the dining table and said, “God, aren’t I telling the truth?” Then in a deep voice, I replied “Of course you are telling the truth Anthony”. Resurfacing I said, “There you are.” Everyone assumed that odd expression when trying to look serious but wanting to laugh. It was a really idyllic childhood and my heart will always be in Lyme. I was


Anthony Hurst by Elizabeth Sporne - elizabethsporne.com

totally safe and free from danger. Everyone was kind to children, no-one put pesticides in fields and everything was green and sunny. Of course, there was a world war going on and countless people were suffering terribly but I was too young to know all this. I remember long train journeys in the blackout when the train would stop for hours in the middle of nowhere while an air raid was going on. I clearly remember going up to London with Peggy at the end of the war and standing in the crowds and her looking down at me saying “Isn’t it wonderful Anthony, the war is over”. At about this time we went to Bournemouth as

Gordon was now very ill and in a sanatorium there. To be near him Peggy got a job as a matron in a private school and I became a pupil there. One day Peggy took me by bus to the cliffs overlooking Bournemouth and told me “Daddy has gone to live with Jesus. He has got a special job for Daddy to do because he was a special person.” Vivid now as it was then, I think it was a lovely way to explain my father’s death to me and I didn’t need any more. Being ill, Gordon had had no chance to establish himself in his profession so there was very little money. Despite being unable to type, Peggy got a job as PA to the manager of Croydon airport which used to be

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London’s major airport. She then set about writing over a hundred letters to find a Governor who would send me to Christs Hospital, an independent school in West Sussex. She didn’t give up and was eventually successful. In January 1948 at the age of nine I entered the prep school of Christs Hospital. It was and has always been an outstanding school founded by King Edward VI for the sons (and now daughters) of families who are in need. Though wonderful as ‘Housey’ is, it was a pretty daunting place for a nine-year-old, especially one lacking in confidence like me. I can remember the food which was generally revolting and in short supply. We used to buy slices of bread and butter to keep body and soul together. My major pastime was roller-skating which I became quite good at and played many games of roller skate hockey. My time at ‘Housey’ was totally undistinguished. I was neither good at work nor a brilliant frames player and generally felt rather insecure. I played cricket, my best game and rugger for my house but was never good enough for school teams. Peggy had started a new phase of becoming a sort of universal aunt – going to look after families where the mother had had to go to hospital for some reason. It provided money and gave us a stable base. We moved to Lyme Regis where Peggy became matron at Rhode Hill which was then a girl’s domestic science college and finishing school. We lived in the lodge and it was really like having our own home. I loved it there. Careers advice was pretty rudimentary in those days. Peggy told me that, concerned at my lack of scholastic ability, she had gone to ask what I was likely to do after school. There was much sucking of teeth and drawing of breath and she was eventually told: “Well I think Anthony should concentrate on just being a nice chap.” At about this time I injured my knee playing rugger and had to have my whole leg in plaster for six months. It didn’t seem to be making progress so Peggy took me to a specialist in Harley Street who also professed to be a faith healer. He took me into a room where we knelt down and said a couple of prayers. All I can say is from that day on I have never felt any pain and I did start playing rugger again. Furthermore, it withstood the rigours of an Infantryman’s life without any problems. Uncanny but true. Nevertheless, it rather spoiled my plans to be a soldier because all the surgeons told me that my knee would never be strong enough for the army. I got a job with BP but hated it and still hoped to be a soldier. So I reckoned the thing to do was join through National Service where I thought the medical might be less stringent. I didn’t mention the leg and they didn’t find anything wrong. So in August 1958, I went to join Salamanca Platoon at the Regimental Depot of the

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Devonshire and Dorset Regiment at Topsham Barracks in Exeter. Basic training was not very remarkable. After ‘Housey’ and the CCF, it was not too difficult at all, but some people had a real problem with it. I was astounded to discover that some twenty-year-olds had never made their own bed or cleaned shoes before. Some could barely read and write. By this time I was too old to go to Sandhurst. I went to Mons Officer Cadet School at Aldershot and received the Queen’s Commission in December 1958. I then embarked on the SS Devonshire at Southampton – a fine old troopship. We had the 9/12th Royal Lancers on board and it was really one long party. We went ashore at Gibraltar and Malta and finally docked at Famagusta at dawn one morning. I commanded 9 Platoon and we patrolled looking for EOKA, a nationalist guerrilla organisation fighting a campaign for the end of British rule in Cyprus, but things were beginning to quieten down and there were no contacts. During this time I had a letter from Peggy who had decided to marry a man named Ted Honore and was going to live in Kenya. I took compassionate leave to help her pack up the house and saw her onto the ship at Tilbury before returning to Cyprus. We led a very social life, dressed for dinner each evening in the mess, cocktail parties and curry lunches on Sundays and invitations to supper with various married officers. When I was ‘dined in’ to the regiment I had to drink a Regimental cocktail of Advocaat, Crème de Menthe and Cherry Brandy which sat in layers in the glass. After dinner, I had to return to my tent halfway up a mountain in the back of a Landrover and I don’t think I ever felt worse! On one occasion we had to guard an explosives store at a copper mine at Agasta up in the Troodos. Cooking our tea, one L/Cpl McFie tried to fill the burners with petrol while they were still hot and there was a mighty explosion which sent him flying through the air towards my tent. He was unhurt but the following fire spread rapidly and completely demolished the cookhouse, all our weapons and radios and the ammo. Pretty soon the ammo caught alight and it became like the Fourth of July. My worry was that it might spread to the explosives store which thankfully it didn’t. The next morning, fully six hours after the fire had burnt itself out, the Cyprus Fire Brigade arrived. As the one in charge, I carried the can for the thousands of pounds of British taxpayers’ money that had gone up in smoke. I was lucky to get away with a caution. On another occasion, learning to drive I struggled coordinating hand signal, gear change and steering wheel all at the same time and ploughed straight through a plate glass window into a barbershop. I went back there many years


Volunteer visitors needed SOMERSET Sight is the local independent charity supporting visually impaired people in Somerset. For many people, coming to terms with a new diagnosis of sight loss can be a lonely and isolating experience. Fortunately, Somerset Sight offers a volunteer visitor service, matching a person with visual impairment with a sighted volunteer. Volunteer visitors provide companionship, advice and practical support to a person living with sight loss, from a trip to the shops to sharing a cup of tea and a chat. The charity knows of several people in South Somerset in need of a visitor, but does not currently have enough volunteers in the area to support them all. Therefore, they are urgently seeking more volunteers in South Somerset to ensure they can reach everyone in need of their help. If you have a few hours a fortnight free to visit a lonely person in your community, please phone Somerset Sight on 01823 333818 or email admin@somersetsight. org.uk. They will offer full training and cover all reasonable expenses.

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Anthony Hurst continued from page 30

later and the barber shop was still there but had been renamed ‘Reflections of London Salon’. I then had a spell in Lybia where you could fry eggs on the bonnet of a Landrover. The most memorable event was the earthquake at Barce. A small group of us were the first on the scene to help. We were all in our twenties except for some of my NCOs and we grew up very quickly that night. We all saw things that we hoped never to see again. The locals would call us shouting “bambino, bambino” pointing to a pile of earth. Naturally, we dug furiously and sometimes we did find the bodies of little children but often it was a ruse by the locals to get us to dig up their goods and chattels. By dawn, though, we had collected a large pile of bodies and rescued some injured. The process of clearing up went on for many days. It was an event that made a deep impression on us and I was certainly never to forget that night. Afterwards, I took some leave to visit my mother and Ted in Kenya. I left my trunk in the care of the night watchman and have never seen it since. Back in the UK, my daughter Karin was born to my first wife Bunty. I had a brief posting to Belfast during the troubles, then on to train recruits in Honiton while Topsham barracks was being rebuilt. There were other postings including Germany and during this period my son Robin was born. Then it was off to Singapore for three months to learn Malay followed by three months in Hong Kong via Vietnam. Then back to Malaya and jungle warfare training at Khitai Tinnghi just to the north of Johore Bahru. The jungle was wet, hot, noisy and vaguely threatening, I never really felt at home in it. Snakes everywhere and leeches which are revolting. They attach themselves to you as you move through the ‘ulu’ and start off the size of the end of a bootlace but soon become the size of your thumb. I learnt how to survive on what could be found to eat in the jungle and how to recognise what was poisonous. I learnt all about patrolling in the jungle, the rudiments of tracking and how to lay an ambush. We were up against Korp Kommando Operasi – Indonesian Marines and some of their better troops who were tough and well-trained. Patrolling in the jungle was uncomfortable; frequent stops to check for leeches and to check where the hell you were; clinging vines, snakes, creepy crawlies and beautiful huge butterflies. Thigh deep in revolting mangrove swamps then stopping before dark to build a basha for the night – a bed of bracken or groundsheet on sticks covered loosely with another groundsheet. When you returned from ten days of this the smell was unbelievably awful to everyone else. Standing naked in a monsoon to get clean was very simple. The worst thing was being closed in. You never knew what was behind

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the nearest bush and one operated on a constant state of alert and adrenaline. At thirty-one I decided to leave the army. It remains the most seminal period of my life. I didn’t achieve anything dramatic but felt I’d done better than most people would have predicted in my school days. Civilian life began with a job at Unilever in personnel management which was the start of a difficult period. My marriage failed and I worried about the children. Part of my role was to handle industrial relations negotiating with seven different Trade Unions. I quickly realised that almost all problems were not the fault of a bolshy workforce but due to weak and incompetent management. I learned a lot in having to defend my corner against some very tough and powerful people. In some ways, Unilever was like the army – both very large bureaucratic organisations. But the people were not soulmates really. I was part of a small team and missed my “soldiers”. During this time I lived in Sevenoaks and was married to Melita. This was followed by a stint working for the County of Avon based in Bristol. It was my first experience of politicians and the political process. It is very unsavoury. When politicians use words like trust and loyalty they are not using them in the sense that I know. I learnt soon enough that I couldn’t trust any of them. During this time I remarried again to Carole and my son Robin left home to make his way in Bath while my daughter Karin went to live in Cheltenham and start secretarial college. My job didn’t improve and it was definitely my least enjoyable working experience, my worst ever boss and zero satisfaction. It was also a time of my highest ever salary and the happiest and most fulfilling time in my private life. Well, you can’t have it all – not at once anyway. The next period of my working life was mostly taken up as a consultant. I had very wide-ranging experience having managed people and events since the age of twenty in a huge variety of organisations and circumstances. I worked for a company and found myself running courses in masses of things – leadership, motivation, team-building, negotiation, presentation skills, time management, communication and so on. Sadly Carole went back to Canada; so a very sad personal period coinciding with a rather fun, satisfying job. A job I really enjoyed never coincided with a happy personal life and vice versa. How odd. In time I set up as an independent consultant. I loved this work with clients as diverse as Westlands and a small Nursing Home in Seaton. I worked for pretty well every size and type of company in between. I am aware that I probably view my soldiering days bathed in a rosy glow. Of course, it wasn’t all good. But I would say that the general standard of performance


was much higher than I found in Civvy Street. Of course, there were lazy and incompetent people in the army, but they were quickly identified and they sure as hell were not promoted. My private life was often difficult. I had only had two role models – one was Peggy’s descriptions of life with Gordon, which as far as I know was one of those marriages made in heaven. I never saw adults disagreeing with each other in a serious way and for some time didn’t understand that good relationships don’t just happen. I rather thought that you fell in love and everything was alright after that and you lived happily ever after. That was a hopeless preparation for life and looking back I am horrified at my naiveté and lack of understanding. Considering the difficulties they had to contend with I am lucky to have such normal and wonderful children. I love them both very much and now my grandchildren too. Occupying my time has never been difficult and I am seldom bored. My great joy is painting which I have treated like work in the sense of taking every opportunity to learn and put in the hours of work. I took part in Dorset Art Weeks in 2006 and was staggered to find that 418 people traipsed through my garage to my studio. I like nothing better than to use my painting to make money for the Army Benevolent Fund and the Not Forgotten Association. I have been extraordinarily lucky to have a wonderfully loving and supportive mother who was a rock for two more generations and loved being both a grandmother and great grandmother. I have also had a wonderful network of supportive friends including my most recent drinking buddies from The Tiger in Bridport who joined me on memorable cruises on the Thomson Celebration and the Norwegian Epic. Well, it is 2020 now and in December I shall be 82, which is a startling thought. I have lost too much weight - now only 6 1/2 stone. This is rather frightening but my GP is helping me to put some weight on. In any event, I won’t give up and intend to go on living my life to the full. I will not give up without a fight. I continue to love and enjoy my family and friends and know how lucky I am. I will continue to perform random acts of kindness and try to make my little bit of the world a better place.’

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Beer Quarry Caves NEW DISCOVERIES IN ANCIENT CAVES How can you find new things at a place as ancient as ours? The answer is that these caverns are like Alibaba’s treasure caves from the Arabian Thousand and one Nights; they always have something new to show us, because they always have something hidden away, something no one has seen before. A spot of fly fishing for salmon down there in the dark? It’s not as fantastic as it might seem. We can hear water running somewhere beneath and behind the west face of the workings. We don’t know where the water comes from and we don’t know where it goes but a great deal of the fun of Beer Quarry caves is trying to find out all the things we don’t yet know. A book, published around 1926 about walks in Wessex, warns that you shouldn’t enter Beer Quarry caves without a guide as they are full of water and you might drown. Right now the caves are dry, with only one puddle by the west face, close to where we can hear the water flow. You’d be unlucky to get the soles of your shoes wet. OLDER HISTORY STILL But why history at all? When visitors come to Beer Quarry caves its almost always to have a look at what preserved history looks like. Our walls bear the marks of almost 2,000 years of the men, women and children of Beer chipping away at the limestone seam in the caves. The first Roman cuts, then the Anglo Saxon, then the Norman are clearly visible and touchable. Much of what we discuss and talk about on the tours is this visible, preserved history. Why? Why bother with what the ancestors of the folk from Beer village had to do to survive over the millennia? The general answer is that we should study history so we do not repeat the mistakes of the past. But there is also the sheer fascination in satisfying our curiosity by probing the unknown, in discovering the things that time has hidden. What can we learn from this extended saga of cruelty that cut the lives of the Beer miners to a span of less than 30 years, crippled by disease and injury? We can maybe learn that human lives, all human lives, matter and people should not, for economic reasons, be condemned to a mole like existence in the bowls of the earth, digging out stone, albeit stone that will later be part of the great cathedrals that are the historic legacy of the middle ages. As our founder the late John Scott emphasises in our CD recording of his key lecture tour, out of terrible toil rose buildings of enduring magnificence. The lesson for us is that we still benefit

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from the low wages and child labour employed in the developing world to have our cheap high fashion, and our £5 Tee shirts. The world has changed but not enough. Beer Quarry Caves, are not like a museum with the exhibits in glass cases. Here you can run your hands along the actual history, touch the walls the people of centuries ago worked and see the caverns they created. This is history ‘in your face, at your fingertips’. BEER HISTORY BEFORE THE ROMANS SHOWED UP We have already discovered from reviewing local archaeological records in the Beer area that before the Romans officially invaded Britain the second time in AD 43, they may have been trading with the people of Beer. In the digs on Quarry lane are some fragments of Roman pottery. This raises two questions. The first is what did Beer possess that the village could trade with? The second is what might the fishing village of Beer have looked like between, say 4000 BC and 50 AD? The answer to the first question is simple, if still substantially unstudied. Beer was the manufacturing centre at the heart of the flint industry in the South West of England. Based on flint records across ancient Britain and Europe, flint was the key tool for two things. Tools for cutting animals for food and clothing. And the components of fire kits, that were later standard issue with the Roman legions. Fire and food, that’s what flint was for. STONEHENGE AND BEER QUARRY CAVES The new and extraordinary discoveries at Stonehenge are important for Beer, Beer Quarry Caves and the Farway stone age necropolis. The details emerging in Wiltshire show a hugely different picture to the simple one so many of us grew up with. The site is not merely the group of well known vertical stones capped with horizontal blocks. It is a huge area, with paths down to the Avon river and a central array of newly discovered pillars 20 meters tall. It is in short a stone age city, perhaps Britain’s first ever city? It was a place that drew pilgrims from all over the country. It was a place for religious ceremony and to bury the dead. Just like Farway. We are looking at the links between the grave at Fir Cross and the three settlements, at Blackbury, Farway and Sidbury, and the as yet undiscovered stone age settlement in Beer itself, to see if what we have is a mini Stonehenge. Steve Rodgers. Curator and Manager. Beer Quarry Caves June 2020



Remembering

John Scott

John Scott. Photograph by Julia Mear In August 2013 Julia Mear visited John Scott at Beer Quarry Caves. This is John’s story

“I was born in Beer in 1947; father had been invalided out of the war. I was an only child until I was 11, then my brother came along. At that time my father was in hospital on Dartmoor with TB. We didn’t see him for two years apart from waving through a window. He was the oldest man in the country ever to have a lung removed at that time—he came through it. I passed my 11 plus and went to Colyton Grammar School. I’d always wanted to go into the Air Force and signed up for an apprenticeship—I was told father didn’t have long to live so I came home and got a job in Axmouth at the boatbuilding yard. Some of the boats I built are still on Beer beach today. I served my apprenticeship under Harold Mears, an incredible craftsman. My childhood in Beer was fascinating, just after the war; the remains of a German plane crashed in fields nearby

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which we would rummage through. Once a boy brought a canon shell he’d found into school—we all scrammed! This was also the time I first got interested in the quarry here; as kids, we‘d sneak into the quarry whilst they were still working across the road. This side hadn’t been quarried since 1920. My grandfather accused us one day of exploring the quarry— he’d found some jam jars and a ball of string just inside the entrance. We always took a ball of string in case we got lost, but we never got very far, there are 75 acres of underground quarry. I then started to find signatures of men who worked there hundreds of years ago. We did a project at school about Exeter Cathedral; many parts are from Beer quarry. I found out how much men were paid to quarry, names of workers dating back to the 1300s, feeding the horses—there are fantastic records of the work done here. It fascinated me that


there’s a piece of Beer stone in historic buildings all over the country and across the world—we are discovering more and more now. During my five year apprenticeship boatbuilding, I met Sylvia, my wife, purely by chance at a fairground in Seaton. She was only 16, I was three years older, and we got married when she was 18. Everyone was saying it wouldn’t work; 45 years down the line and we are still going strong. Although Sylvia lived in Seaton, she was born in Beer and we lived just ¼ mile apart but we didn’t know each other as kids. When our eldest daughter was born I decided to move to a joinery firm in Colyton. I travelled all over the place fitting shops out. In 1982 I had a serious accident; I was working in Bath fitting the new Habitat store. I saw a bloke slip on the scaffolding, we were four floors up, I gave him a shove to stop him falling and went over the scaffolding myself and landed on a GPO van below. I was in plaster for six months. When I recovered, Lord Clinton, who owns Beer quarry, had heard I was interested in taking people around the quarry and asked me to take him around. He was fascinated by it all and I told him this place should never be lost. A short while later I was tipped off that they were going to blast the Roman side flat. I approached Lord Clinton to see if it was possible to get a lease to open it to the public. He granted this but then it came down to financing the project. A number of people showed some interest. I chose a Mrs Gladys Gray (now sadly departed). When she looked around, she understood immediately and said she had a small amount of money and we should give it a go. Singlehandedly, I cleared a mile of mud to make pathways, put up lighting and opened it to the public on 14th April 1984. I could never have done this without the support of my family. I had to keep my wages very low. Most wives would have said ‘get off your backside and get a decent job’ but I had support all the way through. We have two daughters, Karen and Natalie. We also became foster parents. We thought there are a hell of a lot of kids who haven’t got a home. We went on to take some serious cases; it was sometimes very hard, but very rewarding. The only reason we stopped was because my wife developed serious rheumatic arthritis and became reliant on a wheelchair. She was so active; she could walk my legs off. It came on very suddenly, she thought she had flu then a week later was diagnosed with this. We have great support from our children. As well as our two daughters, we have a younger daughter who we adopted and two adopted sons. All in all, at my last count we have 11 grandchildren and one great grandchild. Running the caves as a business was incredibly hard to begin with on my own. My daughters and son-in-law help now. Some days we have 400-500 people visiting and others, just 30 or 40. It’s very unpredictable. I only occasionally do the tours now. What fascinates everyone who works here is what we are still finding. It is all natural and everything has been cut out by hand. You can walk into the entrance one day, dig out a drain and find an old roman coin—picking up something nobody’s touched for years. We work closely with the Area of

Outstanding Natural Beauty and Natural England. We have nine different species of bat; among them is the Bechstien, the rarest in the country. We have been very fortunate to have Clinton Devon Estates as our landlord—they have been so supportive over the years, as have the Jurrasic Coast. One of my great friends, Peter Dare, was the Master Mason at Exeter Cathedral. If you can’t learn something from a chap like that it’s a poor show. He rebuilt the church window below ground here in the caves and it’s still here for all to see. It was originally in Colyton Church, but removed in a so called restoration by the Victorians. It needed a home so Peter Dare and his apprentices, including myself, took it apart in Colyton churchyard using traditional methods. It had been originally carved underground here in the Spring of 1492, in 58 pieces by candlelight. At the moment old pieces of stone are rescued from Beer buildings but there is a chance, once all the permissions are in place, we could quarry an area down in the caves for restoration at Exeter Cathedral. We did cut some stone in the 80s, by hand, but we couldn’t match the rate that one quarryman could work at with two of us doing it. Of course the caves were also used for smuggling in Jack Rattenbury’s days, about 250 years ago. The ancestors of the old local fishermen remember the stories. The customs man was called Scott and so, because of my name, I still get reminded of this today. Mainly, if you couldn’t fish in Beer then you became a quarryman in the caves. The wages were less than a farm labourer and you had to buy five tallow candles. The stonemasons were given free candles. Many of the quarrymen’s wives were involved in lacemaking. One hundred of them took eight months to make the lace for Queen Victoria’s wedding dress. It left the stagecoach from Honiton which then gave it the name of Honiton Lace. There was great rivalry between Honiton and Beer lace makers. May Wakley a lace maker in Beer was sat outside her house one day with her lace pillow and bobbins in her lap. She called me over. Another lady was chatting to her who came from Honiton. She was bragging as she had just been commissioned to make lace for a speaker in the House of Commons. May replied with ‘this piece is for the Queen’, and it was. There was similar rivalry between the quarrymen and the stonemasons. Beer has changed over the years; I used to know everybody, now I don’t have a clue. The days everyone would stay and work in the village have gone. In the early years when I was fighting to get started here at the caves it was my determination together with massive support from my family and friends along the way that really made it happen. I have always had a thirst for knowledge. I remember my father saying to me ‘Wherever you walk someone walked before, but remember what they may have left.’ I walk everywhere looking out for things; you just never know what you might find.” Founder of Beer Quarry Caves John Scott died at home in Fore Street in July 2020.

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THE TOLPUDDLE SIX By Cecil Amor

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o the north-east of Dorchester the River Piddle meanders, giving its name to several villages, including Tolpuddle, a pleasant village, which has been bypassed, enabling through traffic to avoid it. Normally an annual Festival takes place in Tolpuddle, when it becomes busy, but this year it has been cancelled. The Festival commemorates the story of six local men who lived there in the 1830s. The story began after the Battle of Waterloo in 1815 when soldiers were no longer required and therefore were looking for work. At the same time grain prices were low, resulting in farmers facing ruin. The Government introduced the Corn Laws aiming to help farmers, but the result was that the price of bread increased. Farmers kept labourers’ wages low and introduced threshing machines to aid productivity, which reduced the number of workers. This led to some frustrated labourers vandalising these machines, setting fire to ricks and throwing stones through farm windows. These actions commenced in Kent and spread across the land. The men involved were called “machine wreckers”. Mary Frampton kept a Journal in 1830 describing her concerns about the rioters. She corresponded with another Dorset Diarist, Fanny Burney, who commiserated with her about her worries about the rioters. Mary Frampton had a brother, Squire James Frampton, who was very outspoken against the rioters. In Tolpuddle labourer George Loveless, who was also a Methodist lay preacher, grew concerned when farmers promised they would raise wages to 10s a week, but in fact reduced them to 8s. When wages were dropped again to 7s a week, he decided to act. A meeting was held in a cottage lived in by Loveless’s brotherin-law, Thomas Standfield. About 40 labourers agreed to form a “Friendly Society of Agricultural Labourers”. The society was to be the Grand Lodge of other groups in Dorset, with a secret password “Either Hand or Heart”. Their rules included that they should withhold labour if a master reduced wages or “stood off ” a man for belonging to a union. Unfortunately they agreed to initiate new members by a ritual in which recruits were blindfolded, shown a picture of a skeleton and had to kiss the Bible and swear an oath not to reveal activities or membership of the society. Perhaps this ritual was a parody of the Masonic tradition. Early in 1834 Squire James Frampton was given information by another labourer, Edward Legg, about the oath taking. Frampton took this very seriously and

arranged for the six ringleaders to be brought to trial. An Act of Parliament in 1797 decreed that any trade unionist administering a secret oath was infringing the law. The Tolpuddle labourers were unaware of this when they took their oaths, as they later protested at their trial charged with breaking the 1797 Act, which was a felony punishable by a maximum of 7 years transportation. The six were George Loveless (age 37), James (brother, 25), Thomas Standfield (brother-in-law, 44), John Stanfield (son of Thomas, 21), James Brine (20) and James Hammet (22) who have become known as the Tolpuddle Martyrs. They appeared for trial at Dorchester Crown Court on 17th March 1834 before a newly appointed judge, Williams, who did nothing to help them. The judge was alarmed by the growth of rebellion and trade unionism, as was the Whig government, and in his summing up he told the jury of 11 yeomen and one farmer that if trade unions continued they would “ruin masters, cause stagnation in trade and destroy property”. The jury returned a verdict of “Guilty” in twenty minutes. The judge admitted that the accused had been previously of good character, but he imposed the maximum sentence of seven years transportation. Soon protests were made against the sentence, in the national newspapers of the time. (However despite national petitions and a large public demonstration in London, the government would not reduce or cancel the sentences). All six convicts were sent, in chains, to join convict ships to Australia, to an even harsher life. George Loveless was sent to Tasmania for a week in a chain gang, road making. Then he was transferred to become a shepherd and stock keeper at a government farm, which was a little better, but still harsh, sleeping in a hut, with a leaking roof and five beds for eight men. The five other labourers were shipped to New South Wales and were marched in chains through the Sydney streets and then allocated to different farms. James Brine had a very hard time as he had to walk thirty miles alone to his allocated farm. En route his belongings were pilfered by thieves who stole his belongings, including the bedding, blanket, shoes, new breeches and some money with which he had been provided. He reported to the farmer he had been allocated to, but the man refused to believe his story and abused him as “one of those Dorset machine-break-


...recruits were blindfolded, shown a picture of a skeleton and had to kiss the Bible and swear an oath not to reveal activities or membership of the society

ers”. Consequently James had to work for six months without boots. When digging post holes he found a piece of hoop-iron and tied this to one foot to help take the hurt of the spade. Thomas Standfield, the oldest of the labourers was set to work as a shepherd, and suffered terribly working day and night at lambing time. His son, John, was allowed to visit him by his more considerate farmer several times as his farm was only a few miles away and said that his father was “a dreadful spectacle, covered with sores from head to foot and weak and helpless as a child”. In April 1834 a large demonstration assembled at Copenhagen Fields near Kings Cross in London. They marched to Whitehall and delivered a petition to the Home Secretary, Lord Melbourne. However the Government would not cancel the sentences. Finally in March 1836, after two years of petitions and lobbying from sympathisers, a new Home Secretary, Lord John Russell granted a free pardon to all six men. There were difficulties of communication and bureaucratic delays. George Loveless arrived back in England in June 1837. Nine months later four of the others arrived back. The last man, James Hammett, was not home until August 1839, over three years after the pardon was granted. He had not been at the oath swearing ceremony, but had been arrested in mistake for his brother John. James Hammett was the only one of the six who settled back in Tolpuddle. He died in the Dorchester Workhouse in 1891, aged 79. He is buried in Tolpuddle

churchyard and has a headstone carved by Eric Gill which reads “Tolpuddle Martyr: Pioneer of Trades Unionism: Champion of Freedom”. At the Tolpuddle Martyrs’ Festival a wreath is laid on his grave every year. The other five eventually migrated to Ontario, Canada and of these John Standfield became a successful hotelier and for a time became reeve (mayor) of East London, there. Some of the information produced here came from A History of Dorset by Cecil Cullingford. The old Dorset County Court in Dorchester High West Street has been renovated as the Shire Hall Historic Courthouse Museum and some of the cells are available to view, with relative information. So this is the story of the Tolpuddle Six, or Martyrs’ and their eventual release and pardon and explains why normally there is an annual Festival, with a procession through the village, live music, and various stalls. This year the Festival was organised as an online event over the middle weekend in July, with the following comment: “Tolpuddle .. represents the value of Solidarity, of joining together for the common good, something we all need to see us through this present crisis” Tolpuddle is a pleasant village. I have a happy memory of visiting with my wife, daughter and son-inlaw and sitting on a convenient seat under a shady tree, quietly, but not on a Festival weekend. Cecil Amor, Hon President of Bridport History Society.


News&Views

GOLDEN CAP Location app Praised West Bay Coastguard Rescue Team highlighted the benefit of the ‘What3Words’ location app after a call out to an incident on Golden Cap recently. Officers were responding to reports of a 74 year old female who was having a medical emergency whilst out walking. Paramedics also responded to the scene. A very accurate location was provided to the emergency services using the ‘What3Words’ app, which placed the casualty at the top of Golden Cap. Working with the paramedics, the casualty was packaged into a stretcher and then part carried, part rolled down the steep track. The rescue team later said that using a smart phone location app like ‘What3Words’ can usefully assist the emergency services in getting help to people as quickly as possible.

BRIDPORT Local singer for Disneyland

Local singer Douglas Dare has been chosen to sing in an advert celebrating the reopening of Disneyland Paris. The advert, which features views of the Sleeping Beauty castle with glittering turrets at night promotes their strapline line, ‘There is no magic without you’. In the background the song, Some Day My Prince Will Come, sung by Douglas is heard. Born in Bridport, the son of a piano teacher, Douglas grew up on a family farm and released his debut EP, Seven Hours on Erased Tapes in 2013 and toured Europe with label mate Ólafur Arnalds. His latest album Milkteeth, released in February was produced by Mike Lindsay — founding member of Tunng and one half of Lump with Laura Marling — in his studio in Margate in just twelve days.

LYME REGIS Anti social behavior hot spot The neighbourhood inspector for West Dorset is asking parents ‘do you know where your children are?’ as patrols are stepped up to tackle antisocial behaviour hotspots. Following a number of reports from residents in relation to anti-social behaviour in areas including Langmoor Gardens in Lyme Regis, proactive patrols are being carried out and section 35 dispersal powers are being utilised. These powers mean police can order people to leave the area if their presence is likely to contribute towards anti-social behaviour and they are liable to be arrested if they return within a designated period. Dorset Police is also working with local councils to ensure a detailed plan is in place to respond to these repeated reports of antisocial behaviour.

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SOUTH CADBURY Burgers from a prison van A former prison van, converted into a stylish modern burger van has been dispensing delicious, locally sourced burgers to the local community in South Somerset. Manned by three reformed young offenders, the van, commonly known as the ‘Food Cell’, gave many of the locals their first experience of having food cooked for them since Lockdown began. The Food Cell is the brainchild of Somerset-based charity Key4Life which helps to reduce youth offending via its innovative rehabilitation programme for those in prison or at risk of going to prison, and gives young offenders skills and support to get back to work. The van pops up at Castle Farm, South Cadbury on Saturdays from 12 - 3pm.

WEYMOUTH Man jailed for attempted rape A man who attempted to rape a young woman in Weymouth town centre has been jailed. Mohammad Abdullah, aged 23 and of no fixed abode, was sentenced at Winchester Crown Court on Monday 20 July 2020 to seven years in prison after being found guilty of attempted rape at an earlier trial at the same court. The judge also ruled that he would serve an additional four years on licence. Speaking about the effect on the victim, Detective Constable Lucy Johnson, of Weymouth CID, said: “This was a truly horrifying ordeal for the victim and it has understandably had a significant impact on her. I am glad that thanks to our fast moving enquiries we were able to quickly identify and arrest Abdullah so he could face justice before the court.”


The Internet of Things Laterally Speaking by Humphrey Walwyn

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s we all continue to emerge from isolation, it’s really great to be able to view real people and real places again. We’re like a troupe of bears slowly shuffling out of our winter hibernation and rubbing our eyes with the brightness of the light and the green countryside all around us. I don’t know about you, but I reckon we’ve all learnt quite a bit during the lockdown, and because we couldn’t go anywhere or meet anybody for four months, we’ve been exploring the only area that was truly open to us—the internet. With all that spare time, I have now discovered websites that I never knew existed. I have played loads of computer games with my children and learnt humility and how-to-lose comprehensively. I have watched endless BBC news headlines but have also widened my global view by downloading news and opinion in English from non-UK websites like Russia’s Pravda, Singapore Straits Times, the South African Herald and China Today. The Pyongyang Times website from North Korea is worth a giggle or two provided you don’t actually believe a word it prints. Yes, there’s a lot of garbage out there but there are some worthwhile gold flakes hiding in the internet’s cobwebs if you can find them. I have relived my childhood and streamed wall-to-wall old movies, zoomed through various Broadband quizzes and even tried to learn a new skill or two (card-tricks and poetry). In the course of which I have also purchased loads of online stuff that I never knew I wanted! Yes, you can really buy or experience just about anything over the internet if you want. Here is my lateral guide to some online websites that might be useful in these post-lockdown times. You don’t have to click on any of them because they don’t exist. But I feel that some of them should exist and perhaps someone might launch them online someday… www.ripOff.food will supply literally any vegetable from all over the world – even things that don’t really exist at all such as Siberian Eel Grass, Game Of Thrones Lettuce and Arctic Pepper. It’s all 100% organic and reassuringly expensive. Based in Azerbaijan, the cost of delivery is over ten times the cost of the food itself, but presentation is every-

Interesting things over the Internet… Deep in Lockdown, Armenian Television offers advice on Social Distancing

thing. Your handpicked delivery of Fresh Dragon’s Spittle will arrive in a Yak-driven Siamese cart lovingly packed inside a sterilised anti-Corvid organic balsawood coffin. Enjoy… www.esperanto.lingo is an entirely pointless language learning website based in Germany. You could spend hours every evening at home learning Esperanto, but since nobody else speaks it nowadays you would be better advised to learn about basket weaving, Japanese sword design or breeding Mongolian catfish—all of which might be more useful to you in the future. www.getStuffed.org is for anyone wanting to learn about Taxidermy. All your friends can bring you their favourite pet cat, hamster or canary so you can deliver back to them a lasting memento of their dearly loved departed animal. Use your time constructively and become a qualified taxidermist in lock-down. Launch yourself on a new career! Also works with reptiles, rats and goldfish. Avoid stick insects as they’re a bit thin and fiddly. www.misterCloggy.co.nl is another of those instructive websites to teach you new and useful skills while you’re isolating yourself at home. This website has diagrams and instructions for you to learn how to make wooden clogs for your feet. Simple, useful, organic and good for the planet, you can pretend you’re a Dutch tourist on holiday in Chard. Warning: it takes about two years to carve and polish each wooden shoe, so you’ll need to be patient to get both feet covered. ...continued over page

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Laterally Speaking, continued from page 37

www.virusVanish.co.ru is a Russian based website that downloads an infra-red anti-viral ray gun to your phone. Simply point your mobile at any passing virus (if you can see it) and ‘ZAP’— it’s gone! Warning: also kills passing birds, dogs and small children. Not to be used anywhere near Salisbury. www.virtualMaskerade.co.xyz will download a virtual mask to you on those annoying occasions when you need to enter a shop and you’ve forgotten your own personal mask. Made from light tissue paper and spray-on black paint, it makes you look like you’re wearing a mask when in fact you’re not.

If you hate wearing a real mask because it’s itchy and uncomfortable and makes your glasses steam up, this is for you! It’s entirely non-hygienic and has no effect on blocking anything, so from a safety point of view, it’s probably best to avoid. www.socialdistanz.org is an app for mobile phone and PC that sounds an alarm if you get closer than 2 metres to anything. It is extremely loud and goes off every couple of seconds as you walk around town. Lamp-posts, traffic lights, abandoned rubbish, passing cars and other pedestrians will all activate the alarm making it extremely annoying and completely useless. Avoid at all costs. Do not install.

‘Lamp-posts, traffic lights, abandoned rubbish, passing cars and other pedestrians will all activate the alarm’

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The Marshwood

Audio Files

BENEFITS IN THE GARDEN Seth Dellow talks with garden designer Kathy Crouch

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his is the first in a new series of audio and video features looking at different aspects of life in our wider local community. This month, Seth Dellow talks with garden designer Kathy Crouch about gardening and the beneficial effect it can have on mental health and well-being. ‘Organisations such as the RHS and Mind have backed the strong connection behind gardening and mental health’ says Seth. He points out that there are also many scientific research projects exploring links between enhanced mental and physical health and gardening. Kathy Crouch Kathy Crouch, whose accolades include ‘BBC Gardener of the Decade’, ‘BBC Gardener of the Year’ and ‘Gold Medal Winner’ at the Chelsea Flower Show agrees. She is surprised that some people feel gardening is a lot of work. Outside of the enjoyment of growing your own food or enhancing your day with beautiful flowers and plants, there are simple benefits that hugely improve our lives. ‘The feel of the soil and the sun on your face’ says Kathy ‘how could any garden not enhance your mental health?’ Seth points out that one of the obvious benefits is the exercise that one participates in when out in the garden. ‘Think of it as going to the gym, but you get vegetables as well’ says Kathy. To channel a famous quote from John F Kennedy, perhaps we should say: think not about what you can do for your garden, but more about what your garden can do for you. Click on the link below to listen to Part 1 of this two-part audio interview. Part 2 will be featured in the Marshwood Mid-Month Special online issue, later in August. To be sure not to miss it, send us an email requesting an alert when it is available. Email info@marshwoodvale.com. Click Below to Listen

Seth Dellow is a University of Exeter student reading History & Politics, with a keen interest in political history and public policy. Aside from academia, he is active in the local community, regularly volunteering and has won the Pride of Somerset Youth Awards twice. His experience extends to the media sector and he enjoys interviewing people from a wide range of backgrounds, often to discuss the emerging themes of the day. You can learn more about Seth at www.linkedin.com/in/sethdellow

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House&Garden

Vegetables in August By Ashley Wheeler JULY was pretty full on in the planted crops should also be garden—its a time when a lot of given a good soak straight after change happens, as early crops going in the ground. are cleared and autumn crops are planted. Beds were prepared WHAT TO SOW THIS for planting salad turnips, more MONTH: endive, winter salads—the first of the chicory, purslane, salad mustards (best endive, lettuce, brassica salads sown direct) such as Golden such as rocket and mustards, Streaks, Purple Frills, rocket, land coriander, kale, kohl rabi, more cress, chard, leaf radish, texsel chard and perpetual spinach, greens, lettuce, fennel (early in chinese cabbage, pak choi and the month), broad beans (for other stirfry greens. tips in salads) & peashoots, This continues through August autumn radish and turnips, for us as the bulk of the chicory chinese cabbage and pak choi is planted, and we plant a lot of (early in the month), parsley (for chicory! This provides us with overwintering in polytunnel/ leaves for the salad mix through glasshouse), corn salad & spring the autumn and winter. Most of onions & spring cabbage (all late the chicory gets planted once the in month for overwintering) shallots and spring onions are all harvested. It also goes in the place Newly planted crops are watered in during dry weather. WHAT TO PLANT THIS of earlier plantings of chard and Also, mesh is used to protect the brassica plants from dam- MONTH: perpetual spinach. age by flea beetle as well as cabbage white caterpillars For us, much of August is about OUTSIDE: fennel, beetroot, being organised and prioritising jobs, as so much time lettuce, chard, kohl rabi, chicory, salad leaves: is spent harvesting at this time of year—picking the buckshorn plantain, salad burnet, chervil, endive, beans, tomatoes, courgettes and cucumbers, two or turnips and winter radish (sown direct), pak choi and three times a week, as well as all of the other harvests. chinese cabbage We have to fit in the other work around this, and it is sometimes a case of having to let some things go a bit INSIDE: summer purslane, goosefoot and decide which jobs to prioritise. Most importantly for us at this time of year is getOTHER IMPORTANT TASKS THIS MONTH: ting all of the planting and sowing done on time as the days are getting shorter. It starts to make a considerKeeping on top of taking old crops out and planting able difference in terms of when or in fact if a crop with new crops is still important throughout August. will mature before the first frosts, or before growth There is still plenty of time to get late crops in the levels slow a lot from October time. ground, and as we roll into September it can almost be Sometimes the hoeing and weeding has to be a bit like a second spring (with the benefit of already warm more superficial at this time of year, and may just be soil). a case of making sure that any weeds that are about to flower and seed are removed rather than spending Generally it is a time to harvest—keeping on top of lots of time hoeing the whole garden. Watering can be harvesting courgettes and beans will keep them going another job that has to be prioritised during August. If and mean that they don’t get too big or too stringy. it continues to be dry then watering of leafy greens is Also continue with the weekly job of sideshooting prioritised as well as drip irrigation of fruiting vegetatomatoes and removing lower leaves to get good bles such as beans, cucumbers and courgettes. Newly airflow going through the crop.

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August in the Garden By Russell Jordan

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he trend over the past quarter of a century, or so, has been to move away from the traditional ‘mid-summer’, herbaceous border, plants towards a later flowering, ‘new perennial’, palette. This means that the season of interest has extended so that August need no longer be a ‘hungry gap’ in the flower garden, with little in the way of blooms, but is actually only just the beginning of the peak for later flowering perennials. For me I think Veronicastrums are an indispensable component of a later flowering garden. They have many of the attributes associated with the ‘new perennial’ tribe; spiky, tall, long flowering and not requiring staking. Veronicastrum virginicum ‘Album’ is a good one to start with because, being white, it fits in anywhere and can be planted fairly close to the front of the border as it’s easy to see through its tall, ethereal, flower spikes. Other varieties are available in the pink / purple / mauve colour spectrum. I find they hybridise with each other and seed around, non-aggressively, so that

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you end up with your own mix of offspring. For the more traditional herbaceous border and bedding plants, regular dead-heading is essential to achieve maximum performance and to produce a succession of blooms. Roses benefit from similar attention, except for those that produce decorative hips and therefore need to have their faded blooms preserved, and I think roses have done particularly well this year. If they are running out of steam then a feed with a proprietary rose fertiliser and a generous mulch with organic material will see them through until the end of the flowering season. Similarly, tender perennials and bedding plants respond well to regular feeding. It’s easiest to do this via a liquid feed at weekly intervals, or whatever the label of your chosen product suggests, and never allow the pots to completely dry out, which stresses the plants, is important too. Commercially available feeds have the advantage of containing a balanced mix of essential nutrients but it is possible to make your own ‘feeds’


...it’s hard to write about the garden in August without giving an honourable mention to the phenomenon that is the dahlia

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using such things as chopped up nettles, or comfrey, steeped in water. If you have access to sheep then I believe that ‘dags’, fermented in water, yield a particularly pungent brew. Mature hedges may well need tackling this month, as soon as the birds have raised their last broods, so that any regrowth has time to harden up before the onset of winter. Those which require frequent trimming can be done anytime, species which are usually cut on an annual basis, yew being chief amongst these, can be left until a bit later. If you are doing second or third cuts, on specimens like privet or box, it is still important to avoid doing this on really hot or sunny days. If you remove a layer of foliage from these, small leaved, species there is a danger that the new layer of foliage which you expose will get scorched by the strong light and high heat. There is nothing worse than doing a fantastic clipping job, on a long run of box hedging, only to return a day or two later to find that the whole lot has turned brown and crinkly! As an antidote to anything ‘brown and crinkly’, spring bulbs are hard to beat. I know it’s a bit depressing to have to start to think about this summer ending but, as ever, gardening is a circular pursuit and now is the time that you can begin planting the bulbs that you need to brighten up your garden next spring. New bulb varieties may only be available in limited quantities and are more likely to be found in specialist bulb company catalogues (online and ‘on paper’) than in mainstream garden centres. Ordering early ensures you get what you want and, culturally, it’s better for the bulb if it spends as short a time as possible between being ‘harvested’ and being replanted. While you are perusing the bulb suppliers, for spring flowering bulbs, you may also come across a number of bulbs that flower in the autumn; autumn flowering cyclamen and crocus being, possibly, the most well known. I like autumn flowering bulbs because they inject an element of spring freshness into the garden when most of the other constituents are beginning to lose their shine or are dying down. Autumn flowering cyclamen have the advantage of having cheerfully bright blooms, in the white to purple spectrum, and, especially in the case of Cyclamen hederifolium (Ivy-leaved cyclamen), attractive leaves too. When planting the autumn flowering crocuses and colchicums it is important to consider that they produce rather large, somewhat unlovely, foliage, after flowering, which takes a long time to die-down. For this reason it is best placed somewhere where it’s not too prominent. I’ve seen them planted amongst low, evergreen, ground-cover, such as a prostrate juniper, where their bold flowers pop up amid the foliage backdrop and, in turn, their dying leaves are largely

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hidden, as they shrivel away, under the disguise of the evergreen ground-cover. They’re not bulbs, they’re tubers, but it’s hard to write about the garden in August without giving an honourable mention to the phenomenon that is the dahlia. I’ve mentioned before that this seems to have been a ‘social media’ driven renaissance, because they are so damn photogenic, with dahlias having been out in the wilderness, as far as horticultural taste is concerned, for decades until recent years. I can see their appeal because they satisfy the modern need for almost instant gratification, a tuber purchased in the spring will flower reliably in the first year, and they are available in a dazzling array of sizes, colours, shapes and foliage forms. If you want to see what’s available then a quick image search on ‘Google’, or a foray into the world of ‘Instagram’, turns up hundreds of varieties.

...it’s hard to write about the garden in August without giving an honourable mention to the phenomenon that is the dahlia

If only the good old chrysanthemum was quite as easy and quick as the dahlia. I find that they have just as much charm and cheerfulness as the more brazen dahlia. The showiest ones are similarly tender, requiring them to be lifted and kept frost-free over winter, but their culture and rate of establishment is a little less obliging than the dahlia. They don’t produce discrete tubers, like the dahlia, but form stems and ‘stools’ which are slightly more difficult to prepare and lift for overwintering. I guess this is what is limiting their appeal; dahlias can be treated as ‘disposable’, their dormant tubers are widely available in packeted form whereas chrysanthemums cannot be packaged and marketed in such a user-friendly way. I guess, if chrysanthemums are a little complicated to form a permanent part of your garden mix, then there is always the good old aster, part of the hugely useful ‘daisy tribe’, to bring late summer flowering to your beds and borders. Which brings us neatly back to where this began; new perennial planting. One of the best places to see this late summer planting, at its very best, is in the ‘Oudolf Field’ at ‘Hauser and Wirth’, near Bruton, Somerset. They have reopened, after lockdown, but booking, via their website, is essential in order to maintain social distancing.


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VJ Day 75 15th August 2020 is the 75th anniversary of VJ Day. Derek Stevens recounts some of his memories of life along the Jurassic Coast when the war ended.

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ictory in Europe day was celebrated with teas, stalled, and the Royal Blue long distance coach would games and running races at Alhallows school pass our front gate as it renewed its daily journey along in my village of Rousdon, where I had spent the south coast to Penzance. the war years with my mother and grandparents. Three At this time of austerity, an action by the British months later I was visiting an aunt and uncle in New authorities was to still rankle among the villagers of Barnet who lived right next to the railway station from Dunkeswell. At the departure of the US navy from which I could note passing locomotives enabling to untheir airfield, from which they had been operating derline their numbers listed in my Ian Allen book, the alongside RAF Coastal command in the task of SubABC of L.N.E.R. steam engines. It was that morning of August 15, 1945 when my uncle shouted up to my bedroom “Derek, the war’s over!” He then took me on a tour of street Life at home continued unchanged, grey and somewhat parties where everyone seemed to be singing austere. Additional cuts were made to food rationing “Roll me over in the clover and do it again,” leaving my eleven-year-old mind to wonder which was to continue for another nine years. whether it was really as rude as it sounded. The period since the Allied victory in Europe had seemed uneventful. The Pacific wars were far away on the other side of the world, but our attention was certainly re-focussed upon it marine hunting in the Battle of the Atlantic, to return with the announcement of the dropping of not one, to the United States, they had to dump much of what but two devastating atomic bombs immortalising the they had in store including food stuff. Permission from names of the Japanese cities of Hiroshima and Nagathe British Ministry of Food to offer it to the local saki, vaporising most of their population. It has since population was refused, so sacks of sugar and sides of been estimated that over a quarter of a million souls bacon were among some of the foodstuff which had perished in the two attacks. to be incinerated by order of His Majesty’s GovernLife at home continued unchanged, grey and somement. what austere. Additional cuts were made to food A wartime hero, who could be found selling his catch rationing which was to continue for another nine years. by the roundabout on Seaton seafront, was fisherman For the first time bread was rationed because there Tom Newton. Walking out of his front door from his were millions to be fed now in a devastated Europe, house alongside the river mouth at Axmouth he was much of which had been destroyed by persistent Allied alarmed to see a naval mine freely drifting upstream bombing raids. Each raid had cost a million pounds towards the bridge. Fortunately, he later recounted, and more, and the continuous programme of nightly it was attached to seven fathoms of cable impeding raids flown by RAF Bomber Command during the its progress Thinking “I’d better do something about latter part of the war had contributed greatly to the this” he grabbed an oar and waded out to the mine country’s final state of bankruptcy. and started prodding it until eventually, with the help White bread, as we used to know it, suddenly beof a turning tide, he managed to isolate it on a spit of came darker in colour and more coarse in texture, but shingle. Whereupon he called for the Royal Navy’s a great reintroduction by our Musbury baker was a Bomb Disposal Squad. split penny-bun with fake cream in it. A speciality for They arrived with the news that the situation was a bit Fridays only, it was something to hurry home for. New concerning, as there was a train load of naval ammunidelivery men began to appear as servicemen became tion in the sidings of Seaton station on the other side demobilised and returned home. Local ‘Devon Genof the bridge due to be taken to Beer quarries for secret eral’ and ‘Southern National’ bus services were reinstorage in Beer stone quarries. 46 The Marshwood Vale Magazine August 2020 Tel. 01308 423031


Relating his experience sometime in the sixties he summed up by telling me that he was awarded the British Empire Medal by the King at Buckingham Palace, the town had had a whip round for him and the Navy “Gave me five pounds”. The red defused mine casing remained a feature on the riverside bank of shingle against the rusting tiers of anti-invasion scaffolding for several following years. To supplement the scarcity of food at the time, standing spaces were at a premium on that old concrete bridge during evenings and week-ends as people gathered, shoulder to shoulder, tying to catch some bass or pollock on incoming tides. Mass ownership of the motor car was yet to come so every weekend day-trips from Waterloo would arrive at Lyme Regis. Train loads of people would cascade down the hill to roam the town and sea-front for a few hours, then at about four-o’clock they would all be seen labouring back up the hill to the station to return to London. They were probably hauled back to Waterloo Station by one of the new merchant navy class locomotives, streamlined monsters rumored to thunder down Honiton Bank through Seaton Junction at 100 m.p.h. The Southern Railway was soon to be nationalised and incorporated into British Railways by a Labour government. The first election in post war Britain ousted wartime leader Winston Churchill as premier, with an unexpected landslide victory by Labour leader Clement Atlee. The newly elected majority government immediately set about establishing the foundation of the welfare state which we enjoy to this day. A letter to my father in London at the time told him that a remaining piece of wartime detritus drifting in the channel, yet another old naval mine had drifted into Lyme Regis and exploded, “Many windows throughout the town had been broken in the blast”. At about the same time a large tank landing craft in transit along the bay broke down and was washed up on Seaton beach near the river mouth where the remaining storm broke its back. The navy towed away the section housing the engine leaving the forward section stranded to be taken over as a playground for local children. The old sewage pipe entered the sea close by, all before the days of Health and Safety awareness, the only casualty being the late “Topper” Tolman who broke a leg when he fell over the side of the vessel onto the beach. The remains of that old LST can still be seen beneath the waves a short way offshore I am told by local scuba divers. Warners holiday camp at Seaton was reopened, hav-

ing served during the war years as an internment camp during the early years of the war and a US Army base during the run up to D-Day. And the placing of a small colony of caravans on neighbouring ground laid the foundation of the future Blue Waters camp where Carry On Star Barbara Windsor and her gangster boyfriend, Ronnie Knight, bought two chalets for a seaside retreat. That area of happy bye-gone days is now covered by a vast Tesco and new homes. German POW’s were delivered to surrounding farms from their camp at Tiverton, returning at day’s end. 24,000 elected to stay in the UK, the rest were eventually repatriated in 1948. Some returning home with thankful and fond memories of the friendly treatment they had received during their imprisonment. One exciting picture of the world to come I remember was the announcement of the forthcoming streamlined British motor car. We had all been wowed by those super-duper streamlined cars driving highranking American officers about the country, now we were to manufacture one of our own, the Standard Vanguard. I was to pass my driving test in one of these vehicles during my time in The RAF. National Service was the general direction for school leavers at the time rather than a university campus. Also, for the more adventurous one could have joined one of the several colonial police forces existent at the time in Kenya, Rhodesia, Malaya, Hong Kong and Palestine being among them. Palestine was a particularly nasty area of operation at that time, the rest representing the dying embers of a once dominant world empire. Returning from my visit to Barnet I found we had bread and breakfast visitors staying. My grandmother had found the old CTC (Cyclist Touring Club) sign in the bike shed and had re-erected it outside the gate. I got myself ready for a new school, I had passed a scholarship for Lyme Regis Grammar school. Playing in the field alongside, we could see the corrugated iron remains of the old shelters falling into the ditches beneath the hedges where they had been built five years previously. Catching the train, ‘Lyme Billy,’ from Combpyne to Lyme Regis every day, the rule was firstclass compartments for girls, third-class for boys. Another new boy joining at the time was Major T.B. Pearn who had participated in the Arnhem landings and had now become our new headmaster. He was especially musically inclined and soon had the main hall resounding to the whole school belting out the words of ‘Jerusalem’. Tel. 01308 423031 The Marshwood Vale Magazine August 2020 47


PROPERTY ROUND-UP

Let the Sunshine In! By Helen Fisher

CREWKERNE £650,000

A 1920s Mediterranean-style villa set centrally within its beautiful, mature gardens. Well presented, with 5 bedrooms and views from every room. Dining room lit by an atrium and large sliding doors to decking area. Large basement for storage. Acre garden with water feature, trees, shrubs and 4 outbuildings. Garage and ample parking. Knight Frank Tel: 01935 808648

LYME REGIS £300,000

A spacious ground floor apartment in a elevated position with sea and town views, with plenty of natural light. Original features inc: large bay window and fireplace with coal effect gas fire. Beautifully kept lawn communal gardens plus a range of mature shrubs and trees. With allocated off-road parking and visitor spaces. Symonds and Sampson Tel: 01308 422092

BEER £650,000

A beautifully presented 3 double bedroom former farmhouse close to the sea. Set in a quiet location yet very easy access into the village. Spacious with high ceilings and plenty of natural light. Family bathroom with roll-top bath plus family shower room. Fully enclosed garden with 2 small trees, summerhouse and timber shed. Private garage and parking. Gordon and Rumsby Tel: 01297 553768 48 The Marshwood Vale Magazine August 2020 Tel. 01308 423031

UPLODERS £450,000

A very well maintained detached south-facing bungalow with 3 bedrooms, set in an attractive village. With uPVC double-glazed windows and doors and modern kitchen and bathroom. Beautifully landscaped private, secluded gardens with paved terrace and flower and shrub boarders. Garage block and off-road parking. Kennedys Tel: 01308 427329

CHIDEOCK £775,000

A detached Arts and Crafts-style 4 bedroom house in a stunning rural yet convenient position. Recently extended and improved with classical and modern styling. With bi—folding doors & roof lantern in the kitchen/family and room triple aspects in many rooms. Secluded, well stocked gardens with carport, garage and workshop/studio. Ample parking. Stags Tel: 01308 428000

WEST BAY £365,000

A stunning elevated ground floor apartment with 2 double bedrooms and views across the harbour. High specification contemporary accommodation and spacious open plan living area with ample natural light. Built in wardrobes, under floor heating and an under lit bath. Allocated parking in a gated parking area. Goadsby Tel: 01308 420000


South West gets top Awards Again

T

he finalists for the national VisitEngland awards have been announced and the South West’s position as England’s top region for quality have been further reinforced with 13 of the 53 finalists—including the Three Horseshoes in Burton Bradstock as a finalist in the Pub of the Year category. Nominations for the national awards were put forward following the South West Tourism Excellence awards in Exeter Cathedral in February, following a record year for the awards with 773 entries into the Dorset, Cornwall, Bristol, Bath and Somerset, Devon and South West awards. Since then the nominees have been through a further round of national judging leading to the announcement of national finalists.

Robin Barker from South West awards organisers Services for Tourism, commented: ‘In what is an extraordinarily difficult year for tourism and South West England, it’s great to have this positive news to share. The success of these businesses—and the region as a whole—pays real testament to the innovation, passion and commitment of tourism across the South West and I pay tribute to every one of them. This year’s regional awards are also currently open for entry and I hope this news will encourage many more businesses to get involved.’ The finalists are all invited to attend an online virtual event on Monday 17 August when they will be awarded a Bronze, Silver or Gold award.

Tel. 01308 423031 The Marshwood Vale Magazine August 2020 49


Food&Dining

ROSEMARY ICE CREAM

A Rosemary Ice Cream, churned in the traditional way. This fragrant ice-cream is delicious served with summer fruit tarts.

INGREDIENTS

DIRECTIONS

• • • • •

1. Put the milk and rosemary sprig in a saucepan and over a low heat bring to the boil. Remove from the heat and allow to stand for 30 minutes. 2. Remove the rosemary sprig, place the pan back over the heat and return the infused milk to the boil. 3. In a bowl, beat the egg yolks and sugar together and then, still beating, pour in the milk. 4. Return the custard to the pan and stir constantly over a low heat until the custard forms a film over the back of a wooden spoon. Do not allow the custard to boil or it will separate. 5. Remove the pan from the heat. Allow the custard to cool and stir in the cream. 6. Transfer the cooled custard to an ice-cream maker and follow the manufacturer’s instructions.

300ml (1/2 pint) milk 1 large sprig rosemary, bruised 4 egg yolks 100g (3 1/2oz) caster sugar 300ml (1/2 pint) double cream Makes 1 1/2 pints

LESLEY WATERS

50 The Marshwood Vale Magazine August 2020 Tel. 01308 423031


Biscuits take First Prize BISCUITS inspired by one of the Westcountry’s most iconic landmarks took first prize in a competition run recently by Bridport Museum. Sarah and Isla Smith’s ‘Colmer’s Hill’ biscuits took First prize and Tracey Barclay’s monkey’s fist rope cake came Second. Caroline Parkin from Leakers Bakery generously donated the prizes of £100 and a £25 Leakers Voucher. She was joined by Bridget Bolwell of Bridport Local Food Group to judge the entries. Both ladies said they were so impressed with the creativity of all the entries. This is what they said about the winners: ‘We liked the fact that the biscuits were cut in the shape of Colmer’s Hill. We thought it was a really good representation of the Hill and very well observed trees, clouds, path, colouring, although they are obviously in 2D. There is a real aliveness to them which makes them into a 3D representation— good enough to eat!’ Describing the Second Prize winner’s biscuits they said: ‘We liked this because it speaks of Bridport’s heritage and the Sea. We thought it was very clever use of the “rope”. It was well coloured and intricately worked to create the fender. We also appreciated being able to see how the rope was built around the delicious looking Victoria sponge inside!’ Isla, aged 10, said: ‘We decided to make these biscuits as Colmer’s Hill is the most famous hill in Bridport and we have a picture of it at home. I helped make the actual biscuits and Mummy helped to decorate them as they were quite big. We’ve really missed The Museum being open and seeing the exhibitions, my favourite activity inside is the rope making where you can make your own piece of rope using the long machine!’

Tel. 01308 423031 The Marshwood Vale Magazine August 2020 51


CHILLED PEA SOUP WITH SMOKED SALMON Apart from eating raw peas straight from the pod - picked from my own garden minutes before - I love pea soup, with that almost unreal intensity of flavour and colour and silky texture. To keep that fresh garden taste you have to make soup properly; keep the cooking time short. And although peas are coming into season, you can get as good a fresh taste from frozen. In fact they’ll give you a better result, and in a fraction of the time. I’ve been getting a lot of trimmings of my home smoked salmon from my food truck so added a few to this just lightly poached but it’s an optional add on)

MARK HIX

INGREDIENTS

DIRECTIONS

• 1 leek, roughly chopped and washed • 1 tbls rapeseed oil • 1.5 litres vegetable stock • 250 - 300g fresh or frozen peas (reserve a few for garnish) • A few sprigs of mint • Salt and freshly ground black pepper

1. Gently cook the leek in the oil until soft. Add the vegetable stock, season with salt and pepper and simmer for 20 minutes. 2. Add the peas and mint, bring back to the boil and simmer for 6 - 7 minutes. 3. Blend the soup in a liquidiser until smooth and strain through a fine meshed sieve into a bowl on iced water. Correct the seasoning if necessary. 4. Meanwhile poach the pieces of salmon in water for 30 seconds and drain. 5. Pour the soup into chilled soup bowls add the peas and spoon the salmon on top.

To serve • Some extra peas, cooked • A few pieces of smoked or fresh salmon ( 60 - 80g) Serves 4 - 6 52 The Marshwood Vale Magazine August 2020 Tel. 01308 423031


Tackle Tingle By Nick Fisher My tackle tingle has gone. I don’t know where. I don’t know when. It just went. Just like that. Gone. There was a time, not so long ago, when tackle got me so hot. I was a total tackle junkie. The sight of an Orvis catalogue or a Harris Angling American lure selection guide, would send me into wobbly raptures. With my hands on a tasty tackle catalogue I’d be like a horny schoolboy with a copy of Men Only. Tackle had an arousing effect. I couldn’t help myself from ordering something. A four-piece travel rod with its own zip up case. A jerk bait rod. A set of pike lures with their own internal battery that lit up underwater. Monofilament tippet so fine and yet so strong it was like invisible wire. A new Scandinavian filleting knife supple yet stiletto sharp. A pair of bass-shaped socks.... You name it—if it related to fishing in any conceivable way, I desired it. My appetite and interest for tackle from all nations and all corners of the world, was all-consuming. On my honeymoon I treated my new and perfectly-formed bride to a fishing tackle pilgrimage. We scoured the auction sales and super stores of New York and Florida for tackle old and new. ‘I practically divorced you before the first week was over’ said Helen, when I reminded her about Captain Harry’s tackle store in Miami. ‘You spent three hours in Captain Harry’s, walking up and down the shelves, again and again. I was so bored I wanted to die’. In those days, what lit my fire and floated my boat tackle-wise, was anything new. Anything weird and wonderful. Anything I’d never seen before. And I was a sucker for a bit of flash packaging and fancy spin. American tackle was all so different, so exotic, so previously unseen. Now, with easy global marketing and internet availability, everything from anywhere can be had tomorrow. Which should be really exciting, but somehow it’s not. ‘Look, it’s a four-weight with a specially designed ergonomic grip’ said Tim, the other day, as we parked by my lake. ‘And the reel is Hardy’s carved out of a solid block of anodised aluminium’. He took his brand new tackle out of the car and handed me the outfit. The reel was undoubtedly a thing of beauty. A work of fine craftsmanship and hi-tech engineering. But when I held it in my hands, I felt nothing. No quickening of the pulse. No murmurings of salacious excitement. Nothing. ‘Very nice’ I said, quickly handing it back and moving off towards the water. Only a couple of years ago I’d have lusted after a reel like this. I’d have asked a million technical questions and begged to try it out. Now, I couldn’t really give a toss. What’s happened to me? Have I lost my kit-libido?

Has my tackle tingle all dried up? In the old days, tackle for me wasn’t just a means to an end. It was an entity in itself. A hit. A thrill. A passion. Now I simply just don’t care. I buy very little tackle now. And if I do, I buy the cheapest most basic stuff. Stuff I can chuck carelessly in the cupboard under the stairs and forget about until the next time I go fishing. Playing with my tackle used to be like a form of piscatorial masturbation. I’d get it out. Sort it into boxes. Clean it. Oil it. Construct new rigs. Polish rusty rings. Get myself all excited in the absence of water. It was a solitary Onanistic vice. Then I guess, one day, I just grew up. I put aside boyish things and refocussed on the real thing: fish. Tackle bores me now. ‘You really have to look at these’ said Tim one day when he came to visit. ‘They’re amazing!’ he breathed as he handed me a stack of Japanese fishing tackle catalogues ‘Enjoy!’ Two weeks later, I hadn’t so much as glanced as the stack of glossy mags. There was no natural urge. I had to force myself to peruse the pages. And, Tim was right. The Japanese development of style and design was innovative. Although all the text was in unintelligible Japanese, the photos and diagrams spoke of a whole new era of east-west fusion, blossoming into a truly original selection of stuff. I scanned the glossy pages, willing myself to feel something. Like an old man in the absence of Viagra, I willed myself to get excited, to feel a stirring arousal. But still, I felt nothing. Sure it was fun to look at, but I wanted nothing. I have more fishing rods and lures than I will ever use. Through the years of making TV shows and radio shows about fishing, I have a acquired a stack of stuff, yet I only really use about ten percent of the total. The older I get, the more I go fishing the less tackle I ever carry with me. It’s like I’m trying to achieve a Zen-like state of tacklelessness. I dream of going fishing with no extra baggage, no tackle alternatives, to kit conundrums to be solved. Maybe it’s just because I’m no good with tackle. I break it. I lose it. I mess it up. Which only depresses me. I like to think that I’ve lost my tackle tingle because my fishing has evolved to a higher, more piscatorially aesthetic plain. That I’m no longer moved by the flashy superficial trimmings of the sport and have instead narrowed my perspective so I only care about the real deal. The location. The Nature. The environment and the things with fins. Or maybe I’m just getting old and can’t get it up like I used to. When a man is tired of tackle, is he tired of life? Tel. 01308 423031 The Marshwood Vale Magazine August 2020 53


Guest Recipe

Davide Del Gatto & Kristina Gustafsson Kristina and Davide have spent years serving satisfying salads from their London food stall to crowds of adoring fans – they’re experts at creating punchy flavours and exciting combinations. Topped with meat, chicken and fish, these recipes are nourishing, delicious, and packed with protein.

GRILLED APRICOTS AND PEACHES, COUSCOUS, MINT, SERRANO HAM AND PINE NUTS

INGREDIENTS • 60g/2¼oz/¼ cup pine nuts • 200g/7oz/1 cup moghrabieh (giant couscous) • 8 ripe apricots • 8 ripe peaches • Vegetable oil, for rubbing • Juice of ½ lemon • Splash of extra-virgin olive oil • Splash of balsamic vinegar • 160g/5½ oz thinly sliced serrano ham • Salt • Mint leaves, to garnish

3.

4. 5.

Serves 4 Dressing Suggestion. Splash of balsamic vinegar

6.

DIRECTIONS

Savage Salads: Fierce Flavours, Filling Power-ups Frances Lincoln ISBN 978-0-7112-3765-0

54 The Marshwood Vale Magazine August 2020 Tel. 01308 423031

1. Toast the pine nuts in a non-stick frying pan over a low heat for 5–7 minutes, tossing occasionally until golden-brown. Remove from the heat and set aside. 2. Bring to the boil plenty of water in a large pot, with a pinch of salt. Add the couscous and cook

7.

for 9–10 minutes until soft. Drain the couscous and rinse under cold running water. Cut the apricots and peaches into quarters. Put your stove on maximum heat and place a grill pan or griddle on top. Make sure the pan is smoking hot before you start grilling the fruit. Rub the peaches and apricots with a little bit of vegetable oil to keep them from sticking to the grill. Put the fruit on the grill and leave for about 5 minutes until they do not stick to the grill any more. Once all the fruit is grilled and cooled, put it in a bowl together with the couscous and pine nuts. Squeeze in the lemon juice and dress with a splash of extra-virgin olive oil and balsamic vinegar and mix together well. Place everything on a plate and serve with the sliced serrano ham and fresh mint leaves on top.


Guest Recipe

© Corey Schweikert

PETER GORDON

MINTED BABY POTATOES, PEAS AND CRÈME FRAÎCHE

INGREDIENTS

DIRECTIONS

• 750g baby potatoes, skins scrubbed if dirty • 250g peas, fresh or frozen (if using fresh in the pod, you’ll need just over 500g • 8 shallots, or 2 banana shallots, thinly sliced • 1 tbsp vegetable oil • 200g crème fraîche (thick sour cream) • 40 mint leaves (1 loose handful), shredded

1. Boil the potatoes in lightly salted water until almost done (when you can insert a knife through them). Add the peas and cook for an additional 2 minutes. Drain into a colander and run cold water over them for a few minutes, then drain again. 2. While the potatoes are cooking, sauté the shallots in the oil with ¼ teaspoon of salt over a medium heat, stirring frequently, until caramelized and slightly crisp. Tip into a bowl and stir in the crème fraîche (thick sour cream). 3. Tip the potatoes and peas into a large bowl and add the shallots and the mint. Stir together and taste for seasoning. Transfer into a clean bowl.

For 8 as a side dish

Peter Gordon is the pioneer of fusion food. For 40 years he has gathered ingredients, textures and techniques from across the kitchens of the world, combining them in thrilling new ways to imagine the impossible. He was born in Whanganui, New Zealand, and collated his first cookbook aged just four. With eight book to his name and a string of awardwinning restaurants Peter’s eclectic style of cuisine has had a global reach.

Savour: Salads for all Seasons by Peter Gordon, photography by Lisa Linder, published by Jacqui Small (£25). Tel. 01308 423031 The Marshwood Vale Magazine August 2020 55


Arts&Entertainment

Angles of Inspiration Devon artist Richard Kaye shows recent works in Lyme Regis

D

espite there being no shortage of ‘lockdown’ blogs on the internet the full results of the last few months of enforced isolation will probably take decades to unravel. In the early days, with a rush of enthusiasm, many people predicted an enormous surge in creativity. There’s no doubt that happened for a lot of people, however many writers and artists who had expected an opportunity to produce volumes of work were surprised to find that wasn’t the case. Some writers particularly found it difficult to be creative and the same story came from many artists and makers. That expected burst of creativity just didn’t come—not for everyone anyway. However, Ottery St Mary based artist Richard Kaye is one of those that found the process productive. As a print-maker, with no access to the machinery he needed to produce his work he had a change of focus and a welcome return to painting and drawing. ‘Painting and drawing tend to be the go to mediums for artists in that situation’ he said. With the studio he uses in Exeter closed he wanted to work in a medium that was naturally comfortable to him. He wanted to be quickly up and running instead of thinking too much about any complex working structures. ‘I wanted something that was going to be simple to get straight into the creative zone with,’ he said ‘so I picked up some canvases and brushes and that was something that I could start making marks with straight away, whereas with something like a screen-print, it’s much more planned.’ For Richard that immediacy allowed him to explore and develop a theme of abstract landscapes that he had already been working on over the last few years. Some of it was work he showed in his last exhibition but realised they weren’t actually finished. ‘So I carried on painting on top of them for a while’ he explained. ‘I would say most of the painting work reflects the local area. All the paintings I have done are very similar in that the subject matter is abstract landscapes that take on that cubic geometric form, with quite bright colours and a subdued greeny blue sky feel - quite a tranquil sky.’ Despite being more urban the landscapes compliment

the other work he will be displaying in an exhibition at The Malthouse Gallery in Lyme Regis from mid-August. A fan of Brutalist Architecture, Richard also recently completed a small series of drawings focusing mainly on stairways. These images tend to be very bold and distinctive, with some of the more urban subjects being somewhat unexpected. Richard takes pleasure in finding strong compositions and angular forms within subjects which are often missed or ignored. Turning these images into highly detailed and intricate prints was the basis of his introduction to printmaking. In the last few year’s Richard has started to work on a larger scale, with screen prints which he hand-tints using watercolour. The colours he is using now have moved away from the more subdued pastel tones toward a brighter complementary range as well as neons. These images are really angular, edgy and bold. The neon ones even inspired Richard to start a street wear clothing brand ‘2_Brutal’. Trained at Bournemouth College of Art, Richard has had a varied career that has occasionally veered away from art. Apart from a stint as a chef at the Alexandra Hotel and time making false teeth in Axminster he also spent a year as a DJ travelling the world with Indie band Ash. ‘But the one thing that’s run through my career is my need for creativity in some way shape of form, whether it’s art or music’ he said. ‘Art has always been there. I’ve had periods where it has slowed down but if I had to go on a journey there’s no way I would go on a train without having a pad and pen with me. I’d walk up and down the train looking for people who’ve fallen asleep and I’d use that as an opportunity to do a life drawing.’ He has a series of drawings called ‘sleepers’ that he hopes may fit into the upcoming exhibition. The upcoming show at the Malthouse Gallery, though varied in medium, clearly shows that he has a love for strong compositions and compelling use of colour. Following on from his first very successful show at the gallery in 2018, this sees a growth in confidence and a very refreshing show with striking architectural emphasis.


Richard Kaye, Recent Work 2017-2020 is at The Malthouse Gallery from August 14 to 26. The gallery opening times are 10.30 – 4.30. Visit www.townmill.org.uk for more information. Tel. 01308 423031 The Marshwood Vale Magazine August 2020 57


Never and Always

DAVID INSHAW AT SLADERS YARD, WEST BAY

Willow Tree 2019 Pencil on Paper - David Inshaw

A

solo exhibition of over fifty recent paintings, drawings and etchings by David Inshaw, the consummate painter of the English landscape, is at Sladers Yard in West Bay until 12 September. Inshaw is at the height of his powers, able to paint extraordinary light effects, moonlit trees, birds in flight, bonfires and figures not posing but caught up in their own inner lives. David’s landscapes are real places, interpreted through his memories, dreams and associations, in paintings that are both intensely personal and universal in their potency. Called ‘perhaps the greatest living proponent of the English Romantic tradition’ (The Spectator), David Inshaw grew up in Biggin Hill, close to Samuel Palmer’s Shoreham. He studied at Beckenham School of Art and the Royal Academy Schools, with a six month scholarship to study in Paris, before

58 The Marshwood Vale Magazine August 2020 Tel. 01308 423031

he started to teach painting and printmaking at the West of England College of Art in Bristol. It was a girlfriend who introduced him to the work of Thomas Hardy, whose way of describing landscape to convey mood, struck a light which has ignited Inshaw’s paintings ever since. In 1975, with Peter Blake and five others, he formed the Brotherhood of Ruralists, who devoted themselves to painting subjects drawn from nature and English mythology and literature. Together they exhibited widely in this country and internationally. The following year Inshaw’s most famous painting, The Badminton Game, was exhibited in Bath and Edinburgh and was bought by the Tate Gallery. Inshaw exhibited at Waddingtons in London until 1998. Since then he has been represented by Agnews, the Fine Art Society and most recently by the Redfern Gallery. His work has been included


in numerous major Arts Council touring exhibitions and museum shows. He has featured in a number of television films including Arena in 1984 and Hidden Paintings in 2011. His work is in the Arts Council Collection, Bristol Museum and Art Gallery, the British Council, the British Museum, The Government Art Collection, The Victoria Art Gallery, Bath, the Royal West of England Academy, Bristol, Tyne and Wear Museums, Tate and the Wiltshire Museum as well as many of the finest private art collections in this country and overseas. David Inshaw has seen West Bay and its environs as a place of inspiration since the seventies. His famous Cricket Ground paintings are set at Little Bredy, just up the road. In 2007 he showed an extraordinary collection of major West Bay paintings in the then very new Sladers Yard gallery. He has showed in various group shows here with a second solo show in 2013.

This, his third solo exhibition, includes three magnificent tree drawings and a powerful group of etchings based on earlier paintings of bonfires and fireworks in West Bay and Hay Bluff as well as over forty wonderful fabulous oil paintings. A fully illustrated catalogue with a foreword by Simon Rae is available to download free or order from the gallery at £10 plus £2 p&p. All the work can be viewed online at sladersyard.co.uk. David Inshaw and Peter Robinson will be in conversation with readings of poems from Bonjour Mr Inshaw, poems by Peter Robinson, paintings by David Inshaw, on Saturday 5 September at 12 noon followed by lunch. Numbers are limited. Tickets are £10 plus lunch available from Sladers Yard. For further information please contact Anna Powell on 01308 459511 or gallery@sladersyard.co.uk www.sladersyard.co.uk

Tel. 01308 423031 The Marshwood Vale Magazine August 2020 59


August

GALLERIES

August 13 - 31. The Gallery, Symondsbury Natural Forms. Lyme Bay Arts CIC will be welcoming back visitors to the Gallery in Symondsbury with its first post-lockdown exhibition entitled Natural Forms. The Gallery has re-scheduled its postponed Contemporary Crafts exhibition to run from 3-21 September. The Gallery will be open Thurs-Mon from 10.30-4.30 (closed Tues/Wed) and will be complying with relevant social distancing. The Gallery, Symondsbury Estate, Symondsbury, Bridport DT6 6HG. www.lymebayarts.co.uk. August 1 - 29. The Arts Stable Contemplation. Ceramics by Adam Buick, Nel Faulkner, Jonathan Garratt, Ali Herbert, Nigel Lambert, David Roberts, Jason Wason, with furniture by Matthew Burt. Curated by Cigdem Baker Open Thur - Sat, 10am - 3pm. Kelly Ross Fine Art, Child Okeford, Blandford, Dorset DT11 8HB Tel: 01258 863866 www.theartstable.co.uk Until August 12. The Malthouse Gallery Immersion. Joe Webster. Exhibition of breath-taking new artwork by acclaimed Southwest outdoor painter Joe Webster. 11am -4.30pm Sunday-Wednesday 11am-8pm Thursday-Saturday Artist in Gallery. The Malthouse, The Town Mill, Lyme Regis DT7 3PU. www.townmill.org.uk/ Until August 13 Four Contemporary Landscape Painters. Hester Berry, Day Bowman, Rita Brown and Sam Travers. Guggleton Farm Arts, Stalbridge, Dorset. DT10 2RQ. https:// guggletonfarmarts.com/

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August 14 - 26. The Malthouse Gallery Richard Kaye, Recent Work 2017-2020. Featuring works by Richard Kaye, including Painting, Printmaking and Drawing. Opening times: 10.30-4.30. The Malthouse, The Town Mill, Lyme Regis DT7 3PU. www.townmill.org.uk/ Until September 12 The Summer Exhibition. A delightful showcase of diverse Artworks feature in this annual popular mixed exhibition. The show will include brand new oil paintings by the President of the Pastel Society, Jeannette Hayes and long awaited paintings by Kathy Little, a Gallery Artist that has exhibited with Artwave West for nine years. Regular visitors will also be familiar with Suchi Chidambaram’s dramatic palette knife paintings and will not be disappointed to see her new small paintings in the gallery. There will be numerous other artists and, as customary for this season, the exhibition will be constantly changing as pictures leave for their new homes and different pieces fill the gaps! Open Tues-Sat 10-5. Artwave West, Morcombelake, Dorset DT6 6DY 01297 489746. www.artwavewest.com Until September 13 Never and Always. David Inshaw. Recent paintings and works on paper. the consummate painter of the English landscape, peopled by dreamlike figures, birds and animals. Called ‘perhaps the greatest living proponent of the English Romantic tradition’ (Spectator), Inshaw invokes the powers of nature, the moon, trees, stars, birds, animals, men, women, ancient landscapes and the sea to create his powerful intensely personal paintings. Sladers Yard Gallery and Café Sladers, West Bay Road, West Bay, Bridport, Dorset DT6 4EL. 01308 459511. https://sladersyard.wordpress.com/


THE SUMMER EXHIBITION AT ARTWAVE WEST

‘Blue Haze II’ by Jeannette Hayes PPS from The Summer Exhibition at Artwave West in Morcombelake. Until September 12. www.artwavewest.com

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Put a face in the window with

BRIDPORT’S PORTRAIT CHALLENGE

PART of the ‘Curtain Up On Communities’ initiative, Bridport Rights Respecting Town and The Lyric Theatre are championing a Portrait Challenge for Bridport to get involved in during the summer holidays. While many people have not been seen or have felt invisible during lockdown, organisers believe this community project is a way of seeing and celebrating each other’s faces. With additional support from Bridport Museum, Magna Housing, SEAFAIR, Bridport Open Studios, Bridport Contemporary Gallery and most importantly the participation of anyone in Bridport, The Portrait Challenge hopes to turn the town’s streets into an art gallery. The project invites us to draw our community and fill windows with faces. The organisers of the challenge have stressed that this is for everyone! It’s a chance to feel good, to spend time thinking about and drawing someone you care about. Everyone is invited to take part up to 31 August—flooding the town with portraits. So how does it work? It’s very simple. Just draw a portrait of someone you know then put it up on display, in your window, or on Facebook or Instagram using the hashtag #theportraitchallenge. Try drawing yourself, your family, the shopkeeper, the bus driver, the delivery driver, your next-door neighbour, people working in shops, your pet—or all of them. Draw with a pen, potato print, charcoal, whatever you have to hand. You could try drawing mini-portraits or giant portraits, and make as many portraits as you want. Perhaps you might like to ask a local business to put it up in their window. Simply have a go—there will be pop-up portrait drawing lessons in parks and online, so you can learn something new and there will be drawing, making and painting happening everywhere. Bridport Museum would also like you to vote for a few of the portraits to be archived in its collections for future generations. For any more info see www.the-lyric.com.

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Natural Forms in Symondsbury REOPENING EXHIBITION INSPIRED BY NATURE

Carolyn King, Andy Rollo, Caroline Barnes and Christine Allison are some of the artists taking part in The Gallery’s new opening

EMOTIONS and connections with the natural world around us are behind the artwork that has been chosen to re-launch The Gallery and The Space, the two exhibition venues on the Symondsbury Estate. From 13-31 August, in an open showcase called Natural Forms, local and regional artists will be sharing their recent 2D and 3D creations inspired by nature. The Gallery and The Space welcome visitors from 10.30-16.30 Thursdays through Mondays, and all relevant distancing and hygiene requirements are in place. The Gallery, Symondsbury Estate, Bridport DT6 6HG. For further information, contact Lyme Bay Arts via phone 01308 301326 or email Phil@lymebayarts.co.uk

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Yvonne* By Louisa Adjoa Parker

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vonne* was born in London and her family is from Jamaica. As well as Devon, she has also lived in Lancaster. She moved to Devon as an adult in 1996. ‘Back then I could go days without seeing another person of colour which was a weird experience. I felt like I was a person of intrigue; I have memories of going to the shop and people asking to touch my hair, or standing at the bus stop and a woman saying I must feel the cold more where I’m from.’ People often ask if Yvonne is a student or holidaymaker, ‘i.e. not actually a resident of this white space,’ and often look surprised when she says that she lives and works here. ‘It took me a couple of years to adjust to living in the West Country; I was always acutely aware that I was an outsider and that my otherness was constantly highlighted and pointed out to me. I still feel ‘other’ here, but the demographic of the cities in Devon has changed, with increased numbers of students, refugee families and so on, so I am less of a novelty.’ Yvonne experienced a couple of ‘particularly awful’ racist incidents in the street in a city centre. She was verbally racially abused. This also happened once when she was on a bus. She feels that when it comes to more subtle instances of racism, she blocks them out: ‘I don’t have the physical or emotional energy for them and I now think ‘this is not my s**t.’ These experiences were ‘pretty damaging’ emotionally, and left Yvonne feeling hyper-vigilant. ‘After the incidents I was unable to go to (and am still conscious of being in) certain areas of the city. I continue to be conscious of my safety due to my visibility. My sense of self was less shaken, which I think is due to growing up in a Black family in London, which affirmed a strong sense of self and Black identity. I feel like Devon is my home but I’m not sure that I “belong” to the community.’ Yvonne has experienced living in both urban and rural areas. She says the main differences are that in urban areas, there is less of a novelty factor and people seeing things as exotic—cultural diversity tends to be the norm, and therefore it’s more accepted. ‘I do think that racism exists in both rural and urban areas though, but the manifestation is different. In rural areas, people of colour (POC) are seen as not belonging, being strange or people from another place, unlike the locals.’ In terms of people of colour and our relationship to the natural environment found in rural parts of the UK, Yvonne believes that POC have ‘a long history of being connected to nature and the land in our countries of origin and the homes to which we have migrated.’ Her dad and his friends cultivated an allotment for over 30 years as a way of maintaining contact with nature. Being in touch with the land was also important to people from the refugee community that she used to work with. She believes that it is the history of colonialism and migration that brought POC from nature into urban areas. ‘One of the things I like best about living in Devon is being close to the wider outdoors. I love living by the sea, being close to the moors and being in touch with nature. I think POC being outside in nature is not a common sight in Devon,so when doing this I feel very visible, but I don’t let this deter me.’ *Name has been changed

Yvonne’s story is one of the many stories that Louisa has been gathering for The Inclusion Agency (TIA). To read more visit www.whereareyoureallyfrom.co.uk.

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The Lit Fix

Marshwood Vale-based author, Sophy Roberts, gives us her slim pickings for August.

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ince the last issue, when we were just coming out of lockdown, I haven’t much changed my habit for slim reads. In these distracting times, I’m still attached to those short books which allow me to escape for an hour or two each day—something I can start and finish in the bath, or before I fell asleep at night—giving me a daily sense of achievement (and much-needed escape) in these otherwise bewildering times. I have, however, found myself picking up more travel writing than usual, or at least books with a keen sense of place, which is perhaps a reflection of itchy feet. I’m also being drawn to food writing as I dream of eating oysters shucked on a Breton beach. Here’s my shortlist of books for August—some short stories, a memoir and an ode to a mollusc (recipes included). The Piano Tuner is an exceptional novel by the American contemporary author, Daniel Mason, about a nineteenthcentury Englishman who travels to colonial Burma to fix up an instrument belonging to a Kurtz-like character in the jungle. Its themes, explored in this persuasive fiction, are not unlike Joseph Conrad’s Heart of Darkness. I was therefore quick to jump on the author’s latest: a marvellous new book of his short stories, A Registry of My Passage Upon The Earth. In it you will find a particularly moving tale about survivor’s guilt, told through the experience of a man who enjoys army re-enactments, and my favourite: a short story about the Dorset-born genius, Alfred Russel Wallace, a contemporary of Charles Darwin, whose work in biogeography led to Wallace simultaneously articulating the theory of evolution through natural selection. Mason’s writing is transporting, taking you deep into the thick of the Malay forests. Mason’s pen, so adept with fiction, gives spirit to the boundless curiosity of the scientist’s brain (Mason’s ‘other job’ is as a practising psychiatrist and a professor in the department of psychiatry at Stanford University,

California). His Wallace story, entitled ‘The Ecstasy of Alfred Russel Wallace’ is also a prescient reminder to contemporary readers of the wonder of the natural world we are doing such a remarkable job of destroying. Gift from the Sea is an essay written by Anne Morrow Lindbergh, a remarkably brave woman (despite her political muddles tarnishing her reputation) who ventured from Kamchatka to the Arctic with her husband, the aviator Charles Lindbergh. This 1955 instant bestseller records her solo retreat to a cottage by the sea on Florida’s Captiva Island. Using seashells as a means to anchor her meditative journeys, this book is a trove of insights about the necessity of both the near and the far in our lives, particularly among women. The far-flung can also be a difficult interior journey, she says: “We must relearn to be alone”. It is a phrase I have scribbled onto a note on my fridge, to remind myself about silver linings in the Age of Covid. Optimism is a powerful emotion, especially in times like these. And if there is one thing that makes me salivate with appreciation for life it is the food writing of Mary Frances Kennedy Fisher, another American who commanded huge post-war celebrity. Her style is pithy, sensuous, and witty. Her prose weaves like the storytelling of an amusing friend you want to keep plying with wine. “To Mary Frances food was a metaphor for life,” observes the contemporary critic, Ruth Reichl (it was she who flagged up M.F.K Fisher’s writing to me, in an article published by an exceptional blog, lithub. com, which I recommend to everyone). As a small taster of Fisher’s oeuvre, try Consider the Oyster. It reads like an orison for a mollusc, taking us from docks of Marseilles to the gumbo stews of the Deep South, with recipes gleaned from home kitchens, shifty Russians and many more besides. I finished it as this column went to press, her writing leading me straight out of my door to Mark Hix’s new venture, HIX Oyster & Fish Truck, at Felicity’s Farm Shop on the A35, to stock up on supplies.

Sophy Roberts is a freelance journalist who writes about travel and culture. She writes regularly for FT Weekend, among others. Her first book, The Lost Pianos of Siberia—one of The Sunday Times top five non-fiction books for summer 2020—was published in February by Doubleday. Buy any of the books above at Archway Bookshop in Axminster in August and receive a 10% discount when you mention Marshwood Vale Magazine. archwaybookshop.co.uk. Tel. 01308 423031 The Marshwood Vale Magazine August 2020 65


The Mayflower Generatiion by Rebecca Fraser REVIEWED BY BRUCE HARRIS

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ow many of the events planned to commemorate the departure from Plymouth of the Mayflower in September 1620 will actually happen in our present situation remains to be seen. It is to be hoped that as much of the intended programme which can go ahead will do, but for those whose knowledge of the event is sketchy, this book will be an invaluable aid. Rebecca Fraser is a biographer as well as a historian, and her writing is people-led rather than dominated by dates and events, which gives the story a particular poignancy. While the venture had a very religious and political background, it is the extraordinary courage, determination and persistence of the people which is striking from the start. The Mayflower pilgrims had already fled to Leiden, in Holland, to escape the oppressive religious atmosphere in England. The hopes of greater religious toleration invested in the accession of James 1 in 1603 had largely been dashed, and Puritan clergy were being widely ousted from their livings. When further difficulties began to arise in Holland too, over 100 of the Leiden English Puritan community sailed to England in a small boat called the Speedwell. Their first attempt to leave Plymouth in August 2020 in both the Mayflower and the Speedwell failed because of the unworthiness of the Speedwell. The Mayflower, in truth, wasn’t much better – the ship was scrapped in 1624 – but if the expedition was to go ahead, the pilgrims had no other choice than to all pack in to the Mayflower, which was 100 feet long and 25 feet wide, a ‘bathtub with masts’. After a profoundly difficult and uncomfortable two month voyage, 102 pilgrims and 30 crew landed on the coast of New England in November, probably the worst possible time to arrive. Half of the pilgrims died during the first winter, and the colony would have been wiped out altogether but for the help of the local Indians. Central to the success or failure of the expedition was the Winslow family, originally yeomen farmers turned cloth merchants In Droitwich, near Worcester. Edward Winslow became the Governor of the Plymouth Colony, and he was a fascinating and in many ways admirable character whose abilities are adeptly illustrated by Fraser. The persistence and courage of the community in the teeth of dreadful obstacles and a death rate, including some suicides, which would have totally destroyed the morale of lesser people resounds through the story, and at the centre of it all is Edward Winslow, whose negotiating skills and ability to deal successfully with the local Indians gradually improved the colonists’ chances of survival. He established a relationship of trust and mutual respect with the prominent local Indian chief Massasoit which literally rescued the expedition from oblivion. During the Commonwealth regime of 1650-60, Edward spent some years in England working in senior governmental positions. However, the Restoration changed the situation 66 The Marshwood Vale Magazine August 2020 Tel. 01308 423031

radically, and Charles II eventually imposed direct government on the New England colonies, which had become used to considerable autonomy. The new government also no longer recognised the Indian wampum shell-currency, meaning the Indians could no longer pay for the English goods they wanted, particularly the tools. Over the years, this also meant the only way the Indians had of paying their debts was by selling their land. Edward’s son Josiah and Massasoit’s son Metacom, the latter’s name anglicised to Philip, were different characters from their fathers. Josiah had similar organisational and leadership skills while lacking his father’s careful diplomacy and respect for the Indians. Philip saw that the only possible conclusion to the way things were developing would the total subjugation of his people to the English, meaning the loss of their lands and their way of life. In 1675, he achieved an unprecedented union of the tribes, whose combined strength still heavily outnumbered the English, and a vicious conflict which has become known as Philip’s War broke out right across New England and almost brought the colonies to their knees before the Indians were eventually defeated. We all know the outcome, and while we can respect the colonists’ determination and achievements, there is little to celebrate in the treatment of the indigenous peoples. As the years passed, the original uncompromising Puritanism of the settlers became increasingly diluted with the many and various adventurers escaping the persistent sectarianism of the British Isles. One of the great tragedies of the United States was that, while they sensibly managed to avoid the vast religious conflicts of Europe by setting themselves up as a secular state, they found another issue which would tear the country apart in slavery. Rebecca Fraser follows the lives of the original pilgrim families until the early eighteenth century, and it is an extraordinary story made all the more remarkable by the author’s diligent and detailed handling of her material. Bearing in mind that these are, in effect, the years when our people gave birth to the nation which was to become the richest and most powerful in the world, it is surprising how little many of us know of them, and I don’t exclude myself from that. Whatever its merits and faults, this story is part of our story.

The Mayflower Generation by Rebecca Fraser Published: Vintage 2018 (paperback); Chatto and Windus 2017 (hardback) www.penguin.co.uk/vintage www.mayflower400uk.org


Humankind: A Hopeful History by Rutger Bregman REVIEWED BY ANTONIA SQUIRE

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umankind has a truly radical premise in today’s world: people are basically decent. You, me, the guy half way around the world. Decent. Rutger Bregman didn’t always believe that either. He bought into the Veneer Theory, the idea that civilisation will disappear in moments of crisis. That human beings are selfish and will take care of themselves before anyone else. That when push comes to shove people will push and shove. Except we don’t. Time and again, in times of crisis, people over the world have banded together to help their neighbours. 9/11, Hurricane Katrina, The Blitz, COVID-19 all brought out the best in us. Of course, there were some people to took advantage for self-gain, but they were few and far between. In New York in 2001 most people were handing out bottled water to survivors of the Twin Towers, only a few were charging $10 for a bottle. So why are we so ready to believe the worst about people when all objective metrics show that people are basically decent? The quick answer is simple—The News. We hear about all the bad stuff going on in the world but we’ll “never see a headline reading NUMBER OF PEOPLE LIVING IN EXTREME POVERTY DOWN BY 137,000 SINCE YESTERDAY, even though it could accurately have been reported everyday over the last twenty-five years.” The long answer is, naturally, longer. A lot longer. For that we need to go back to the Enlightenment and the conflicting philosophies of Hobbes’ Leviathan and Rousseau’s Social Contract, and further back to Plato, Augustine and the concept of original sin. Why are so many religions, philosophies, economic theories etc based on the idea that humans are selfish when the vast majority of evidence suggests that we’re not? Looking at humankind through the lens of history, economics, biology, evolution many things become appar-

ent, but mainly that human societies are built on both our need and ability to connect to others in a meaningful way. We are friendly, we need social contact, we perform better when we do good and help people. Friendliness is a key point that Bregman comes back to time and again, humans are wired to cooperate, our friendly ancestors were the ones who were able to work together to solve problems, find and share solutions and ultimately survive. None of this is to say that we don’t have problems in this world, and that terrible things don’t happen. Of course, they do, we are inundated by images of such things, day in and day out—but what we are seeing on our screens is probably very different than what is being experienced by the people involved. Using science, data and social history Rutger Bregman methodically dismantles each of those taught beliefs in the inherent selfishness of others to form a new, radical and ultimately hopeful view of humanity. The author of the best-selling book Sapiens, Yuval Noah Harari, had this to say: ‘Humankind challenged me and made me see humanity from a fresh perspective.’ Have a read, you won’t regret it.

Humankind: A Hopeful History by Rutger Bregman. Bloomsbury Publishing, RRP £20. Special Marshwood Vale Reader Price £17.50 only at The Bookshop, 14 South Street, Bridport

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Health&Beauty

HELP AT HAND IN A TIME OF NEED A psychological therapies service that is part of the NHS, Steps2wellbeing offers a range of therapies to help with mental health problems. In a series of short articles, Ellie Sturrock offers details of a vital community resource. LOW MOOD AND DEPRESSION. We all know what it’s like to feel ‘depressed’ but actual depression is characterised by several symptoms that endure for more than two weeks. It can be recurrent and if a person has had three episodes of depression they are 90% more likely to have another one. Lena is 26 and works in a local caravan park. She came over from Poland three years ago. Work has been difficult. She is not sure she is being treated as fairly as some of her co-workers. She is ‘stressed out’ she says and puts herself down. She is feeling low in mood and despondent. Keith is 57, he lives locally and works as a plumber. He’s been diabetic since last year probably having gained weight after an injury at work that stops him cycling as he used to. Keith has had depression several times over the last 25 years. He has tried antidepressants in the past and some counselling. The antidepressants caused side effects and he described feeling ‘numb’ so he’s keen to try a different approach. Counselling was around a relationship problem and he is now very settled with his second wife. He feels less confident about himself and is turning down social gatherings. He has been drinking alcohol more after work then wakes feeling sluggish and tired most of the time except at night when his mind races and he wakes in the early morning finding he is going over the past and worrying about his health and the

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family. He feels he is letting his wife down. He heard about S2W and has had an assessment with a psychological wellbeing practitioner (PWP). She asked him about current problems and symptoms as well as past treatments and any risk, e.g. thoughts of suicide. She suggested he do an online web based course called ‘Lift Your Mood’ to treat his depression and after this recommended a relapse prevention programme called Mindfulness Cognitive Behavioural therapy; MBCT. Lena also had an assessment with a PWP who suggested she do a seven session psychoeducational course based on cognitive behavioural therapy called ‘Overcoming Stress, Worry and Low Mood’. The PWP also made her an appointment to speak to an Employment Advisor (EA) who has special knowledge about employment rights. The EA appointments are offered by phone. Steps2WellBeing (S2W) is an NHS service. You can self refer via the website (www.steps2wellbeing.co.uk), by email dhc.west.admin.s2w@nhs.net or by phone, 0300 790 6828. This case is made up and is not a comprehensive case explaining all aspects of depression. To know more try leaflets produced by the Royal College of Psychiatrists, https://www.rcpsych. ac.uk, MIND https://www.mind.org.uk or our website www. steps2wellbeing.co.uk.


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Boosting your immune system BY YOGA TEACHER MARY RYAN

Services&Classified CHIMNEY SWEEP

T

here are things we can all do to help ourselves, whatever the current state of our health. There has been much research in the last few decades to help us know what can boost our immune system—so that even if we get viruses and illnesses, we are in a better position to fight them off. One thing is to drink a lot of water and eat simple foods, with lots of vegetables in our diet, and not too much sugar. This doesn’t mean that we shouldn’t enjoy our food—in fact, enjoying our food helps us get much more benefit from it ... so ‘a little of what you fancy’, whether it’s chocolate, sugar or alcohol, is fine for the vast majority of people. But if you are regularly drinking so much that your body has to cope with hangovers, or eating more than your body needs, then it is not able to do its job properly of letting you do what you want to do in your life. Another thing is exercise—and walking is just about the best exercise for human beings. Most of us could walk more than we do. There is a lot of research to show that being in the fresh air, especially around trees, or the sea, or water such as lakes and streams, really helps boost the immune system. Yoga helps make people healthier, and the two most important things probably, in this respect, are the focus on breathing, and teaching people how to relax. If you can slow down your breathing a little, breathing fuller and deeper, but (and this is crucial) without any strain, then your body benefits and your mind does too—you feel calmer and clearer. You can combine this with some slow simple stretches, to give the lungs and organs more space—particularly important if you spend a lot of time sitting down. Relaxing consciously is so helpful because it is when we relax that the body can repair itself: when we are fearful, the body-mind goes into the stress response—the opposite of the relaxation response which helps the immune system. Instead, the body and mind think they need to get ready to fight or to run away—so the body diverts resources from the organs which help the immune system, to the arms and legs—great if you are being chased by a sabre-toothed tiger, not so helpful for combating many modern stressors. So one of the most important things is not to give into fear and panic. When you find yourself feeling anxious or fearful, try thinking instead of something that makes you feel happy and strong and safe: do this often and it gradually will change your thinking—and your health. 70 The Marshwood Vale Magazine August 2020 Tel. 01308 423031

ELECTRICAL


TO LET

SITUATIONS VACANT

Room to let. Own bathroom, non smoker quiet location, nr. Seaton. Tel; 0790 959 5245

Cleaner wanted in the Bridport area. fridays 5/6 hours for a holiday house change over. To work with 2 others on a house that sleeps 17 with games rooms. Immediate start Good pay 07967026444

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CURTAINS Little Curtains. Handmade Curtains, Blinds and Cushions. Contact 07443 516141 or 01308 485325 Apr 21

RESTORATION Furniture restoration. Antiques large and small carefully restored. City and Guilds qualified, ten years experience in local family firm. Phil Meadley 01297 560335

May 20

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Friendly people person needed August onwards. Saturday and Sunday mornings. Abbotsbury area. Breakfast and tidying up. Contact Angela 07967886762

FOR SALE Kirby Sentra vacuum cleaner with accessories set, shampooing system and micro allergen filters. £190. Carrera 6061 folding bike, aluminium frame, Shimano Altus 8 speed, 20” wheels and carry bag. £180. 01460 221793. Set of 6 Royal Brierley Honeysuckle crystal wine glasses, barely used £65. Immac condition, some in original box. West Bay area. Tel 07880 702330

FOR SALE Sofabed. Single. Grey leather. DFS, as new, 145 x 100 folded. £350 Photos available 07837452637 Photos available 01460 55105

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Dishwasher Indesit 60cm, integrated under-counter, A very large industrial unused , Model DiF04B1. storage bin, very well made £75. 07463 610810. and strong with wooden top rails and riveted Amstrad PCW 8256 corners. Many uses as with manuals and many clean inside and has grab extras. Retro machine, handles for easy moving. suit enthusiast. £120ono. A piece of industrial chic. 01460 220339. 20” wide 41 long and 34 high. Enquire about local 4 boxes of white floor delivery Photo available tiles, 4 boxes of black floor £45 0146055105 tiles. £40ono. Loads of videos if any interested. Honda GD410 Engine Free. Bunting lots of Single cylinder diesel sizes and designs. Ask if Engine Double Pulley interested could send pics. Drive Pull Start £210 07814 432470. Good running order East Lambrook 01460 242071 Road Pro self-seeking Mob 07834 550899 satellite TV ariel, £300 (cost £1600) needs new Massy Ferguson dome. Dog crate 3’ x Hydraulic Lift. (3 point 2’ £20. Petrol strimmer Linkage) Original trailer hardly used £50. Petrol leaf Hitch used with T bar £160 blower £40. Mountfield East Lambrook 01460 self-drive petrol mower 242071 Mob 07834 £40. 01297 489885. 550899

6ft wooden field gate with post and metalwork, good David Shepherd signed condition £80. Reclaimed limited edition print “Rhino Beware” in wooden roofing slates, approx 150, enough for kennel or frame £150 ono 01297 log store etc £40. 24 inch 442991 circular saw blade £20. Tel 01460 220029. Tent - 2 man - vgc £25 01297 442991 Vintage Scythe. A vintage agricultural scythe in Hardwood plant display stand, possibly mahogany, good vintage condition with a 28” blade. Made by custom made and unique. Tyzack of Sheffield. Would A heavy and sturdy piece make an excellent barn or of furniture for inside or garden feature. £50 Photos out. It is solid hardwood available 01460 55105 which will last many years unlike other cheap softwood versions. Overall Caravan Electric hook up heavy duty 75 foot long. height 66.5”, depth of £27.50. 01308 425025. bottom shelf 17” and widest point 19.5”. Enquire Under Basin Storage Unit, light colour wood, width about local delivery. £90

Woodturning lathes: Record DML305 with 2 chucks and various extras £250. Axminster electronic variable speed bench top with chuck £100. 01305 261472 Dorchester.

PROOFREADING Proofreading, editing, transcription, secretarial for writers and businesses. Excellent references. Penny Dunscombe Apr 20 07825339289.

To advertise on these pages telephone 01308 423031

WANTED Vinyl Records Wanted All types and styles considered. Excellent prices paid. Please Phone Roy 07429 102645 Clocktowermusic.co.uk Bridport

May 20

Wanted: AERO seed fiddle please contact richard.toft@btinternet. com, 01308 424103 or 07740 985906 Postage stamps. Private collector requires 19th and early 20th century British. Payment to you or donation to your nominated charity. 01460 240630. Old sewing machines, typewriters, gramophones, phonographs, records, music boxes, radios. 0777 410 3139. www. thetalkingmachine.co.uk

May 20

Dave buys all types of tools 01935 428975 Jul 20 Wanted to buy - field, or part field and part woodland, any size, to about 5 acres. Not top grade grass. Private, local resident wants to ‘do their bit’ for the environment. Anything considered. Please help. 07508 106910 May 20 Vintage & antique textiles, linens, costume buttons etc. always sought by Caroline Bushell. Tel. 01404 45901.

Jun 20

Secondhand tools wanted. All trades. Users & Antiques. G & E C Dawson. 01297 23826. www.secondhandtools. co.uk. Oct 20

Tel. 01308 423031 The Marshwood Vale Magazine August 2020 71


FREE ADS for items under £1,000 This FREE ADS FORM is for articles for sale, where the sale price is under £1000 (Private advertisers only — no trade, motor, animals, firearms etc). Just fill in the form and send it to the Marshwood Vale Magazine, Lower Atrim, Bridport, Dorset DT6 5PX or email the text to info@marshwoodvale.com. Unfortunately due to space constraints there is no guarantee of insertion of free advertising. We reserve the right to withhold advertisements. For guaranteed classified advertising please use ‘Classified Ads’ form

Name ............................................................. Telephone number ................................. Address ................................................................................................................................ Town .......................................... County....................... Postcode ..................................

Monthly Quiz –

Win a book from Little Toller Books

Send in your answer on a postcard, along with your name and address to: Hargreaves Quiz, Marshwood Vale Magazine, Lower Atrim, Bridport, Dorset DT6 5PX. Study the clues contained in the rhyme and look carefully at the signposts to work out which town or village in South Somerset, West Dorset or East Devon is indicated. The first correct answer drawn out of a hat will win a book from local publisher Little Toller Books. There is no cash equivalent and no correspondence will be entered into.

Last month’s answer was Fluxton. The winner was Mrs Shire from Mosterton.

72 The Marshwood Vale Magazine August 2020 Tel. 01308 423031


BUSINESS NEWS New solicitor joins Kitson & Trotman

K

itson and Trotman are delighted to welcome Nicola Mitchell-Rodd who joins the firm as a Dispute Resolution Solicitor. Nicola joins the firm after returning to Dorset, having previously spent several years practising in Devon. She is an experienced civil litigator and brings with her a wealth of expertise, extending Kitson & Trotman’s offering to clients. Nicola has experience in both the County Court and High Court and her expertise covers a wide range of civil litigation areas including contract disputes, debt recovery and property litigation. Her specialism is advising parties in relation to matters arising out of contentious Wills, Trusts and Estates. Her work in this field has seen her act on cases involving claims for reasonable financial provision under the Inheritance (Provision for Family and Dependants) Act 1975, challenges to the validity of Wills, cases involving suspected undue influence and disputes arising from the administration of estates between beneficiaries and Executors. She has also been instructed to advise in relation to matters concerning Attorneys, often involving suspected financial impropriety. Nicola is pleased to offer a full service for personal and business disputes, including advisory work, the commencement of and/ or defence of claims, and Alternative Dispute Resolution, including formal mediation. She is happy to assist clients with the early resolution of disputes but equally can represent clients in Court proceedings, should the need arise. Nicola will be primarily based in Kitson & Trotman’s Bridport office but is also happy to see clients at the firm’s Beaminster, Lyme Regis or Weymouth offices and can be contacted on 01308 427436 or n.mitchell-rodd@ktlaw.com

Tel. 01308 423031 The Marshwood Vale Magazine August 2020 73



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