The Model Village

This Easter saw the successful re-launch of a much-loved tourist institution – The Model Village in Southsea. It was once run by a Mr West who also owned the two shops fronting South Parade Pier and wonder of wonders, I used to work for him at weekends. Although work was a sideline – we actually…

Canoe Lake AKA Swan Lake

I used to live around the corner from Canoe Lake – and one day will probably do so again – and regularly walked its circumference on my way home from school. I’ve always enjoyed it on fair days and foul. So just how old is Canoe Lake, which is now a central player and attraction…

Semaphore Relay?

I’ve just seen an interesting little snippet about Lumps Fort, Southsea online. Apparently although rebuilt extensively in Victorian times, Lumps Fort dates back to the Middle Ages – around the 1500’s – and was an earthworks fort. Once you start to look, understanding what you are seeing, the skeletal remains of the fort become more…

The real Cockleshell Heroes

One sunny Sunday afternoon this March, I went for a stroll around the Canoe Lake area of the Southsea seafront and came across a plaque denoting the words, The Cockleshell Heroes. Being a bit of a fan of vintage film, I seemed to recall a film of the same name with Jose Ferrer and Trevor…

A new investigation into the past …

As readers of this blog will know, last week, I discovered the youth of my Great Aunt and Uncle and found out that they were intrepid travellers, regularly visiting Europe and Africa in the 20’s, 30’s, 40’s and 50’s. A couple of images however reveal a family mystery which I hope, over the next few…

The sweet sadness of memories

It’s taken a house move and several years before I have looked at the family photos my mother has passed down to me.  I grew up in a happy family, taking for granted my “Auntie and Uncle”, whose ongoing presence meant I never missed my unknown departed grandparents. Auntie and Uncle, in fact my great…

A design classic: Spode’s Blue Italian

I’ve always loved blue and white ever since I was a little girl.  I like its crispness and clarity and its affiliation with all things seaside.  As I’ve got older however, and have started to inherit things, I’ve begun to realise it might also have something to do with hanging onto my memories of cherished…

A fun day out to Brighton, East Sussex

I used to come to Brighton as a child but I have to admit, I haven’t visited for a while so one summer, I took a day trip to visit the beach.  The town we know and love today dates really from the 18th and 19th centuries when Brighton established itself as a health and…

Piccadilly’s Bomber Command Memorial

Just along Green Park at Hyde Park Corner, lies one of the most evocative of London’s war memorials in honour of Bomber Command – the Royal Air Force. I have passed this spot at least a hundred times since it was unveiled on 28th June 2012 by Her Majesty The Queen however I have never, until very…

Britains Miniature Garden

“With a kiss of the sun for pardon, And the song of the birds for mirth, One is nearer God’s heart in a garden, Than anywhere else on earth.”  Britain’s Miniature Garden As readers of this blog will know, I recently rediscovered one of my childhood joys – the plastic Britains Floral Garden – and have started…