Monday, 31 August 2009

Sunday, 30 August 2009


I think the playground scene was shot in Kensington gardens,seems very familiar to me, especially the drinking fountain with its bowl on a chain and the long swing which was lethal if you got in its way when going full belt with the older kids.
The streets scenes also typical with all the different uniforms and languages of the soldiers from many countries mostly seeing London on their weekend leave.It was great to be there but frightening at night when the bombers visited.

if you want to get ahead get a hat...


Saturday, 29 August 2009

Saturday thought

Why is "According to current legislation" the usual given reason for District Counsils closing something good down?

Thursday, 27 August 2009


An early Busby Berkeley



I thought you would want to know about this e-mail virus. Even the most advanced programs from Norton or McAfee cannot take care of this one. It appears to affect those who were born prior to 1970. Symptoms:1 Causes you to send the same e-mail twice. done that!2. Causes you to send a blank e-mail! that too!3. Causes you to send e-mail to the wrong person. yep!4 Causes you to send it back to the person who sent it to you. who me?5. Causes you to forget to attach the attachment. well, darn!6. Causes you to hit "SEND" before you've finished. oh no - not again!7. Causes you to hit "DELETE" instead of "SEND." and I just hate that!8. Causes you to hit "SEND" when you should "DELETE." Oh No!



Remember these? Always one close by,you never needed to get out of your car.Drive into the forecourt over a cable which would ping a bell somewhere in the premises and during the day a overall clad mechanic would come out from the back of the garage and fill your car up with petrol check the oil and clean the windscreen before taking your money and thanking
you for the tip.
If it was night time his wife,a chatty old soul would come out of the house and do the same.
Then the supermarkets came and buggered the whole thing up.

Wednesday, 26 August 2009

Mersea mudflats

Photo by our new resident correspondent Mersea Pearl

Tuesday, 25 August 2009

VALADIA SNOW The great unknown

Valaida Snow (June 2, 1904, Chattanooga, Tennessee – May 30, 1956, New York City) was an African American jazz musician and entertainer. Raised on the road in a show-business family with her sister Lavaida Snow, she learned to play cello, bass, banjo, violin, mandolin, harp, accordion, clarinet, trumpet, and saxophone at professional levels by the time she was 15. She also sang and danced.

After focusing on the trumpet, she quickly became so famous at the instrument that she was named "Little Louis" after Louis Armstrong, who used to call her the world's second best jazz trumpet player besides himself. She played concerts throughout the USA, Europe and China.

Her most successful period was in the 1930s when she became the toast of London and Paris. Around this time she recorded her hit song, "High Hat, Trumpet, and Rhythm." She performed in the Ethel Waters show, "Rhapsody In Black", in New York. In the mid-30s she made films with her husband, Ananais Berry, of the Berry Brothers dancing troupe. After playing New York's Apollo, she revisited Europe and the Far East for more shows and films.

Later she became addicted to morphine. While touring through Denmark in 1941, she was arrested and sent to a Concentration camp by the Nazis, where she was held from March until May 1942[1] before being released on a prisoner exchange. According to jazz historian Scott Yanow, "she never emotionally recovered from the experience".[2] In the 1950s, she was unable to regain her former success.

Valaida Snow died of a brain hemorrhage on May 30, 1956 in New York City.




I well remember being taken to this when I was about six years old.
A very large display dwarfing anything going these days with countless troops and bands marching to and fro under the beams of coloured searchlights followed by mock battles in the field complete with horses and tanks and the rebels being bombed at low level with flour bombs.
The grand finale took place with a mock castle being attacked and exploding with fireworks and smoke.
All this followed by a long dark drive home under blankets in the back of our old Humber which to us was as exciting as the Tattoo
Two years later those soldiers were doing the real thing.

Monday, 24 August 2009

Happy Birthday


Henri Fantin~Latour 1836~1904


Many in here I've never seen.

Sunday, 23 August 2009

Saturday, 22 August 2009

Friday, 21 August 2009


Golden hair.

Family photos box

Depicting biplane flying under the footbridge at Brooklands Racetrack sometime mid thirties well before Health and Safety was king. My father took part as a passenger in sidecar landspeed records at this track for Douglas Motorcycles as he was of rather small build.
One of my first ever fleeting memories was of being on someone's shoulders watching racing cars going round the banking here at a meeting maybe from this very spot.

Thursday, 20 August 2009


MUSIC: My life before me. Wojciech Kilar

Wednesday, 19 August 2009


And some bloke who talks funny.

Nelson.....The real story

~MISCHIEF~ bonus picture

Deck view of Mischief on the motor. Looking at the sea
there's not much in the way of wind.


Solution................ Scotland The Shiant Isles


Photo of Mischief a newly built Bristol pilot cutter now sailing adventure tours off the coast of Scotland. Photo sent by one of my nephews who was lucky enough to be on board.

How much nicer is this boat than those Russian gin palaces so beloved of the rich and famous and the odd politician
Letter from Nephew....
Mischief weighed in at 27 tons. There were no winches, except an electric capstan for the anchor chain so all the sails needed a crew of three or more to hoist.
The sheets were pulled in heave ho style and then tightened using a block and tackle tied to the sheet one end and a large cleat on deck, the sheet then made around a cleat outside the cockpit and block and tackle removed for further use on the sheets or stored.
You can see it in the photo. A handy bit of kit I thought, you can pull ropes really tight.

The gaff is heavy and had two main halliards. The throat is a big leather and metal ring hauled up the mast while another team hauls up the gaff. I think there is a topping lift as well.
Two more halliards lift the boom off the crutch astern of the cockpit.

Before you do any of this you have to tighten the bowsprit, pulling it downwards using the block and tackle. This in turn bends the topmast forwards in readiness for the weight of the gaff and mainsail. Shrouds and stays keep the main mast rigid while four backstays compensate for various sailing conditions. See backstay in photo.

Alternatively, you can just fire up the engine, lift the anchor and cruise, all with a cup of tea in one hand and the tiller in the other.
But that ain't sailing.

Tuesday, 18 August 2009

Migraine ! Screen hurting my eyes still, so normal service will resume tomorrow hopefully.

Sunday, 16 August 2009



Scan of the very first photo I ever took,mid 40s with an Ensign Coronet. the print measures one and a quarter inches,common in those days of wartime austerity. Things have moved on a bit since then but nothing measures up to the excitement during the twelve mile bus trip to get the first ever prints from Boots the chemist after the wait of a week.

Family photo box

Jan in a box.....with Kami the cat and Ruggles bemused.

Saturday, 15 August 2009


If only they were all like this....


Another hit from the late 40s. Well played at all decent parties.

Todays fashion depiction

GREEN MUSIC.....Rock on

My newly installed music centre,requires no electricity and doubles as an exercise machine while being wound up. I have every thing on 78rpm from Paul Robeson to Frank Sinatra.............Maybe scratchy but live.

Friday, 14 August 2009


whatever happened to the good old bubble pipe? so much better than those nasty plastic rings that are used today,and the bubbles were so much larger,magic and floated for ever down the garden. Even the hippies of the sixties produced better bubbles than you see now.

Thursday, 13 August 2009

Rose Murphy

1940s Student days! I still have this on a 78.


Studio 35mm Olympus OM4~computer imaged


This charming photo of dawn over the marshes is actually one of our outside loo when we moved to Strood Villa in the 1940s. It consisted of a hole in a bench with a long drop out into the field outside to be then ploughed in. Problem was that the Essex marshes tend to be very windy, this would cause candles to blow out due to the wind coming up the chute and toilet paper doing the same thing.
It was a blessing when we got mains water and inside toilets but not so close to nature nor anything like so spooky.

Wednesday, 12 August 2009


the ancient sport of "creek jumping"still to be seen on the
marshes of Mersea Island off the Essex coast.
This was once an annual event the champion being Mersea Pearl
of west Mersea but the popularity of the sport waned when she
refused to return the cup.
the young lady depicted here is perhaps unwise to be wearing
white trousers as the mud is difficult to wash out and the smell
of Mersea mud tends to linger.

Tuesday, 11 August 2009

Sunday, 9 August 2009


Studio OlympusE~500 digital


Make the world a brighter place...

My friend Mei

Mei goes mobile

Saturday, 8 August 2009

Friday, 7 August 2009

Thursday, 6 August 2009


Rather indicative as he spent much of his life between women.
Lucky man...