Old Cowplain

     We were the first family to move into the newly built Padnell Avenue Council Eatste at Cowplain moving there in around 1947. Our house was one of a pair on the corner of Winscombe |Avenue. I lived there until I married my wife Maureen at St Wilfreds Church, Padnell Road in 1971. I have many fond memories of the area and I'm sure other people of Cowplain will share my memories of Padnell Recreation Ground, the Swamps, the Humps and Bumps, going to the Bon Bon shop at the top of Padnell for sweets, Joery's Field, the lily pond, the boat pond and the Tanks in the Queen's Inclosure.

     Then there was the farm pond at Padnell Farm where we would spend hours fishing for sticklebacks and the golf course - we would spend hours there causing havoc with the golfers, and also wading barefoot in the gold course pond feeling for lost balls that we would then attempt to sell back to the players.

Michael Dewey


Saturday mornings at Aldershot

     We had memories of Aldershot High Street and our regular trips to the pictures about 1950 with the Empire (Odeon) and Ritz (ABC) were situated right next to each other.

We looked at each programme displayed and chose whic one we wanted to see. It certainly gave our mums an hour or so without having to amuse their kids.Imagine the despair if we were to ill to attend one week and had to miss the next exciting episode of Flash Gordon or other gripping serial instalments. My most vivid memories are of the huge curtains in front of the screen which went up at the start of the show, and of horrid boys  who kept clambering over the seats or threw their sweet wrappers at us girls. We kid used to sing the Odeon song at the beginning of the Saturday morning pictures - we sang it as loud as we could and the noise was deafening!

Diana Lower




     Brockenhurst, named in the Domesday Book as Brocests, is in the heart of the New Forest. Surrounded by everything rural, it is still in easy reach of Southampton, , Winchester and Bournemouth.

It is said that it was an ancester of Purkiss the grocer who discovered the body of William Rufus after he had been killed in the Forest in 1100 by an arrow. In about the year 1087, Rufus had his horses shod and his armour, pikes and his arrow tips all made at the smithy which stood on the site of the present 'Island Shop'.

     There are several churches including a Roman Catholic completed in 1939 and St Nicholas', mentioned in the Domesday Book of 1086. In the churchyard is an old yew tree known to be at least 1,000 years old. Also in the churchyard is the grave of 'Brusher' Harry Mills who died in 1905. He  of the parish. He was the local snake catcher and his gravestone was subscribed for by the people of the parish. One villager used to recall how her grandmother often met him whilst out walking in the Forest. 'Brusher' would be carrying his sack full of snakes, and he would say to her "Put your hand in, Mother" - an offer she hastily declined!

     In the summer the village is filled with visitors.

     There are many attractive cottages, some of them Thatched. One of the latter, Ash Cottage, once the home of Miss Bowden Smith, was the first village school and pupils paid 1d a week to attend. Shops, garages, hotels, guest houses and rest homes provide work for local people. There is also an engineering works and stables, One public house, the Rose and Crown, provided the village with its first bus service. Many of the villagers work at the oil refinersy at Fawley and other establishments connected with the oil industry.





Because of our changing memberships, our website will in future be updated monthly instead of weekly. Visitor numbers are counted electronically and will continue to be updated weekly.



was 6,102

and has now reached 


Total updated 29th November



     Numbers of visitors to our Centre have fallen during the pandemic and our thoughts go out to the families of seven of our members who have suffered the loss of their numbers from Covid deaths. Because of this we have made a few changes both at the Centre and this, our Link-up, to members from all over the world giving us a wider coverage of all the aspects of our interests.

     We hope you will like what you now find and don't forget, we love to hear from you, especially about your researches and exploits and any 'finds' you have made.

         Our Email address is   



Dress guard lacer - Someone who laces up ladies'  bicycles to prevent dresses getting caught in the mechanism. The dress guard produced by the lace or string used, was the forerunner of the mud-guard.

dresser down - Used in many trades for a finisher of goods but particularly used in a factory making sculpted or moulded objects which need excessive materials removed to produce the finished object.
gleaner - Member of a poor family who farmers would allow to follow the sheafmakers at harvest time, picking up stray pieces of wheat etc whch he or she was allowed to keep without payment.


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