general

 HMS WARRIOR

     Warrior was designed and built in response to an aggressive French shipbuilding programme which saw the introduction of the first iron-clad warship La Gloire designed by the brilliant naval architect Stanislas Charles Henri Dupuy de Lome.
     Determined to see off this challenge to the supremacy of the Royal Navy the then First Lord of the Admiralty, Sir John Somerset Pakington, determined to build a ship so superior in terms of quality, speed, size, armament and armour that it would be inconceivable to France that she could take Britain on in a sea battle.     
     When commissioned by Captain the Hon. Arthur Auckland Leopold Pedro Cochrane, on August 1st 1861, Warrior was the largest warship in the world, at 9,210 tons displacement she was fully 60% larger than La Gloire.
     The ship underwent minor modifications after a sea trial. In June 1862, she started active service in the Channel Squadron, patrolling coastal waters and sailing to Lisbon and Gibraltar.
     Having introduced a revolution in naval architecture, by 1864 Warrior was superseded by faster designs, with bigger guns and thicker armour. By 1871 she was no longer regarded as the crack ship she had once been, and her roles were downgraded to Coastguard and reserve services. In May of 1883 her fore and main masts were found to be rotten, and not considered worth the cost of repair, Warrior was placed in the reserve, eventually converted to a floating school for the Navy and re-named Vernon III in 1904.
Put up for sale as scrap in 1924, no buyer could be found, and so, in March 1929 she left Portsmouth to be taken to Pembroke Dock and converted into a floating oil pontoon, re-named again as Oil Fuel Hulk C77. By 1978, she was the only surviving example of the 'Black Battlefleet' - the 45 iron hulls built for the Royal Navy between 1861 and 1877 and is now on view in Portsmouth Naval Base..

 

THE MAYFLOWER

The Mayflower is one of the most important ships in American history. This cargo ship brought the pilgrims to Massachusetts during the Great Puritan Migration in the 17th century. These pilgrims were some of the first settlers to America after they established the Plymouth colony. This journey made the Mayflower an icon of European colonization.
     The captain of the Mayflower was a businessman named Christopher Jones and he was born in Harwich, England around 1570 and was the son of a mariner and ship owner, also named Christopher Jones. Around 1608, Jones purchased the Mayflower and became its Master, what we would call a captain today, but he was only a quarter owner of the ship. The other owners were Robert Childe, Thomas Short and Christopher Nichols. The Mayflower was a European cargo ship in the years before its voyage to the New World with the pilgrims. Jones’ first voyage on the Mayflower was to Norway in 1609 where the ship transported fish, lumber and tar.
     In May of 1620, religious separatists known as pilgrims hired Jones and his ship to take them to the mouth of the Hudson River in North America where they had been granted permission to build a colony. The Mayflower set sail from England along with another ship, the Speedwell, on August 15, 1620. The Speedwell leaked so badly that both ships had to return to England. A few weeks later, the pilgrims all boarded the Mayflower and it set sail alone from Plymouth, England on September 16, 1620.

     Although the Mayflower was a large ship measuring about 80 feet in length and 24 feet wide, the 102 passengers on board led to cramped conditions. The Mayflower had three decks, an upper deck, a gun deck below it and the cargo hold at the bottom.
The passengers sighted shore on November 9. Although the pilgrims had intended to land in northern Virginia, when they reached the shore they realized they were in New England. Nonetheless, after 66 days at sea, the pilgrims were relieved to see land, according to Bradford in his manuscript Of Plymouth Plantation: With winter approaching and a short supply of food and beer, they decided to go no further and dropped anchor off the coast of Cape Cod in Provincetown harbour.
     While the ship was anchored in the harbour, the passengers drew up a social contract known as the Compact  that established a set of rules and laws for the colony. In December, after some skirmishes on land with the local natives, the pilgrims decided to pick up anchor and sail to nearby Plymouth harbor where they reportedly landed near Plymouth rock in mid-December.
The Mayflower crew spent the winter with the pilgrims in Massachusetts, living on the ship, and sailed back to England on April 5, 1621 and arrived on May 6, 1621. Christopher Jones passed away the following year, on March 5, 1622, and his widow, Josian, inherited the Mayflower. In May of 1624, the ship was appraised for the purpose of probate and was described by the appraisers as being “in ruinis.” As a result, it is believed that the Mayflower was eventually broken up and sold off as scrap.

 

 

PARISHES

THE PARISH CHURCH OF WATERLOOVILLE   

     The original church of St George in the centre of Waterlooville, was built in 1831 to serve the small community that had established itself around the crossroads of London, Hambledon and Stakes Hill in Waterlooville. Built from funds raised by subscription from various local landowners such as Thomas Thistlethwaite and John Hulbert, the church built in the Gothic style was consecrated on26th January, 1831 by the Vicar General, the Revd, William Dealty.
     After serving a growing population for more that 130 years, it was decided that the small church needed wither replacing or enlarging. Several plans were considered before a decision was reached to build a new church, but retaining almost half of the original building including the chancel and altar. The old tower was completely re-faced and a spacious nave added. The new edifice was re-hallowed by the Bishop of Portsmouth, the Rt Revd. John Phillips in April, 1970
     We have transcribed all the parish registers of Baptisms, Marriages and Burials up until the turn of the century

 

SEARCHING PARISH REGISTERS ONLINE

     There are many websites offering online records, but the one that stands out above the rest is TheGenealogist. This is a vast online research site, holding complete BMD and census records, along with Parish Registers, military records, directories, non-conformist records, and much more.
     Parish records are available in two formats - transcripts/database records and searchable printed books. The database records consist of easily searched transcripts of the original records which allow you to search on various fields and may also have linked images of the original registers. The searchable books consist of indexed books that were transcribed and published many years ago, many over 110 years old. These transcript books have then been OCR'd (Optical Character Recognition) to turn the pages into searchable text.

 

ANCESTRY HAS BEEN BUSY

     Ancestry has updated its collection of WW! Pension Ledgers and Index Cards for 1914-1923. The collection already holds the records of pensions applications from military personnel who were injured during the war, and the next of kin of those killed. These new additions are records for injured Army, Navy and Royal Air Force officers; women who served, such as nurses; and officers’ widows. The records are indexed on Ancestry, while images of the originals are available on fold3.com.

 

PORTSMOUTH RECORD OFFICE

      New records just added include Description Substantial oral history collections (over 1100 recordings) relating to Portsmouth history and to D-Day, subjects including Portsmouth dockyard, the Home Front in WW2, Leisure, the Chinese, Bangladeshi and Caribbean communities, corset making, ferry workers, local rock musicians, D-Day and the Battle for Normandy.

 

LEE-ON-THE-SOLENT

     Lee-on-Solent, often referred to as Lee-on-Solent, is a small seaside Ward of the Borough of Gosport in Hampshire, England, about five miles (8 km) west of Portsmouth. The area is located on the coast of the Solent. It is primarily a residential area, with an upsurge of mostly local visitors in summer, but is well known as the former home to the Royal Naval Air Station HMS Daedalus.
     The district gained its name in the 19th century, during attempts to develop the area into a seaside resort. The area had been referenced long before this, referred to as Lee and numerous variations, including Lebritan. Early impetus for the district's development came from Charles Edmund Newton Robinson  who persuaded his father, John Charles Robinson, art curator and collector, to fund the buying of land. Over the period 1884 to 1894 the district was established with the setting out of Marine Parade, a pier, railway connection along with a number of impressive red brick villas. The railway service was discontinued in the 1930s and the pier, unrepaired after breaching in aid of Coastal defence in World War II and was demolished in 1958.
     Lee-on-the Solent has had a long association with aviation. Seaplane trials took place at Lee-on-the-Solent as early as 1915. A base for seaplane training was established in 1917 on the former RNAS Lee-on-Solent, formerly HMS Daedalus, 
     In 1935 the Lee Tower complex was built on the seafront next to the old pier and railway station. It was designed by architects Yates, Cook & Derbyshire, and comprised a white v-shaped Art Deco building with a 120-foot (37 m) tower. The complex housed a cinema, ballroom and restaurant, as well as a viewing platform at the tower's peak. The complex was demolished in 1971 by Gosport Borough Council, with its land now used for the promenade, remembrance gardens and a car park

 

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Total updated 5th October, 2020

 

 

THE DREADED PANDEMIC

     As we are having problems as above, this our main webside has been updated irregularly recently owing to the difficulties in putting the page together because of research limitations. We do apologise for this, but until the current restrictions are lifted we cannot update to our usual fortnightlt pattern

 

WHO’S FOR TENNIS?

     Founded in 1902, the Avenue Lawn Tennis and Squash Club of Warblington proudly celebrated its  centenary. From its original four, leased, public courts in Havant Recreational Ground, the club progressed to its own present location in 1920. Now boasting ten grass and seven hard courts, additional facilities include three squash courts and a fitness room. There is also a modern clubhouse with a comfortable lounge and full licensed bar for members and visitors. The club was voted the Lawn Tennis Association Club of 1996.
   

IN AND AROUND SOUTHSEA

     Southsea is well-known as a resort and part of the City of Portsmouth, but it was almost entirely a nineteenth-century development in 1800 and takes its name from the castle which was built by Henry VIII in 1544.
     The are that is now Southsea Common was marshy and unpleasant until it was flattened and drained by parties of convicts in the mid-nineteenth century. The Kings Rooms, a fashionable pump room and baths, was built in 1816 near the site of the present Clarence Pier, but they were intended for residents rather than visitors to the town. In 1845 they were the scene of the challenge to the last duel ever fought in England, In 1848 a carriage road was built between the Kings Rooms and the castle; it was called Clarence Esplanade after Lord Frederick Fitzclarence, the bastard son of William IV who was then Lieutenant Governor of Portsmouth, As time went on, further esplanades were built and trees planted, but the Common remained the property of the War Department until it was sold to the corporation in 1923. Even then building was not allowed on the Common - the field of fire from the batteries had to be kept clear. So Southsea owes its unique seaside common to the military past of the City.

 

CREMATORIA ESTABLISHED

     Private cremations had been taking place sporadically since the 1880s. In 1902 the Cremation Act came into force, extending the rights of burial authorities to allow them to establish crematoria from 1st April, 1903. No crematorium could be closer than 50 yards to any public highway, or within 200 yards of any dwelling house without the written consent of the owner. Private cremation on an open-air pyre was subject to a penalty of up to £50.

 

OCCUPATIONS 

astronomer - Weatherman who assisted mariners here were going on long voyages to try and predict what weather conditions they might encounter.
broom seller - A street salesman with his own distinctive cry, ‘Buy and broom, old shoes buy a broom’. He would accept a pair of old shoes in exchange for a broom, due to the resale value of the leather.
couple beggar - Travelling priest who performed ‘instant’ weddings up to 1754. Also known as a ‘hedge priest’.
crab boiler - Worker associated with the sea fishing industry who boiled crabs and lobsters either for himself or others before selling them on to the public.
forester - A huntsman. In an abbey this was a uniformed position, not just a job. He would live outside the abbey with his own family and would have a range of staff under him. By law, foresters and huntsmen were the only persons allowed to carry bows and arrows in the King’s forests in medieval times.
Luddite - Originally one of a group of factory workers loosely joined in a movement to smash factory machinery which was taking away the jobs of manual workers. Later the term was applied to anyone who refused to take on new ideas or working methods.

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