Page Updated:- Sunday, 07 March, 2021.

Published 2 November 2000

Local History Society’s annual exhibition of old photographs, postcards and documents, in the attractive Roman Catholic Church Hall in Surrenden Road, Cheriton. The Society had the support of the Local Studies section of Folkestone Public Library.

It’s quite amazing how new pictures keep turning up with a road transport theme, which Is a special Interest of mine, not to mention other forms of early road transport and the harbour.

I noted one of the early Cheriton Baptists’ outings was to Elmsted Chapel, that was in June 1910. An identical postcard had only a few weeks before been shown to me by Folkestone born enthusiast Peter Hooper.

Reading back issues of the Herald to compile the From Our Files section I came across an old picture of what was described as the first motor coach outing from Folkestone -from the True Briton Hotel, Harbour Street - featuring a fascinating line-up of early open-top cars.
CHERITON FIREMEN, a picture shown to me by Peter Bamford. Can you perhaps recognise your father - or grandfather - I wonder?
Help wanted

Secretary of Folkestone & District Local History Society Peter Bamford, of Shorncliffe Crescent, Folkestone, who has a fine collection of pictures of old Cheriton and is always on the look out for new ones, is appealing for the help of Memories readers. His number is 01303 223337.

He is trying to identify the men in two pictures. Firstly there is a photo of ARP Wardens of Folkestone ‘C’ Group, who served from 1937 to 1942. The squad is pictured at Baker Road, outside what is now part of the clinic at Cheriton.

The only names he has are Mr Tozer, in the centre of the back row, while a Mr May is thought to be the man seated on the left.

In the Cheriton Fire Brigade group, pictured around 1921/22, in which several firemen are wearing their First World War medals, he only knows the name of the chief man, Mr Lucas, on the left.

Sadly the picture is not very sharp.

The well supported exhibition was at Folkestone & District
That outing was in June 1903 and organised by the hotel to Rye and Tunbridge Wells. I was amused by the caption to the picture which was reproduced 50 years after the event by our former midweek paper the Folkestone & Hythe Gazette. He wrote “It was a record outing. Only two cars breaking down. One went direct to^Rye after repairs at Hawkhurst; the other returned home twp days later.” What nostalgia.

There appear to have been eight cars in the party which set off in the picture taken by W. Tiddy of Folkestone. Eamonn Rooney and Martin Easdown included a similar picture in their recently published book Tales from the Tap Room, but it does not show a full line-up of cars. (The book was published locally by Marlin Publications.)

I featured the bigger group in 1996 in our pull-out “Wheels” motoring section. And I appealed for sight of an original copy of the photograph, toying with an idea to write a book on motoring in this area. A reader offered to show me one - but I think he forgot to get back to me. Any offers?
Picture request
A SUPERB gathering of early motor cars outside the London & Paris, T rue Briton and Harbour Inn, in 1910, read the caption to this picture in Tales from the Taproom.
A.R.P. WARDENS Folkestone Group 'C' 1937-42 pose for this old postcard shown to me by Peter Hooper. Can you name them?






Shorncliffe tournament features on lirst’film.

f QrtrtTHE FIRST cine film camcras were _L*?wV/appcaring and the Herald noted that Folkestone's big Military Tournament was recorded on "cineomatograph" film for the Biograph Company and the “animated pictures" were to be shown at the Pleasure Gardens Theatre and other centres, which would be good publicity for the district. Shorncliffe Camp commandant Major-General Hallam Parr invited all the 3.500 local schoolchildren to the event and they were captivated by events. Smaller children were conveyed to the Pleasure Gardens Theatre for the opening event of the three-day tournament in wagons, each drawn by four horses and driven by Dragoons and Artillerymen. VIP spectators Included Princess Stephanie of Austria and husband, but pride of place went to white-haired Chelsea Pensioners, from Sandgate. who were also invited, wearing their war medals. A 601b salmon, largest of the season from Scotland, was on display in Webb's West End Fish & Poultry Stores. It had been bought by the Langhorne Boarding House in Folkestone. A 14ft shark was also displayed.



‘Speeding’ on Leas leads to call fora lOmph limit.

f Q/jr A COUNCIL Watch Committee renewed the bus licence of a one-eyed driver involved in two accidents. This was after it had been pointed out he had been exonerated from blame in both cases. Following complaints of speeding on the Leas it was decided to seek powers to impose a lOmph speed limit. You would think Folkestone has always been keen to preserve the East Cliff s.mds but back in 1925 a reader was asking why someone was being allowed to excavate and remove sand from the beach. Week after week tons of sand had been removed, said the writer, whose name was W. L. Cole. Holes were 12ft square and several deep. A tragedy in the Warren led to talk of filling in the pond there but some councillors feared this would detract from attractions of the area. One-third size replicas of famous Flying Scotsman mainlinr IccuniotiVL"-, the Green Goddess and Northern Chief, had been built for Captain Howey's Romney, Hythe & Dymchurch Railway which was soon to run across the Romney Marsh. The Herald featured a picture of the 25ft luni; Green Goddess which had been successfully tested on the testing seven miles of the Eskdale mountain railway, hauling 20 and 30 carriages with ease.



Folkestone night fighter pilot chalked upalirst’.

m QEftWELL known businessman Robert JLS/Oi/'Bob' Darney, who was born in Folkestone and became one of the first pilots of the old Royal Flying Corps to engage in night fighter operations, was being mourned in the town. He was only 51. He followed in his father's footsteps and became a partner in the firm of Swoffer & Co. wholesale fruit merchants. A court at New Romney was prosecuting an un-married woman who was using a bathing hut as a home at St Mary's Bay after being fined 2 with costs back in May for living in it. She tried to get consent to use it as a home without success. A KCC planning officer said she had even set about enlarging the hut, which had no toilet. The court imposed a penalty of 1 a day that she used the hut. They had power to make it 20. The late photographer Ray Warner, of Wear Bay Crescent, had two fine portraits accepted for an exhibition in London. One was of “coal heaver" Joe Dixon MM, which was printed in the paper. Ray went on to run the Lambert & Weston business in Dover and eventually, before he retired, took over the Townwall Street shop.



Dunkirk hero adds second ‘gong’ to bravery awards.

( HISTORIC Mill House at Froi; was JmtJ I O reprieved at the last minute, after plans for the proposed M20 motorway were changed. But a fight by three young squatters to continue living there went on. The Department of the Environment, which bought the property to demolish it, sought an eviction order against the squatters who offered 11 a week in rent. Shepway Council had declined to use the property for temporary accommodation. Elderly folk living in P.mlion Court on Folkestone seafront got little sympathy it seemed when they sent a barrage of complaints about conditions to owner Mr Motel Burstin. "Those who don't like it and feel so bitter, should move." was his blunt reaction. But a few years before the flats were advertised in top magazine The Lady as being suitable for "retired gentle folk.” Tenants' hopes of a peaceful environment were dashed by the building of the towering Motel Burstin hotel. Mr Burstin said that in future he would not let the flats to the elderly. And he also promised repairs and a kicolift for the building and surrounding area. 30 years late war hero Victor Tozer added a second honour to his Military Medal won in Burma for helping injured soldiers cscape from the Japanese. A Dunkirk veteran, the garage manager learned he had been awarded the French Croix Du Combattant L'Europe.

If anyone should have any a better picture than any on this page, or think I should add one they have, please email me at the following address:-