Page Updated:- Sunday, 07 March, 2021.

Published 8 February 2001


‘Ogamv’ Hall ‘Black-un’ and ‘Bangle’

SEVERAL Herald readers contacted me to say how interested they were in my Memories feature about the large number of Folkestone fishermen of the past who spawned a rich variety nicknames.

They included Ron Hammond, of Ernwell Road, Folkestone, who has figured in Memories before and wrote to tell me about his father's family.

He was one of a family of 10 children, six girls and four boys, Ron's father being the eldest. And he says:

"Everyone of them had a nickname, which was used throughout their lifetime.

"His was 'Darky' Hammond, and his youngest brother, Mark, was well known in the Fish Market as 'Bangle' Hammond.

"He would play the piano and sing in all the market pubs, just for the pleasure of it!"

He worked for a number of years for Hernu, Peron & Stockwell, importers, whose office was next door to the Ark Cafe, now sadly, demolished.

"He spent many hours with the fishermen in the Market, and is in a photograph on page 17 of Folkestone in Old Photographs, a Second Selection, by Alan Taylor and Eamonn Rooney - a picture of the crew of the fishing boat Joan of Arc"

One of those not named in the caption, he was second from the left, next to John Bull. At the other end, commented Ron was 'Black-un' Fagg.

"At one period in my life (80 years) I was very friendly with Jim Fagg, 'Black-un's' only son. He, 'Black-un.' still has a daughter living - Sally
Wooderson, in the Durlocks. Jim told me a story one day, relating to 'Ogamy' Hall." (Or 'Hoggamy' as the Herald has sometimes written it.)

"On a fishermen's outing to London, 'Ogamy' got separated from the group as they toured the sights (and pubs) so one of them went up to a policeman and the conversation went like this:

Fisherman: "Ave you seen 'Ogamy?

P.C.: "Who?"

Fisherman: " 'Ogamy' Hall!"

P.C.: Never heard of him!"

Fisherman: "Never 'erd of him! B....r! Everyone knows 'Ogamy'!

"That happened just before, or just after World War One." says Ron "The Market those days was a very closed community, some women only coming through the Arches once a week to shop.

"My school days consisted of being in the Market, watching the piles of 'dogs' (dogfish) being skinned and the rows of rigg laid out in No. 2 shed. I've enclosed a little verse to reflect those happy days."

Boyhood capers in Folkestone

"In 1925, when I was ten.

The summer holidays were set.

And with clean ancient towel and 'cozzie' wend My way down to the Fishmarket.

There on the Stade, we three or four would meet. Knowing that it would be Spring Tide.

The sea would rise above the landing stage.

And slow along the passage glide To the double sets of steps that raised In each direction, up on to the Stade.

'Twas there we'd lay our clothes in little heaps Old shirt, old shorts, and plimsolls made To last the holiday's few weeks.

No socks to lose, or even vest it seems.

Then I would don that awful cotton 'cos'

When wet, would stretch down to one's knees. Which didn't seem to matter more Than getting in that lovely sparkling sea!

Smooth cobbles, warm beneath our feet.

We'd disconnect a chain from post, to be Our jumping off spot to compete.

So all the London visitors could watch

Our antics in the air, to see

Us swim, and jump, and dive from off the Ring,"
ROBERT Latham is researching his ‘family tree' and the trails lead to his great grandfather Robert Worthington and his father, William Worthington. “They were coach-builders running a business and living in Hythe for many years. The information we have for the family includes the addresses for Robert and his family, from the 1881 and 1891 Census returns, 12 East Street, and 147 East Street, Middle Ward, Hythe,” he writes.

“About 1912 the business developed a prototype motor car, details of which I have obtained from the National Motor Museum.” Mr Latham goes on to say he is keen to learn more about the family and would welcome any information from Herald readers.

His address is 5 Palmers Close, Woodlands Park, Maidenhead, Berks SL6 3XF.
(That ring's still there. I went to see!) "We'd all jump in together, and then sing, 'Come throw your mouldy pennies down!' Another trick that we'd show off to them.

As they stood 'gawping' on the chains.

Was from the doorway of the "Ship"

We d race across the road and quay.

Some three or four, all shouting "Hip, Hip, Hip, Hooray," as we jumped in the sea.

Straight out, as far as we could get, and freeze

Into silly comic postures

That we'd seen in Mack Sennett comedies!

Then slowly surface and come up

Beside another lad, and with a mouth

Of water, squirt into his face.

Which always gave the visitors a laugh So throw more coppers down apace Some we'd catch, but some sank to the bottom So then we'd wait until the tide
Had ebbed away, then among the flotsam We'd find enough cash to divide.

Then go to 'Cozzi's' for a bag of chips!

So, in our school holidays When High Tides meant that we could do our tricks

We'd have some coppers for a day!

Then home to tea, my Mum would say "Where have you been? What have you had to eat?

"Tell me, what did you do all day?"

"I went down the Market," I'd reply "Just for a swim, and had some chips!"

Just as well the truth she'd never find.

Or else my earhole would be clipped!

Then from my skin I'd wash away the brine.

To bed I’d go, so happy-tired.

To dream that each tomorrow would be kind. And sun would shine again for me!"

New Pleasure Gardens Theatre plan proposed

<| THE TOWN'S Amusements Associa-

XC7VIJ. tion after reporting on a successful financial year was given a pat on the back by the Herald editor who remarked that there had been hardly a ‘carping’ letters about entertainment in the town - a big contrast compared to previous years. There was no doubt, he wrote, that the popularity of the resort had grown considerably as a result of the Association^ efforts. The Pleasure Gardens Company also had a good year and Earl Radnor spoke of plans for a better Folkestone theatre, costing around £20,000, the old theatre also to be developed into winter gardens. A growing local military garrison would ensure the success of the venture, he said. The Herald was looking at ways to commemorate the reign of the late Queen and the editor said a statue of Queen Victoria looking out across the Channel would be ideal. The town, he thought, was lacking in such features but he realised some people would be looking to mark Queen Victoria’s reign in a more charitable way. And he stressed the need for a proper police station, to replace the “wretched holes of Calcutta" their 40-odd guardians of the peace had to use. and for a new police court.

‘Slow’ snow clearance hit trade, complain traders

ill QOfi FOLKESTONE had a crisp snow white start XvZO to the year and as far as the Chamber of Commerce was concerned it was a bad start - because of the slow snow clearance; It was bad for business, they complained to the Town Council, observing that other neighbouring towns had managed much better. The Chamber was also angry at the "out of date" tolls charged on vehicles crossing Sandwich tollbridge in view of the road taxes already paid by motorists. It was agreed to seek a lifting of this toll. (In fact it wasn’t abolished until recent years.) Folkestone FC was reported to be in dire straits and the Chamber wholeheartedly endorsed the club’s money-raising appeal and wished it every success. Hythe town surveyor reported his concern to the Council over the condition of Prospect Road and suggested they should ask the police to enforce a speed limit from the police station to the Dukes Head public house. But at least one councillor commented that no matter what the speed houses nearby were “being shaken to pieces." The whole road needed a limit that would be enforced day and night. Another councillor said they should never have diverted traffic along the road. It was agreed to set a limit of 6mph.
Back our Civil Defence -local people are urged

<* QPrf THE FAIR Maids of Kent were being JL«79JL asked to volunteer to help in a new Civil Defence scheme. Folkestone housewife Mrs E.M. Tyrell, responding to the toast of "The Fair Maids of Kent” at the annual dinner of local members of the Association of Men of Kent and Kentish Men, urged that women should take a lead in supporting Civil Defence. Her appeal, in the Leas Cliff Hall, followed a statement by local MP Brigadier H.R. Mackeson, that only a little over 4,100 people in the county, out of a population of 1.25 million, had volunteered to join Civil Defence. Mrs Tyrell said there ought to be more than two people In a thousand who realised the importance of defence and could volunteer. She suggested many people were not taking the matter seriously enough. Chairman of the local hotel and catering association, Mr H. Sargent was optimistic that the twin resorts of Folkestone and Hythe were going to have a good year, but he warned that some people might be expecting too much from the Festival of Britain, The mayor of Hythe thought both towns could be Ideal dormitory towns for visitors coming to the Festival of Britain. Folkestone was backing the Festival with four-days of events in mid-July, including a two-day flower show to draw up to 20,000 visitors
Relief - as work resumes on port improvements

MORE than 40,000 vehicles a year were JL5/ » O passing through Folkestone port and there was a sigh of relief when delayed work resumed on increasing the standing area for vehicles around the harbour, in a scheme costing £126,000. The work was to increase that capacity to about 70,000 vehicles a year. A bid to close two railway stations in Shepway on Sundays came under fire from councillors and MPs. British Rail wanted to close Folkestone West and Westenhanger on Sundays, while Ham Street and Appledore stations were also affected by the plan, and the Sunday service between Rye and Ashford was to be scrapped, Methodists were saying goodbye to their old church on Grace Hill, with its tall spire overlooking the Pent valley. Mother church of the local circuit for a century, it was made redundant by a new church in Sandgate Road. Every Methodist church in the local circuit was represented at the dedication of the new church and its opening by Paul Bartlett Lang, secretary of the Joseph Rank Benevolent Trust. The Duke of Atholl, chairman of Westminster Press Ltd, in company with other directors, visited Hythe where he was entertained by the mayor and mayoress, Cllr and Mrs Edwin Sturdy. This was during a tour of Kent newspapers owned by the group, including the Folkestone Herald and Dover Express.

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