Page Updated:- Sunday, 07 March, 2021.

Published 4 July 2002

Bob note. See Memo 7 Nov 2002.

Book plea
A WELL known chain of bookshops is getting together with a publisher of popular local history titles to produce another book on old Folkestone - and, what's more, they want the help of Herald "Memories" readers.

Linda Fry, of Ottakar's in Sandgate Road, tells me the local store is co-operating in the venture with Tempus Publishing Ltd, who have already produced books on Folkestone, Hythe, Dover and Deal in their "Images of England" or "Archive Photographs" series.

"We are looking for the most lively and interesting local history stories in Folkestone," say Ottakars. "We will be publishing the best pieces in an extraordinary book that will chronicle the town's history in a unique and personal way.

"If you have an interest in your town or surrounding area and would like to have a piece of your history writing published then this is the perfect opportunity." And, as a bonus, they say, you could win 200 for your efforts.

"Writers of the best three pieces, according to the judges, will each win 200. These, together with the best of the other pieces will be published in a book in November."

Entries are to be judged locally by Ottakar's Bookstore and by Tempus Publishing Ltd.

Submissions can be based on any of the following subjects - family life, school days, the war, work and industry, farming, buildings, local characters, historical figures, geography and landscape, the countryside, village life, memories of all kinds, ghosts, myths, tradition, sports, the arts or a subject of your choice.

All matter should be factual and original work and be accompanied by suitable illustrations.
such as photographs, old postcards, drawings, letters, maps etc.

"Entries may take the form of photo essays, which can include favourite family photographs. They must be not less than 500 words or more than 2,500 words long."

But you will have to get cracking, submissions have to be sent by July 31, 2002, to Ottakar's Bookshop, at 16 Sandgate Road, Folkestone, Kent CY20 1 DP.

You can pick up details of the terms and conditions of the competition from the shop and contact the store by phone, on 01303 258888 or by e-mail on

Successful authors, whose work is published, will each receive a free copy of the book and will be able to buy five further copies at 25% off the published price.

Copyright of work remains with the writers and their stories should preferably be typed or on computer disc (Word.) Full details are given in a leaflet available in the bookshop.
Fashion parade
Where are they now? Veteran Memories reader Avril Crosby-Emery (nee Metherell,) who is 88, wrote to me from Stade Street, Hythe, enclosing the old Hythe picture, above right, of what appears to be a fashion parade in which she is shown as a mere youngster.

"I am No. 116 (third from left) and the girl next to me. No. 114, was Margaret Reading," says Avril.

"She had a son, Noel Reading, who grew up to play in the "Jimi Hendrix Band," she added.

I remember a much earlier photo of Avril, featured in Memories four years ago, picturing her as a child with two pet terriers.
MEMORIES reader Avril’s photograph, by Halksworth Wheeler, of a fashion show in Hythe about 50 years ago. Top right is a picture of an air crash at Danton Lane from another reader, Peter Hooper, of Dover Road, but when was it?^_

The photograph showed Avril standing beside a drinking fountain given to the old Cinque Port of Hythe by her family nearly 80 years ago.

Sadly, the fountain does not survive. It was "commandeered" on the orders of the government, at the beginning of the Second World War, when the UK was short of raw materials, to melt down to manufacture munitions.

I recall Avril writing to tell me how the family were a bit cut up about that, because it had been a gift to the town.
LEAS Cliff Hall - An aerial view of the new attraction opened 75 years ago, in July 1927, by Prince Henry, who received an enthusiastic welcome in the town.



Herald protest at town’s 'noxious’ refuse fumes

ft OHO "DISGRACEFUL in the extreme," was the Herald editor described the Town Council's refuse disposal a century ago, declaring the situation was seriously detrimental to the town and “calculated to lower the reputation of the place in the eyes of the visiting public." In the heat of summer "noxious fumes were poisoning the air" and this was just the kind of "nuisance prejudicial to health," the Council had a duty to prevent. And yet. he wrote, the council had no hesitation in carting thousands of tons of "this vile rubbish" outside the boundary and "dumping it down among our Cheriton neighbours.” There was “the amazing spectacle" of one sanitary authority deliberately planting a "centre of infection" within the area of another! It was hardly surprising Cheriton council had at last taken action to stop it. The reaction of Folkestone was to deposit a “hotbed of pestilential deposits (!) at Park Farm, then but a short distance from the town centre. A refuse destructor had long been needed, the editor added, but “obstructionists" had been at work and blocked this remedy - which was "anomalous, shameful, and indefensible."
Storm lashes 'Blessing of Fisheries’ celebrations
•< THOUSANDS of people gathered in the

/ Fishmarket on a Sunday evening for the

annual ceremony of the Blessing of the Fisheries, only to be sent dashing for shelter as heavy rain fell. Hundreds, however, braved the elements to watch the

Bishop of Croydon, under an umbrella, perform the

blessing from a decorated staging overlooking the harbour. where fishing boats, bedecked with flags, stood high and dry at low tide. Others watched from the shelter of the big sheds of the fishmarket or under the railway arches. Thirty Kent fire brigades took part in an annual tournament of the South Eastern District of the National Fire Brigades Association at Folkestone Sports Ground when a new method of fighting petrol and oil fires with a foam generator was demonstrated. It was the biggest gathering of its kind locally, since 1904. Lionel Smith and Quartermaster Sergeant T.s Philpott. both of Folkestone, were appointed to the committee of a new Rifle League formed in Dover to serve the two towns. Folkestone Rifle Club, the Buffs (Folkestone) and the Royal Field Artillery (Folkestone) were represented at the meeting. A national anti-vivi-section team was due to visit the town with its campaign caravan to recruit more supporters.

Water jets used to clear Warren’s lethal minefield

ilQpnAN ARMOURED vehicle, called a Monitor. armed with high pressure water jets, was being used to clear a 12-year-old minefield, for years fenced off with barbed wire, at the entrance to the Warren. Many beach mines were believed to remain in the gault clay, hidden beneath tons of rubbish tipped over the cliff. The mine clearance operation involved construction of an access road from the cliff-top at Baker's Gap. five former German PoWs helping with road construction. Water was piped through thousands of feet of flexible piping from a British Transport Commission jetty at Warren Halt, at the rate of thousands of gallons a minute. A Herald feature on the old Victoria Pier prompted an interesting letter from reader Victor Foley who attended the foundation stone ceremony in May 1887. He told how the old promenade pier became the centre of attraction to the seaside visitor in the "Gay Nineties." He recalled a ventriloquist with a Camera Obscura. a Phonograph with which one could 'listen in' with the aid of earphones to recorded music of the day, trips out into the Channel in the large sailing yacht "Gertie" moored close to the pier, and the "noisy monstrosity'' of a Switchback railway, along the beach, which objectors tried to close.
Massive homes crisis - and a hospital for 'geriatrics’

| HERALD writer Stephen Court was looking

I I back 50 years ago, to the day when Prince Henry came to Folkestone to open the Leas Cliff Hall. Four thousand came to watch the ceremony - and a flyover by the 25th Fighter Squadron of the RAF. The hall was seen as the 80,000 crowning achievement in the town's re-development after the First World War. The Prince also opened new extensions to the Royal Victoria Hospital, laid a foundation stone for an extension at the Harvey Grammar School and spoko with enthusiasm about the spaciousness in the past planning of the town and the excellence of its maintenance. The Mayor said improvements at the Royal Victoria made the hospital one of the best equipped in the country. Fifty years on, said the writer, the town was seeing the opening of the William Harvey Hospital at Ashford, the 'Royal Victoria' was set to become "chiefly geriatric" — and Folkestone faced a housing crisis with 900 people on the council's housing list. “Nellie the elephant packed her trunk and came to Port Lympne,” began a story 25 years ago about the arrival from Howlett's Zoo Park of six Indian elephants. aboard an 86ft-long lorry borrowed from Billy Smart’s Circus, It carried three animals at a time, the tricky operation being supervised by an expert brought in from Basle, in Switzerland, since the elephants were said to be very different to the circus variety.

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:-