Gerald’s Oct 2019 Musings

It is sixty years this month as a newly married couple we moved to Whittington to start married life. After leaving school I was an apprentice motor engineer for six years,before two years national service, with the REME army corps, where I was employed maintaining Centurian Tanks for the Seventh Hussars Cavalry Regiment.

During that time we had little chance to save for married life. My first weekly wage was £1.43 for a 44-hour six day week, and the army pay was around £3 per week, but we managed.

The village we moved to was totally different then. The main street was very narrow, there was a shop and a post office, a thriving school, Fred Hall the builders, Vince Watson the joiner, Jack Usher was the landlord at the Dragons Head, Tommy Tallon was the blacksmith, Fred Goad at the garage, Pelters Haulage and coal business, as well as at least fourteen working farms.

Sellet Mill was still working, a lot of village men were employed maintaining the local roads, and some worked for the Forestry Commission. Not many people had their own transport (I had a motorbike and sidecar) but the village was well served with regular calls from butchers, bakers, fishmen, and hardwear vans, plus the Co-op travelling shop. No need to leave the village to go shopping, it was all brought to you.

I wonder what changes the next 60 years will bring?

The next dance in the Village Hall is on October 5th when Denis Westmorland will be playing once again.

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