Mark Tristan Cooper 073


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Transcribed Memories

Pont memories

Bexhill Observer 1951

memories 160213 c momories 160213 b

The Coffee Morning held on Saturday 16th February 2013 was a great success. We had about 25 people (mainly long time residents of Ninfield) come along to meet, talk and reminisce about growing up and living in the village. Group work included identifying faces on some old photographs. The main item on the agenda was to enlist volunteers to take part in our oral history project funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund as part of the All Our Stories initiative. Our project is called Ninfield- The History of a Rural Village and this event was the first in a series planned for the next 12 months.


The Coffee Morning

Where is this Ninfield I once knew.

With narrow roads and houses few?

Gone, are the days beyond recall

Of fete’s and parties at Moor Hall.


The Old Windmill has disappeared

The Blacksmiths too, as we all feared

Gone are the “Old Un’s, sons of the soil

Taken by the reaper from their earthly toil.


I knew them all, and they knew me

As plain old “Chuff”, and not Leslie;

My dear old Dad; God bless his heart

Gave me that name from the start.


My life in this village I have spent,

From a boy, to manhood, well content.

But the changes that have taken place

Have removed from the village “her old face”.


One cottage I lived in when I was a lad,

It was during this time I missed my Dad

We knew the cottage as “The Thatch”, now called “Pipers”

And Dad ? was away; fighting in Ypres.


To write down all, I’d need a book

So now I sit, and back on my memories look;

Times were hard but we didn’t complain

And if I could, I’d relive it all again.


Some of my pals left this life

Called very young; during years of strife

Caused by war, not of their making,

But we didn’t complain at this great undertaking.


They fought for their country and their King;

To some people mowadays, a stupid thing;

The lads were called, a cause to serve,

And from their duties did not swerve.


We still recall them by their names,

When we talk of bygone days, and games

In which as boys we had played;

And now in foreign soil they are laid.


Gone is the “Tollgate” and “Ducking Pond” as well,

The “Saddlers Shop”, and now sad to tell

“Smith’s Shop” has had to go at last

All it remains is a memory of the past.


My days at school I did not waste,

Because if I did I’d get a taste

Of “Boss Rider’s” cane, one on each hand

And so I sought to do my best, and not in trouble land.


He taught us that, Politeness cost us nought

And since that time I’ve often thought

How true he was; because in the end

It has often brought a “dividend”.


I love this old village, which gave me a start

She’s always had a place in my heart

And given hours of happiness in my leisure hours.

Wandering in her woodlands, ‘neath leafy bowers.


And when I’ve drawn my final breath

My body stilled by the kiss of death

Until the final Judgement Day, to her bosom my I be pressed,

And in her Churchyard “Laid to Rest”


L.C.Spandley  (Leslie Charles “Chuff” Spandley)




by L.C.Spandley



Sunset 2

Memories of Ninfield