A Tug Of War

Ron has e-mailed me four more scans of the early negatives of his late father, Ray Salinger.

The first image, made in 1948, is of the Blandford Forum, a West Country Class steam engine that pulled the train that took my brother in law to school until he left in 1967. Ron points out that the burnt banks are wooded, now that steam and cinders have ceased to singe them. When I commuted to London by electric train a common cause of delay during autumn was “leaves on the line” for, it seemed, funnel furnaces no longer set them aflame.

Another ridiculed excuse, for winter commuter train tardiness, was “the wrong kind of snow”. I would hope that the precipitation blanching the roof of The Walkford

in this next image was of the right kind. It was inside the bar of this hotel that Ray’s first set, featured in https://derrickjknight.com/2020/07/08/in-keyhaven-harbour/ was photographed.

http://breweryhistory.com/wiki/index.php?title=Strong_%26_Co_Ltd has this entry for

Strong & Co. of Romsey LtdHorsefair Brewery, Romsey, Hampshire.

Founded c.1778. Brewery and 23 tied houses leased to Thomas Strong 1858, who bought the business in 1883. Registered November 1894.

Strongs were acquired by Whitbread & Co. Ltd in 1969 with 940 public houses. Brewing ceased at Romsey in 1981. Partly demolished in the early 1990s.’

The Fighting Cocks pub at Godshill, visited in https://derrickjknight.com/2013/03/05/carry-on-walking/ is another popular hostelry once part of the Strong chain;

a chain of strong men engaged in a tug of war in the first of these two images of the SRDE (Signals Research and Development) sports ground at Somerford. There is a faint possibility that the little boy in the roller coaster is Ron.

The SRDE, where Ray worked, was a pioneer of satellite communications. Wikipedia tells us that ‘The Signals Research and Development Establishment (SRDE) was a British government military research establishment, based in Christchurch, Dorset from 1943 until it merged with the Royal Radar Establishment (RRE) in Malvern, Worcestershire to form the Royal Signals and Radar Establishment (RSRE) in 1976. Its focus was military communications (signals).’ The sports ground, now owned by Siemens, is still at Somerford, once part of the eponymous estate.

This afternoon I wandered up and down the paths collecting up refuse to transport to the compost bins and dead-heading roses and poppies.

In the Palm Bed on one side of the Gazebo Path we have these new alliums; on the other the eucalyptus trunks support hanging baskets spilling petunias.

This evening we dined on Jackie’s potent pork paprika; flavoursome savoury rice; and tender mange touts with which she drank Hoegaarden and I drank more of the Squinzano.