2 Chris#
Newsletter of Old Boys & Friends of 70
London BB Company
Welcome to the 6
Edition of
The success or otherwise of a publication such
as ours, is the number of written contributions
OB’s and friends are prepared to make.
We know that some feel reluctant to put ‘pen
to paper’ in the belief that their personal
stories might not be of interest to others. We
would argue otherwise.
It is fascinating looking back over earlier
editions to read, not just of indelible boyhood
memories but of the wide range of hobbies and
careers pursued since leaving the 70th.
Our thanks therefore go to those who have
hitherto ‘taken the plunge’. We hope this will
encourage those yet to submit to have a go!
We are not looking for ‘posh’ writing, just your
own words in your own style.
You may remember that the previous edition of
had a musical theme. We showed
how several OB’s love of music was born out of their experience in the 70
. Reading these
accounts encouraged another OB, Alan Hemsley, to tell us of how his singing and keyboard skills
were fostered by his time in the 70
At last we managed to get Jim Ballard and Barry Green together for a tribute occasion to say
thank you to these two devoted servants of the company. 25 OB’s and friends were there to
witness the presentations made by Chris Buss to Jim and Barry. It was a very happy occasion for
all those that were there as our pictures show.
Maybe us men folk sometime overlook the impact we, as boys and officers, have on the females
in our lives. It was great therefore at the above tribute occasion to give a big thank you to
Daphne Knights for her unstinting support for husband and Captain, Peter.
Picking up the theme of the impact of the 70th on our ladies, Moreen Sore recounts her
memories of husband and officer Percy and the influence of ‘Longley Road’ on her life.
Camp memories are usually the most indelible we have as OB’s and Martin Dennis recounts his
own particular stories.
We hope you enjoy the read…….
In this Edition
In this EditionIn this Edition
In this Edition
October 2011
As you know all editions of
now available via our website… and therefore
OB’s stories are made accessible via the
internet to any one in the world for ever more!
How great then to be able to leave your mark
on the world in this small but indelible way!
So why not have a go at writing a piece,
however small or large, for next time?
Previous authors should in no
way feel confined just because
they have written before.
We look forward to
hearing from you
any time soon!
6 Up -with Thanks
6 Up -with Thanks6 Up -with Thanks
6 Up -with Thanks
Thank you for the latest edition of
. I
have read the previous editions but the article on
music caught my eye this time.
I started in Life Boys under Ivy Clark, Vera Bowbeer
and Will Ward (Snr) around 1962/63 moving to the
Company in 1965 under the Captaincy of Peter
Knights until I left in 1970/71.
Two things I remember about Life Boys were the
memory verse at the end of Matthew 28 and the
fact that it was through Vera that I had my first
piano tutor.
In those days the Lord's commissioning was relayed
as going to foreign parts as did Owen Clark and
later David Hurford. Today, of course, we recognise
that it actually means anywhere one finds oneself,
even here in Rustington, West Sussex.
As for the piano, I started that at the age of 9 and
played for my first Drill Parade around the age of
13/14/15. By that time I had taken up the organ as
well. I also sang in the choir at Longley Road, first
as a treble, moving down to Alto then to the back
row joining the basses.
Many's the time I have played "We Thank Thee O
Our Father", "Underneath the Banner" and "Will
Your Anchor Hold". I still play both piano and organ
at my local church on alternate Sundays; sometimes
modern songs from Mission Praise but sometimes
older hymns and really enjoy serving our Lord in
that way.
The discipline of Fred Bateman (and occasionally
Rolly Clark) in teaching drill on a Friday night has
stayed with me over the years.
It was interesting a couple of years ago at work to
be on a First Aid Course and having to use a Resusi
Annie for the first time in nearly 35 years. It was
like riding a bicycle to remember where to put the
hands, pinch the nose etc - thanks to Will Ward
(Jnr) and Peter Ellis.
I've lost touch with all those in the Company at the
same time as me but have met up with a few of the
older guys in recent years especially at Peter's
Page 2
Thanksgiving Service. Please give Daphne my very
best wishes and those of my sister Anne (who was in
GLB/GB at the same time).
I had a chuckle to myself at Dave Richardson’s
comment about singing some of the older hymns
that we used to have on Drill Parades, at Bible Class
and on Church Parades… and those Battalion
Parades at the Methodist Central Hall and later at
the Granada cinema… and the forming up on
Tooting Bec Common. Oh the memories!
I hope you get a good response to your comments
on singing so that we might do something in June
2012. I'll put the date in my diary in the hope of
being there. The only comment I would add is why
should the singers be tucked away?!
Anyway, thanks for reading this and for your efforts
in the production of Reflections
Alan Hemsley
More Musical Talent
More Musical Talent More Musical Talent
More Musical Talent
Alan Hemsley writes on music and
Resusi Anne 35 years on
…….It was like
riding a bicycle to remember where
to put the hands, pinch the nose etc -
thanks to Will Ward (Jnr) and Peter
Since the last edition of Reflections, the following have been added to our website...
‘Archive’ has four documents containing extracts from the 70th Archives, scanned as part of the 2008
Centenary Project. Three of the documents are based on a transcription of the only available Company Register
(from 1939-66) and the fourth is a scan of a booklet produced to celebrate the first 50 years of the 70
Hopefully those of you of a certain age will find this of interest - I was amazed at the number of forgotten
names that jumped out. But, some of the handwriting in the Register is illegible, so guessing took place! If you
spot any errors please let me know.
‘Audio’ contains the existing Bugle Call and Band recordings plus a selection of pieces from the ‘Kool
Drummings’ Steel Band which was made up of members of the 70th and the 7th London Girls Brigade. From
1992 to 2007 the band gave almost 200 live performances.
Other changes are hopefully self-explanatory… as ever, ideas for new content welcome…
PS…Should the changes not be evident, try ‘reload’ or ‘refresh’ on each page
place if you were a camp ‘rookie’. Prior to going on
the trip to Charmouth I was told that part of your
essential kit was a brailling spanner. So after
several trips to camping shops and becoming more
and more worried about this spanner I was finally
told by my father that I had been had!
Wonderful days!
Martin Dennis
Page 3
Martin Dennis
Martin DennisMartin Dennis
Martin Dennis
remembers taking on the
‘big’ boys
It was my first camp at Charmouth 1959 and I was
only 12 years old.
During the week a cross-country race was held.
Boys of all ages between 12 and 16 were asked to
compete against each other. I considered
this to be rather unfair for obvious reasons.
Anyway, lads from all tents were picked to run and
I drew the short straw. The day of the race arrived
and off we set. Two of us seemed to pull away from
the rest of the field. These were Alan Rance [aged
16] and myself. Alan went on to win the race with
me coming in a very poor second.
I thought not bad considering the age difference
but to my disbelief the officer in charge of the
event [Owen Clark] said the race had to be rerun as
only 2 boys had taken the correct course - Alan &
So 2 days later we raced again with me trailing last
and of course Alan winning.
Does anybody else recall that race?
As many will remember, a lot of ‘kidology’ took
Website Update……..
Website Update…….. Website Update……..
Website Update……..
Dave Richardson writes: