a symbolic cross made from a palm leafEaster Greetings

After a long and fairly cold, though never very cold, winter spring is at last with us, flowers are coming out, trees are budding and the sun is getting some warmth in it. It seems that spring is about two weeks late this year, but I am reliably told that it is actually at its normal time - we have just got used to several years with an early spring.

Sometimes I end up scratching my head to think of things to include in my newsletter, but not this time.  I have had far more visitors and contributions to the web site that I normally get.  Normally I get just under a hundred 'new' people write to me in a year. So far this year I have already had over sixty!

I have received a favourable reaction to my font size selector and it has now been added to the foot of most pages. Unless you have disabled "cookies" then it will remember your selection from one page to the next, and on subsequent visits to the site.

There have been a lot of additions to the site since my Christmas newsletter, so let's get straight on with them.

Photographs & books

bluebells in a woodTwo readers have provided photos of children's groups from the 1950 and hope that the collective memory of those readers who lived in the village at that time can identify more of the children. Mary has sent pictures taken at Christmas Parties held in the Parish Hall about 1949/50; and Peter a 1958 one of the boxing club.

Another correrspondent has provided pictures of the bluebells in the Crown woods north of the village and these are linked from the pictorial tour.

Do you know of any publications of old Bagshot photos, or have any yourself?  - a local historian is looking for new material. Quite separately, Mike wrote "I'm looking to purchase a book about Bagshot, covering at least the last 60 years with information and photographs. It is going to be a gift for an Italian lady who was sent to a ladys finishing school proberbly in the 50's or 60's. Any pointers as to where I might purchase such a book will be most gratefully received."  The limited anount of material I know about is listed here, plus my CD ROM.  Do you know of any other material? It might be too late to satisfy Mike's needs but it would be nice to expand my list for the benefit of future visitors. ref 617


We have more memories of the the boxing priest, also about Mary Ann Mason and about the Tilbury family (or perhaps there is confusion with Godfrey) and Underwoods second shop.

No sooner had I published the Christmas newsletter than a reader was able to resolve the enquiry about retired gardener 'Bun' Bennett.

snowdrops and crocus flowersRon Frost was one of the post-war Boy Scouts and later the Scout Master. He would like to contact anyone who remembers him.

Ex-pat Robert Allen is seeking contact with former acquaintances, and another correspondent would like to make contact again with the Roberts family (enquiry concluded).

Pubs and eating houses

Bagshot has more than its fair share of pubs and eating houses, and several have featured in recent correspondence. Do you remember the Lupin Cafe on the A30 at the top of Jenkins Hill, the tiny Little Chef on the bypass, or any of the other old cafes? We also have a lot more about Frankie Fortuna and his ice cream from Ron, Allend, Derrick Papworth and Diane Draper.

I have a bit of an answer to Jon's question about the history of the Jolly Farmer pub, and a variation on the legend of the White Hart.

Lee's grandad provides reminisences about the baker's trade that would now have Environmental Health tear their hair out!

Other reminescences

Ron Frost has written with a collection of information including yet more about the Square, Rapley Lake, a Canadian Army base in Bagshot Park and the post-war exploits of the local scouts, the old Fire Siren; cinema (one of several people to add information to this topic), Bagshot Heath in the 1940's and Dr Grahamy. Also the Jolly Farmer legend and dairy farming - with another name in the frame - and a macabre accident on VE Day.

Diane Wilsdon (as was) contributes her reminisences of her childhood in Bagshot and especially of a pair of Championship Dogs.

A second ex-resident of Half Moon Street writes from Austrialia, also with some kind words about the proprieters of Central Garage

Places and properties

Did you play in an area known to the children as The Copse? Or can you contribute information about current play areas.

We have some information about the India Room in Bagshot Park; the old Pantiles swimming pool; more about the fate of the old cinema; and an answer about 45 Guildford Road and the other war-time coal yards

I have received an enquiry about Park View and its properties; and another seeking any connections between Longleat and Bagshot Park, or an explanation for families moving back and forth between the two locations during the late 1800's?

Jean has written to thank all who have contributed to the page about the Nursing Home:  "I am doing my family tree through the internet and thought I would just see if  The Duchess of Connaught Memorial Nursing Home (where I was born in 1936) was still there. Now I know where I came from, and I will be making a visit very soon.  Thank you everyone for your pieces of information." ref 641.0306

Jean's is not the only contribution about the Nursing home. Sam provides details of its current use and of a plaque inside the building that confirms its origin. But the saga of a grey or white building continues with Gloria's recollections. I have a vague recollection of a grey building that fits the description and location previously given by Wendy (on the A30 on the Camberley side of the junction with what is now Lambourne Drive). I think it was demolished in the 1970's to be replaced by social housing. Do you recall this building, and do you know what it was used for?

It's out of my patch, but I've been asked to bring to the arttention of locals a campaign at www.valleygardens.org.uk to stop the fencing of the Valley Gardens in Windsor Great Park.

a red brick and stone building under constructionSt Anne's Church Centre

I have reported from time to time about St Anne's new centre being built behind the church.  I am pleased to say that it is near completion and is due to be handed over to the church on Maunday Thursday. It's formal opening will be later in the year by the Bishop of Guildford.  

It is rather more advanced than this picture taken last month, but with a few days to go to hand-over it looks like, and is, a builder's site!


You may notice adverts appearing on some pages. I run the Bagshot web site as a hobby, but as it gets bigger it costs me money, so I though I'd see if I could generate a wee bit of cash to offset the costs of running the site.  I am not looking to make a profit, and in the unlikely event that I get more than I need to cover my costs them the extra will go to local charities.

Some of the ads are by Google. They should be for things relevant to the page and if anyone clicks through to see the advertiser's material I get a small cash return. I suspect that it will prove to be a waste of time, in which case I'll get rid of them. But we will see.  I will also be offering local ads and 'sponsor this page' to local businesses.

With best wishes to you, and those you hold dear. 

God Bless,

The opinions expressed here are those of the author, writing on his own behalf and not representing anyone else or any organisation.

copyright © 2006 Neil Bartlett and licensors. All rights reserved.

ps: each time I do a mailing telling friends like yourself about one of these 'update' pages I get several bounce back as undeliverable because the intended recipient has changed their email address, and I have no way of knowing what it has changed to.  So if you change your email please remember to put me on the list of people to tell if you want to keep in touch.