Do you know whereabouts of Bournemouth policeman’s family?

MAURICE Vincent contacted the Echo after seeing the pictures of Bournemouth policeman, Stan Vallance and his wife Ruby and Roger Peters’ appeal to try and contact members of their family printed on July 9.

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The day thousands turned out to see Concorde in Bournemouth. Were you there?

CONCORDE was one of the most glamorous possible ways to travel – the favoured transport of celebrities and diplomats.

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Do you know men who were treated at Western Hospital during First World War?

BERYL Churchill of Northbourne brought in a photographic album on the Western Hospital in Torquay, most of which are pictures taken during the First World War.

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When Miss World and boxer Dick Richardson were guests at sports ground

AFTER seeing last week’s feature on Miss World, Ann Sidney, Gordon Elsworth of Poole, sent in a couple of photographs of the beauty queen when she was at Hamworthy Engineering sports club ground at Fleetsbridge in Poole.

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Rare map under the hammer at Sotheby’s

AN EXTREMELY rare early map of Bryanston Estate near Blandford will be auctioned off next month by Sotheby’s.

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Lighting up the big screen with Silvery Moon

THE classic Hollywood musical, By the Light of the Silvery Moon will be showing on the big screen at the Evergreens Cinema, at Age UK Dorchester on Wednesday, December 3, 2014.

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Friends get together to relive school days

THE pages of Looking Back have proved a bit of a catalyst for a Sidney Hall-inspired reunion.

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S-Kate’s memories come rolling back

LAST week we enjoyed looking at some photos of roller skating at the Sidney Hall in Weymouth.

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The Chevalier d’Eon: Transgender Diplomat at the Court of George III, 1763-1777

In 1763 peace broke out between France and Britain, ending the Seven Years War. The defeated superpower France was left nursing its wounds, as well as thoughts of revenge. While King Louis XV’s foreign minister sought to maintain the peace, the King’s spy network, ‘the King’s Secret’ (Secret du Roi) developed plans to invade England. These conflicting agendas were embodied in the Chevalier d’Eon, France’s minister in London. A Georgian Edward Snowden. Shortly after his arrival the Chevalier began publishing confidential diplomatic despatches and blackmailing his King. The Chevalier escaped assassination and imprisonment by becoming a woman in 1777.

Dr Jonathan Conlin teaches modern British history at the University of Southampton. Currently he is researching a biography of the Anglo-Armenian oil magnate Calouste Gulbenkian. His books include Tales of Two Cities: Paris, London and the Making of the Modern City.

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Horton: The Parish Church of St. Wolfrida

We often find reference in the archives to Horton with Woodlands but in the 19th century what was a large parish was reduced by the separation of the parish of Woodlands. Nowadays the plan view of Horton is ‘L’ shaped and consists of about 2,800 acres.

The parish church stands in the middle of the village on the site of an old Priory founded here in 961; St. Wolfrida was the Abbess of a nunnery and she died at Horton. Here in 1685, after the battle of Sedgemoor, the Duke of Monmouth is said to have been found in a ditch hiding under a cloak. An ash tree known as Monmouth’s Ash commemorates the event.

The church is surrounded by a large unattractive churchyard where mostly the graves are in regimented rows. This building is unusual and not at all like other Dorset churches. It is mainly Georgian: Pevsner refers to its “quite thrilling north tower” while Hutchins describes it as “a very ugly edifice.” Visit the church and see if you side with Pevsner or Hutchins.

Enter by the north transcept door above which is a round headed window and above that in the gable is a small bull’s-eye window. An adjacent stone bears the date 1755. Inside, to your right, are the font and two effigies – a knight in Purbeck marble and a lady in Ham stone. The knight, Sir Giles de Braose (1305), in mail and surcoat bearing a shield; the lady in cloak and wimple. Ahead of you the wall is curtained floor to ceiling concealing the entrance to the nave.

The north wall of the nave has a round-headed arched entrance to the north tower. In the west wall two round headed windows and a similar window in the south wall. Seating is entirely box pews of panelled oak and there is a fine 18th century pulpit.

The north tower has a round headed window similar to that found over the entrance to the north transept and it also has a bull’s eye window above that, which now contains a clock. The tower dates to 1722 and is the work of John Chapman and says Pevsner is a “memorable piece.” One bell dated 1634 by John Danton.

The chancel contains within its walls mediaeval masonry of flint and rubble, probably of the 12th or 13th century and a similar window to those found in the north transept and tower, in the north wall.

The church was restored in 1869 and in 1900 the tower was repaired.

 

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