GMS News 105 October 2017

Bat & Trap BBQ

July Meeting

BT_game preparing_the_BBQ















The bat & trap game at the July meeting was a great success. Thanks to Steve & Debbie for the use of their garden, and to Brian & Diana and Alan & Margaret for organising the barbecue. 


August Meeting




















I was not able to attend the August visit to Sandwich. Diana and Pauline were kind enough to provide reports of the visit. Since the 2 reports complement each other I am including both.

Our August meeting was a visit to the Sandwich Guildhall. We were met by Kevin Cook, in his regalia as Town Sergeant and Town Crier, who kept us entertained with stories of his 14 years in office and his involvement with the rituals of the Cinque Ports ceremonies.

Kevin gave us a tour of the Guildhall, which dates back to 1579, including the Council Chamber, Courtroom, Mayors Parlour and Jury Room and showed us  many priceless gold and silver artefacts which we were allowed to handle with his white gloves. We visited the latest addition the Museum which is open to the public from Wednesday to Sunday and houses the Magna Carta and the Charter of the Forest dating back to 1300.                    D.K.

When we arrived at the Guildhall entrance we were met by our tour guide  Kevin Cook who is the Town Seargent/Town Crier. He was in full regalia. Kevin was an excellent guide, both informative and entertaining, he took us through the later extension of the Guildhall circa 1973, which is used for social occasions. We then went through to the 1912 extension which was the panelled Jury Room,  this had been in use for civic functions and dances as one of our members recalls. We travelled further back in time to the early part of the building dated 1579 to the Mayors Parlour, with its dark oak wood, stained glass windows and creaky floorboards, a real treat.  Kevin talked us through the ancient documents on the walls, including a complete list of all the Mayors of Sandwich, he showed us the blackthorn wand that was presented to the Mayor to ward off evil spirits. We also had the opportunity to handle (with gloves) the two small silver guilt maces.  Our next room was the council chamber were we were allowed to handle the larger silver guilt mace which is reputed to have been touched by Elizabeth I.  Kevin then escorted us into the Court Room which is the oldest one to have survived in England. This 16th century court room has the original box for the jury of twelve men and the dock for the offender. The stained glass window depicting Elizabeth I was well worth seeing. The vote of thanks was given by Steve Chappell before we went to our final destination which was the museum, again another very interesting room and we were allowed to browse the exhibits and had the opportunity to ask Kevin questions.                                             P.T. 

Remembering John Bowsher 

John_BowsherI first met John in 1999, the year of the tercentenary  of Deal’s Royal Charter. He was part of the Deal and District Camera Club’s group who were to produce a booklet of photos of Deal past and present.  A slightly rotund, affable man, he was reminiscent of a jovial Mr Pickwick.

The following year he and I became members of the Great Mongeham Society committee. Once again photography featured when he reproduced a set of old photos of the village and matched them with a set of photographs he had taken. Village life suited John. He became a co-ordinator for the local Neighbourhood watch. He used his design skills to put together the Village Design Statement booklet, containing text written by members of the VDS committee and many photographs, most of which were taken by his beloved soulmate, Sylvia. He then organised its printing.

When I started producing the monthly Great Mongeham Society Notes, John would provide photographs of meetings and occasionally other photos. He would take care in resizing and editing them so they were fit for purpose.

I am sure those who were in the GMS at the time remember the fiendish puzzles he produced for AGM nights. – If January has 31 days and June has 30 days which ones have 28 days?  And of course, his photos of familiar objects in the village photographed from unfamiliar angles.

Then there were the croquet based games he devised for the village fete, enjoyed by all who took part at the same time raising a small amount of cash for the society.

But John will be remembered for more than his involvement in the village and Society. A charming personality, accompanied by the sharp intellect of a retired academic, made him good company, as those who have lunched with him will testify. He will be missed.

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