Last month I wrote a blog about falling in love with a WRNS Sub Lieutenant during WWII when I was 8 or 9 years old; I was always a forward child. She was working at Bletchley Park on the Enigma Code Machine and based at Wavendon Manor a local mansion near to where I lived, along with about 50 other gorgeous WRNS. . . . . . .
I further mentioned in the blog that I was going to a carol concert at Bedford School, which we did and met up with my niece and her husband. They told me about a website they had discovered that I might find interesting, called Ampthill Images which has thousands of photos from Ampthill and surrounding villages from the late 1800s. They suggested it might be my era.
I originally came from Woburn Sands and my wife (Pollyanna) was a girl from Aspley Guise and Wow! . . . . . . . . . I spent hours trawling through www.ampthillimages.com and found hundreds of black and white photos of family and friends in the area in the 1940s and 1950s. Pollyanna’s mum organised a lot of the social life in the village. She produced concerts, pantomimes, fancy dress parades etc. And hence Pollyanna, her elder brother and sister must have featured in hundreds of the photos.
I moved to the next village on the site, Woburn Sands and discovered more photos of yours truly masquerading as a choirboy at a Remembrance Parade in the village square. Then to my further surprise there was a parade of WRNS marching down Woburn Sands High Street with my very own, lovely Jenny Wren, leading the parade.
More detective work and I discovered photos of the mansion house at Wavendon and lots more photos of the WRNS relaxing at their luxurious quarters. I now have a pin up photo of my first love and a lot of long forgotten memories now awoken.
I have spent hours and hours of time, all unpaid, on the Ampthill website – Time wasted? I think not!
“The time you enjoy wasting is not wasted time”. (Bertrand Russell, who incidentally had family living at nearby Woburn Abbey, namely the Dukes of Bedford), small world!