Friday, 29 April 2011

Did you mark the Royal Wedding or avoid it altogether?

So the much awaited royal wedding of Prince William and Catherine Middleton has taken place, and Farnborough like many places had a bit of local colour to celebrate the event - see a gallery of local images from the day. Certainly the local pubs took full advantage and were patriotically decked out with many a Union Jack!

And on a day when an estimated 2 billion people watched events unfold what did you do? Were you at a street party, or did you put bunting on your house or business, or maybe Union Jack flags on your car? Or did you try and avoid the celebrations and coverage altogether? We all pretty much watched it on TV, but did it foster a real community spirit as royal weddings of the past have?

Whatever you got up to why not share how you marked the day by getting in touch or posting your comments here. And if you've got any photos from the day, maybe from a street party or how you decorated your house, then send them in and see them featured here.

Friday, 22 April 2011

What are your memories of Pinehurst Barracks?

Glenna Mason's been looking for any photos or memories of Pinehurst Barracks, especially the married quarters, as her uncle was born there in 1926. Pinehurst Barracks were located to the North of the RAE and were demolised in the early 1970s. Built in 1921 the barracks was the base of the 2nd Battalion Royal Tanks Corps from 1921-1939, the Mechanical Warfare Experimental Establishment (MWEE), the 4th Battalion Royal Tanks Corps from 1937-1939 and the Royal Army Service Corps after WW2. Today, Meudon Avenue runs through the former site of the barracks with Rushmoor Borough Council located on the site of the former officers mess. The former Sergeants' mess still stands and houses the Community Centre (Elles Hall), and Pinehurst Cottages also reminds us of the military roots in this area.

Does anyone else have any further photos or memories of Pinehurst Barracks that Glenna can share with her uncle? Tom Watson has shared his memories, and if you have something to share please post it here or get in touch.

Wednesday, 20 April 2011

Origins of the Elephant and Castle in North Camp?

Louise Sutherland contacted Historic Farnborough to ask about the name of the Elephant and Castle pub on Lynchford Road in North Camp, and whether it was ever called anything else in the past?

Interestingly the Elephant and Castle is not listed in the Kelly's trade directories for Hampshire for either 1898 or 1911 which is odd. However, it is listed in the 1881 census under this name. Separately, local historian Jo Gosney, in her book Farnborough Past, speculates that based on articles printed in the Aldershot News in the 1930s, and which recall memories of the past 50 years or so, that there was a pub called the Blacksmith's Arms and that this was likely predecessor to the Elephant and Castle. Although it's unclear whether it was a different pub which was demolished, or whether it just changed its name.

So, can anyone else shed any further light on the origins and name of the Elephant and Castle in North Camp or point Louise in the direction for further information? If so, please post your comments here, or get in touch with the site.

Tuesday, 19 April 2011

Where was the White House in Cove?

Peter Wigley has been researching the life of his Godfather, Kenneth Montgomery who was a WW1 fighter ace and who won the MC. Although he was born in the Wirral, Cheshire, his parents moved down to The White House in Cove around 1911, and this was the address on his marriage certificate in 1922. Peter is in touch with a nephew of his Godfather who remembers visiting a house owned by Kenneth Montgomery's parents James and Jane. From what is known it was a large house with a large garden and substantial staff were employed. They were living there in 1922, but it's unclear whether they had moved there by 1911. According to 1911 census, the three Montgomery children plus servants were still living at 16 Bidston Road Birkenhead, but the parents were elsewhere on the day of the census.

In terms of information we know, there was a farm house was on the west side of Trunk Road in Cove called White House farm and today this is part of the Barningley Park estate.

Also, in Kelly's directory of 1911 there are two references to a White House on Guildford Road (today Guildford Road East and Guildford Road West). The entries are for a Capt. Julian Bacchus and a Mrs Hayes. However, this is in South Farnborough and not part of Cove, so is possibly not what Peter is looking for. Separately, there is also a Col. Robert Montgomery mentioned in the directory living at Woodend in Farnborough Park - could this be a relation of Kenneth Montgomery?

So, does anyone have any further information about either the White House in Cove, or the Montgomery family who lived there from about 1911, or any other suggestions? If so, please post them here, or get in touch.

Can you help find lost Farnborough relatives?

Les Jarvis contacted Historic Farnborough in the hope of locating some lost relatives. Les' father was Leslie Jarvis, and who was in the RAF and stationed in Farnborough. Some of his family came from Farnborough, including his sister Janet who was born on 24 October 1944;  and Les's grandfather was Samuel Jarvis.

If you have any links and information about the Jarvis family, or any tips to help with his search then please post them here or get in touch with the site. 

A good starting point would be one of the major genealogy websites or one of the major forum sites such as