A Guide to the New Forest by Heywood Sumner

A review by Peter Roberts

A Guide to the New Forest was published in 1923 by Charles Brown and son of Ringwood. The guide, although produced more than 90 years ago, is in many ways the best guide to the woods of the New Forest.  Sumner shows their character by loving description as well as his very attractive drawings and map.  Two editions appeared; without advertisements for 2s 6d (12½p) and with for 1s 6d (7½p)

Sumner, in his preface, said:

This little guide-book is planned for the wayfarer – to suit his pocket both in size and cost.  It is written by one who has known and loved the Forest for forty years.  It claims to be a handy companion, giving a brief account of the District, past and present, of its topography, history, traditions and scenery; and it aims at supplying a useful introduction to the subject, reminiscent of the past, and of the varied beauty that pervades this wild expanse of wood and heathland….

It is difficult to add to that.  He deliberately ignored the church architecture as being described elsewhere but included such delightful descriptions of the real Forest that the book was reprinted not only in his lifetime but also fifty years later.  Following the descriptions of the Forest area by area he included chapters on ‘Natural Landmarks’, ‘Forest Terms’ and ‘Forest Notes’.  This allowed his readers, then and now, the opportunity to become familiar with Forest terms such as Agister, Assart, Vert, Estover and Turbary.  He listed the rights of common and of fuel and even gave brief notes on population in the villages as well as rainfall figures.  Lymington had an average of 33 inches for the years 1910-1919 as against nearly 36 inches at Cuckoo Hill where he lived at Gorley and 39 inches at Lyndhurst.

In the areas he works through the place names alphabetically making this a most useful reference book as well as a pleasure to read.  Under ‘Picked Post’ he states ‘This place is now usually spelt “Picket,” but “picked” was the spelling in the Ordnance Map of 1817, and in all maps previous to that date…Picked is a Wessex word in present use, meaning pointed…. The name probably referred to the pointed angle of the roads that join here.’

Aerolite – A Royal Visit in 1944

Aerolite was the codename given to the visit on May 24th 1944 when King George VI came to review the assembled Eastern Task Force invasion fleet.

The following is a transcription from the diary of King George VI – Wednesday May 24th 1944

Wednesday May 24th

I motored to Exbury, which is now a naval shore base, H.M.S.”Mastodon”, where landing craft crews are trained. I spent the day with the Eastern Task Force to see the officers & men of the British Naval Assault Forces in Overlord. I was met by Admiral Sir B. Ramsay, Allied Naval Commander Expeditionary Force, Rear Admiral, Sir P. Vian, Naval Commander Eastern Task Force & others. We went by barge, the Royal Yacht barge, down the Beaulieu River out into the Solent passing landing craft. I went on board the “Bulolo” Command Ship, Force “G”, Commander Douglas-Pennant, the “Largs” Command Ship, Force “S”, Rear Admiral A.G. Talbot and I saw Force “J” ashore at the Royal Yacht Squadron, Cowes, Commodore Oliver. From here I saw all the landing craft in Portsmouth Harbour & lunched on board the cruiser “Scylla”, Rear Admiral Vian’s flagship. I went in a Naval Rescue Motor Launch to Southampton Water & the Hamble River passed all the landing craft there. I must have seen over 300 landing crafts and other ships attached in the command. I spent a most interesting day. I got back to Wilton at 6:30 pm.

(This transcription has been made with the permission of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II. No unauthorised reproduction is permitted)

He was to arrive at H.M.S. Mastodon at 9.30 a.m. where Captain Swinley and the ship’s company would provide the guard of honour. He would then proceed to Gilbury and board the Royal Barge.

This gave rise to great excitement amongst the Wrens, however the Captain (a misogynist of note!) confined them to the upstairs rooms of the House, only allowing the male ratings to be inspected on the lawn in front of the House. Others remember that some of the WRENs were allowed to stand in the Ha-ha, so only a line of hats were visible for inspection. They also sneaked into the shrubberies and watched from there.

Being May, of course the Gardens were in full flower, so Swinley spent days learning all about the various flowers in anticipation of having to show the Monarch around. The King, however, had other ideas, having been a regular visitor to Exbury prior to the War. “No” he told Swinley politely, he knew his own way round and would relish a few moments of tranquillity before having to review his fleet.

Down at the Gilbury jetty there was much excitement amongst the boats crews, one crew, expecting to be inspected, found that their feet had been glued to the decks by sticky tar. Luckily the King had spent longer than the 15 minutes allotted him in the Gardens and they were saved the embarrassment of not being able to come smartly to attention.

He boarded the C.I.C. Portsmouth’s barge, known as ‘The Green Parrot’ and slowly and quietly went down the Beaulieu River. All the C.O.’s saluted in turn. It was a very quiet and sombre occasion.

In the Solent he transferred to a high speed Motor Launch and with his party of Admirals sped off. The return to the barge presented the King with a moment of humour. Their craft approached at high speed, creating quite a wave. The poor WREN on the bow of the barge had enormous difficulty in maintaining her dignity and not falling into the sea. The King and the Admirals watched this balancing act with much mirth, commenting to the effect that WRENs look better in skirts.

Account supplied by Nicholas de Rothschild of Exbury Estate – 17 September 2012

There is a short section of archive footage filmed at Wilton House, Wiltshire on the 25 May 1944 held by criticalpast.com.  It shows Allied officers attending a conference in Wilton House shortly before D-Day landings during World War II. Group of U.S. and British officers attend a conference at Southern Command (Wilton House). Includes British General Miller at his desk.

See the footage (No sound) here.

(Please note that this is a third part site and we are not respectable for it content.)

You can find out more about the New Forest’s vital role in D-Day from Mulberry Harbour, to holding camps, road widening, advanced landing grounds, PLUTO and Embarkation by visiting our main page on D-Day in the New Forest.

Alan Brown’s Archive

On Saturday 10th July a group met in East Boldre Village Hall to celebrate the work of Alan Brown. We all had something in common. We had in our care, exhibition panels, artwork, photographs and research by the late Alan Brown.

Alan John Brown was foremost historian of the twelve New Forest wartime airfields. Born in Wales in 1925, Alan joined the RAF in 1946, a year after the War ended. He decided the only way he could fly was to  become a parachute jumping instructor. After two month of training a request was received from the Airborne Forces Experimental Establishment (AFEE) asking for six volunteers. Alan served eight years in the RAF, four of which were at Beaulieu. After leaving the RAF Alan settled in the New Forest as a teacher specialising in Art and History. In his retirement he wrote six books on New Forest airfields.

With his wife, Margaret, Alan put on travelling exhibitions. Like his books, his exhibition panels were all hand drawn at an exceptionally high level, with his instantly recognisable handwriting.

After his death, Alan’s work was divided among various interested parties. For the first time, we attempted to reassemble, catalogue, and photograph it for archive and access purposes. Representatives came together from East Boldre Village Hall, the Museum of Army Flying, Boscombe Down Aviation Collection and the New Forest Heritage Centre, alongside private individuals. This was the first of three proposed meetings as work is completed.

Keep an eye out for material by, or about, Alan Brown as it is shared on New Forest Knowledge here

Charles James Newman, Fredrick Burnham and Albert Edward Phillimore

Charles James Newman

Charles James Newman was born in Redlynch to Charles and Lydia Newman. He was a broom maker, as were many members of the Newman family. He is shown on the right of the photograph, with, possibly, Alf Brown on the left. He enlisted, aged 19 years, in the Coldstream Guards on 2 September 1914 – a copy of his attestation papers are shown.

Charles served overseas before the end of 1915, and as such he received all three campaign medals that were awarded during the First World War.

The second photo of Charles would appear to be when he was in training, as it was taken a month after he enlisted.  Charles is shown second row from the back, and third from the left

A further photo of Charles is shown which would appear to be at a hospital.  Chalres is shown in the middle row, second from the left smoking a pipe.  The photo shows not only medical staff, but also a wounded man, and soldiers from various regiments.  It is interesting to note that there are no commissioned officers shown in this photo.

Charles was discharged on 30 June 1916.  A character reference and his discharge papers are shown.  It shows his reason for discharge as “no longer physically fit for war service” due to “gunshot wounds to right shoulder and right elbow”.

(Information kindly given by Juan Phillimore. Charles James Newman was her great uncle and lived at Park Gate. His daughter was Esme North.)

(Information kindly given by Juan Phillimore. Charles James Newman was her great uncle and lived at Park Gate. His daughter was Esme North.)


Albert Edward Phillimore

Albert Edward Phillimore served in the Army. He was Rod Phillimore’s grandfather and was the first full time postman in Redlynch. He lived in Sandy Lane.


The following photographs have been provided from Rod Phillimore’s family archive. They relate to Frederick Burnham who enlisted in the Royal Marine Artillery (RMA) on 29 November 1916, and was discharged on 11 July 1919 (demobilisation).  He originally lived in Salisbury and settled in Redlynch after the War.

He served with the British Expeditionary Force in France from 3 May 1917 until 10 June 1919, and was awarded the Victory and British Medals.

Three photos are shown of the RMA, two showing the engines that were used to tow the naval guns, and one showing one of the naval guns that were used by the RMA.  Two of these photos are linked and there location is probably France.  There is no evidence to suggest which of the men in these photos is Fred Burnham.


Home Guard: Crofton collection

A large collection of military orders, letters, defence plans and hand drawn maps relating to the New Forest’s Home Guard, lovingly created and kept in a huge elegant scrap book and ledgers by Major Crofton’s father, Sir Morgan Crofton. Major Crofton, Sir Morgan’s son, has kept this collection as part of their family archive.

Sir Morgan Crofton was 2nd Commander of the 9th Forest Battalion. Later a branch was formed in Christchurch which covered the south west area of the Forest, the 28th Christchurch Bay Battalion, Sir Morgan Crofton was Commander of this Battalion. The documents relate to the Home Guard and includes detailed maps drawn by Sir Morgan and original documents.

Brockenhurst Platoon Defence Scheme.

One of the many hand drawn maps by Sir Morgan, shows the Brockenhurst Platoon Defence Scheme dated 1943. This map shows the positions of HQ’s (company and platoon level headquarters), tank traps and other military buildings or posts. Is it a unique collection of documentation that probably should have been destroyed once it was read. We are very thankful to Major Crofton for allowing us to view and show his father’s collection.

Can you help? To help the search tool for this site find terms in these pages we need them to be transcribed. If you can help, please do get in touch.

All material is © NFNPA. Crofton

Follow the links below to see the other items in the Crofton collection.

A number of photographs have been offered by St Barbe Museum showing the Home Guard and these have been link to this article.

Local historian John Pidgeon has also made some Home Guard papers available

Home Guard: Crofton Scrap Book

Crofton Scrap Book: Part of the Crofton Collection

The “scrap book” forms the main bulk of the Crofton collection. This is volume two of the Sir Morgan Crofton’s scap books, with the first covering the First World War. The first few pages of this scrap book continue with Lt. Col. Sir Crofton’s time during the First World War, then the interwar period before starting in 1938 with the Second World War, which continues for some 20 pages.  The rest of the scrapbook was not copied, as part of the project, as it relate to the family.

This article holds the largest number of images of any article on the Portal with some 210 images of the documents held within these 20 pages of volume. These documents and the other documents held in the ledgers, that form this collection, give a unique insight in to the world of the Home Guard during WWII.

Unlike the TV series “Dads Army” it paints a picture of a dedicated, well-organized group of people with well thought through defensive strategies prepared to give their lives in the defense of this area, if the German ever invaded.  It is for future researches and historian to discuss how well these plans would have worked if the invasion had occurred.

The images start with the 20 pages, giving an overview of the material held there.  After these 20 images we take a closer look at the individual documents. Every page of every document included in the book has been photographed and is ordered by [page number]-[document number]: then a description and in some cases a date/year.

If you with to make use of any of these images please use the following credit line:

© NFNPA. Crofton. www.nfknowledge.org

Follow the link below to see the other items in the Crofton collection.

International Women’s Day – The Eileen Ashby Collection

For International Women’s Day, the New Forest Heritage Centre is highlighting  the work of naturalist Eileen Ashby whose nature notebooks, photographs and slides were recently added to the Christopher Tower Library’s collection. Eileen’s material is currently being catalogued and digitised by our team of volunteers.



J. Bruce Cooper Photographs, 1897-1900: The Man Behind the Camera

In the collection of the Christopher Tower Reference Library is an album of late Victorian New Forest photographs of exceptional quality. Library Volunteer and super-sleuth, Jo Smith, has been researching the man behind the camera….

Among the photographs which consist largely of views of the broad leaf woodland are a small number of views of more identifiable sites such as Shappen, the village school, Burley Lawn and some of children at the school.  Some of the photographs have been annotated in pencil, we think by Félicité Hardcastle.

Of these there are two photographs, each of a young man well dressed but casually posed recumbent enjoying a picnic complete with what appears to be a bottle of wine. Below the photographs are the following notes:

“Possibly Bruce Cooper’s brother who lived in Bisterne Close and built the house called Bisterne Gate (or perhaps the one next door) Pre 1910”

A third photograph is of a house which again is annotated in pencil:

“Campden House Cottage.  Home of Bruce Cooper (pre 1910) bought by Mr Leach who lived in Campden House.”


A website search for the birth registration of a child with the name ‘Bruce Cooper’, from 1836 to 1900, revealed just two possible boys with a first name that corresponded to the initial J of the inscription.  They were John Bruce Cooper who was born in Croydon in 1869 and John Bruce Cooper who was born in Newcastle in 1893.  Logically the second of these would be too young to have taken the photographs, leaving the Cooper family connected with Croydon to be researched.

It soon became very apparent that John Bruce Cooper from Croydon had a very privileged upbringing, and one that would have easily supported the lifestyle suggested in the photographs.  Still, apart from the information in the photo album there were no official records found – census records or civil registrations in the county of Hampshire – that connected any member of the family to the area. The nearest was a reference to a servant who was born in Bartley, north of Lyndhurst, who in 1911 was working in Leicestershire for the family of one of John’s younger brothers.

The Cooper boys, six in total, were all of an age to have served in World War One, and it is in the series of records ‘British Army WW1 Medal Rolls Index Cards 1914-1920’ that an official record links one member of the Cooper family to Burley.

 The house that was connected to the Coopers was Bisterne Gate, and the young brother of the photographer was Philip Howard Cooper.

Both young men had moved to Burley in the years following the sale Burley Manor in 1894 and 1895.  Campden House Cottage was built on the land to the south and western side of the village that had been bought by the Clough family in the first sale, and Bisterne Gate was on land that was sold in 1895 when land on the eastern side of the village around Bisterne Close were bought in small lots by individual purchasers.


Cooper Family

 John Cooper, who was born about 1840 in West Wickham, Kent, was the son of a country boot maker and his wife who had both been born in the village.  In 1861 the family was still living in West Wickham and John, then aged 21, was working with his father.

Recorded in his obituary in the Northampton Mercury 31 August 1906, the family moved to the rising metropolitan suburbs of Croydon where John’s father established a small factory.  As the business prospered, John was taken into partnership by his father.  The census of 1871 records father, stepmother and sister living in Lower Coombe Street which is where they had established their business.

In the beginning of 1868 John married Maria Mary Hooper the only daughter of Richard Hooper who in 1861was the licensed victualler of the George Inn in the Old Town area.  In 1871 John and Maria and their son, John Bruce were living in Dering Road.  They employed one domestic servant.

In 1872 John bought his father out, so becoming the sole proprietor of the business.  The factory was at first very small but was steadily enlarged and it is thought that John was one of the first to utilise steam power in boot manufacture.

With the business flourishing, premises in Leicester were acquired in 1876 and not long after the expansion continued with the addition of a small premise in Northampton and the top floor of a warehouse in Cheapside, London.

Back in Croydon the need for more room and better accommodation was required and to fulfil this need the palatial brick building -‘John Cooper’s Steam Boot Factory’ – was built.  It was the largest and one of the most important industrial buildings in the town.

A Boot maker would have made the basic boot, but often the finishing was hand done by outworkers in their own homes, who were paid for what they produced.  In 1881 he is recorded on the census as employing about 600 persons and his success is reflected in his personal household for he was employing a governess for the children, a cook, a housemaid, two nurses and a nursemaid.

His success was matched by a sense of social responsibility for he provided workers’ houses and three shops in Byrnes Road, an area that became known as ‘Snobs Island’, a snob being the current term for a cobbler.  He also was politically active, standing as the Liberal Party candidate for Wimbledon in the 1885 General Election.  He was a Magistrate for the County of London and Middlesex, and was the second Mayor of Croydon (1884 – 1885).  He was also an alderman for Surry County Council until 1894.

When production was relocated to Northampton in 1894, about 140 families moved with it.  The premises in Croydon were then used as a depository for a number of years until finally in about 1990 listed building consent for demolition was given by the GLC.

 John and Maria had seven sons and two daughters, though one of the daughters died before reaching her first birthday.  John Bruce was the eldest and his baptism record in the register of St Peter’s, Croydon, shows the relevant dates.

The continued success of the business and the changes in family life as the children grew up, are also reflected in the census record.  In 1891 the family were living at Tandridge Court, Tandridge, East Sussex.  There they employed a butler, a footman, a cook, a kitchen maid and three housemaids who lived in the house and in buildings associated with the estate were a gardener and a groom.  John Bruce was not present that night and his whereabouts has not yet been established.  Another son, Ernest Leonard was at boarding school.

As mentioned above, the factory moved to Northampton, and John rented Delapree Abbey, to the south of the city.  There in 1901 John Bruce, three of his brothers and his sister were resident on census night. The three boys were all involved in the business.  The family were supported by fourteen house staff: – a butler, two footmen, a cook/housekeeper, a ladies maid five housemaids, two laundry maids, a kitchen maid, and a scullery maid. Also present on the census was a gardener.  The younger brother Philip Howard was a theological student at Leeds Clergy School.

In 1901 the firm built a new factory in Leicester which is regarded by many to be the most elegant shoe factory built in the city.

However a business needs to be constantly evolving and that was the reason behind the move that is described in the newspaper extract shown here.  It is from the Western Chronicle, dated 10th August 1906.  The move was to be a fortnight later.

John Cooper died on 30th August 1906.


Five months later, on 29th January 1907, his widow Maria Mary died while at sea on the SS Oratava.

The business was continued by the sons.

In 1911 four were still involved in shoe manufacturing and one had retired. Philip was a clergyman and another brother was a tea planter in Ceylon.

John Bruce who had married Violet Mary Gordon, daughter of General Thomas Gordon, Indian Army, in Kensington in the spring of 1907 was living at Daneshill Cottage, Basingstoke.  His occupation was recorded as ‘Dealer in Motor Cars.  There is no mention of the shoemaking business.

He and Violet had two sons:  Thomas Bruce who was born 6 March 1908 and Richard John who was born in 1910.

Although being over 43 years old when war was declared, John Bruce enlisted and was a captain in the Territorial sappers.  He did not serve abroad but died on 21st November 1915, the death being registered in the Bath district.

Some twenty five years later the connection of the Cooper family with Burley came full circle when in 1940 the younger son, Richard John, married Edmee Mary Budd.  The marriage took place in Kensington, but the home of the Budd family was Burley Hill, another property connected with the Clough family.


Memories of a Scientific Advisor working on Grand Slam

An oral history interview with Frank Myerscough.  Interview Date 08/05/2014

Frank Myerscough was born in 1921. He was evacuated to Bangor in 1939.

Frank was awarded a scholarship to Liverpool University to study engineering completing a 4 year course in 2 years achieving a 1st class honours as the top student. He was recruited by CP Snow joining the Scientific Civil Service on Solly Zuckerman’s scientific advisory group to the British Government in WWII.

At 21 years of age Frank was appointed Airborne weapons tester and designer – Royal Aircraft Establishment, Farnborough. At 22 years of age represented R.A.E on Prime Minister Winston Churchill’s special weapons committee in Whitehall. He became a Scientific Advisor to the armaments section of the Aircraft and Armament Establishment at Boscombe Down in 1943 to help develop Tallboy and Grand Slam bombs. Frank took responsibility as the bomb aimer on first test of Grand Slam at Ashley Walk.

When peace was declared in 1945 he resigned and joined Unilever at the request of the government he wrote a confidential memoir for the Scientific War Records, before moving to work for Proctor and Gamble in 1950 with whom he had a very successful career. Frank featured in an article for the P&G Associate magazine in August 2013.

Frank died peacefully at Poole Hospital on 22 January 2016 aged 94.

Interview Quick Clips:

All material is © 2018 New Forest National Park Authority.

Some extracts from Frank’s Oral History, the full transcript can be found using the link below

On Grand Slam – development and live testing

The normal process of testing designs of weapons involved the use of dummies filled with concrete or sand, materials with the density of high explosive. I saw Barnes Wallis about the testing of Grand Slam and I suggested to him that we’d lose three months at least in getting this bomb into operation if we went through the process of testing a dummy first. And he was willing to listen to me. The RAF were very unhappy about that. The RAF were unhappy because they knew that this bomb was too big to fly with the bomb doors shut. We had to have the bomb doors open and therefore there was no knowing how the airflow would go inside the bombing compartment of the aircraft And therefore there was a serious risk if we didn’t fly it appropriately, carefully, that it could impact the structure of the plane and blow it all up. So they didn’t want to do it with anything but a dummy bomb. In this impasse, I suggested that I‘d take responsibility as the bomb aimer and so I flew in the plane as the bomb aimer in the nose of the plane and the RAF – albeit reluctantly – agreed to fly it with a live bomb.

It was a very nervous process, releasing that bomb over the little country town of Fordingbridge, where it needed to be released in order to hit the target in Ashley Walk. The target in Ashley Walk had been built, or maybe modified, to simulate the submarine pens in Peenemunde, the major place for the revictualling and rearming of U-boats, and similar pens in northern France. The bomb fell 100 yards from the target, which was to be expected really.

Frank Myerscough looking up out of Grand Slam crater 13-03-45. Courtesy of F Myerscough

Frank looking up out of the Grand Slam crater.

The crater it made was 140 feet wide and 70 feet deep. It convinced the RAF and the Ministry that this would destroy the submarine pens, whereas all previous general purpose bombs that had been dropped on it merely chipped the concrete.

I took photographs from the air of the bomb falling over the River Avon and of the target and the crater in the Ashley Walk bombing range on the flight (these can be seen above).

There was also a photograph taken later of the armaments section of the Aircraft and Armament Experimental Establishment with the modified Lancaster bomber and Tallboy on left hand side and Grand Slam on the right and fronted by the staff, with me on the end of the front seats. The photo annotation notes that in front row from left is Frank Myerscough, (?), Flight Lt Brian Harvey, (?), Squadron Leader Evans, Group Captain Fraser (head of department), Squadron Leader Carrtier (5 unidentified officers)

Photographs were also taken of the crater with a human being standing on its edge to give an impression of the size. This enabled a decision to be made in March 1944, ‘45 (corrects himself), March ’45 to make 40 Grand Slam bombs and they were dropped on the V2 and the V1 launching pads in the Netherlands as well as on the submarine pens and soon after that the Germans sued for peace. I am not saying, though, that the two are necessarily related, it might just be a coincidence.

Grand Slam on board Lancaster - Pilot Gp Captain Bruin Purvis 12-04-45. Crown Copyright

Another photo shows a Lancaster in flight with Grand Slam in place – the pilot of the Lancaster is Captain Bruin Purvis

On this site the Ashley Range Overview page has links to detailed pages about the targets, activities, archives and stories about the range.

Full transcription of interview recordings

Download transcription (PDF)

Interviewed by: Gareth Owen
Transcription by: Sue Jackson
Audio Editor: Cosmic Carrot

The New Forest Remembers team were told in January 2016 that Frank Myerscough had past away.

In Memory of Frank Myerscough (28 Sep 1921 – 22 Jan 2016)



Richard (Dick) Galton, 29th February 1924 – 29th February 2012

Christopher Tower New Forest Reference Library volunteer, Liz Galton, shares an article about her late husband, Lyndhurst resident, Dick Galton…

Dick was born in Lyndhurst and apart from his five years’ army service during the war, lived here for the whole of his life.  He was Head Choirboy at St. Michael & All Angel’s Church and Head Boy at Lyndhurst School.  At 14 he won a scholarship to Greggs School, then based in Grosvenor Square in Southampton, where he learnt the commercial skills that were to prove useful in later life.

On leaving school, Dick joined the New Forest Rural Council as a trainee Sanitary Inspector.  In those early days before the war, a visit to somewhere as remote as Calshot with his boss meant taking sandwiches and a whole day out.  Dick retained vivid memories of those early years when, as he said, everyone in Lyndhurst knew everyone else.

Dick spent much of the war being posted around England with the Royal Militia Island of Jersey, before being sent out to Rome with MI9 for 18 months in early

1946, ironically, just a few months after he had married Doris.

On his return from the army, Dick returned to his old department, now renamed Environmental Health, and qualified as an Environmental Health Officer, also as a Meat Inspector which entailed inspecting the numerous small local abattoirs.

He spent 10 years working on the Hobhouse Survey, a government scheme which entailed inspecting every house under a certain rateable value in the NFRC area, giving him an in depth knowledge of the New Forest and surrounding area.

Dick, Doris and daughter Pauline, had spent several years living in shared accommodation in the village before moving to a new house in Beechen Lane, where he remained for the rest of his life.

Always participating in village activities, Dick was also a keen sportsman & during the 1950s captained the Lyndhurst Cricket Club 2nd eleven on Saturdays and played for the first team on Sundays.  Vic Loveless used Dick’s history of Lyndhurst Cricket Club in his book on the New Forest and its Cricketers.  During the early 1960s cricket gave way to golf; he played at Lyndhurst where he achieved a single-figure handicap and was Captain for a year, later joining Brockenhurst Manor Golf Club.

Following Government reorganisation in 1974 Dick became a Senior Housing Officer, taking early retirement in 1981.

Sadly, Doris died in 1979 but shortly afterwards Dick met Liz through their mutual love of bird-watching and they married in 1982.  Pauline spent much of her life living and working in Lyndhurst and his grandson still lives and works in the village.  Uniquely, all three generations were born at the Fenwick Hospital; Dick helped in the campaign to keep it remaining open as a local facility.

Dick did voluntary work throughout his long retirement, with Lyndhurst Community Centre, a few years as secretary of the Hampshire Alliance of Amateur and Professional Golfers and for several years compiled the statistics for Totton CAB.

He was Chairman of Lyndhurst Historical Society for many years, served 3 terms on Lyndurst Parish Council and in later years became a volunteer in the Christopher Tower Reference Library at the New Forest Centre.  He also became an active member of Lyndhurst Church.

Unfortunately, ill-health forced Dick to give up most of his activities a year before his death on his 88th birthday – which was leap year day.

As he was fond of saying – “when you’ve lived in the forest all your life, your roots go down a long way”.