Remembrance Sunday

P1090697I got my poppy during the week on Brighton Station. Leaves on the line and a few other delays meant I got to talking to the distinguished looking man with the poppies collecting for the British Legion.

I mentioned that my family had had a role in the film ‘Oh What a Lovely War’  in 1968. and suggested he might like a soldier puppet featured in the film on the stall in the future. Marionettes can be good at raising funds. P1090176

Well you could have knocked me down with a feather! It turned out he had been in the film himself. His name was Paul Buzz and at sixteen he had been cast as the paper boy, as well as being an extra in the theatre scene and watching Maggie Smith do her stuff! Now I want to see my DVD of the film again and check him out!

Apparently his connection did not end there, his dad Albert Kinsville, had worked in the wardrobe department so he too had been party to the whole thing.  But the irony was that two years later Paul joined up himself.  He served in several campaigns and was lucky to be alive I guess!

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My train arrived so I had to rush off but I asked him his name and told me he was the Chairman of the Brighton and Hove British Legion. I do hope our paths do cross again.


Our family home – part of an art project!

This picture is of my grandparents’ house where I lived as a child. Grandpa had been gassed and suffered so badly from shell shock in the Great War and he was hospitalised for nearly a year. He used to joke that he was the only one in the family who was sane and had a certificate to prove it!

Yes I have written one or two poems about it all…

During the second world war my mother and grandparents in London were literally trying to avoid the bombs. My mother used to say that trying to fit a gas mask and throwing herself over the pram would have been completely ridiculous if there had been an attack, but that was the kind of thing they were expected to do.

A few years before my mother died, I took her to France to see all the places where my grandfather had trained and served during the Great War. We took a little film of our adventures that I still treasure.

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This was the military band playing on the station at at Victoria last week.

This is one of the local pubs in Rottingdean showing their respects.P1090670 - Copy

Wars just seem inevitable, sadly part of the human condition.

P1090641 - Copy  I hope as many as possible give       generously to the British Legion.



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This entry was posted in Brighton - out and about, Cheer yourself up on a dull day, Finding my feet in Brighton, Marionette, Photography, Poetry - Creative Writing, Rottingdean and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Remembrance Sunday

  1. Pamela Boon says:

    I love your memoirs and this is particularly nice. I didn’t spend the war dodging bombs but we lived on the east coast and can remember standing at the open door with my grandmother in the blackout watching the German bombers going back to France after dropping their bombs on London. They released their remaining bombs over the sea to make them lighter and to fly faster. Sometimes they were dropped on our town as they went and the pier took a direct hit, but I do wonder why we stood there watching them go.

  2. Helen Goodman says:

    A lovely article Ann. What a surprise to meet that particular gentleman. Like you, we bought and wore red poppies. I was amazed how few of us at bowls on Saturday had them stuck in our shirts. Like you, I had an interesting meeting the previous day when walking along the beach promonade to meet a man who had nothing to do with the war but was sitting on a bench seat polishing with love a plaque on that seat. I stopped and asked him if it was someone special and he said yes, it was his partner who had died just six months ago. They used to walk along the foreshore and sit and look out to sea each day. He was delighted I stopped. He just wanted someone to tell of his loss. This, too, was at Brighton Beach but here in Victoria, Australia. In Canberra there were thousands upon thousands of poppies at the War Memorial.

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