Love is in the Air…Weymouth & Portland’s Victorian Valentines

Well, as Valentine’s Day is fast approaching, I eagerly await to see what glittering jewels and delicious delights my beloved will present to me early that morn…(don’t even go there!) It might surprise you to know that celebrating St Valentine’s Day is nothing new, it has been observed for centuries, apparently made popular by Geoffrey Chaucer…

Ringing in the New Year Victorian Style; Weymouth and Portland.

Well…that’s yet another year year done and dusted. My old Mum always used to say the older you get, the faster they go, and true to her oh so wise (but often infuriating) words, the older I’m getting, the faster they’re bloody well going. In fact they’ve now almost hit warp speed! New Year’s Eve is…

Victorian Castletown, Portland…Matelots, Mariners and Mishaps.

Now, I’ll be the first to admit, as much as I love the Isle of Portland, in all honesty I don’t know a great deal about it’s history, for that I defer to local historian and accomplished author, Stuart Morris. (image © West Dorset District Council Channel Coast Observatory) What I do enjoy is reading…

Weymouth’s Tommy Atkins and Jolly Jacks.

Something that many of the younger generation might not realise but Weymouth has a long and fascinating history with the army and navy. Even during my own lifetime I can recall a certain ‘liveliness’ when  hundreds of sailors would take their shore leave, hoards of men streaming along the esplanade heading for town, all eager to make the most of their…

Victorian Weymouth and Portland Roads and the Great Eastern.

I have spent more than a few years studying and researching about the lives of the military men who were based at the Nothe in Weymouth during the Victorian era and onwards, and in the course of my sifting through the old newspapers and articles for news items about them I have uncovered many fascinating…

1857; Victorian Day-trippers excitement… journey to Weymouth

Today, we all seem to take many things, including technology, for granted, as ever more sophisticated gadgets and inventions are unrolled into our society. We seem to have lost the beautiful wonder and awe of the Victorian era, when every new invention or places of travel created great excitement amongst the people, such sights were…

1824; Weymouth, the Great Storm

This being the morning before zero hour…I thought that this might well be a good time to write about the Great Storm of 1824 that hit the country. Those living on the South coast were worst hit. This is a tale of a storm that was so severe and so destructive that it has gone…

1872; Chesil Royal Adelaide shipwreck; part 2. Armageddon.

This is the second part of the tale of the sinking of the Royal Adelaide on Chesil beach that happened on the 25th November 1872. Well, in fact, it’s actually about what happened after…the dreadful scenes that hit the national papers and shook a lot of people. Despite there being many shipwrecks around the coast over…

Weymouth 1873; Rub a dub dub, 3 men (not) in a tub….

Well, o.k. maybe the title is a bit lighthearted for such a tragedy, but when I read that it allegedly concerned 3 butchers assistants that the misfortune had befallen, a visual image immediately flashed in my mind of the popular nursery rhyme. Just put that down to my extremely warped sense of humour which seems…

1870; Pilfering pilots in Portland Roads

Being on the coast, and having both Weymouth Harbour and Portland Roads on our doorstep, a lot of the local men had always earned their living from the sea, and fiercely guarded their rights to do so. Not least the men who worked the local waters as pilots. These were were the men who from…