Hitting the Headlines; Weymouth 1869.

When you stroll  through the streets of Weymouth, do you ever gaze up at the at the old windows and mansards of these historic buildings and wonder what silent spectres peer through their bubbled panes or pondered the scenes they may have witnessed during their long existence. The lives of our ancestors past, of their families, neighbours and…

Weymouth Maritime Mishaps and Mayhem of 1857

Being on the coast and  both valuable ports for trade, Weymouth and Portland have had their fair share of shipping disasters. Take the year 1857 and a peek into local papers reveals a concoction of calamities for those working the local waters. Even nowadays crowds love to stop and watch Weymouth’s town bascule bridge be raised to let…

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…

The Great Escape from Portland Prison 1868;

William though had an even stranger tale to tell, proceeding to enlighten the eager scribe of his past history, a ‘romantic’ tale about his daring escape from the dreaded Portland prison, boasting he had been the only man to escape. its grey forbidding walls.

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…

The Victorian Weymouth College….ghosts and gowns

There are certain buildings in and around Weymouth which I have passed on so many occasions in my lifetime that they just become yet another invisible part of the scenery, you no longer really see them…not properly. One such grandiose building stood down towards the bottom end of Dorchester Road, an imposing building which towered tall behind its…

Who stole the Christmas dinner?…Weymouth 1862.

Well…that time of year is almost upon us again, when everyone scurries around filling their baskets and trollies with a seemingly bizarre amount of food and goodies. Perhaps it’ll be a good time to take a peek back into history, see what sort of Weymouth our ancestors were living in, the everyday lives of the townsfolk…

The Travellers Troubles; The James Romany Family

One thing I really enjoy about my blogs ramblings is that I never quite know in what direction they’ll take me next. I love the fact that people often contacted me from all around the world. Some telling me that I’ve written about a long lost ancestor of theirs or about a place they once lived. Sometimes…

Trouble and strife…I’ve done for me wife! Weymouth 1895

On a beautiful clear but chilly Monday in January of 1895 a terrible scene took place on the normally peaceful Weymouth esplanade, one that shocked those out enjoying an afternoon strolling in the  crisp days sunshine. Early that morning two persons ‘of a certain class,’ (according to the magistrate,) had boarded the train from their home town…