I can remember moving to Bilsington village when I was just over seven years old.
I attended Bilsington Primary School and have clear memories of Miss Fellows (the headmistress). She had a kind heart I think but at the time she seemed very strict to me. She would take us off for nature walks and it was during these times that I learned to love the soft greens of the countryside. She would point out to us the wonders of the wildlife and plants and we would pick grasses and wild flowers to take back and decorate our classroom with.
Our Sports Days were held in the field opposite the school ( the one with the monument in) and I can remember having to clear the field of sheeps' droppings so that we could take part in the sporting activities without fear of falling in sheeps' poo!
We had school outtings once a year, and the school would be closed the day before (much to my mum's annoyance) in order to prepare for the outting.
We had a small vegetable patch at the back of the school playground and we would plant small crops of vegetables and marigolds under the watchful eye of Miss Fellows. She encouraged my interest in gardening, and this has stayed within me to this day. I feel we were lucky to have her as our teacher, although of course we didn't appreciate her at the time. She used to wear crimpolene suits and brown lace up shoes and I have memories of her having a gold coloured compact ... it used to fascinate me as a child.
I was a member of the choir and have fond memories of the kind Reverend Peacock who gave up lots of his time for us children. He took us swimming, on camping holidays and at Easter he gave us Easter Eggs.
Mr Stanger owned the village shop and my mum worked in there for a time.He used to deliver groceries to homes surrounding the village. I can remember his endless patience, while he waited for my brother and I to choose which sweets we wanted to buy with our little bit of pocket money.
I can remember Fenick's Garage but sadly that too disappeared and I can remember strawberry picking with my mum in the field behind school.
I will always treasure my memories of living in Bilsington. Times were often hard for my parents, but they always gave us what they could. They taught us to appreciate the wonders of the natural world by letting us explore the countryside and for that I will be eternally grateful.
A memory shared byon Jun 13th, 2006.
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