Click here to go to the home page


In 1987 PERCY sent the following;



"I was born in 1916 at Lowestoft in the district of Matford (Register book 98 entry 300), the eldest son of James and Mabel. From a Pearl Insurance book which I now hold dated 13 March 1916 our address at the time was 43 Norwich Road, Lowestoft. I believe that I was born during one of the numerous German Zeppelin raids on the east coast during the war. This particular raid caused little damage because of dummy lights which confused the bomb aimers and the bombs fell well way from the town.


Dad was in the Royal Navy, his service number being 226631 and had achieved the rank of Petty Officer when he and Mabel were married on 4 November 1914 at Eastleigh in Hampshire.


It would appear the Naval authorities transferred Dad fairly frequently, even during the war. I do not know when he joined the Navy but he had been serving for a while before the war started in 1914 and had been awarded the commemorative medal for the visit of the Prince and Princess of Wales to India in 1905/06. These years marked a great change in the Navy as the construction was underway of the huge battleships which later fought in the war and the sabre rattling of the Kaiser was giving cause for some alarm.


In 1918, when the war had ended we all moved to Gosport, where we lived in Gordon Road. I remember 'being taken as a child by Dad to Greenwich and riding a horse there in an Army barracks although I can not remember exactly how we arrived there.


We did not remain long in Gosport and soon moved to Portsmouth. After Dad left the Navy he joined the Royal Navy Volunteer Reserve in Glasgow, in about 1923/24 where we lived in number 2 Clutha Street. This was a time of labour unrest in the country as I can vividly recall the General Strike of 1926.


Our stay in Glasgow was not that long as I finished my education at Lambshill Street School in Brighton which I left in 1931 when I was sixteen; this 'being the last of about a dozen schools that I had attended as a result of our moves around the country.


I started working for the Brighton Co-operative Society in 1932 and stayed with them for six years, finally moving on to work with General Aircraft at Feltham in Middlesex in 1938. The war caused an interruption at this stage and I served with the REME from 1943 to 1945 when the fighting ceased.


The post-war years were rather unsettled with several jobs following each other until 1947 when I started working for CVA Ltd. However, a period of sick leave in 1953 following an accident at work ended that job; 'but later, after a year with the aircraft section of Harrington Motors, I joined the Inland Revenue in 1956 until finally retiring through ill-health in 1980.


Lily and I were married on 24 September 1940 and Nigel, our only child was born in 1950. Nigel attended St -Lukes Primary School in Brighton from 1955 to 1961 and from then until he finished his education in 1965 he attended Fitzherbert Secondary School at Woodingdean.


Nigel commenced work with Plummer Rodis and stayed with that firm for three years which was followed by a four year period with Burnetts. He changed to the motor trade after this and joined Caffyns as a partsman. He is now manager of the parts department of Wadhams Ltd.


Although living in Eastbourne, Nigel visits us regularly as we sit now in our retirement looking out 'beyond the rooftops of Brighton to the sparkling sea from our vantage point high above the town on Grove Hill.