[12] 1947 to 1948 Essex girl

In my real life story 1947 when I was 17 years up to when we left Leigh and moved to Terling, Essex at age 21 years, I had three boy friends.

June Bogner Regis Pier Christine and Beryl my real life story 1947
Bogner Regis Pier: Christine and Beryl. By Peter Reason licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0

The first one was Dennis Gamble, who I met after joining the local branch of the Youth Hostels Association.
He was 28 years old, and had been in the Royal Navy during the war.
He smoked a pipe, and in those days, I thought this was really romantic.
He worked in the Council Offices in Southend as a Quantity Surveyor.

As a group, we did Folk Dancing, and I was quite attracted to him.
One day, a visit was arranged to go to Cecil Sharp House in London.
Sharp was a founder of the English Folk Song Society, and as a group we used to sing Folk Songs, including “The Foggy, Foggy Dew”, which was a bit saucy and amusing.

To go back to the day trip to London, we had to cross Berkeley Square to get to the Underground Station, and not thinking, I asked about the words of the song, “A Nightingale sang in Berkeley Square”, which brought forth a rendering of same by Dennis and one or two others, making me go pink with embarrassment.

After this day, Dennis and I had our first date, which was to see the film “Scott of the Antarctic.”
He collected me from work at 7 p.m. and we enjoyed the film very much, but as we were leaving, he suggested going on to a dance at the well-known Kursaal ballroom in Southend near the pier.
I said that I would need to find a Public Telephone to tell my Father and Moya, so then we arrived at the dance floor about 10.30 p.m.
Of course, I stuck out like a sore thumb, as all the other girls were dressed up in bright silk or satin dresses, and I was in a navy-blue suit, having come straight from the Library!
The worst part was that other members of the Y.H.A. gang were there, and I got some odd looks, and did not feel at all comfortable.
Also, to round off the evening, I got a rocket when I arrived home in a taxi at 1 a.m.
They had nearly rang the police, as they were so worried.

We continued to go out to dances, classical concerts, and one day to the musical “The Student Prince” at one of the London Theatres.

He was invited to have an evening meal with us at home, but when one evening he almost proposed to me, I realised that he was not the right man for me as he was not a Christian.

I then left the Y.H.A. group, and soon afterwards, I heard that he had got married to a girl in that group, so I do hope that they were happy.

Christine and Beryl on the Teignmouth Promenade June 1948.
Christine and Beryl on the Teignmouth Promenade June 1948. By Peter Reason licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0

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