Comments : the pleasure and power of blogging.

Boss with Nymph

Boss with Nymph

I was surprised and delighted when I received this comment on this post I wrote about my love of horses  (click on link to see the post, written November 11)

“Hi i love your photos of THE FARM. After the death of the boss it was run as a livery yard by a mrs naylor (you may remember her). Myself and many of my friends kept our ponies there. Many years later my father was able to buy it He sold them about 3 yrs ago. The stables are still there but have just been given planning permission to be converted into flats.My father has a dvd with the auction of the hackneys after the bosses death. Buyers came from all around the world. I NEVER MET THE BOSS SO IT WAS NICE TO SEE A PHOTO OF HIM IF YOU HAVE ANYMORE PHOTOS I WOULD LOVE TO SEE THEM”

I do not think Julie is a WordPress blogger as she did not have a URL attached to the comment, so I am amazed how she found the post. Maybe it came from Google???!! I would love to know. Of course I am delighted to get all comments. I think all bloggers love the conformation and connection that comments give us to the big, wide world of cyberspace

I think this is an amazing testimony to the power and popularity of blogging.

I’m hoping Julie, who sent this comment will get back in touch with me.

The next day my dear friend, Margaret, who shared so many of my adventure on FARM (we still keep in touch regularly) also sent me an email. She had checked my blog to show to another friend and came across the comment. This is part of her email…

“I’ve just looked at your “Memories” blog and have seen the comment by Julie. Jan and Eileen will probably know her as Eileen kept her horses at farm for many years after Boss died. Mrs Naylor was Winnie Wood who I am sure you will remember. Her husband showed you and I round the farm when you came to the UK in 1983. She married late in life and was Boss’s secretary. She was responsible for giving many of the horses their registered names when they were registered in the stud books. She also ran a badminton club in the rooms above the carriage sheds and it was her bottle of lemon barley water we took from the staircase and watered down when we all had the infamous water fight and you and I walked home soaked and sticky afer being drenched by the lads. You did score a direct hit on Pete, though if you remember, he was creeping up behind you to pour a cupful over your head. You were sitting on an upturned bucket and I was facing you sat on a corn bin and you must have seen my eyes move because without even looking you threw your cupful over your shoulder and got him full in the face! Happy days!
I attended the sale of the horses and ponies after Boss died and have photos and newspaper cuttings and Julie is quite right, people did come from all over the world. I didn’t know a video had been done at the time. It would be really interesting to see it or obtain a copy. Sadly as I remember most of the horses didn’t make high prices. As I remember Boss died of lung cancer (do you remember the cigarette always in the side of his mouth and as one finished another one was lit up) and had been ill for some time and the horses didn’t look their best on the day of the sale. Neverheless the bloodlines were there and hopefully have been carried on through the years.”
These are solid gold memories of my teenage years in the 1950’s. The decade of rock n roll, teddy boys, skin-tight jeans, leather jackets. Like Margaret says “Happy days”
Are you old enough to have happy memories of the 1950’s?


Categories: A word a week challenge, horses, love, memories | Tags: , , | 15 Comments

A Word A Week Photo Challenge : Love

Skinnywench of “A word in your ear“, each week picks, at random, a word from her dictionary. Then challenges us to make it into a post. This week the word is “Love”….


Horses: the love of my life

At 11 years old I, unexpectedly, passed the 11+ exam. In the 1950’s all children were inflicted with this exam to sort them into academic streams. It was more a common sense test with multi-choice questions, and not a test of your academic capabilities.

My Mother had promised me a bike if I passed as I would need it to get to the Grammar School approximately 20 kilometres away. I don’t think she really expected me to pass…

So now I had freedom in the shape of a brand new, 3 speed, purple Raleigh bicycle.

Living on the suburban outskirts of Hull, a large city in Yorkshire, the countryside, then, was only a 15 minute walk away and now I could whizz there in 5 minutes on my bike.

I had previously discovered “THE FARM”, I always thought of it in capitals….

It represented heaven to me as it was a stud farm breeding hackney horses and ponies and also New Forest ponies. I could now ride past it, with only a short detour, after school each day.

I was a horse mad child. I read about them,dreamed about them, doodled them all over my school books and fantasized about owning a horse of my own. In fact, at a very early age, in my mind, I did own an imaginary horse. Horses were my obsession, I idolised, adored and loved them. So that bike meant I could get to THE FARM after school at the time that the mares and foals were walked from the paddock into the stables and I could walk along behind the foals making sure they kept up with their mother.

Mare and her foal in the paddock

Me in school clothes talking to a foal. I am about 12 years old

Isn’t he adorable

On the weekends and school holidays I would hang around outside the gate into the stable yards and watch as the young hackney horses were trained and put through their paces around the arena. Have you ever seen hackney horses move? They are pure poetry in motion. They are bred to pull carriages and their gait is a high-stepping extended trot. They seem to float across the ground, with head and tail held high, fine boned and aristocratic. I would watch them for hours.

Two years quickly passed.  At 13 years old all my dreams came true…


The owner of THE FARM came over and said “I have often seen you standing out here for a long time now. Can you ride?”

I could, sort of, I had read all the books, I had practiced on the old cart ponies that came along the street. (I have written an earlier post about them, you can see it by clicking here)

So of course I said “Yes”….

Mr Partington, or “Boss” as every one affectionately called him, took me round to the stables and introduced me to a young New Forest pony that had just recently been broken in. Pandora.

My Pony, Pandora

New Forest ponies are very gentle by nature and an ideal children’s pony. I could call her mine, until she was sold. I could ride her, groom her, clean out her stable and give her unconditional love. I rode my bike home that afternoon in a cloud of happiness. My Mother was very happy for me. As a widow she had worked hard to feed and clothe me, school uniforms were not cheap, and no way could she ever afford a horse, not even riding lessons. Later she told me it was also a blessing in disguise as she always knew where I was during those tumultuous teenage years…

Eventually Pandora was sold to a child in Holland and my next pony was Nymph a more lively grey.

Nymph,Beautiful grey New Forest Pony

Boss with Nymph

Five years of my life I almost lived at  “THE FARM”. Of course I had to go to school and I went home to sleep, but those teenage years from 12 to 16 I lived a dream, I made life-long friends, had fun, got up to some mischief (but I am not going to tell you about that).

During most of my life horses have played a part. I still love to watch horses, I love the smell and feel of them, but now-a-days I do not come into contact with them so often, but they will always be in a special part of my heart.

The photos in this post were all taken in the 1950’s with a Box Brownie camera…I have scanned them into the computer…



In 1989 I went back to the UK to visit my Mother for her 90th birthday. That was nearly 35 years since I had been on THE FARM. Of course I went to see what it had become. Sadly it is no longer stables and paddocks but a used car yard and a housing estate now spread miles out into the one time country side…

Categories: A word a week challenge, horses, love, memories, photography | Tags: , , , | 18 Comments

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