Saturday, June 18, 2011


Good King Hal playing "Where's That Anti-Personnel Mine?" in the great hall at Barrington Court in front of a group of stunned children. And on that BOMBSHELL...

My previous visit to Kingsclere in Berkshire had been three years ago and I had forgotten nearly everything to do with this school. I even read up my blog entry about it from 2008, but it still didn't really stir up the brain cells. I am really getting old now...

The evening before had been very pleasant as I had dinner with my old friends Malcolm and Linda Taylor from The Hoop Cricket Club in Essex. They were on their way down to Port Isaac in Cornwall for their holiday and decided to stay in Somerset on the way down, and stayed at the Manor B&B in Wayford where lots of my friends used to stay when I was living in Clapton. I picked up Malcolm and Linda and drove them over to the Dinnington Docks near Ilminster where we had a lovely meal and lots of laughs about the old days. A very agreeable amble down Amnesia Alley. I must do it more often.

Up, bright and early on the Friday morning and up along the A303 and cutting across country to Kingsclere. This is a lovely village/town just to the north of Basingstoke. I was warmly greeted by Sally James, the teacher who booked me. Before you ask, no, she wasn't some pensionable brunette with a nice pair of legs who had appeared many centuries before on Tiswas with Chris Tarrant. This particular Ms James was blond, young and very friendly, but I am sure she has nice legs. We had a fabulous morning with some of the nicest kids you could want to meet. Lots of fun and laughter, and everyone getting all the gags and jokes. Lunch was absolutely lovely - a cheese and onion quiche with salad and chips, yum! The morning had been almost completely perfect aside from when I had done the Henry meeting King Francis I at the Field of the Cloth of Gold wrestling bit. The young lad I had picked got a bit over excited and basically attacked me during the wrestling joke - punching and elbowing me ferociously. Thank Christ he was only 9 years old. If I had been in a secondary school I'd either be in hospital or a coma by now! The young lad in question was given the dressing down to end all dressing downs by Sally and her fellow teachers later...

The afternoon was fantastic - very very funny and loud, loads of laughs and fun all round. The jousting tournament was a belter where a very competent ladies team came through for a well deserved victory. This now makes the score:


I think that is it for this year. I don't think there are enough gigs left before the summer break for the gents to catch up. So another triumph in the year for the ladies. Well done!

Sunday, tomorrow, I am at Barrington Court for another walkabout. Straight after that I am driving up to Essex. On the Tuesday I am being "me" at St Anne Line RC School in Basildon (the school my son James attends) as it is a "Bring Dad to School Day". Should be fun. Then on Thursday I am back at Thundersley School near Southend for a much looked forward to return visit.

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