Grabbed Prince Charles by the seat of his pants!
As promised,……..I went to WI last evening, and yes as anticipated, the speaker was so interesting, Charles Pickering, a lovely Yorkshire man, told us how he left school at fourteen and ran away to sea, for fifteen to eighteen months he was on a trawler, fishing off Iceland from Scarborough, getting fed up with the cold icy rigging etc.He decided to join the navy proper, he went of to The Royal navy training ‘ship ‘Gangees(this is not actually a ship but a training college for sailors )in due course, he went to sea on Vesuvius, which he said ,did erupt from time to time !it was a coal burning ship and when on shore the sailors would all don over alls and help to load the hold with wicker baskets containing coal, and got absolutely black and dusty .All this time training to be a chef. And was over in Korea, during the time of the war over there .In due course Charles received a signal to attend HMS Drake in Plymouth, for interviews lasting a week, he was interviewed by many branches of the civil service, policemen, and of course captains and an admiral .This was to set up to recruit an initial crew, to advice on the fitting out of the proposed Royal Yacht Britannia ,Charles and the rest of the crew left Euston station London ,slung their hammocks in the guards van ,and slept their way ,to Glasgow ,from there to John Browns shipyard on the Clyde ,
The Britannia’s first voyage was to Tobruck, where the Princess Elizabeth and her husband had been on a tour prior to her Coronation, and on board were, the then very young Prince Charles and Princess Anne, who were going out to join their parents the children were each given a young sailor whose job it was to act as body guards to the mischievous youngsters, and Charles remembers catching hold of a speeding little Prince Charles as he darted towards a lift, by the seat of his pants. To save him from falling down.
It was at this point that we had a power cut, in the Methodist Hall where we have our meetings, it turned out that the power was off all over the town, oh the joys of living out here in the Fens! And by torch light Charles continued his talk ….but I am going to end the entry here and continue another time with the rest of the story ....so have a good Evening every one Jan xx