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Jean Bridle


Born 16th August 1936 on the Isle of Wight


Elizabeth (Jacobs) Bridle





 I was born 16th August 1936 at Stella Maris where the photo of Pete was taken.
We moved to 239 Upton Road when I was about 18 months, which must have been about the time Barbara was born in 1938, followed by Chris in 1942 and Sue 1946.
 I started school at Bettesworth Road school where Pete went, which then got bombed not long after. The school was then moved to St Michaels church hall, just up the road. I remember my teacher was Miss Spragg and she was Dads teacher too. I think Barb was in first or second grade when we got bombed again, while we were in it this time. My class roof started to fall first then the rest. I grabbed Barb and we got out and all she was worried about was dropping her bottle of school milk.!! When the bomb went off Mum was at home with Chris who was strapped in his pusher ready to come and meet us. He was behind the front door and the door was blown open and he got blown onto the stairs. We lived I think about a mile away as the crow flies.(Chris might have a better idea of distance). When Mum got to school she couldn't find us as someone had taken us into their house. Panic stations for a while!!!.

 The next move was to Player Street school which was in town, Ryde. We all went to this school and after sitting the 11 plus we went to Upper Grade as Chris said. I had to sit the exam again as Dad wanted me to go to Grammar School in Newport. I didn't.! Anyway Dad said if I didn't pass I could go to West Wight Pre Agric School at Freshwater. right the other side of the Island.!! Needless to say I didn't pass. So in 1949 I went there for 2 years.


Betty, Barbara, Peter, Jean


Betty, Barbara, Peter, Jean, Ern


Ern, Jean, Sue, Peter, Chris, Barbara, Betty

 After leaving school I was lucky enough to get a job on a dairy farm still in Freshwater. I went home for 2 weeks of the summer holidays and then started work and was there for the next 2 years. My pay was 2 pounds 2 shillings a week of which 2 pounds went for my board and lodgings. The 2 shillings I saved till the next weekend which was then enough for a return bus ticket back home for the weekend with 1 penny to spare. I earnt a bit of pocket money waiting on tables at home as Mum ran a guest house in the summer holidays.

  On leaving the farm I went to Sparsholt Farm Institute as it was then. I studied poultry husbandry from September 1953 till June 1954. I worked there till March the following year. Went back to the Island and worked in Ryde for Peters the Vet for a while until I got another job running an egg producing and chick rearing farm.

  I applied and got a job April /May 1956 on the poultry dept of Brooksby Farm Institute near Melton Mowbray in Leicestershire. It was part of my job to teach students how to look after poultry and how to kill chicken by dislocating the heads and plucking them. Many a time we had headless chooks and blood everywhere.!! This is where I met Brian in Sept 1956 when he came as a student. He wasn't my boy-friend then. In 1957 he went back to the farm where he had worked before Brooksby.
I left to work in Sussex and then I was asked to work on the farm not far from Brooksby for a friend’s mother, as his father had died . It wasn't till we both went to the Brooksby reunion in 1958 that we met again. I moved again, I think to Cadnam in the New Forest area. We then became engaged and I moved up to live with his family and worked for the same farmer. .


Weekly Routine:

When we retired we decided that we would NOT be getting up early as we had done so for years.So we always had our first cup of tea in bed...where we would either read or decide what we would do...I still do.
 Monday... is housework day..maybe Marj my neighbour will come over for a morning coffee and natter..if no family are around.
 Tuesday..is my TLC Club day...(Tuesdays Ladies Craft Club.) in the morning and afternoon visiting my friends,,Ron and Iris.
 Wednesday..is usually spent trying to keep the garden tidied and the grass mowed.
 Thursday ..is the same as long as the weather is okay. It can get a bit too warm.
 Friday...is the day I go to town to do my shopping and anything else that needs doing. Then Iris and I usually have a coffee and a natter and I don't do anything else this day....
 Saturday ...is washing day and more gardening...
 Sunday ...is more gardening.
 I don't play any sport as I think 2.5 acres of gardens is enough for me.

 We married in his village church,in Tur Langton October 1959 We had our own small cottage at Foxton and stayed working there till Sept 1960 when we moved to Birch Green in Herts where Angela was born June 1961. In April 1962 we moved to Kings Sutton near Banbury Nick was born there in January 1963. Proved the old saying right. New house new baby. Twice.

  We went back to work for his first boss and lived in Church Langton. Brian later took up driving milk tankers until we emigrated. He drove right up till the night before we sailed. Talk about cutting it fine.

  We left April 1967 to live in Esperance West Australia, where I still live. We worked on different properties in the Esperance Shire and really never wanted to live anywhere else.

  In 1972 we moved into town ready for when Angela had to go to High School. Brian left farming and started truck driving, carting livestock to markets and between properties. We had our own truck from 1979 until Brian retired in 2006.

  Angela married Paul in 1987 and they had Kara 3rd March 1992 and Ben 16th August 1993. That's the third family birthday for that day. Angela and Paul divorced and she has since married Simon Jones. They live in Perth.WA.

  Nick married Jan Delaney in 1989. They had Sarina 1st September 1995, Cody 7th September 1998 and Matt 7th June 2001. Unfortunately they have also divorced. Jan and the children still live here but Nick has moved to Bunbury. Still in WA. I still see the three grand children here. Occasionally I see Ben as he still lives with his dad in Kambalda.WA. He is an apprentice boiler maker.
Kara I see all the time as she now lives with me and works in the deli department at Woolies in Esperance.

  In 1989 Brian and I bought our first 5 acre block just a few kilometres out of town. After a few years we had that block planted with trees and gardens going, we decided to sell and buy another block just around the corner, where I still am. I am trying to sell as it is getting just a bit too much for me to manage on my own. They were farmland blocks so had nothing growing on them. They had by the time we were done.

  Brian and I did a bit of touring since he retired. We had a 3 months holiday travelling over to South Australia, up to Queensland where we went to "Stonehenge", across the top of the Northern Territory and the top of WA.

  Sadly as you know Brian died just 3 months after we got home. We had celebrated his 70th birthday and our 49th Anniversary just a month before.

We had made a lot of friends and I really don't want to live anywhere else now

I have just read Chris's story again and reading how there were no thunderbolts after Ronnie's sendoff.. I thought back to Brian's funeral... We were  standing around talking to the people there and Cody, who was only 10 at the time came up and said "Grandpa must be happy. He's not knocking to get out." It just lightened the sadness for awhile.

My Year: 2011

    Esperance is so far from anywhere I don't go anywhere very often. I also have had my eldest grand-daughter Kara living with me till a few months ago. She now has her own flat in town....I have been going to Bunbury for some of the school holidays. Taking Nicks boys, Cody and Matt down for a weeks holiday...and having a good time myself. It is an 8 hour drive for me as I like to stop and have a walk every couple of hours...and of course we stop for lunch.

Angela came down for a long weekend in August for my birthday. Surprise visit..We, Angela, Kara and I went for a Chinese meal which we all love.

  I had three parties this year ..As mine fell on Craft day we had a shared lunch ...we usually have a shared lunch when a member has a birthday. Trudy makes delicious cream sponges...If there is any left, the birthday girl(s) get to take what remains home... In the afternoon I had "High Tea" with my friend Iris and family..Another jam and cream swiss roll along with a lot of lovely sandwiches without the crusts on....All home-made by Iris of course. Then Jan, Sarina,Cody and Matt came over with another sponge cake later in the day. ..It was my 75th after all.

 In November there was a Seniors Expo held in Esperance...Various local clubs held stalls and demonstrations...Some especially for men. Machinery etc...There was a Zumba demo ....a ladies fashion parade from the 50's to 80's...indoor bowls ..the spinners club...painters and photography clubs ...a wooden, to scale model of Stonehenge...Esperance has its own full size Stonehenge .A local farmer and his wife have erected it on their farm...and of course our club was there.The aim of the Expo was to show seniors that they do not have sit at home ....that there are various clubs they can join in... we have a member who is visually impaired but she still knits the most beautiful toys.

 This Tuesday we have the club wind up ,shared lunch as usual.This time we are having it at one of the members farm..only 5 kms away from me..I'm 11 kms from town.
 Christmas this year, I will have lunch with Kara in her flat as she doesn't have her licence to drive out here on her own yet..February she will have.
I may go to Bunbury a day or two after Christmas but I'm not sure yet..The kids are old enough now to go by bus to Perth and train down to Bunbury..
Maybe by next Christmas I will have sold this place and moved into town...then I can join a few more clubs. Photography maybe.I still have Brian's SLR camera and I really need to learn how to use it properly..I have my own digital camera which I like better.
December 4th was the Esperance Shire Council's dinner for the Seniors of Esperance. It costs us each $15. For that we have an evening’s entertainment, a 3-course meal and as much wine and beer you can drink. Usually we have a sherry as we arrive and at the end of the evening, you could have either a sherry or a port.. I was the driver so I only had a sherry and wine with dinner. Mind you I did have another wine when I got home...We have the same group each year so we all say we are going again next year.
  Talking to Nick today and I am now going to Bunbury with Sarina, as co-driver (Lplates), Cody and Matt on the 30th December and coming home on the 6th of January as summer holiday swimming lessons start on the 9th. Will give her more driving time and it is an automatic. She is used to a manual but has driven an automatic.

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