A New Day, a First Blog

From time to time when I got something to say I will Blog on me site. Well Hello it's you again how Ya doing? There's only one G in Blogs. I know but let's say it's in memory of a dear old gentleman friend who I met when I first went to work on the Gas Board when I was 15 years old. Charlie Bloggs was a great bloke and a big influence on me. I was an apprentice gas fitter and he worked in the workshop where he was an engineer and a tinsmith. I was always very tall at school I was head and shoulders over everyone including some of the teachers. I was born in 1943 and there weren't much food about in the late 40s and 50s, so I was painfully thin. I'm basically the same height now and I go around 15-16 stone but back then I was 9 stone. All the nicknames were thrown at me like beanpole, hair clip, match stick etc but I was always starving hungry and old Charlie used to share his sarnies with me at dinner time, after Id wolfed all mine down. He used to tell me all about when he was a young feller and he worked for a farming family round my way called the Pye's on their steam traction engines. They used to go all over the place pulling large loads and working in the fields, and Charlie was the boy in the team whose job it was to look after the boilers. He was up at cock crow, and he had a 5 mile bike ride to the farm yard in Lidsing to get the boilers going, before the men arrived and they headed off to the next job. If they was a good stretch of the legs away, they used to sleep in the old iron wheeled steamers hut the engines pulled behind them until the job was done. But if they was harvesting and it was a hot barmy summers night, Charlie used to sleep under the engine with the heat of the boiler above keeping him warm. In his spare time and when the foremen weren't watching, he had hidden under his bench some copper sheet that he worked into a 1/4 size replica of an old gas street lamp. It was a work of art, which he took home when it was done. One time they was away working harvesting and just like today if the weathers right and its dry, you have to jog on and get the job knocked out, so they slept on the job exhausted. When Charlie got home after a few days, his Mrs had given birth to their first child, and he told me that she never forgave him. What a great bloke he was, and I wish I could remember some of the other tales he told me back then. So Charlie Bloggs it will be.

Over the years I have owned and loved many cars, vans, 4x4s and Land Rovers, and at the moment I have my 2 door Camel Trophy Range Rover which we off road and do shows with, and our posh car is a new Ford Ranger Limited 2. The mountain bike fits in the back nice and its handy to go and get logs for our fire. I decided to stop contributing to magazines etc after 30 odd years and I now spend a lot of my time helping my friend Paul at his off road site in Elham Kent. With the help of my pal Barrie Holt and his Kubota digger we have made a few more sections for people to enjoy, and clubs come along to use it now regularly. I also build and organise and run the off road course every year at the Billing Land Rover Show held at Billing, on behalf of the farmer/landowner, and that takes up a lot of my time. This is the 11th year I have done this with Barrie Holt my Chief Marshals help, and we think our team are awesome the best. Most of the team have taken the City & Guilds NVQ Level 2 exam in Off Road Driving, Vehicle Preparation, And Use Of Vehicle Winches, with our friend Tony Howland at Oakwood Training. If any of you would like to have this qualification contact Oakwood Training on the links page.

There is a lot more we shall add to this site in the future, so in the meantime have a whizz round the pages and we hope you like it. So from Hazel, Simon, and Isaac and Anthony Ridler for his excellent Billing films, our best Regards & Happy Rovering till we blog again. Charlie.