Newbury to Chichester/Bognor Regis

Due to other plans being cancelled/delayed, we decided on an ad hoc trip centred around Chichester, where I spent about 10 years, from 1963 to 1973/4, leaving soon after starting secondary school to go to Cornwall.

Although not intended purely as nostalgia it seemed appropriate to revisit some of my memories for the first day at least. Approaching via Petersfield (very nice town, lake, town square, sax busker!) we parked just below South Pallant and headed south over the railway line to Kingsham Avenue. We visited the rather sprawling School, and the boarded up Chi High old grammar school, looking rather sad unfortunately, then on to Kingsham Primary, through the tidied up but previously slightly intimidating ( to a 7 yr old!) cut through to The Whyke and across to Willowbed Avenue.

All pretty much the same, though double glazing, and the garage had been bricked up. Ying endured tales of burglers, my fascination with the bitumen between the concrete road blocks (don’t ask!)

Onwards past my Scout hut obviously updated but essentially unchanged, then finding a way along Whyke Lane, over the bridge to St Pancras Church and The Hornet, and back into town.

We visited The Pallants, and one of Dads offices then on around the Cathedral.

We then headed of to the campsite, but not before regaling Ying with amusing tales of Bitumen, the Ash tree at the end of Willowbed (no more), the houses of long forgotten friends, competitions with Michael Toops, and meeting his mum at a GP practice visit!, seeing Belstone Fox at the cinema with Edna, etc.

Perhaps the most important to me, and one Ying had heard before and thankfully remembered! was of a shopping trip with Dad to Sainsbury’s pre barcodes etc. I guess I was about 8-9 or so‘ pre decimalisation (1971). I added all the purchases as we went round (possibly 20-30???) and when we got to the checkout, my total was about 1 and 6 more than the till… Dad turned to me and asked if I was sure, then got the checkout lady to tally the whole lot up again, and confirm I was right, ending up having to pay the extra money. If memories stay with you, then let them be those❤️

After that we drove down to Bognor seafront via a fish and chip shop for supper which we ate on the promenade, before walking the pier at sunset. A bit blustery but a good day was had by all