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Friday, 31 August 2012

Musical Moments - Sharing Memories

ILorine McGinnis Schulze at http://olivetreegenealogy.blogspot.com/p/sharing-memories.html is asking us to Share Memories.  This week's theme is Music.

I am in an  all singing/dancing chorus, swirling my skirts,  in a  London West End show  - such as Carousel, Oklahoma, West Side Story or 42nd Street .......

But It Was All One of My Wildest Dreams!  

Back to reality! Playing the triangle in my infant school percussion group  is my earliest musical memory.  I was not too pleased at being given  this instrument.  Like everyone else, I wanted the favourite choice  - the sleigh bells. 

My first stage performance  was at a Brownie's concert when, clutching our teddies,  we sang "The Teddy Bear's Picnic". 
In my primary school days,  every Wednesday afternoon we gathered in the hall for community singing and I learnt such patriotic songs as The British Grenadiers, Hearts of Oak, The Bonnie Bonnie Banks of Loch Lomond, Bluebells of Scotland and my favourite Men of Harlech, sung with much gusto.  Sea shanties were also popular as we swung from side to side to sing What Shall We Do with the Drunken Sailor?   Are these now all forgotten,  as I doubt that children are familiar with them today? 

I began learning the piano at the age of eight, largely because it was a sore point with my mother that her older sister and much younger sister learnt, but she missed out.   In my school days, there was no opportunity to learn other instruments, as there is now.   I did have a go at teaching myself the recorder, but the dog hated it and whined throughout my attempts, so I never got very far!   I would have loved to go to dancing classes, but that was not to be. 

My parents and aunt were the people I have to thank for making music so much a  part of my life from an early age, introducing me to musicals, operetta and ballet (my most  favourite art form).  I was lucky to grow up in Blackpool, Lancashire which  had regular touring companies to the Opera House and Grand Theatre.  

I loved The Gypsy Baron and wanted  a gypsy costume and  headdress with long coloured ribbons  - the nearest I got was full skirt  trimmed with rows of  ric rac.  My first ballet was Coppelia - an ideal choice for a little girl with the feisty heroine in a lovely pale blue tutu,  the handsome hero - and more gypsy dances.  

 In my teens, my mother took me to see "Sleeping Beauty" and I was mesmerised by the magic of it - from the orchestral overture,  the transforming scenery, the costumes and of course the dancing.  "La Boheme" was the first grand opera I saw and my hanky was well and truly soaked as I wept at the death of Mimi.  Ditto seeing Carmen and La Traviata. 

We weren't a particularly musical family, but my mother sang in the Townswomen's Guild Choir and my father sang in the church choir.  Radio & TV  programmes such as "Melodies for You, 100 Best Tunes, Friday Night is Music Night  and Songs of Praise  - were regulars we listened  to or watched.

Singing in a choir (school, church, community)  has been a key activity throughout my life from primary school days onwards, whether it was folk songs from round the world, spirituals, carols, sacred music, opera and operetta choruses,   or songs from the shows - musical tastes that still mean a lot to me today. I was very happy to be a chorus girl, with no pretensions to be a soloist - I knew my limitations!  It is a marvellous form of music making, whatever your age, a great creator of the "feel good factor",  and there is nothing to beat singing with the full blooded accompaniment of an an orchestra or  organ.   

High school introduced me to Gilbert & Sullivan  and I was hooked, singing in most of the operas over the years.  At University, I joined the  Savoy Opera Group and the annual G & S performances were the highlight of my years there - I loved taking part in them - the dressing up (the girls made their own costumes), the singing and some dancing. 

In "Yeoman of the Guard"

In "Pirates of Penzance".
My other musical highlight was a few years ago when I  was  one of over a 1000 singers, plus orchestra and organ  in a "Come and Sing" performance of "The Messiah"  in the iconic Royal Albert Hall in London - an exhilarating. moving  and unforgettable experience in front of a packed 4000 audience.  I was on a high,  walking back to our hotel.   

I have now decided it is time  to "retire" my voice, but music still plays an important part in my life.  "Classic FM" is my favoured radio channel and a natural accompaniment to being at the computer.   But the musical moments and memories live on. 

In "HMS Pinafore"
Copyright © 2012 · Susan Donaldson.  All Rights Reserved

Thursday, 30 August 2012

A Quorum of Q's - A to Z Challenge

I am enjoying participating in this series from Aona at http://www.gouldgenealogy.com/2012/05/take-the-family-history-through-the-alphabet-

Q if for:

Questions, Queries and Quandaries at the heart of our family history research. So many avenues are open to us now, beyond the traditional local and family history society magazine pages, with online message boards, social network sites etc.

We can  generally find out the "who, where, and when" about our ancestor's lives, but the "why" remains a mystery and we can only hazard a guess as to motives.  

Why was 6 year old John Robert Donaldson left behind when his parents moved 350 miles south?
John was born in 1854, the son of Robert Donaldson, a shipwright, and Isabella Walton of South Shields, a town on the north east coast of England, dominated by the sea and maritime activity. An obvious next step in research was to find the family in the 1861 Census, but frustratingly, in the days before online records, this proved impossible to trace. Yet all the indications were that direct Donaldson descendants had remained in South Shields down the generations.

It was only much later the opportunity to do national searches online revealed that by 1861 Robert and Isabella were at Portsea in Portsmouth on the south coast of England. With them were two young sons Thomas, aged 4, born South Shields and one year old Frederick W. (Walton perhaps after Isabella's maiden name?) born at Portsea, indicating a move c.1857-1860. But there was no mention of their eldest son, John who would have been 6 years old. 

How had the family travelled 350 miles from South Shields to Portsea, by rail or more likely by sea? Was work the reason, with Robert now employed at Her Majesty's Dockyard as a shipwright? Why was John not with them? 
Back in South Shields, I returned to the 1861 census and found John's maternal grandparents, John and Hannah Walton, with the household also including their grandson John Robert Walton aged 6. This must be "my" John Robert Donaldson, mistakenly recorded in the census with the wrong surname. An entry in the 1871 census gave further confirmation - a John Donaldson, aged 16, born c.1855 was living at the home of his maternal uncle Robert Walton. Death records showed that John must have lost his grandparents (and his home) in 1868.
Eight year later John married Jane Elizabeth Rushton. and they had four sons - John Robert, Henry, Thomas, Frederick and one daughter Isabella. Interestingly these names echoed those of his siblings in Portsmouth. For Robert and Isabella had more children, making a family of Thomas, Fredrick, Henry, Robert, Charles, Isabella and Alfred.

The fact that John retained the name of his father and mother for his eldest son and daughter suggests that the split had been amicable. One cannot help wonder did the two families ever meet again.

Why was my great grandmother, who was named Maria on her birth certificate, noted as  Martha M.   in later official records, including her marriage certificate?
Maria was only 4 years old when her baby sister Martha died, so could hardly have remembered her, but did she, for some reason, adopt her name as her own?  

Maria Danson, nee Rawcliffe (1859-1919)
with her only daughter Jennie (after 8 surviving sons)
and granddaughter Annie Maria.

Why did Maria's sister Alice and family (husband John Mason, a general labourer,  and six children under 11 years old)  emigrate  from Fleetwood , a fishing town in Lancashire to Brooklyn, New York in 1886-7. 

Alice and John Mason and their eight surviving children c.1920's

Why cannot I trace the birth certificate of my grandmother Alice English, born c.1884 in Bolton, Lancashire?   


These Questions remain mysteries and I may never know the answers - another factor that makes family history so absorbing.

I am still on the Quest - and not for Quitting.


A Sad Watch Tale - Sepia Saturday

Sepia Saturday give bloggers an opportunity to share their family history through photographs.This week's prompt is A CLOCK (in a rather dilapidated office). It  led me onto a sad tale about my great uncle's watch. 

This watch was in the box belonging to my Great Aunt Jennie and was thought to belong to her youngest brother George, as it was with other memorabilia on George.   This is the sad story of his short life.

George Danson was the youngest of eight surviving sons of James Danson and Maria Rawcliffe of Poulton-le-Fylde, Lancashire.  Born in 1894, he was followed three years later by the birth of an only daughter Jennie.   George was the favourite uncle of my mother and aunt,  and they had fond memories of him, perhaps because he was nearest to them in age and took on the role of the big brother. I can see why in the photograph of him above.  George worked on W.H. Smith bookstalls at different railway stations.

George outside a W. H. Smith's station bookstall

George joined the Royal Army Medical Corps in 1916 and I was lucky enough to trace his service record on www.ancestry.co.uk  as many were destroyed  in the Second World War.  On his enlistment,  George's  medical report stated he was 5'3" tall,  weighed 109 lbs. (under 8 stone), with size  34 1/2 chest and he wore glasses.

A photograph of George, with his brother Tom on the left,

 Taken by W. J. Gregson & Co, Photographers, 92 Talbot Road, Blackpool.
One of the many embrodered cards sent back from Flanders to George's mother Maria Danson

Also amongst the family papers were two letters written  headed paper of the British Expeditionary Force.  A letter of 19th March 1916 to his eldest brother Robert said "I will tell you one thing it is no easy job the army life today and I am of the opinion as most of the chaps are here they won't be sorry when it is all over."

The second letter of 23rd August 1916 was to Frank, his brother nearest to him in age. "At present we are abut 8 miles behind the firing line. I had to assist the wounded at a dressing station and stuck to it for about 40 hours. It's blooming hard work being a stretcher bearer in the field. On Friday I was in a big bombardment and will say it was like a continual thunder and lightening going off. As I write there are blooming big guns going off abut 50 yards away every few minutes. Don't I wish that all of us could get home. Wouldn't that be great, lad, there's a good time coming and I hope we shall all be there to join in."

Three weeks later, and a week after his 22nd birthday,  George was killed on 16th September 1916 at the Battle of the Somme, and buried in the Guards Cemetery, Les Boeufs, near Albert.

A photograph of George's grave,  sent to his mother Maria Danson  

The later memorial to George

Captain Macleod in writing to his mother who had four other sons serving, said "He was one of my stretcher bearers and was gallantly doing his duty over open and dangerous ground which suddenly became subjected to severe shell fire. He continued steadily bearing his burden and was only stopped by the shell that took his life. We mourn his loss and are very proud of him".

The death announcement in the local paper read:

The bugle may sound, the war drum may rattle
But no more they arouse their young hero to battle
For his King and his Country his life he nobly gave
And now he lies sleeping in a soldier's grave.

From Mother, Brothers, Sister, 2 Bull Street, Poulton-le-Fylde.

  George's Victory Medal and British War Medal which remain in the family possession.

The War Memorial at Poulton-le-Fylde, Lancashire.
George is remembered below the name of his brother John Danson
Copyright © 2012 · Susan Donaldson.  All Rights Reserved


To see how other bloggers have interpreted this week's theme,  look here

Wednesday, 29 August 2012

My Dad's Football Picture Discovered - Thankful Thursday

Thanks to a local historical society, I now have the earliest photograph of my father, as a member of a winning football team in 1925-26. 

My father is on the right of the middle row, identified as Perce Weston.

In "A Pigeon Sent the News" I told how my  father John Percy Weston (1912-2003) wrote down memories of his early life in Brosely, near Ironbridge, Shropshire.

"I was mad keen on soccer, so much so that I had a trial at Birmingham with the English schoolboys. My teacher took me in his car to that and to a second trial at Shrewsbury.

One Saturday when I was working as an errand boy, two directors from Birmingham Football Club came to see Dad and Mum to sign me on - they refused, saying I was too young to be away from home. I was not told about this until later and sulked for a month!

But a bit of glory followed, when my school team entered a cup competition. I was vice-captain and we got to the final - and won the cup, the first ever for Brosely.
One of the supporters took a carrier pigeon along with us and set it loose at the end to let Brosely know the result and to prepare a welcome, as we were bringing home the cup! "

Apparently a photograph was taken of the team's success, but no pictures of my father's early life passed down the family. I have only one  photograph of him  prior to his meeting my mother in 1936. Family memorabilia (including Dad's church choir and football team photographs) were thrown out by his widowed sister-in-law. How sad!

Unfortunately I only had a broad indication of year for the event, which made tracing it in local newspapers difficult.    In an effort to find out more, I contacted  Shropshire Archives and Brosely Historical  Society who put my enquiry on their online newsletter.  The Archive Centre sent me background information on the school and church.  But I am delighted to say I have heard from three members of the society with more personal memories   - and even better have a photograph of the winning football team, with my father on the middle row right, identified as Perce Weston. I always thought he hated his middle name Percy, but he seemed to be known by that as a child.

This is the  earliest photograph I have of my father and I am so grateful  to the Society for filing this gap in my family history.   My father retained his love of football all his life and was an avid watcher of matches on television,  right up to his death at the age of 91. 

And an important lesson from this - don't forget the value that can be gained from contacting local societies and archive centres.
Thankful Thursday is one of many daily prompts from www.geneabloggers.com to encourage family historians to record their research,.

Monday, 27 August 2012

Help! How Do You Handle Comments ? Tuesday 's Tip

I am looking for some tips and would love to hear from fellow bloggers on best practice in dealing with comments. 

I very much appreciate  the fact that people have taken the me to read my postings and type a comment.  I want to 

acknowledge these,  respond to questions or elaborate on specific points.   

No problem where there is an e-mail address given and I can do a personal message, but very often no address is obvious.  

What is the best way of replying to comments on  my own blog,  so my response is seen and not just hidden away at the end of a posting readers may well not return to again.  Am I wasting my time doing it this way, when my comments may not be viewed? 

Do you keep track of blogs you comment on?  With blogs on my regular reading list, this is not so much a problem in remembering, but I often add comments to particular posts that catch my attention on the daily Geneabloggers Beat.  Should I be keeping note of these in case I get a response, so I can follow it up?

Should I be changing anything on my Settings tab? 

Do let me know your own thoughts on this topic. 

Tuesday's Tip is one of many daily prompts from www.geneabloggers.com to encourage writers to record their family history

Saturday, 25 August 2012

Time to,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,Sepia Saturday

Sepia Saturday give bloggers an opportunity to share their family history through photographs.This week's prompt is A CLOCK in what looks like a rather dusty office.  I've chosen to focus on TIME.  
Time for Church 
The clock tower of St. Chad's Church, Poulton-le-Fylde, Lancashire. 
James Danson, watchmaker, whose son married my ancestor Margaret Danson,
was responsible for the new clock in the tower in 1865. 
One of the earliest photographs I took as a child.

My Danson ancestors, back to 1736 were baptised, married and buried at St. Chad's.
My parents married here in 1938, my father sang in the church choir  
and my brother and I were christened here.  
Time for the Parade

Poulton-le-Fylde Gala Day, Lancashire c.1911.
My mother and aunt Edith and Kathleen Danson are the two little girls in the front of this picture - I love their dresses, hats and boots.  
My aunt related that the little boy behind them Thomas ( ?)
had an uncle in America who had sent the banner.
The parade was gathering in front of the wall surrounding St. Chad's Church.
Time for the Train

 The old Peebles Railway Station in the Scottish Borders, c. 1908, 
From the postcard collection of the Heritage Hub, Hawick www.heartofhawick.co.uk/heritagehub
I felt sure this postcard would feature a prominent station clock, but  not so. 
Peebles is 27 miles south of Edinburgh and the first passenger trains ran there 1855,  ceasing in 1962.  The site of the station is now a car park. 
Time for Tea

An unidentifed scene from the postcard collection of the Heritage Hub, Hawick www.heartofhawick.co.uk/heritagehub

To see how other bloggers have interpreted  this week's theme look here

Thursday, 23 August 2012

A Plethora of P's

I am enjoying participating in this series from Aona at http://www.gouldgenealogy.com/2012/05/take-the-family-history-through-the-alphabet-challenge/.


Passion and Pleasure - at the core of our family history activities.

We need Patience to track down that elusive ancestor or break through the proverbial brick wall.  We also need Precision in taking down notes or making transcriptions.  I admit to the mistake of rushing to scribble down something when I have limited time at an archive centre or library - then get home and have trouble making head or tale  of my notes. 

Where would we be without  Photographs to enhance our family history stories?  They make such a difference in bringing our family "alive" and making them real people .  It is always so sad to hear of photographs being thrown out,  as has happened in branches of my family.  

Right - John Moffet (c.1814-1881) mariner - my husband's great great grandfather,  in a Napoleonic pose.
This is the only 19th century ancestral photograph held by the family.

Postcards in my collection are amongst my most treasured heirlooms - sent from Flanders during the First World War by my grandfather, William Danson,  to his family back home.

I was too intent on the past and never thought about recording my own Personal Memories until I started  blogging and was inspired by  the many blog prompts.  It has been  great fun to recall my childhood and write such posts as "When I Grow Up..." and "Speccy Four Eyes".

I cannot let P pass by, without focusing on my ancestral home - Poulton-le-Fylde, Lancashire.  At St. Chad's Church (left) my Danson ancestors were baptised, married and buried.   

Poulton was the social and commercial centre for the surrounding small hamlets and the market cross, stone table for the selling of fish, the whipping post and the stocks remain as symbols of Poulton's past. 

The only photograph (below)  I have of my great grandfather James Danson shows him sitting merry in the old stocks in the Market Square. What a character he looks!

Family history takes us in so many directions - You can explore and experience:

Place Name StudiesI love the images conveyed by certain place names - Applegarth and Applethwaite in the north of England bring an image of rosy cheeked women outside a cottage garden with trees full of blossom - shades of romantic fiction I know!   On the other hand would I want to live in a place called Boghall?               

My husand's great grandfather George Hibbert was a miner hwo in the 1891 cesnus was living at Snowdrop Terrace, Barnsley, Yorkshire.  given the living and working conditions of miners, it is doubtful if this address lived up to such a picturesque name.

My own area of the Scottish Borders is full of  place names that roll off the tongue  - such as Wolfcleuchhead, Deanburnhaugh,  Priesthaugh, Ramseycleuchbur,  Blackcleuch  and Muckle Knowe.

and gh are pronounced as the ch in loch.
haugh means - low lying meadow by a river

cleuch means ravine, gorge, cliff, crag
knowe means hill
muckle means large

  • Population Studies
  • Police Records
  • Prisoner Records
  • Poor Law Records

So  Perseverance is called for to Progress with all these Paths
on our family history journey.


Tuesday, 21 August 2012

A Century of Wedding Belles - Sepia Saturday & Wedding Wednesday

Sepia Saturday give bloggers an opportunity to share their family history through photographs. This week's theme is WEDDINGS

Where do I start on this topic? 
Postings relating to weddings have always come high on my page views, 
 so I decided here to "Focus on the Fashions,  1879-1971."   


From "The Illustrated London News", issue no. 2074 , March 15th 1879. which I purchased many years aglo in London.  This the wedding dresss of Louise Margaret Alexandra Victoria, third daughter of Prince Frederick Charles of Prussia who married Queen Victoria's third son Prince Arthur William Patrick Albert, Duke of Connaught.

The princess's dress was described as "made of thick white satin, the waist trimmed with lace 4" wide, the skirt also trimmed with lace 12" deep with bunches of myrtle. The train was 13 feet long, with a rich lace flounce 3 feet wide, upon which was laid a branch of myrtle......The bridal veil was richly decorated with real point-de-gaze lace, ornamented with flowers, crown and the royal coat of arms of Prussia, in relief, all worked with real white lace. The order was given at the beginning of July last and the work has been done by the hands of 300 peasant girls in the mountains of Silesia".


What a magnificent hat!   Worn by Sarah Alice Oldham  who married George Butler in Blackpool, Lancashire in 1910. From the collection of my third cousin, Stuart.


Sarah's sister Beatrice  married Jack Clarke in 1919.  I feel the significance of the date after the First World War is not lost in this photograph where there is a air of informality (shorter skirt, trilby hat etc.), compared with the opulence of Sarah's dress above. Another  photograph from my cousin Stuart.  

"Gowned in delphinium blue" was the description of this dress worn by my  mother's cousin Annie Danson who married Harry Ditchfield in Poulton-le-Fylde, Lancashire with the local newspaper giving a fulsome account of the dress. "The sleeveless bodice being plain, while the circular skirt was side slashed and bordered all round with deep silver lace. Her hat was ruched georgette to tone and she wore silver shoes and hose to tone. Her bouquet was of pale pink chrysanthemums." 


Another newspaper report gave the over-the-top account of the dress at my great aunt Jennie Danon's wedding to Bill Stemp at Poulton-le-Fylde, Lancashire.  Jennie was " stylishly gowned in French grey georgette, veiling silk to tone. The bodice which was shaped to the figure was quite plain, with a spray of orange blossoms at the shoulder, while the skirt, which was ankle length, was composed entirely of five picot edged scalloped circular frills, and the long tight sleeves had circular picot edged frilled cuffs in harmony. Her hat was of georgette to tone with uneven pointed dropping brim, having an eye veil of silver lace and floral mount. She carried a bouquet of pink carnations with silver ribbon and horseshoe attached."


A  rather low key wedding for my parents John Weston and Kathleen Danson 
 at Poulton-le-Fylde, Lancashire


A magnificent array of dresses for the wedding in New Jersey of Ruth A. Urtstadt  and Edward J. LInke -  the parents of my American third cousin Bonnie - descendants from my Rawcliffe family.


A wintry austerity Britain in December 1946 when my uncle Charles Weston married his bride Vera.  I am the tiny shivering bridesmaid, dressed in dusky pink, and holding a big posy, with my elegant mother standing  behind.   


The omens were not good on my wedding day on 24th July 1971. It poured down and we have no photographs taken outside; my husband Neil looks a bit shell shocked in this informal picture; and with the Tudor monarchs all the rage on film and TV at the time, I chose to wear an Ann Boleyn style headdress - she suffered the fate of being beheaded by Henry VIII.   Still we survived - and celebrated our Ruby (40th) wedding annviversary last year.  
Copyright © 2012 · Susan Donaldson.  All Rights Reserved

For other contributions on this week's s theme look at

Sunday, 19 August 2012

Celebrating My Second Blogiversary - Thankful Thursday

August 21st is my second Blogiversary!   It has been a great two years and has far exceeded my expectations.

I am relishing the blog experience of telling my family history stories to a wider audience (instead of boring my family), discovering this different style of writing, coming up with a title and content that appeals - and making new contacts with fellow enthusiasts.

When I started, my main concern was "Is anyone finding this and more importantly actually reading it?" A few arms were twisted with friends and relations to sign up as my first followers. But let's face it, although we enjoy writing,  recognition from others is a great motivator, and I must admit to being an avid reader of comments received  and of my page views.

My initial target was one posting per week.  I thought I would soon run out of material, but the prompts from www.geneabloggers.com and inspiration from other bloggers has been so stimulating,  Retirement helps! 

What hasn't worked?

  • Some postings I know were written more for my own satisfaction and evoked little interest e.g. my Stop Press series.  With my reviews of WDYTYA (UK).  I failed.   Response was, apart from the first episode, virtually nil.  Having started, I persevered through the whole series, but I must admit even I was flagging in coming up with comments  - so perhaps it is not surprising that others felt much the same.

What have been the milestones in my second blogging year?

  • Making contact  with two distant (third) cousins) Stuart and Bonnie who have been a wonderful  source of photographs, stories and inspiration for more posts on my Danson and Rawcliffe families.
    Florence [Rawcliffe] Mason and Charles Urstadt - New Jersey, 1919.  
  • Finding new information on my father's Weston and Matthews families, an area of my family history which has taken rather a back seat uptil now.
  • Testing my brain power with two very enjoyable A-Z challenges, which brought me more followers, particularly in Australia.

  • On a more serious note, writing  about research tools as I followed the series  Beyond the Internet on Family History Across the Seas and Amy''s  52 Weeks of Abundant Genealogy.
  • Discovering the importance of Personal Memories -  recording my own memories had never struck me  until I started following various prompts.  These have proved  great fun to write e.g.  Hair Days,   and evoked interest from readers.
  • Participating in Sepia Saturday which give bloggers an opportunity to share their family history through photographs. I am amazed at the ingenious interpretations of the weekly themes,   and the supportive comments from fellow contributors.  Posts such as  A Village Gala Day  and Riding's In the Blood  resulted in my highest number of page views.
Gala Day, c.1950 at Staining,. near Blackpool, Lancashire
I am front row on the left.
  • Having one of my suggestions taken up by www.geneabloggers.com as a daily prompt i.e. Travel Tuesday.
  • Being contacted by a history teacher who is researching the men who fought in the King's Own Royal Lancaster Regiment during the First World War. He had found my blog and the postings on my grandfather William Danson who was awarded the Military Medal for "conspicuous gallantry and determined devotion to duty in action at Givency on 9th April 1918. 

William Danson and Alice English, my grandparents.

  • Being approached by Thomas at Historic Newspapers to write some reviews   in return for giving a link to his website which sells original newspapers as gifts.  I was delighted to accept this opportunity to look through and write about   old newspapers.
My  brain is still buzzing - so I look forward to my third year at an all absorbing hobby.   
Thank you to everyone for their support.    Do keep watching!