Itinerant Oldie Peter Isaac and his wife Gail, both fresh from New Zealand, via France, found that the past half century or so melted away when they encountered a posse of contemporary Oldies at the Rose & Crown near Chilton Cantelo.
They had anticipated a “quiet” lunch with familiar old lags Peter Liesching, Edward Lutley, and Clive Lewis-Hopkins. But when they entered the tap room they also found themselves among a detachment of others from the Class of circa 1962 including Ruth Sawtell, Nick Collis, Dave Wilson and Richard Cotes-James.
“I recognised everyone immediately,” recalled Isaac. “We just took up where we had left off — I felt like a time traveller which I suppose, in I sense, I was. It was a fantastic piece of logistics by Clive and Edward.”
Fifty years ago three Chilton Cantelo House School pupils gate-crashed a cider tasting at the 400 year old cider press at Higher Farm, adjacent to the school and which from the inception of the school has seemed to be almost part of it. Then as now the farmer and the proprietor of the cider press remains Nobby Kerton.
The three pupils Nick Collis, Peter Liesching, and Peter Isaac were there again, half a century later, this time invited as part of a re-enactment organised by Edward Lutley. They had a strong supporting cast of contemporary Oldies on this occasion to sample the scrumpy offered by eternal mine host Nobby, and his wife Sue.
The Kerton family quite literally married into the school when Nobby’s brother Charles married Miss Protheroe, one of the teachers. The pair then subsequently emigrated to New Zealand where Charles embarked upon a farming career, curtailed only by his too-early death. Nobby explained to the guests how he had, in recent years, journeyed to his brother’s grave at Whangarei in the north of New Zealand’s North Island.