Sunday, 21 October 2012

England Expects, While Wales Regrets.

Today October 21 among the fanfare of Bullshine and Historical Revelry commemorating Admiral Horatio Nelsons epic victory* over the French and Spanish fleets, on Monday October 21, 1805. culminating in a 75% casualty rate - both dead and wounded, which also included Nelson himself dying on his flagship HMS Victory, will be overshadowed by a disaster occurring Friday October 21 1966 in the tiny mining village of Aberfan in Wales when torrential rain caused a mountainous coal slag heap to move so fast that it engulfed most of the village and the whole yes whole generations of the village schoolchildren. The story can be unfolded by googling 'ABERFAN DISASTER'. ...................................................................................... At the time of the signal "England expects every man will do his duty" in 1805 many children too lost their lives it was well known that 11 year old powder monkey's as they were called - served on British Naval ships while among the upper class were young midshipmen - future officers age thirteen. However, the situation had improved by the time of WW2 When I joined the Royal Navy as Boy 2ND Class at the ripe old age of 15 years six months and twenty days on Jan 7, 1942 and on my first ship as Boy ist class at 16 plus. ....................................................................................... Vice Admiral Sir Bernard Rawlings a Vet of WW1 in a dinner speech on his flagship HMS King George V in Tokyo at the end of Hostilities in that rather nasty Pacific war(read about it) said to his American Admiral guests. "Our ship has been in this commission for just two years and has served in the Atlantic, the Mediterranean the Indies and the Pacific, The average age on my ship right now is 19 - mere children. On 'KGV' V J Day Aug 14 1945 Able Seaman Vest daily gaggle was 19.08 years of age. ....................................................................................... Today's Quote. Suffer little children to come unto me. Vest...... Back soon.

6 comments:

Anonymous said...

Subject: Fw:HMS KING GEORGE V RETURNS (aka K.G.V. RETURNS) - British Pathe


> The NO Gold card Men who saved Australia from the Japanese.and have lived
> their lives in Australia, most of us are older or have been Australian
> citizens longer than most Australians. the Aus Govt and Veteran Affairs
> spend more money on memorials and the dead than us Brits. However, there
> are only a handful of us left left to be forgotten from the "Forgotten
> Fleet" The British Pacific Fleet.
>
>>> Lots more where this came from
>>>
>>> http://www.britishpathe.com/record.php?id=23600
>>>
>>> ---
>>>

the fly in the web said...

So was this the first or last time you were described as normal....

You may or may not be delighted by a heading in one of the French national newspapers which has a daily column posting about events which happened on that day in the past.
This being October 21st....the headline read

French sniper kills British admiral

Vest said...

FLY: When I passed my HET in the RN I achieved a passmark of approx 80 plus in Naval History.
Uncertain of the meaning in your first paragraph.
Not at all surprised at the French version of the outcome at Trafalgar, which the French described as an overwhelming success for the French.

Usually we have a history column in my Fav Newspaper 'The Sydney Daily Telegraph', except on Sunday's. So no write up on this successful encounter by the British Royal Navy on Oct 21 1805.
Thanks for calling.

Lower deck lawyer. said...

No worries Vest, there is no such thing as normal, normally only occasionally when things appear to be different from what is supposed to be normal but then one cannot be too sure.
loved your reply to FLY.

Dylan said...

In regards to the relevance to modern society I see it as only reflecting those in poor economic states.

While it is important to remember the past, undoubtedly, it has no effect on probably Generations X, Y and Z.
Such 'battles' which ruled previous generations have mostly vanished. There are still wars, but these are of little importance to the world as a whole, besides monetary.

Revolutions in less 'modern' societies are where anything controversial appears.

Jane, Stokes-Honour. said...

I will be away from my computer until the morning of the 30th October and will get back to you as soon as possible.