News: The modern name of Kent is derived from the Brythonic word kantos meaning "rim" or "border", or possibly from a homonymous word kanto "horn, hook"
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Author Topic: Hop farm, Beltring  (Read 1040 times)

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Offline kyn

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Hop farm, Beltring
« Reply #1 on: January 20, 2017, 17:52:54 »
Our new home was only about two miles from Paddock Wood and we were billeted in the Oast Houses at Bellring Hop Farm. These were fine in the warm weather but very draughty when the wind blew. The tiled roofs were waterproof but I could not stay the same so far as snow was concerned and during the winter it was not unusual to wake up in the morning to find that everything within our sleeping quarters was covered in a fine film of white powder. I was very lucky because I had relatives living within half a mile and therefore it was my best wartime billet so far. I was able to visit them fairly regularly for tea and cakes and other goodies. We continued with our training sometimes going out on exercises around that very lovely part of Kent.

There was a fair amount of sport as well. An attempt was made to form a rugby team but despite several practice games nothing materialised. There were many inter-troop soccer matches and in one of them, which we played at nearby Paddock Wood I suffered a badly sprained ankle when I fell awkwardly and another man fell on top of me. Whilst at the Hop Farm we were able to get day passes home to London by train occasionally which helped to lighten the burden considerably although the return journey on a Sunday night, in the blackout, was such that we were never sure as to whether we would reach our camp by midnight, when the pass expired.

In this particular position, apart from the Oast Houses into which the battery personnel was billeted there was a row of hoppickers sheds which were used for stores and so forth. Some were used as cells for prisoners and one set fire to his, then escaped, was chased down the road, recaptured and brought back securely handcuffed. The guardhouse had a valor oil stove which was useful for making toast but the operation usually took some two hours and tasted of paraffin!

From Beltring we moved to the south coast at New Romney.

Taken from:http://www.bbc.co.uk/history/ww2peopleswar/stories/96/a2812196.shtml



 

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