NOSTALGIA: Site of marines’ pool at Gosport

Thanks to Derek Howard we can now locate the position of the Royal Marines Light Infantry bathing pool and, inset, the original picture of the pool. 'Picture: Robert James Collection
Thanks to Derek Howard we can now locate the position of the Royal Marines Light Infantry bathing pool and, inset, the original picture of the pool. 'Picture: Robert James Collection

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I recently published a photo of the bathing pool used by the Royal Marines Light Infantry at Gosport and asked if anyone knew where it was. Derek Howard sent me this map showing its location.

He says: ‘This location is almost certainly in Gosport. The key feature is the terrace on the left. Counting the number of chimneys (there is only one now) it matches the number of front doors viewed on Google Earth.

You would never guess, but this is Portsmouth Harbour, looking north, during the Second World War. 'Picture: Mike Nolan Collection

You would never guess, but this is Portsmouth Harbour, looking north, during the Second World War. 'Picture: Mike Nolan Collection

‘This terrace is on the northern end of Mill Lane (alongside the former HMS St Vincent) where it continues as San Diego Road.

‘The pool was once the pond for a water mill on the western side of Mill Lane. Opposite, on the eastern side of Mill Lane, is the pond, a part of Forton Lake (or creek) which comes close to the road.’

Derek says on the map you can see a ‘square-ish patch of creek which is where the original mill pond was’.

He adds: ‘This part of the creek is tidal and only water-filled when the tide’s in full flood> It appears the bathing pool had a wall to contain sea water with sluices to let water flood in and drain out as needed. One building that is sunlit (in the photo) remains today but most of the features to the right of it no longer exist.’

Home Waters by David Bruhn and Rob Hoole.

Home Waters by David Bruhn and Rob Hoole.

• On April 4, I published this picture of the submarine HMS Porpoise going astern out of HMS Dolphin, the former submarine base at Gosport.

The photo had been manipulated so Portsmouth Dockyard, on the right, was made to look more like a Scottish loch. To the left Camper & Nicholson’s boatyard had been left intact, giving the game away.

Former shipbreaker Roger Allen believes the boat was going to be towed away as the chains around the bow and running the length of the deck would have been used to retrieve the boat if it had broken its tow.

• A book on the fight against German U-boats in the First World War has been published.

This was Victoria Park, Portsmouth, in the early part of the last century. The low wire fence was to stop people walking on the grass. ''At the bottom is a sign in block capitals with a request from the mayor.  It says: 'THE MAYOR REQUESTS THE ASSISTANCE OF THE INHABITANTS IN PROTECTING THE TREES'.''I don't suppose such a sign would last five minutes today.  Picture: Barry Cox Collection

This was Victoria Park, Portsmouth, in the early part of the last century. The low wire fence was to stop people walking on the grass. ''At the bottom is a sign in block capitals with a request from the mayor. It says: 'THE MAYOR REQUESTS THE ASSISTANCE OF THE INHABITANTS IN PROTECTING THE TREES'.''I don't suppose such a sign would last five minutes today. Picture: Barry Cox Collection

With 458 richly-illustrated pages containing more than 150 photographs, maps and diagrams the book tells of the crippling Allied blockade of German ports.

Germany tried a counter-blockade via U-boat attacks and mining waters around the British Isles.

Hundreds of fishing vessels were pressed into minelaying and minesweeping duties.

Desperate, Germany mounted a U-boat offensive off North America in 1918 to induce the US to bring her destroyers home.

The book is available from Rob Hoole on (023) 9236 7651 or rob.hoole@ntlworld.com for £30 including p&p.