In the 1960s Portsmouth Dockyard was the largest employer in the area. Three times a year hundreds of youngsters left school at 15 to start life as apprentices, many in the ‘yard. The largest groups were the fitters and turners and the electricians followed by the shipwrights.
Bob Chalmers, from Warminster, Wiltshire, was part of the September 1964 intake and he is hoping to organise a reunion.
He was a shipwright apprentice at Flathouse Apprentice Training Centre with about 30 others.
Bob recalls: ‘In the second year we were given the job of building the Dockyard entry for the 1965 Southsea Carnival which was based on the old woman who lived in a shoe.’
His picture shows most of the apprentices in his year along with a few from other trades who helped build the float.
He adds: ‘I am in contact with four other apprentices John Bramble, Geoff Hillier, Barry Pickering and John Summerfield from the entry, but it would be nice to get a reunion gathering together.
‘The names that I have are Bob Piper, Calvin Sims, Chris Wyatt, Tony Davies, Malcolm Copper, Terry O’Hagan, Stuart Lukey, Ed Salvage, Ian Privet, Mick Tucker, Michael Arnell, Malcolm Bain, Allan Fudge, Barry Goble, Dennis Purvis, Bernhard Reed, Malcolm Reglar, Joseph Shears, Alan Weatley and John Miller.’
n There was a great reaction to my picture here of some of the old Radio Victory presenters.
Another, Mike North, got in touch and sent me his cartoon of the staff who were there when the station closed.
Mike, a freelance presenter who presented a Sunday evening show called Go North, covered countryside pursuits, book reviews and interviews with Portsmouth personalities.
He says: ‘When Victory unfortunately lost its licence those of us who were still part of the broadcasting team decamped for a wake to the unofficial Radio Victory registered office known locally as the The Eldon Arms where much-loved mine hosts Terry and Jean Little helped us drown our sorrows.’
Mike tells me that last year he won the top award in the Society for All Artists, Artist of the Year competition.
Of his cartoon he adds: ‘I hope it brings a little humour to what was the sad demise of a truly much-loved local radio station.’