Alan Ormerod
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Alan Ormerod - Aberdovey, Wales, 1959

I was aged 15 and had been chosen from the Education Division 20 for Lancashire to attend a junior course at the Aberdovey Sea School from the 1st to 24th February, 1959.

It was my first time away from home and although I was proud to have been chosen it was with much trepidation that I left home that February morning for the train journey to Aberdovey.

I was assigned to Jellicoe Watch, our leader being Lt Com Basil Mosenthall, who I remember was far from in his first flush of youth, but a great character never the less and made us all feel at ease. I still have my log and the one photograph of the Watch, I am sitting left of Lt Com Mosenthall. It was only when I started to read the log that I began to remember events - the days started with parade and the raising of the colours.

On our second day I sat in a canoe for the first time in my life, then we started to build our own Watch canoe.
Some of the other activities I remember are walking to the 'Bearded Lake' via 'Happy Valley'. The four day expedition to the 'Cabin in the Mountains' returning via Pennal and having tea at the Riverside Inn and one of the party collapsing and having to be taken back by the Land-Rover.

The excursion to Cader Idris was another very memorable day, visibility was down to about two metres most of the time, and our compass had seen better days, if I remember correctly we went round the summit a few times before we started our descent and it was dark by this time, my little legs certainly ached and cried out for a hot bath.

It would be impossible to forget the 'Cutters' at first glance,to a young boy, they looked awfully big, but I recall loving every minute of that experience and it being my best activity, and our Watch getting disqualified in a race with 'St Vincent Watch' for cutting across, accidentally of course, their bow.

On my return home I visited schools in the education division giving a talk on my experiences. I returned to Aberdovey, with my wife, some years ago but my records could not be found. So many wonderful memories, much of this probably sounds a little childish, but one has to remember we were still schoolchildren when all this took place.

It would be nice to hear from anyone who was at Aberdovey on that course.

Alan L Ormerod

Alan Ormerod - Manchester
Mike Kittier - London
Mike Atkinson - Blackpool
David Lee - Nottingham
Chris Jones - Cambridge
Bernie Robinson - Norwich
Barry Dilks - Huntingdon
Graham Marshall - Grimsby
Kevin McBride - Middlesbrough
John Bowley - Cardiff
Bob Barlow - Manchester
Tom Adson - Grantham
Lt Com Mosenthall - Watch Officer