Flashback: Jumping for joy as memories flood back

FORMER gymnasts from Mid Suffolk have been tumbling with excitement after spottign their photo in Flashback.

Tamlyn Burgess said: “I was shocked to see myself with my friends showing off our medals.

“To name all from left to right: Sarah Cooper (nee Fish), Michelle Morgan, Helen Coward, Caroline Cowham, Gaynor Lee, Michelle Cockayne, Me (Tamlyn Burgess - nee Wells), Helen Woollard, Centre - Emma Perkins.

“Unfortunately I do not know everyone’s married names, but our coach was Colin Barnard.”

While Emma Perkins, aged 34, added: “|I saw the photo of Mid Suffolk gymnasts from 1986, and yes I can tell you more.

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“I am the little one at the front of the photo, Emma Perkins. We had done really well at a recent Class Two County Competition and were showing off our medals.

“I was eight at the time and it had been my first county competition. I came second to my teammate Helen Woolard (far right of photo) who got the gold! I even remember the day the photo was taken.

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“For some reason I had not got the message that the photographer was coming and had not worn my club leotard like the rest of the girls, so they stuck me right at the front of the photo because I didn’t match the others!

“It was lovely to see the photo again (I do still have the original article in a scrapbook at my parents’ house) and it brought back so many happy memories.

“My daughter is five years old and she is now doing gymnastics at Mid Suffolk Leisure Centre so it was good for her to see her old mum winning medals too.

“Thanks for printing it. “

The picture of the bellringers at Pettistree was taken just after the bells had been re-hung, wrote Mary Garner, tower captain, this week.

She said it was taken just before their re-dedication on December 14, 1986.

Adding: “Centre front is Mike Whitby, who had undertaken to teach a band to ring the bells which had been silent almost entirely since 1938. First row (l-r): Tony Franklin, Colin Upton, Rebecca, Hannah & Sam Whitfield, Marie Goodship, Jeff Hallett, Maggie Hallett (by the bell rope). Middle row (l-r): James Smith, Mary Garner, Evelyn Whitfield, Rita Smith, Sarah Whitfield. Back row (l-r): John Jennings, Steve Hind, Paul Norris, Alan Whitfield.

“All pictured, except the three youngest Whitfields, were ringers. The photo shows both learners and teachers. The latter were John Jennings, James Smith, Marie Goodship and of course Mike Whitby.

“Several of the learners from that time are still ringing, although the only one regularly in Pettistree who is pictured is me, Mary Garner.

“The band at Pettistree continues to flourish under the tutelage of Mike Whitby and the bells can be heard every Sunday and Wednesday throughout the year.”

Regarding Combs Barn farewell party, Janey Auchincloss, said: “The photo actually pictures my entire family - well, almost, my dad is just about visible beside a lady in glasses!

“The chap in the flares is my older brother, David Burch, whom I think was then chairman of the Museum of East Anglian Life friends. Next to him is Nick Portway. I am standing in between my brother and mother, I’m the one with the fetching 80s haircut!!

“I think the barn was being donated to the Museum from Combs Model farm, and has since been reconstructed on the Abbots Hall site.

Scarily enough, various friends recognised me from the picture.

“Many thanks for the memories.”

Gloria and Aidan Branch wrote in to say: “You can imagine how we smiled when we returned from a weekend away to find a copy of the EADT from November 15 had been posted to us by friends.

“The two brothers shown in the picture are two of our sons, Christopher and Andrew Branch. The picture was taken at the national finals of “Stars of the Future” talent competition held by Warners Holidays. In the summer of 1987, whilst we were staying in a caravan at Weymouth, the boys entered the competition and ended up performing a comedy song and dance routine, they won their weekly heat and were entered into the national finals where they progressed to the last eight.

“These two sweet innocent boys are now in their thirties, both happily married, one is a school teacher the other is a data analyst – not remotely connected to showbusiness, very fond memories nonetheless and thank you for reminding us of those halcyon bygone days.”

Another Falshback photo that bought back memories was one taken in 1975 at the Suffolk Agricultural Association Awards, Bury St Edmunds.

“The photograph showed five farmers, all well known in the county,” said David Barker, MBE.

“From the left Brian Collingwood who won the small farm section; Brian was a highly respected pig keeper at Saxtead. Next is Robert Long looking very young, he won the Large Farms competition; Robert was a great supporter of the Suffolk Show and was a terrific deputy director to me in 1994. In the centre is Jonny Paul from Freston, I imagine he attended as Paul’s may have sponsored the competition. Stanley Wade from Newton Green is presenting the cup.

“He was doing this on behalf of the Show President Rt Hon Viscount Blakenham. On the right is George Reeve who farmed at Ixworth with his son David the winner of the medium farms section. George was a great supporter of the NFU and also served as a councillor on the local council.”

Meanwhile, Tony Garnham added: “The photo of the Royal Observer Corps could have been taken outside the Pettistree Greyhound public house. I used to attend this pub when I lived in Pettistree and can remember the ROC would meet there most Thursday evenings.

“The two men standing in the middle of the back row are Ray Morris (third from left) and Ted Barrett (third from the right). Both residents of Wickham Market.

“I recognise some of the other faces but I cannot remember their names.”

Anne Robinson added: “The photo is of my late father Bertie Cooper on his promotion to Chief Observer.

“He was in the Royal Observer Corps from before the 1939 war until he retired in 1980-81.

“Also in the photo is Ted Barrett and the late Eric Newson.”

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