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About the Author: Mike Golding
Born in Ashford a long time ago I have had a lifelong relationship with Dungeness having spent every year here for a fortnights holiday up to the age of 15. In those good old days there was no electricity and hence no radio, no running water and no adequate sewage solutions. Nothing to do other than enjoy the vast expanse of the Ness and all it offered for the young children of that era. Out after breakfast and back before nightfall. There were lakes to swim in. Same lakes to boat on (well large logs). A derelict school in which to play.(Add pic on school roof) Gun emplacements, underground shelters. Sheer bliss. That all ended at 16 when I joined the RAF, finally purchasing a shack – as indeed it was then – in 1971 for the princely sum of £750.00. Only 15 years prior to that we could not afford the £250.00 asking price for what was then known as ‘Windwhistle’, the former Queen Victoria’s Pullman carriage. Still there today but concealed behind painted shiplap. Leaving the mob I travelled, retuning ‘home’ as oft I could, and realistically, only becoming a permanent fixture since 1977. In those days there was a vibrant community here with annual gatherings for the Mayday festival – spit roast and all and open days at the Lifeboat station – with bosuns chairs, zip wires to keep the kids happy. I think Health and Safety put paid to that and other activities, as did the moving away of many locals. The result of which , today there are probably less than 40 persons residing here permanently, in probably less than 20 out of the 80 shacks still here. (I have been told not to use the word ‘shacks’ as now at £3000,00.00 plus they are desirable bungalows in a well sought after locale. So ‘Shacks’ they are! End.