In reply to the request for information regarding the whale’s jawbone at Mill Rigg, Upwell, in the Fenland Citizen dated March 4, I offer the following:
My family from both my mother and father’s sides have close connections with the whale’s jawbone, which was sited opposite Strawberry House at Mill Rigg, Upwell.
My grandfather, Albert Fenn, purchased the adjacent house and land from Frank Goodley in 1946. I believe he moved the jawbone to its final known position from a gateway nearer to Strawberry House shortly after this date.
My other grandfather, Hugh Godley, is known to have unwittingly damaged the pair of jawbones – which originally met in the centre of the track – whilst driving a horse and cart-load of straw through Mill Rigg to his farmyard.
I lived with my parents at Strawberry House until I was 13. I can clearly remember as a child the remnants of the remaining section, being about 6 feet tall and arched in shape.
It was partially buried in the ground and formed part of the boundary gate next to the gate post. By the mid 1970’s the jawbone was in a decaying state, and very much akin to rotting wood.
I moved from the house in 1981, and parts of the jawbone were still in evidence.
My sister studied metalwork at university in London, and used a small section of the jawbone – approximately 9’’ long – in her final exhibition piece in 1995.
Unfortunately I have no photographs of the structure.
My father has found some old title deeds to the property dated 1935, which clearly show the whale’s jawbone marked in position adjacent to Strawberry House.
I hope the above information is of some help.
Proud to be a Fenlander
I’ve followed with interest the stories in the Fenland Citizen in recent weeks responding to appeals for help.
The response to the efforts to get a young March girl a special hand-powered cycle and the community’s reaction after the youngsters’ football club was struck by arsonists immediately spring to mind.
It was so heart-warming to see an almost instant response from people right across the Fenland area – there really is such a lot of caring people around.
It says a great deal for them that they are able to give money during these difficult times. Makes you proud to be a Fenlander.
I read in the latest issue of the Citizen the letter by your correspondent John Smithee, whom I have never met.
I have to say I admire him for his letter regarding cutting MP’s super-sized salaries. I would seriously love to know WHY they get so much, just for acting like overgrown schoolchildren in the House of Comedy as I now call it, as well as on what can only be a part-time basis?
Last year and through the letters page of a top national daily paper, I challenged South West Norfolk MP Liz Truss, and Environment Secretary, to live on the £170 per week pension I was getting, after she claimed she COULD.
But, as yet, she is to even prove it – and for six months, and she refuses, because she knows she simply can’t.
Earlier this year she, along with four others, spent £34,000 of taxpayers’ money for a five-day tour of the Middle East in trying to increase exports from the UK.
No doubt they stayed in 5* hotels and travelled first class instead of business class, seeing as they were supposed to be ‘on business’ over there.
What is good for the goose is good for the gander simply doesn’t apply to MP’s and their hangers-on.
“Oh the taxpayer can pay it, while we enjoy ourselves swanning abroad.”
Many of us Senior Citizens get such a pittance to exist on. Is it any surprise that many of us struggle in the winter months to pay for heating, above everything else going up for no good reason – such as fuel to get around due to diabolical public transport in the area?
Five years ago, I inherited some money, and because I was honest and declared it, it has now almost gone, leaving my wife and I to struggle this last week.
Holidays! What are they these days?