Memories of the Boys’ Brigade

Posted on 19th August 2013 | in Community , Heritage & Tourism

Jean-with-photosHappy Birthday to Jean Gregor who will be 93 at the end of August.  Jean (pictured right) was born in Amble and has lived here all her life. She contacted The Ambler after finding some vintage photographs of St Cuthbert’s Church Boys’ Brigade together with her family, who set up the popular club for young people.

Jean remembers there was a lot of activity in Amble for young people in her youth:  “We had regular shows, roundabouts etc, and regular carnivals for the children on school holidays.  My mother told me the day I was born was really hot and she had the windows wide open. She could hear the music from the traction engines at the showground nearby – where the clock is now. I remember that when I was three, I heard the music and I decided to go and see the engines for myself. A lady there who must have known me, saw me and brought me home!”

Jean and her family have always been very active in Amble, and particularly with St Cuthbert’s Church. Her father Frank Pierpoint was a church warden and was one of the founding members of the Boys’ Brigade in Amble in 1936. Finding the photos brings back happy memories for Jean.

“David Kay, Frank Pierpoint and Tom Henderson together formed the Boys’ Brigade. They were three good church workers. David was a wonderful person who introduced most sports into Amble.”  Jean remembers the Boys’ Brigade were smartly dressed in uniform, they had bugles and drums and every year there was a wonderful summer camp beside Warkworth.

When tragedy hit her family, Jean remembers the tribute the Boys Brigade paid to her father. “My father worked on the Amble  to Broomhill railway. In 1939 he lost his life in an accident. The Boys’ Brigade all lined up at church with their drums and bugled [his coffin] into St Cuthbert’s Church.”

Jean returns to the photograph of the Boys’ Brigade with a request for Ambler readers: “Looking at my photo, I wonder if any of these men are still around?”
Anna Williams


Top row: A Mossman, K Wade, J Charlton, J Bowron, E Mather, V Henderson, R Poggi, M Dodds, J Tate, J Yeaman, M Henderson, A Rowell, J Wrigglesworth, R Hall, H Ford, Richardson, A Lewis, E Baston, J Brown, R Purvis, W Taylor, D Kay, T Henderson, J Rowell, M Cuthbertson, R Turner, G Hogg, K Lisle, F Robson, F Pierpoint, J Aston, P Herbert, P Herbert, G Stewart, J Embleton, A Stewart, F Hamilton.

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