In 1955 Timsbury builder Maurice Moon dismantled the old Camerton colliery where his father William Moon had mined coal for 40 years. He bought the mine which had closed in 1946 for its building materials. The 125 foot chimney was felled by Dawson and Sons of Clutton and was estimated to contain about 100,000 bricks. Maurice said that he hoped to use the bricks to build walls and for rough structural work and to salvage white stone, slates and timber from other large buildings in the colliery.
Extrovert Tunley newsagent made sure people on his round still received their newspapers during the heavy winter snowstorms by delivering by sleigh. Mrs Windebank of the Meadgate Inn said, “We have just received our Somerset Guardian but I think it is the first time it has come by sleigh”.
Dr. H.W. Bradfield, the Bishop of Bath and Wells, was the guest speaker at Timsbury County Secondary School’s Speech Day in July 1955. The school hall was packed to capacity and the chairman of the Governors, Mr. Reg Ingle said he felt the school had really come of age. There were exhibitions of needlework, woodwork, art and craft and items by the school choir and orchestra under Mr. H. Wyn Davies. Earlier in the year Mrs Ingle had presented the sports’ awards with the Somerset Cup and Rose Bowl going to the winners of the House matches. The cup and rose bowl had been donated to the school by the captain, officers and crew of the school’s adopted ship, “The Somerset”. Robert Young accepted the cup on behalf of West House with Eric Nott receiving the bowl for North.
Later in the year there was sad news at the school, however, with the sudden death of Mrs. Evelyn Greenland who had been Senior Mistress at the school since its opening in 1934. A memorial service was held at the school and an appeal was launched in her memory to provide a lectern desk for the Assembly Hall. Mrs. Greenland had been secretary of the Radstock Association of the NUT and President of the County Association.
At St.Mary’s Primary School a PTA Association was formed. The Head, Mr Bert Blake said that there was a need for close co-operation between parents and teachers which he felt would be of great benefit to the children. The elected Chairman was Mr. Blake with the secretary Mrs. Tompkins and the treasurer Mrs. Pickford. 65 years later the Association continues to play a pivotal role in the life of the school.
Members of the St. John’s Ambulance Brigade formed a guard of honour at the funeral of the superintendent of the Timsbury division Mr Fred Sims. A popular villager Mr. Sims who was 55 when he died had for many years been secretary of the Miner’s Welfare, Timsbury Labour Party and Football Club as well as a Parish Councillor and clerk to the Council. He was also a playing member of the village cricket team, a singer in the Male Voice Choir and a caretaker at South Road Methodist Church. A very busy man!
There was success for Smith’s Bakeries in the National Hovis competition of 1955. The entry by Gerry Stenner was highly commended in the 14 ounce Hovis class while Fred Horn received a similar award in the Novices’ section. The bakery in Baker’s Parade was a prominent feature of the village for many years with its shop in Maggs Hill.
Living next door to the shop were the Fricker family and in 1955 one of the sons John was among the 52 commissioned at a passing out parade of National Service Officer cadets at Mons Officer Cadet School in Aldershot. John received his commission in the Royal Artillery.
Timsbury South Road Junior Prize Choir under its conductor Mr. Raymond Taviner provided regular entertainment throughout the area. Laughter was in the hands of the 4 Kings comedy team of Tony Taviner, Bob Hunt, Maurice Fricker and Michael Bale while amongst the singers were Jennifer Purnell (Gould), Rene Padfield (Shakespeare), Wendy Padfield (Chivers) and the Taviner sisters Sheila and Ann. Joyce Sims(Evry) was adept with her tap dancing while Sheila Sands (Goldsworthy) played the piano.
Finally a 98 year old resident Mrs Kite who lived with her daughter Mrs Ida Bridges at Rectory Lane delighted members of Tabor Women’s Bright Hour when she recited unfalteringly a 21 verse poem entitled The Little Pilgrim. Mrs Kite was the grandmother of Wilf and Bert Bridges.