I do remember a more recent visit to see Beryl James, a great friend, at Selsey but had to turn back due to the traffic! Happily we did catch her another time before she passed away. She was a wonderful lady and, together with husband Charles and their children, would take me out at weekends all over the peninsula.
Staying in the Obs was never for the faint hearted and if Harry Robinson wasn't with me, I only had the rats for company. I think there was a nest under the floorboards and they would keep me awake all night with their gnawing as I lay in my sleeping bag with a heavy stick next to me which I would bang loudly if one ran over me in the night. They would eat their way in through the skirtings and every morning I would place bricks over the holes to keep them out. Eventually I took all the bricks away as I was worried the walls of the hut would collapse! The hut was very sparse: no windows, a table, chair and bench. We cooked on paraffin Primus stoves by Tilley lamp (which also served as heating) and would spend the evenings reading Field Guides. We kept our food in tins on top shelves but invariably there would be a loud crash in the night as the tin with my food would fall to the floor so the rats could get at my sandwiches. Rats are clever!
In 1980, Gerda and I got married in Chichester. My parents had moved to Selsey by then and following our Reception at the Rushmere Hotel (now sadly gone), we all went for a seawatch. My notebook entry for 19.07.1980 reads: 'We got married today! Seawatch 1620-1715 - 2 Gannet, 5 LBBGull, Guillemot & Turnstone west. With Tony Marr, Nick Lord, Alan Kitson, Sally & their son Jamie et al' The next day, as we left Selsey, I had a Lesser Spotted Woodpecker over the road just south of Sidlesham." Happy days. Dave Flumm (OM/Eds)
Between Bramber and Marsh Farms there were 43 Cattle Egrets, whilst a Merlin unsuccessfully chased a Greenfinch close to Marsh Farm.
I have never seen the water levels on the Breech Pool so low, but the only waders present were 37 Black-tailed Godwits and two Common Snipe. (JDW)