Memory from Pearl Myers
Memory from Pearl Myers, volunteer at Bude Heritage Centre.
We used to come to Bude for holidays, catching the Waterloo milk train from London which left at 1am and arrived at 8am. Imagine, being able to travel from the north to London, then from London to Bude, all by train.
My first trip was in 1955, when I was 10.
One morning, the train ground to a halt. There was a cow on the line. It was an interesting run, with lots to see. Bude had gas cylinders near the railway line, too.
The place we stayed was actually at Marsland Mouth, Devon, which was advertised in the New Statesman.
It was an old mill, which claimed to have electricity. The electricity was one light bulb above the mill machinery which only worked if the mill wheel was turning. It belonged to Ronald Duncan, the playwright. We stayed there for many years until the property was divided in half.
The only time we actually went in to Bude was to catch the train as we used the village shop and had no car. We used a taxi to reach the place we stayed.
The whole family attended these holidays. My grandfather used to bring a suitcase full of disguises: false noses,teeth, etc. He would wear them on the train so people wouldn’t sit in our carriage. His ploy worked!
The engine would be washed at Bude. Grandfather once played a practical joke. When collecting my uncle, he asked my boyfriend to pretend he was a local (and a not too bright one at that). We all hid behind the engine to listen in! It was great fun.