LETTER: Mother insisted on buying a new hat for the palace

I was pleased to read in last week’s issue [January 27] that ESCC have been persuaded to continue funding for the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award.

Way back in the mid 1950s East Sussex was chosen as a trial area for this scheme prior to a nationwide launch, and Lewes Secondary Modern School took part.

Under Geoff (Taffy) Morgan a number of us early teenagers started on the Bronze Award, then progressing to Silver and Gold, which climaxed in a three-day expedition in the Lake District.

No mobile phones or sat-navs in those days, just a compass, OS map and some grid references and we were on our own with sleeping bags and tents.

It all culminated in a trip with my family to Buckingham Palace to receive my Gold badge from HRH, and it made front page news in the Sussex Express at the time. I remember Mother insisted on buying a new hat for the Palace visit.

I was given to understand that our pioneering group were in the first 100 to complete all three levels, as many others jumped the Bronze stage to go direct to Silver or Gold.

Long may the Award continue and ESCC support it.

John Beck,

Mill Road

Lewes