NEWSLETTER NO. 17.
Dear Fellow member,
His address was most welcome, put across very well indeed, and thoroughly enjoyed by all present. His talk was punctuated by graphic and very interesting slide copies of photographs taken in the P.W. Camp and he brought much laughter from his audience.
This talk was most enlightening and something new to the Society and the evening really went off with a bang. Many thanks Professor and also taking the trouble to bring your slides all the way from Cape Town for us to see. Of further interest, all the original photographs, from which the slides were taken, were franked by the German Censor's stamp as a result of sureptitious bribing. Although not a member of the Society, a friend of Professor Bromolow-Downing, Brigadier du Plessis, thanked the Professor for his address. The Brigadier was also taken P.W. at Tobruk, and he told the Society, in an amusing manner, how he was responsible for the Professor being taken P.W.
Captain John Ball, on a suggestion at the July meeting, that figures etc., should be procured to the possibility of hiring a bus to take members and their friends to Kimberley and back rather than the long drive by car, produced these figures which are as follows:-
At the meeting there were some 28 members who signified that they were going (by a show of hands) and all voted in favour of the bus. They were also asked to comment on the best time to leave on Thursday afternoon, the 9 October (dont forget that the 10th is a Public Holiday), and it was finally agreed that the best time for 90% of those who signified that they were going, would be to leave the War Museum at 3 (three) p.m. which would mean that the approximate time of arrival in Kimberley would be between 9 and 10 p.m., and the return trip would commence on the Sunday afternoon the 12th October after lunch.
Commandant George Duxbury has intimated that cars may be left in the Museum's grounds, and will be safe as there is a permanent Night Watchman on duty and also on during the day time.
In the August News-letter you were kindly asked to let the Secretary know as soon as possible if you intended taking the trip to Kimberley as our hosts there must have figures in order to arrange entertainment for us, but at the time of the last meeting,
NOT ONE PERSON HAD LET THE SECRETARY KNOW.
If you are going to Kimberley, you are ernestly requested to PLEASE complete the attached form and return to the Secretary so as to arrive not later than THURSDAY THE 4TH SEPTEMBER, as this will be the latest date before the Transport Company must know whether or not the Society requires one or more busses. If it will be more convenient for you to telephone your reply, please do so to either of the following:-
Mr. Paul Melville (Secretary) Residential 42-5348
Mr. Bertie Simpkins (Chairman) Residential 46-4585
Please do not forget that you must make your own arrangements for accommodation in Kimberley. We can only do this if you want accommodation with a private family as mentioned in our August Newsletter.
The Honorary Editor still required articles, photos, etc for our next Journal No. 5 to be published at the year end. Please treat this matter as urgent.
+ I will be going to Kimberley for the long-week-end 10-12 October, 1969.
+ My party will consist of •........• people (please print)
+ I wish to travel by bus and understand that if sufficient persons make use of this travel facility, thereby making the bus trip possible, I here undertake to pay the §ociety the full amount as soon as I am informed to this effect.
+ I will be travelling to Kimberley by private transport only.
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
(Signature) + PLEASE DELETE WHATEVER IS NOT APPLICABLE.
To tour the battlefields of Belmont, Graspan/Enslin, Modder River, Magersfontein and Paardeberg with a special excursion to the Big Hole and Consolidated Buidlings (De Beers Diamond Mining Co.). All members of the S.A. Military History Society, Adult Education Committee, Ex-Service Organisations and interested members of the general public as well as their families and friends are welcome to attend.
2. MODE OF TRAVEL
Persons joining the tour are expected to make their own travelling arrangements except for those who have reserved seats on the bus being hired by the S.A. Military History Society.
Those travelling by bus are epected to rendezvous at the War Museum on Thursday 9th Cctober at 2.45 p.m. and be ready to move off at 3.0 p.m. sharp.
Cars may be left in the Museum grounds over the weekend or until such time as called for by the members concerned. The Museum Authorities do not hold themselves responsible for the safety or care of such vehicles and they will be left in the grounds of the Museum solely at owners' risk. It should be stated however that during the daytime they will be under the care of three European attendants and at night the gates will be locked and two Non-European Nightwatchmen will be on duty. The vehicles will, therefore, be extremely safe and in good hands.
The bus will arrive at Stilfontein at 5.20 p.m. where a halt of 30 minutes will be observed whilst members are
entertained by Col. G.K. Roodt and the residents of Stilfontein. Those travelling by car are welcome to join the party at Stilfontein. (Stilfontein Recreation Hall).
There will be no further halts, unless in an emergency, until the bus reaches Kimberley at 10.30 p.m.
On arrival in Kimberley the bus will stop in the following order:
It is suggested that passengers take supper-boxes with them and some form of liquid refreshment to be consumed between Stilfontein and Kimberley.
Persons joining the tour are expected to reserve and pay for their accommodation.
The following hotels have accommodation.
The prices are approximate and should be confirmed by intending tourists.
|Savoy Hotel||Bed and Breakfast||R5.50|
|Grand Hotel||Bed and Breakfast||R3.90|
|Horseshoe Motel||Bed and Breakfast||R3.50|
4. CLOTHING AND EQUIPMENT
Members will naturally know their requirements for a three day stay. There are, however, certain musts due to climate and field conditions.
IN THIS CONNECTION MEMBERS ARE REMINDED THAT DURING THE DAYTIME KIMBERLEY CAN BE AT LEAST 10° HOTTER THAN JOHANNESBURG. (The climate is extremely dry). The evenings can be cold if a south wind is blowing.
a) Telephone: Direct dialling from Kimberley.
b) Loud Hailer: W1ll Comdt. Simpkins please provide one loud hailer.
c) Public Address System in bus: Will Mr. John Ball please arrange.
Will Dr. Felix Machanik and Dr. Hillman please provide snake bite outfit and those very useful black bags which never fail to awaken the interest of the layman.
7. FIRST TOUR - FRIDAY, 10th OCTOBER, 1969
First phase: Belmont.
Second phase: Graspan/Enslin.
(a) The first tour will be to the Belmont battlefield or Friday, 10th October.
(b) Bus will leave
|(i)||Grand Hotel||at 8.20 p.m.|
|(ii)||Savoy Hotel||at 2.30 p.m.|
|(iii)||Horseshoe Motel||at 2.40 p.m.|
(d) It is suggested that all vehicles rendezvous at the Horseshoe Motel and be prepared to depart therefrom at 08.40 a.m.
(e) There is a small hotel at Belmont. Morning tea will be available at 7c per pot. Cold beer and cold drinks will a1so be available but no lunches can be served.
(f) It is suggested that members provide themselves with lunch-boxes.
(g) The tour of the Belmont battlefield including tea and lunch breaks will last until 2.0 p.m. when the first phase will end and the party will leave for Graspan/Enslin.
(a) Party arrives Enslin Station turnoff at 2.30 p.m.
(b) Enslin turnoff is 13.5 miles North of Belmont turnoff on main road to Kimberley
(c) Tour of Graspan/Enslin battlefield will last until 4.0 p.m.
(d) Arrive back at Kimberley at 5.15 p.m.
(e) TOTAL MILEAGE FIRST TOUR = 122 MILES.
(f) Total distance on foot = 2 miles.
(g) Terrain - flat with several hills ± 150 feet in height.
(h) CLOTHING ON THIS FIRST TOUR:-
HATS, TOUGH WALKING SHOES OR BOOTS, SLACKS OR LONG TROUSERS OR OTHERWISE PUTTEES OR OTHER LEG PROTECTION. L00SE COOL UPPER CLOTHING.
(i) Binoculars will be useful.
(j) Lunch boxes
(k) NO AFTERNOON TEA WILL BE SERVED. IT IS SUGGESTED THAT A THERMOS FLASK OF TEA SHOULD BE TAKEN BY EACH PERSON. HANDY POCKET SIZE FLASKS CAN BE PURCHASED VERY CHEAPLY.
(l) Sun tan lotion
8. SECOND TOUR - SATURDAY, 11th OCTOBER 1969
Phase 1 - Big Hole
Phase 2 - Consolidated Buidings (De Beers Diamond Mining Company)
Phase 3 - Modder River
Phase 4 - Magersfontein
Phase 5 - Braai
(a) Bus will leave hotels as follows:-
Note reverse order
|Horseshoe Motel||08.00 a.m.|
|Savoy Hotel||08.10 a.m.|
|Grand Hotel||08.20 a.m.|
(b) Bus will arrive at Bogt Hole at 08.30 a.m.
(c) Bus will leave Big Hole at 09.15 a.m.
(d) Bus will arrive at Consolidated Buildings (De Beers Diamond Mining Co.) at 09.20 a.m.
PHASE 2 - CONSOLIDATED BUILDINGS (DE BEERS DIAMOND MINING CO.)
(a) Bus will arrive at Consolidated Buildings (De Beers) at 09.20 a.m.
(b) Bus will depart Consolidated Buildings (De Beers) at l0.OO a.m.
PHASE 3 - MODDER RIVER
(a) Bus will arrive at Modder River Bridge at 11.0 a.m.
(b) Distance Kimberley to Modder River Bridge = 24 miles.
(c) Direction - South on Main Cape Road.
(d) Group will then proceed to a point 2 miles South of Modder River Bridge, for FIRST STAND - ½ hour.
(e) Tea break - ½ hour.
(f) Group will proceed 1 mile East to Guards Monument. SECOND STAND - ½ hour.
(g) Group will proceed to South bank of Modder River on West side of bridge to THIRD STAND - ½ hour.
(h) Group will move to area of Modder River Hotel for lunch break. Distance ½ mile North of Bridge.
(i) Lunch break 1.0 p.m. to 2.0 p.m. Tea and/or beer available against payment at Hotel. Members will be advised in good time if Modder River Hotel can provide lunch.
(j) Group will depart for Magersfontein battlefield at 2.0 p.m.
(k) Terrain flat grassland, no scrub. Walking distance ± 200 yards.
PHASE 4 - MAGERSFONTEIN
(a) Group arrives at Headquarters Hill at 2.15p.m. FIRST STAND - ½ hour.
(b) Group arrives at Magersfontein Hill de-bussing point at 3.0 p.m.
(c) Group arrives at top of Magersfontein hill at 3.20 p.m.
(d) Height Magersfontein Hill = 150 ft.
(e) Distance from de-bussing point = 500 yards.
(f) Group breaks for individual trips to
(g) Group gathers at vehicles at 4.30 p.m.
(h) Group arrives at Kimberley at 5.30 p.m.
(i) Total mileage = 70 miles.
(j) Total distance on foot = 2 miles.
(k) Clothing as for first day.
(l) Tea flasks.
(m) Lunch Boxes.
PHASE 5 - BRAAI AS GUESTS OF FRIENDS AT KIMBERLEY
(a) Bus leaves hotels for Magersfontein battlefield for Braai as follows:-
|Grand Hotel||at 7.30 p.m.|
|(ii)||Savoy Hotel||at 7.40 p.m.|
|(iii)||Horseshoe Motel||at 7.50 p.m.|
(b) Details of braai and return to hotels to follow. (Knowing the splendid hospitality of citizens of Kimberley, members should not expect to get back to hotels before 11.0 p.m. even with considerable pressure from our Chairman who will be thinking of Sunday morning well in advance.
(c) A piper or pipers will be laid on by our hosts.
(d) Musically inclined members are invited to bring their musical instruments. Will Major Alec Tyrrell please conduct impromptu concert and sing-song at Braai.
THIRD TOUR - PAARDEBERG, SUNDAY, 12th OCTOBER 1969
(a) bus departs:
|(i)||Grand Hotel||at 8.30 a.m.|
|(ii)||Savoy Hotel||at 8.40 a.m.|
|(iii)||Horseshoe Motel||at 8.50 a.m.|
(c) Tea break at 10.30
(d) Depart for Kimberley at 11.00
(e) Arrive at hotels at 11.40
(f) Heavy shoes or leg protection may be dispensed on this 3rd day as there is less scrub than on two previous tours. (g) Tea flasks required.
(h) Tour ends officially at 11.40 a.m. except for those travelling by bus to Johannesburg.
(i) Bus will depart hotels as follows:-
|(i)||Horseshoe Motel||at 12.10|
|(ii)||Savoy Hotel||at 12.20|
|(iii)||Grand Hotel||at 12.30|
(k) Bus will arrive at War Museum at 7.30 p.m.
(l) By mutual agreement bus will be able to leave Kimberley at an earlier time, so as to arrive at the War Museum at 6.0 p.m.
10. Chairman of the Military History Society, Cmdt. Bert Simpkins, will be staying at the Savoy Hotel.
11. Precis of the battles concerned will be supplied in due course.
12. General Reminders
a) Do not forget to fill up your tanks with petrol before going into the field each day.
b) Take sufficient liquid refreshment. Kimberley is very hot in October.
c) There is a good swimming pool at Kimberley for the early risers so don't forget a swimming costume.
d) Excellent Museums are available if you can find time. They have kindly agreed to remain open on Friday evening, 10th October.
e) Please remember to diarise the date.
f) Do remember that your friends are welcone. Non-members are equally welcome.
g) That Hat - Do put it in your case or car now so that you will not forget it.
h) Camera if you are one of those keen photographers - The Societv will appreciate a permanent record especially in ten years time when we look back at those delightful 'minis'.
i) DON'T FORGET GOOD COMFORTABLE BUT TOUGH SHOES
j) DO REMEMBER TO BE ON TIME PARTICULARLY TRAVELLING BYBUS.
k) DO COME - IT WILL BE BOTH ENJOYABLE AND EDUCATIONAL.
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