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Books by Local Authors

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A Commoning Heritage: The Mansbridges of Longdown

By  Jo Ivey

A Commoning Heritage: the Mansbridges of Longdown tells the story of a commoning family from the time of the First World War to the present day. Written in the words of two of the family's members, it describes how life has changed for these guardians of the New Forest over nearly a century.

Jo Ivey is a researcher who has worked with the commoners of the New Forest for nearly 25 years. She has undertaken a series of censuses of the commoning population spanning 20 years of change, and written many reports on the economics of commoning and the challenges that the community faces. Being a commoner herself, she understands well a way of life sustained by mutual support within the community.

ISBN 978-0-9568990-0-2


It is available in local bookshops and museums.

Twelve Airfields

Revised Edition

By Alan Brown

This is the story of the twelve wartime airfields built in the New Forest. Its 33 A4 size pages are packed with hand written and hand drawn information in Alan’s own inimitable style. Cost £10.00

To receive your copy by post, send your name and address, and a cheque for £12.50 (£10.00 plus £2.50 p&p) payable to East Boldre Village Hall to:

East Boldre Village Hall

c/o Midsomer Cottage

Rowes Lane

East End


SO41 5SU.

Click here for sample pages.

The New Forest Aviation School 

at East Boldre, Beaulieu.


by Alan Brown

Especially written for the East Boldre Airfield Centenary Celebrations, the first print run sold out completely. The 70 A5 size pages start with the pioneers who, in 1910, opened the country’s second Flying School at East Boldre in the New Forest and it takes us through two world wars to the 1950s when the site of the old airfield was used as a parachute training ground.

To receive your copy by post, send your name and address, and a cheque for £12.50 (£10.00 plus £2.50 p&p) payable to East Boldre Village Hall to:

East Boldre Village Hall

c/o Midsomer Cottage

Rowes Lane

East End


SO41 5SU.

Click here for sample pages

A Collection of Our Poetry

Written by the South Baddesley Women’s Institute

To purchase this book and for samples of the sixty original poems, go to the SBWI website.

Cost £5.00

Available exclusively from the SBWI website.



It is 1962. Imagine leaving behind all that is familiar and comfortable on the farm, to travel to an uncharted posting in Tanganyika under the British Government’s Overseas Aid programme with three small children and all your worldly goods, whilst your friends and relations predict doom and disaster in the ‘Dark Continent’ expecting never to see you again.

This is the adventure that Brian and Jo Dawtrey and their family embarked upon, armed with his black rolled umbrella with a gold band “to fight off primitive savages, in true colonial style” and a brand new Hoover washing machine.

From the very moment they leave England’s shores, you are swept along by their enthusiasm and lust for all that may face them – from recalcitrant hippopotami, charging elephants and a life-saving leopard, to welcoming tribes folk and the glorious unspoilt African bush. Unfazed by minor setbacks such as the lack of electricity to drive the Hoover and the confrontations with unwelcoming snakes, the Dawtrey family revel in their new surroundings and the challenges of their new life under President Nyerere’s regime of new found Uhuru (freedom).

Please go to the Amazon website for a full list of Brian’s books and Kindle books, and his biography.

Brian Dawtrey (age 85)has been a resident of East End for 35 years.

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by veteran aviator Doug Gregory D.F.C.

ISBN 978-0-9927220-0-5

Residents of East Boldre might remember the amazing flying display Doug Gregory and Des Biggs gave us at our New Forest Flying School Centenary Celebrations in 2010. Now he has written a book about his lifelong love affair with aeroplanes.

It might surprise former pupils of Noadswood School to learn what their old art and drama teacher, Doug Gregory, did during his RAF service in WW2 and more recently in building and flying his own WW1 replica aeroplane.  Doug’s book is a gripping read – and he writes with wry humour, honesty and some pathos.

The book is illustrated with over 40 photographs of the author building his plane and taking part in aerial displays, as well as his time in the RAF.

Doug’s is a ‘lifelong love affair with aeroplanes’ – as a boy in Southampton, as a WW2 night-fighter pilot, flying over 67 missions over occupied Europe, and post-retirement, in building a replica S.E.5a biplane and entertaining the public with his aerobatics in the Great War Display Team.

Doug in WW1 uniform - as on back cover of book -for websiteNow 90 years old, he hung up his flying goggles and helmet only recently, but not before penning this memoir. He writes as if building an aeroplane in the back garden and taking to the air in it, is a natural way to pass the time:

AEROADDICT will be available to buy from Little Knoll Bookshop and book retailers from the start of November 2013 at £14.99.

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