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Friday, 3 February 2012

I remember Old Totton

Ponies on The Green c1955

Let's start with an easy conundrum ....can you remember where 'the largest village in England was situated? Just to help you, a clue, it also housed the smallest pub. You've got the answer I'm sure ..... Totton.

We lived there many years ago, my children completed their education there and fine schools they were too. Eling Infants and Junior always comes to mind, an old building but with excellent teachers run efficiently by the Head and children drawing efforts on the walls it made cosy surroundings.

Let's talk forest ponies. I suppose they felt they were there first and wandered freely on our small estate. When I first moved into our house I was intrigued with them, after all we had moved here from a large city.....Cardiff, no wandering ponies there.

But, here's the crunch, nobody told me they could get over garden walls! I'm not a keen gardener but kept the front garden neat, short grass and seasonal flowers. The ponies certainly did their wanderings at night (never knew that too) and next morning absolute shambles in the front garden. Of course at first I made many excuses for them but then joined my neighbours turned cowboys in the round up, in other words, shooing them off the estate. Anyway  this event helped my introduction to my new neighbours.

Oh dear! Single lane road to Southampton, it used to take an hour.

What an outcry when they built 500 houses in Calmore!

I thoroughly enjoyed living in Totton. You had all the shops you needed and the tradespeople were so helpful, in fact they were more like friends.

Well we had to move on and found a house in the Waterside, it's so very pleasant here. We have so many advantages.The nearby New Forest, a Marina to name a few.

One of the things that really impresses me is the community spirit, curtesy and ever helpful tradespeople and staff in the area.

The ponies are still around but, they seem to enjoy their very own habitat.

We love residing here but keep memories of old Totton after all it was our first home after the Big City.

Guest Post: Many thanks to Ruth Lodge an 86 year young local New Forest resident for sharing her memories of Old Totton with us. I hope you have enjoyed this post and please do make a Comment below. Share your memories with Ruth.

Photo: Francis Frith - Nostalgic photos, maps, books & memories of Britain


The New Forest by Matthew Conway
Featuring a mixture of history, folklore and stories of interest, this book explores the culture and wildlife of the New Forest. From it deer, which for centuries were hunted exclusively by the Kings of England, to the thousands of trees that were the cornerstone of the English Navy, this fascinating volume illustrates how flora and fauna are interwoven with the forest's heritage, and pays special attention to its wildlife.  As well as providing a backdrop of history, this affectionate look at the forest will inspire readers to explore the area themselves. Read more...


  1. Thank you so much for your memories of Old Totton.It was lovely to see the ponies on the green in the photo. I live in Bedfordshire and often I see horses popping their heads over the fence.

  2. Dear Ruth

    I love your blog post- what fantastic memories you must cherish.

    With kind regards

    Nina Basset (Hotel TerraVina, New Forest)

  3. My grandparents did all their courting in Totton before the war. Poor Grandad had to cycle all the way from Lyndhurst to get there. It must have been worth the effort though, they married in Eling church.

  4. Lived there from '59 until '93, I remember how the calmore estate used to be the 7 fields, grammar school cross country route.