INTRO. CHRONICLES. SOCIETIES. PARISH. VILLAGE. CHURCH. PEOPLE.

A History of YALDING, Kent, England


OUR VILLAGE GUN

In pride of place in front of Randalls Cottages between the two world wars stood the village gun. It had been presented to the village by the War Office Trophies Committee in recognition of the village’s V. C., Bosky, brother of Biffy, sons of Colonel Borton of Cheveney. It was a German gun that he had apparently helped to capture at Selonica, and there it stood half way up the High Street for many years. After the Colonel had died, the then owner of Randalls Cottages contacted the Colonel’s estate, and the Parish Council, only to find that no was interested in it.
Moves were made to dispose of it and it was towed into the old iron yard of Messrs. Hunt’s of Maidstone. Villagers were indignant about the disappearance of their gun, for a protest meeting was held and the Parish Council then took notice. Within a frantic week of letter writing and meetings, the P.C. had decided that it was their property, and in the mean time a reporter had located the gun in Hunt’s yard.
As plans for its return were supposedly formulated it left Maidstone at 10 o’clock on a Tuesday morning as it clanked and banged its way along the Tonbridge Road, through Wateringbury and Nettlestead before making its way along the Lees. There was a rumour that the British Legion with its band would welcome this proud possession back to its native village, but only a few women saw it arrive at its final destination. It was brought to rest by the War Memorial, but after waiting a quarter of an hour to see where it should be put, they were told to take it to a farmyard near the church, where it would stay until the village makes up its mind whether it really does want it, and where it will be kept.
This incident is dated about 1937, but by the outbreak of the Second World War it is understood that it did finally go for scrap.