Eastbourne Memories - A Victorian Perspective

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152                 Old Memories of East-Bourne. [Chap. XII.
created quite a sensation. Such a crowd had never been seen before because in 1806 there were no excursion trains to bring Hodge into the town to see reviews of the troops quartered here.
I suppose the following may be deemed appropriate to a Chapter on Sport. On January 30, 1854, Mr. E. C. Graham, brother of the R. J. Graham frequently quoted in this book, walked 80 miles in 23 hours and 25 minutes for a wager to do it in 24 hours. The course was a measured half-mile in front of Compton Place. The incident caused great local excitement and much annoyance to Graham's parents. He afterwards took Holy Orders and died Vicar of Wartling.
Golf is a game originally limited to Scotland and in the "Fifties" had, I believe, no hold in England otherwise than in the form of a Club established at Blackheath, of which an East-Bourne uncle of mine had been a member. His superannuated " tool" was long under my eyes at The Gore and regarded by the few people who knew what it was as a relic brought from a foreign clime. I wonder how many golf tools now exist in East-Bourne were a census taken. I suppose thousands. It is a game which never took my fancy for I prefer to satisfy its supposed advantages of affording pedestrianism and fresh air by an honest walk over the Downs. I did, however, once have a day's play when staying with a cousin in Aberdeenshire.
I do not know whether a " Spelling Bee " belongs to " Games and Sports " or is " Educational." Perhaps it is a little of each. I will place it with the former for my present purpose. I was present at one held at Diplock's Assembly Rooms on February 4, 1876, and must confess that I thought it provided a very good combination of amusement with profitable instruction. The movement suddenly became very popular in different parts of England about the year in question, and as suddenly died out. As I dare say many of my readers have either forgotten all about it, or have never heard of it, I will dedicate a few lines to it. The performers, as I suppose they must be called, assembled on a platform
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