Early friendship

Created by Andrew 6 months ago

Robin and I met as students at St Andrews in 1962. We both stayed in Hepburn Hall (by todays standards an upmarket residence on the outskirts of St Andrews opposite the Universitysports fields (now frequently used by Barcelona FC for pre season training).

Through common interest in sports and talking about girls (this WAS 1962) we developed a strong friendship lasting through the sixties and early seventies, sharing summer holidays staying in the lake district or at Lowbands Farm whilst providing constant advice to England cricket selectors which was pretty much ignored I am sorry to say.

After Robin left St Andrews in 1965 I stayed on to complete my BSc and then to undertake research for a ph D. We maintained contact sharing in the 1966 World Cup success and in subsequent years spending summer holidays terrorising the Norfolk Broads in a yacht 'captained' by Alistair Ingram, also a resident of Hepburn Hall. We at various times succeeded in becoming marooned on reed banks, sailing so close to the wind that the bilge came up into the storage areas - soaking Rob's gear in oily fluid and putting an end to planned expeditions to the local hostelries, and hilariously losing the crutches - used to lower the mainsail into - overboard. this in turn caused some lads to show off and retrieve these ( hinged lengths of wood about 12ft long) by sailing at speed towards them and leaning over the side of their boat .... But they grabbed the nearest end causig the drag of the remaining lengths to pull 2 of the crew into Wroxham Broad. We found it much more amusing than they did...

Sadly this period ended with me missing out on the trip To the Shannon in 1970 (I think) through getting engaged ...

We met with increasing irregularity until 1976 by which time distance and shorter holidays together with other commitments intervened, resticting contact to annual exchanges of Christmas cards with news, vews and further advice to selectors.

I feel we managed to stay friends throughout life by acknowledging the effects of distance and not trying to force a later reunion which may have let us both to recognise changes. As it is I can look back with great fondness on the period in which our lives overlapped : at the card games, mah jong challenges, larger and limes in the Whey Pat, sport and north vs south debates..

Robin, you were a great mate and I will always think of you with great affection and a laugh ..

              Hawk

PS I can't handle technology with certainty so will send some photos to Cathie as hard copy for her to append as she thinks appropriate