The Party of the Half Centry at The Eastbury Hotel.

Just got back from Sherborne in Dorset.

Where Lynda Collier celebrated her 50th Birthday with a multitude of Friends and Family.

Being one of the honored guests that got under the radar! I can confirm that the event held at Eastbury Hotel was a success on all fronts.


I turned up to the Hotel to be met by the Hotel Receptionist, who then carried my Black tie gear up to the Honeysuckle room.

The single bedroom had all the mod cons you could want such as LCD TV, both Still and sparkling water, Tea, Coffee and Chocolate making stuff and of course biscuits! The room was spotless and was the work of Lucy who left a small card if there was a problem. Needless, to say, I couldn’t find fault to the room, it was both clean and modern and was situated at the front of the hotel. Which, was quite, with little noticable traffic along the road.

Then, after a few drinks at the hotel bar where every one met up. The guests retired to their rooms to get ready for the evening dinner at the close by restraunt.

Andy had organised Taxi fleet to take us to the restraunt as the weather had taken a turn for the worst. But, tyipically it had stopped raining by the time that it time for us to leave. There was the usual discusion of who should go first. Some even decided that the short walk would do them well.

Here’s the rest of us lottering outside the Hotel.

The restraunt had set up a table to the rear of the restruant which keep us out of the way of the other guest and allow us to enjoy the evening. Just over 20 guests were in attendance, with the others due to arrive on the Saturday, as family comments required.

The evening rolled on with everyone finding out how Lynda knew them. There were old work colleagues, Friends of long outstanding and few that were relatively new. I have know Andy for more years than I can possibly comment on here.

Suffice to say, one story, I didn’t tell on the evening. Was the time that he met Lynda. We were due to have a social evening in London at one of the nice restaurants in London.  Which, we try and do at least once a year. Although, both of us have fallen behind that schedule. When, he arrived he was like Tigger. He was bouncing up and down to tell me that he had met this wonderful girl in London Bar/Pub that had sweepped him of his feet. I never did find out if it was a Pub or Bar.  I though, she must of been nice. As, I knew that the distances he was travelling.


I soon got to meet the young lass (said in jest)  and I could see the reason he was taken. Andy over many years, had taken the ruff path of life and I was truly happy to see he had found someone with which he click with. You have to meet Lynda. If you list the words, you would probably not do her justice. Despite her own ills, she is always there for her friends and colleges.

The food and wine was probably one of the best meals that I have had. It was balanced and just the right amount without being stuffed. The wines, no doublt choosen by Andy, were excellent. But, I wouldn’t expect anything less from Andy, as he does know his wine!

Then Andy presented Lynda with her Birthday present. A Handbag! But, as the saying goes. “This, wasn’t just any Handbag”. It had taken Andy and crew, a considerable time to track this illusive designer handbag down. Someone, was very please. In fact, she nearly went into tigger mode!!

Well, we eventually returned from the restaurant later that evening as one of the last groups to leave the restaurant. Some of us, taking the long route back to the Hotel. But, of course I did find a public house, where the locals were more than helpful to point me in the right direction, after, I had a pint of the local brew. Which, was more my wish than their’s.

The Hotel staff kept the bar running in the lounge until the early hours, when even the night owl of us was starting to tire.

As you can see the Handbag was in full view!

The following morning. Or, should I say, later in the day. As most of us hadn’t made our bed till nearly 3am. We were greeted, by the Hotel staff and a large spread of cereal and fruit was laid out on presten white table clothes, that would have catered for anyone that I could think of.

The staff then offered a wide choice of cooked breakfast that included, a full English and for those who like fish.

Kippers or Salmon with scrambled egg on the side. Toast and of course Tea or Coffee were both available. Although, I think you could of asked for nearly anything and they would have tried to provide it.

We, then, decided that we would venture into town and the rest of us energetic type  would go on a 4 mile walk. Not surprisingly, the numbers  for the walk were low. So, we ended up with Andy and 4 others including myself.

We set out, to find the starting point, which was a railway station. We soon found out, that this was slightly more that a British Rail sign.

So, we drove back to the local village to park. Then, we headed out, following the trail. Which, as you might have expected, took in various land marks and building of historical importance (Don’t mean the Pub!). Of course, we had to stop half way for quick refreshment in the local pub and sample the local ale.

Surprisingly, we only stayed for one drink, before we set out again to complete the trail.

Some interesting terrain we trod. Stopping at the various rivers that normally were streams to admire the workman ship of the various bridges.

Some, that I believe, could do some recalc’s on the weight they can hold. Anyway, bar wandering off  the trail for sometime. We had to take a detour. As a farmer had probably been upset by the number of walkers that had cross his field. He had set a electric fence. Well, we didn’t want to upset him any more, so we took what was a slightly longer route and this is where we then came unstuck, as we lost the track. Typically, Richard wait for Andy to be touching the electric fence before reconnecting it to ensure it work. By the way Andy jumped, it seem to do the trick.

Anyway, we walked sort of in the right direction. Once, two of the three people who were using GPS technology, to find out where we were had worked out where we were. Then, things started to become easier. (Unfortunately, I couldn’t help, as, I work on pub locations only!)

A voice called out to Richard, over a hedge. He was leading at the time (Also, as he had been in the RAF. We decided that he would have the best negotiation skills against hostile personel), to ask him if he was lost?

Thankfully, it was the owner of the field we have just walked though, who was some what amuse on how far we had wandered. Only one field out! But, it was rather a large field, never the less.

We return to The Eastbury to get applauded on the distance we had travelled. Richard’s wife had gone on the shopping visit and he was some what concern the time that she had spent on her own with the Credit Card. It’s seemed he was worrying more than he needed.

We all decided that the late night was catching us up and took to having a quick nap before dinner. We were told by Andy to be there sharp at 7.30pm for drinks. I would have been except the Bun on my dinner jack wouldn’t latch. Anyway, fortunately I wasn’t the last!

We then got treated to the photo’s album that highlighted the younger years of Lynda checkered history. Unfortunately, even for the Internet, these can’t be published here. Some of the dress sense was a little supspect and MI5 wouldn’t release the photo’s on decency grounds.

We then were asked to take our places at the table. I was sat between two young ladies Julie and Vicky. A thorn amongst roses, I think.

Where, were wined and dinned. The staff where impecable in service department and the kitchen produce a truely excellent 4 course meal. Then came the speech that Lynda had written. Which, hightlighted where everyone had come from in her life so far.

We were also joined by their friends in USA via Skype. Who couldn’t make the event. However, must have wonder what was going on in the UK that evening.

We were treated by the husband, of a long standing friend. That now just happens to be a Queens Council. To explain, to the rest of the table, how certain incidents had taken place.

The event he had recalled, had taken place near this corner shop call “Harrods”.

As, they had dented the plastic sufficiently, for it to answer no more!  They, then had retired to the local wine bar and order a Magname of Champagne. Then, once, realising that they were not going to be able to finish the said bottle. They persuaded the barman using their feminine charms, to find a cork and plastic bag. Except this wasn’t just any plastic bag! It was an M&S Plastic bag.

On returning to the hotel, they endeavoured to keep a straight face walking thorough reception and back to their room. Where, they subsequently past out for the rest of the evening until the early ours of the following day.

Realising that they were thirsty and they still had half a bottle of champagne left. They realise that they couldn’t just ask for a bottle opener without causing suspicion that they were drinking their own drink rather than the hotel’s. So, they attacked the bottle with nail scissors, until they prised the cork from the bottle. Then, completed drinking the champange.

He then stated that a txt had arrived from them summing him for their collection. Due to the on going laughter by the two people involved in this story. I never heard the final comments.

But, as you can see they are as thick as thieves in this shot.

The Second memorable speech was that of her longest friends who she met at school. Barbara. Where she explain the first time that she had met Lynda at around five. She had strewn herself across the door to stop Lynda from going home. Other, highlights were the imaginary Dolls and their imaginary children which they would talk to and about. The sharing of a packet of 10 cigarettes and how Barbara had to smoke the additional 3 as Lynda didn’t like smoking. The strip tease. That had actually been removing over garments in a jumble sale. But, of course the local Lads started chanting that “they had stripped” in front of them. She also explain, how she had to moved 3 miles and that this necessitated a school move. Because she wasn’t there to protect Lynda any more from the bullies. There wasn’t much of her now. So, I can’t think that she was particularly big at school. However, Lynda had been move to a private school, which is where they had lost touch for sometime.

And so the night went on. We heard short and long stories of how Lynda had met her friends.

We then retired to the bar where the pictures speak for themselves.

As, I stated previously. Most of these photographs are now classified by MI5 as to dangerous to release.

Well, all good things have to end. So, we met up in the morning at breakfast. To say our good byes and I believe Lynda has several more engagements to celebrate before the end of the year.

All, I can say is the weekend was great and the crew who orginised it did so very well.


About tagware

I've worked in IT for over 30 years. As the owner of one of the earlier AutoDesk Dealerships, when Richard Handyside was the main UK guy in The Cut! We supplied complete CAD, Networks and visualisation systems to Corporate clients such as RIBAS, Channel 4, NHS, BBC, Merrill Lynch, COMET Plc, Morgan Stanley too mention a few. We also developed the graphical ADB system for the Department of Health and a graphically lead Asset system for Merrill Lynch. Subsequently became a contract IT Consultant in both Developement and Production area's for both Large and small businesses. Which is what I'm still doing.
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1 Response to The Party of the Half Centry at The Eastbury Hotel.

  1. Andy says:

    Brilliant – thanks. It was great to see you and you’re right, we do need to catch up properly!

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