So who was Jeremy Bentham?

A view of the Cleddau Bridge –

Cars are transported high above the waters of Milford Haven now.  Decades ago the Hobbs Point jetty was where foot passengers and cars lined up

to catch the Cleddau Queen and later the Cleddau King ferries

across to “the other side”.

A long shot down the Haven

– just to the left is the embarkation point for the Irish ferry to Rosslare; on the right there’s a glimpse of the tanker jetties, a reminder that Milford Haven’s deep waters accommodate huge oil and liquid gas super tankers.

It was Sports Relief weekend – there were bananas on Barafundle beach,

a heavy sea at Freshwater West.

The winter storms have left their mark: undercut dunes at Barafundle,

shingle replacing the sands at Freshwater West.

So why were the Cleddau crew back in Cleddau-land?  Well, there was an invitation to a Pembs-based relative’s 60th birthday event in Tenby. Family, friends, neighbours, colleagues and Jeremy Bentham were there.

Jeremy Bentham…? Jeremy Bentham! Wasn’t he the guy who attended a UCL (University College London) board meeting despite having died 181 years previously? Wasn’t he a nineteenth century philosopher and social reformer?

Change the verb – who are Jeremy Bentham? A teenage school pop group in the 1960s called themselves ‘The X’. They played noisily and enthusiastically in the school hall and at local night clubs. Seeking wider publicity, acclaim and bookings ‘The X’ group decided to change its name – and with the aid of an encyclopaedia a worthy substitute was found.  So there, on Sunday, the founder members of ‘Jeremy Bentham’, now all in their sixties, played sixties’ music at the sixty-year old’s birthday party. It was a good bash!

As for Cleddau – after six months she’s emerged from the Stoke Boats shed and is afloat alongside on the Trent and Mersey Canal.

Trials of systems and installations are under way  – but don’t ask yet when she’ll be fit for cruising…

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