This Robert was born at a very similar time to the one below
One of them is probably the son of George & Maria Brind The other may be the son of William and Mary (Mudge)

The Alfred Brind below may be the well known character in Highworth referred to in a book called Highworth & About by P J (Jack) Archer.
Robert Eliza
b. about 1845/6 Aldbourne
Agricultural labourer (Willow Labourer)
     b. about 1845/6 Lambeth, London
See account of stroke at 84
Death at 94
1901 census
1881 census
1901 census
1881 census
Edith M Eliza Ann Sarah Kate
Possibly Kate in school photo
Possibly Nellie in school photo
Possible link
Alfred John
See photo
b 1875/6 Aldbourne b 1877 Aldbourne b 1880 Aldbourne b 1883 Aldbourne b 1886 Aldbourne b 1889 Aldbourne b 1891 Aldbourne
d. 1972 Portsmouth
1881 census 1881 census 1881 census
1901 census
1901 census 1901 census 1901 census
General Servant Domestic Plough boy Shepherd
Return to index   Skeleton of tree

Posted: Wed Mar 01, 2006 5:07 am Post subject: BRINDS
I am researching my family tree and would like help from anyone with information on any Brind. In particular, if anyone has any information on Thomas Brind who married Hannah Liddiard on the 10 Apr 1808. Thomas was possibly the son of Robert Brind & Mary Watts and lived from 1784 to either 1826 or 1836. Hannah lived from 1791 - 1823. I am unsure of Thomas's parents as there are several possibilities. Also, I have a newspaper clipping (possibly from 1944) which describes the funeral of Aldbourne's Eldest inhabitant, Eliza Brind (nee Newman). She was my Great,Great Grandmother. The article refers to several generations of living relatives, including Liddiards, Barnes, Evans, Sheppards, Bull, Crook. She was also a member of the Mother's Union. If anyone could shed any more light on this and suggest which newspaper the clipping may be from, and also where to look for other Aldbourne Obituaries, it would be greatly appreciated. Aldbourne Community Forum Forum Index

Posted: Wed Mar 01, 2006 6:05 pm Post subject:
mjbrind, I have replied to you by e-mail, but additional information is that the newspaper obit. may be from the Marlborough Times or the Gazette & Herald. Backdated copies of these are held on micro-fiche at Marlborough Library (01672 512663) and these do go back a long way. Will also ask around the village about the family names you mention. Aldbourne Community Forum Forum Index

Posted: Tue Mar 07, 2006 4:38 pm Post subject:
Thank you, I am already a member of and various other sites, but they are no replacement for local knowledge. I am trying to explore every avenue and since the Brinds and Aldbourne have been intertwined for many hundreds of years, I am hoping that I may gain that elusive piece of info that makes everything gel. Thanks again, Marcus. Aldbourne Community Forum Forum Index

Alfred Brind is the grandfather of Alan Brind (born 1948). Alan has a son Daniel Michael (born 1971). They have a recording of Alfred interviewed on the BBC about his life as a shepherd and the long trek he took from Aldbourne to Stubbington near Fareham, in search of work. One of Alfred's sisters married a man named Barnes. Her son was called Wilfred Barnes who in turn had a son still living in Aldbourne in 2004. See Robert Brind who married Ann Barn(e)s and lived next door to a Barnes family.

Aldbourne, Wiltshire
Return to index Shepherds
Alfred Brind interviewed about Life on the Wiltshire Downs 26/12/1961 on the BBC, presumably the Home Programme.
Interviewer: Salisbury Plain is an area of rolling downland lived in and farmed for thousands of years. It's got a bleakness and a beauty all its own. A loneliness and a monotony that you can feel today even though fast motorways follow the roads the Romans made. Yet only 60 years ago these rolling hills were one vast sheep walk with a shepherd playing an important part on the large arable farms. A little while ago I met one of these old shepherds. He's Alfred Brind born in 1889 at Aldbourne in Wiltshire and now retired to Stubbington near Fareham in Hampshire. He spent a lifetime with sheep. A lot of it on the down with only his flock and his dog for company. His knowledge was gained by observation and the skills were passed down from one generation of shepherds to another. A shepherd's working life began at an early age for he told me that times were hard at the beginning of the century.
I started at the age of ten really through the summer holidays and I got 2/6d a week for minding about 120 pigs on the stubble for seven days a week. Well that lasted until October and the I went back to school again for the winter. And then in the May I passed the fourth standard and I went back as a ploughboy on the same farm.

Of course that was at Aldbourne in Wiltshire and I was very interested in horses for a few years and then I went on the shepherding. But during the time I was in the horses I was feeding 13 horses from 6 o clock in the morning until 7 o clock and then we went to plough all day and I got three bob a week for that.

And then when I was 14 I was holding plough and I got five bob a week and I used to plough six acres a week for five shillings a week. That's somewhat different to what it is to day, init?

It certainly is. When did you start shepherding?
I started shepherding when I was 14 wet days and Sundays at Baydon during that winter we had a very wet winter and then we had a lot of frost and snow and we never turned a furough for six weeks and then I took on shepherding. I went back to Aldbourne where there was three flocks or sheep and I took on there as a shepherd boy and from there I just simply begun to get really interessted in sheep.

I was along with my brother in law at Baydon and they had a bit of trouble just before lambing. They had several ewes go giddy. And the young farmer he had never done no farming before. He called in a vet and the vet said they was having too many turnips. He cut the turnips down and the sheep got worse.

So after a day or two the farmer asked the shepherd his opinion. He said you ought to have asked me that before, sir, he said I have been with sheep ever since I left shool, he said. And the vet, he said, he only sees a flock of sheep when he meets them on the road. He said you take that hay away, he said, and change the hay, he said, and you'lll find that it will be all right. They did and after a couple of days they never lost another sheep.

Well from then on as I say I was always interested in sheep and then I went to Browns at Aldbourne and they lost a lot of sheep through slipping and that before lambing and that always played on my mind. In fact I have always carried it in my memory up till the present day.

And then I went to Whatley's at Wanborough Plain with old Shep Pierce and he'd have been a shepherd all his life, his father before and I believe his grandfather and the whole family had been shepherds. He couldn't read or write but he was a good shepherd. There's no doubt about that and I learnt quite a lot off of him but I have experienced off of what I learnt off of him. I have always opened up me own sheep when one died I always opened it myself and had a look at it. And that's how I come to be, really, as experiencd as what I really am. In those days, you see, the shepherd he had to do everything he had to be the nurse; he had to be the doctor. If a sheep broke its leg he had to set it. And all sort of very funny things happen in the lambing time but I have had some very, very important things to do.

By this time you were in your 20s I suppose? How old were you when you got married?

When I got married I was only 17 and when I went on me own I was 18. Well I was lambing down sheep when I was 19 on me own. And from then on I always was the shepherd, you know.

I used to tell the farmer when I agreed with him well after I got on a bit, I used to say well sir if I comes for you, you will be the master and I shall be the shepherd and one of 'em he stopped me one night and said I was going home too early and I told him that the shepherd's job was his own time. He said well, the labourers have complained about you going home at 4 o clock.

I said well you can tell the labourers from me that they has an hour for dinner. I don't. I said and when they knocks off at 5 o clock, I said, they're finished but if anything goes wrong with your flock of sheep, I said, if tis the middle of the night I shall be there. So you see my time was me own. And he said well very good shepherd. He said you carry on as you're going. 'Cause I said to him if you wants a labourer to look after your sheep you have'em by all means.

Going back 50 years shepherd to when you were a young man how did you bring up a family on these very low wages you were getting.
Well, I suppose we brought em up as well as what they have been brought up today because we didn't have the money to fool away on sweets and so such things as that. The youngsters didn't get none. And when we did get a ha'penny we usually had somebody go along with us to spend 'en. You could get a ha'penorth of sweets, you'd get a farthing's of sweets. And grub I remember when I was first married I only had eleven bob a week, when I was first married 'cause I had the house as well. But I could used to go to shop and get enough grub, enough groceries for a fortnight for ten bob.
So you had a shilling in the kitty?
Well you could have a shilling, if you went out of a night time you could have a couple of pints of beer and a piece of bread and cheese and go home then with a tanner in your pocket. Oh yes, we had some very good times. In fact I very often thinks that today when you come to reckon it up, which I've got it down in black and white in one of my books where I have a reckoned it up.

You see in those days it only cost £4 a year for rent for a four roomed house. That's down in Wiltshire where I was. And a five roomed house was £5 a year, that was only £1 a year per room and today, well, some of the people's paying more than that per week.

What about the garden, did you grow most of your vegetables?
Well, we used to grow what we wanted in our gardens because we mostly had some fair gardens. And I have always been pretty well interested in gardening in fact I have got a bundle of cards where I won prizes and that since I have been out here. A bundle of them there, for that.
How did you amuse yourself up on these lonely downs then when you didn't see anybody for days on end?
Well I always seemed to think that I had someone near me. I never felt alone. But then, of course, I always used to have a mouth organ, me old testament. And I used to read 'ee pull ee to pieces as much as I could, to find out. Because it says search and you'll find that by Jingo it wants some searching to find the truth in there too. I used to stick up me old stick and get up there in one particular place there, was where they had cut some turf off and there was a lot of hard chalk rubble, you know. I used to stick my stick up and I used to say well now I'm going to practice what David practiced. And I would fling stones at 'em. And I could usually hit that stick I suppose twice out of three. And I was all right.
That's the crook you have got it in your hand now?
That old crook, yes.
How old is that?
Well, I have had him I suppose about 60 years but he belonged to an old shepherd that had died before I had him
Is there a special size for the crook at the top?
Yes well you see this one, you slip your hand up through like that, look. See? Well now, that's about the size of a sheep's hock, and he goes in there like that and you will see the crook is set back there and he comes up round like that so therefore when you have got him your just give the crook a twist like that, see? And she can't possibly get'n out. Now if you look at that crook up there, he's straight at the back. A sheep could kick her foot out of that one and you can't, haven't got the same twist on it. But this is the proper shaped crook
In the window, there of your cottage, I see some sheep bells.
How old are they?
Well, the one's I bought myself I suppose they are 50 years old and some of them must be pretty well double that.
Are they really? What blacksmith made?
Yes, yes.
Did you have a special sheep to put on for each bell then?
I used to select my sheep according to their strength and for extra big sheep, you see, well he carried the big bell and the smaller sheep carried the smaller bells, that's how I worked it. But you know the sheep was really, always seemed to be proud to carry a bell. Some of them, well one of them, always used to walk in front and another one with a big bell always was last. I could never understand that but that's how it worked out.
Do they still put bells on sheep today.
Well, the trouble is you see there isn't many arable sheep today and they are really grass sheep and this is where the trouble comes in where dogs get in amongst grass sheep and with no bells on them, well then you don't know anything about them being worried but if there is a set of bells on them, if you are a mile away you can hear 'em.

Perhaps you would like to ring them for us would you and show us what happens?
I will do. Now here's a bell you see. And when they were feeding they'd be (bong,bong,bong,bong) like that, you see? Well if they was running (bongty,bongty,bongty,bongty) they'd be going like that.
And how far would the sound carry?
Well, the sound of this bell 'ould carry a mile easy.
Now what about this set of ram's horns you have got in front of us. What's the story behind those?
Well that set of horns come off of a two tooth ram of the old Dorset downs. That ram well he died and I just took his horns off him and there they are. That was in 1915.
Was that a good farm to be on?
No it wasn't. I was only there six weeks and the first day I went there I let the sheep go where they wanted and they went right all round the farm. Then they settled down on a bit of young clover and I thought to myself well, you aint a going to stop here. You are going back where I want you to feed. So I took them back on a piece of old pasty ground. And the farmer next door he said the next day those sheep are more behaved, he said, today than I have seen them, he said, for months. Well I was only there six weeks. During the time I was there I thatched all the farmer's ricks that was there. He couldn't get any spars made. He couldn't get anybody to make any elms, so my wife made the elms I made the spars out of old hurdles and I thatched the ricks. And one morning I was talking to a roadman I said hello, here comes old Tommy. I'd better get out there and see what he wants.

And I went out there and he came up there, I suppose he was about three parts drunk early in the morning too. And he accused me of letting the sheep out on the wheat. Well, I knew that they hadn't have been out on the wheat, and even if they had it would have done it good. Well I said to him can't you tell the difference between a sheep's foot and a cow's foot then?

And he turned round. He takes a revolver out of his pocket. And he pointed it at me. And he said: 'you want some of this?' I stooped down and I picked up two or three stones and I put them after him as fast as they could go and so did he go out of the field as fast as he could go.

Well, we always associate shepherds with dogs, Mr Brind. Have you had some good ones in your time?
I think I have had as good as ever anybody could've had. I had one in 1910 and his name was Monty. He was a collie and I was in Marlborough fair one day coming away with 40, I think it was 40. And one of them cut out. What made 'em cut out I don't know but he did. And he ran straight away for 300. A flock of 300. And the farmer and the shepherd were stood in front of 'em. And they never stopped the lamb. Well in most cases that lamb would have been lost but not this time. I sent the dog after my lamb that had got into their flock I said go on Monty get hold of him. And Monty went away and they tried to stop the dog, but he never took any notice of 'em. He went up in amongst those 300 lambs and took off my lamb by his hock. And he brought it out, passed the farmer and the shepherd back to mine.

The farmer come across to me and he said, shepherd, you've got a good dog there. I said tell us some'at I don't know. He said I will buy him off you. I said governor you couldn't you haven't a got enough money. When this dog and me parts, death'll part us.

Now where you ever ill when you were up here on your own?
I had influenza, double pnuemonia and typhoid fever and it took me two hours that night to walk two mile. The I had this typhoid fever and it got me down and of course I finished up in the Old Sarum hospital, Salisbury. No hopes, no hopes, no hopes. Only his own confidence 'd pull him through. And one day well they couldn't get my temperature to move and one day the nurses was going down to Salisbury for their afternoon and I said to an old solider that was there from India. He was there trying to get climatised or something of that. And I asked him if he'd get me six penny worth of milk chocolate. Well he got it and give it to me and I eat that six penny worth of milk chocolate and you know the next day my temperature went down normal. Directly after that they started giving me a bit of bread and butter and I started getting all right. And as soon as they said I could go home, why didn't I have some good old rashers and eggs.
You made up for the food you hadn't eaten?
I made up for that yes.
How did you use to feed yourself on these lonely stays up on the downs
Well, I used to come home once a week. Change me clothes and then take some food back 'long with me. Enough to last me the week. And one night when I was a coming over Faldean there we had a flood, similar to what we have had some of these years. This year. And I had to walk through water up to me hips. Course I hadn't had far to go when I got, after I got through it. I was soon home and had the clothes off and changed and I walked about two miles round to get back to the lambing fold that night.

Well 50 years ago Mr Brind, before we used to use the vets as much as we use them today. How did you use to manage with sheep that were ill?
Well, after I began to get along, in fact when I was 19 I was on me own. And I had a ewe go giddy and I sent her to the butcher. That's what we usually did. Well, the next day I had another one go giddy. But I thought myself, well it's no good to send her to the butcher. I don't know no more about that one than nothing so I took and killed her myself, and sold her out to the work people. 'Cause I could dress a sheep as well as a butcher but besides that you see I opened her. And by opening her I found out what was the matter with her. So I said to the governor we had better change the diet straight away. And so we did. We were giving them a bit too much cotton cake. And therefore by changing the diet after the next year I never had another sheep go giddy at all. And I have never lost any sheep through that kind of giddyness since.

You see there was a lesson taught through opening the sheep.

What about these modern diseases like pulpy kidney and lamb dissentry. What do you think of those?
Well now as regards kidney trouble that's nearly always brought on by something sweet such as mangoes, sugar beet. Now up here, not far from here I had a lamb go wrong and I sent that to the butcher. He sent back next day saying it was the kidneys and a lot of it round the ribs and that was no good.

So the next day I had another one go wrong. I killed that me'self and dressed it and had a look at it. And then I thought myself, well I see what this is: kidney trouble. I came down into a copse and just away across where the fields are that's grubbed up now and I got a little arm full of broom brought it up down here. Boiled it up in this house. And I took it back and I drenched the lambs with that. Well I fatted them lambs out and I smeared exactly the same place as I did the others. I had eleven of them there. And then I have also found that broom is a very good thing to, for anoybody with got dropsy. One old chap down the road here he come to me one Thursday with his boots cut in slickets. I said hello old fellow, what you on the sick list then? And he said yes. I said what's the matter with you? 'Oh,' he said, 'I've been to the hospital and they have sent me home uncurable. They said gout.'

I said I see your feet's swelled. Let's have a look at your legs. So he pulled up his trousers and I felt his legs and of course where my fingers went it was all dense. I said they might as well have told you the truth old man. I said, they know what's the matter with you. I said you've got dropsy. 'Oh,' he said, 'my father died with dropsy.' Well, I said, be on the cheerful side look's as if you are going the same way unless you do summ'at for yourself. Doctor yesterday told him that all the medicine in the world wouldn't do him no good.

I said will you do as I tell you as if a doctor told you. He said yes, I will. I said right, first of all cut those spuds out. Don't have no more than one fair sized one or two small ones. Eat as much green stuff as you like and come along here I will show you what to get. I took the old chap along and cutting off a handfull of green broom. I said take that home and put it in the jug and pour some boiling hot water on it and when its cool enough to drink you take a wine glass full just as it is. And then I said you'll take another wine glass full tonight before you go to bed. And then one morning, noon and night until I tell you different. Well, that's what he did. He come to me on the following Sunday, which was only three clear days, with his proper boots on with no cuts. And on the following week that Monday, which was only ten days, he started work on the golfing down here with britches and gaiters on.That old chap kept himself alive for 16 years with his home made medicine. Plenty of it grew all round his house. You see people in these days they keep running to the doctor for everything. They don't help their selves. And you've got to help youself if you want to get well. I know people as gets some tablets. And throw them down in the sink. One told me only just recently that she had some tablets. She didn't want them. She wouldn't take 'em. Well why did the doctor give her some tablets he knew she coulnd't swallow. See he should have give it to her in medicine. But I believe in me own herbs because now from me own eyes you can see I can read anything. I can even see a lot of that on there and that wants some seeing, don't it. I only use elder leaves to wash my eyes with. I gives me eyes a good soaking with elder leaves. Just simmer the leaves, strain them off. And they will leave your eyes as soft as silk.

Shep, were there any occasions when your power as a shepherd were really proved, for example when you could get sheep in that anybody else couldn't?
Well, I should say that there was. Because the way that I did it was that when I was in the lambing fold I used to be talking to my lambs all the time I was feeding them. And when they was say a couple of months old I could call them and they would all come away from their mothers. I could get them out like that for market, you see. Then my governor came down here one night after I was gone to bed and he rattled on the door and I looked out the window and he said I have just had a phone shepherd message shepherd, he said, say our sheep's out. I thought the best thing to do was to come and get you..I said very good sir I will be along with you in a minute. So of coure I've come down. Took the old dog shoved him up in the car and away we went. Up through the village we had about a mile and a half to go, I suppose. I said pull in the left side of the road turn your headlights down, so as not to throw any shadows. I'll go and get them. He was a coming I said, no you stop there and I'll leave the dog there in case I wants him, I said, you can let him out. But I think I can manage it without him. Well the old bells was ringing, you see, I knew exactly where they were. And it was dark you couldn't see no more than five yards. And I walked across where they were and I called out 'whooa, whooa, whooa' and every sheep answered. Come running up to me. I said come on then. Come on. They followed me through that field in darkness out through the gate into this road and away down there, other side the copse and through another gate and across another field and in to the fold and I shut them in without the aid of a man or a dog. And when I got back to get in the car the governor put his hand on me shoulder and he said 'shepherd you can handle a flock of sheep'. And when I left those sheep I took me handkerchief from me pocket and I wiped the tears from me eyes.

Silent Night on the harmonium.

Hock: Tarsal joint of the hind leg of hoofed mammals; corresponds to the human ankle
Pre decimal coinage. A farthing is a quarter of an old penny. A ha'penny is half a penny. There are 12 pennies to a shilling, which is also called a bob. Six pennies are called a tanner. There are 20 shillings in a pound. So there are 240 old pennies in a pound compared to 100 new pennies. That means an old tanner is worth the same as 2 1/2 new pence.

Return to index   Skeleton of tree

Some years ago I was shearing some sheep at Peel Common on a Saturday afternoon, when at about 5.00pm my daughter brought me a telegram saying if you want to see mother alive, come at once.

I had 60 miles to travel.

I decided to ride my bike as there was no convenient trains running. I arrived home at 1.15am on Sunday morning.

My mother was now 84 years of age.

The doctor said mother had, had a stroke, there was nothing he could do, it would have to take its course.

When I arrived two of my sisters was watching over her as she lay paralysed on the bed down stairs.

As soon as I arrived my sister told me all the doctor had said, and just what happened.

Immediately I lay across the bed, took my mother by one wrist held it like grim death, put my right hand fingers pressing hard into the nerve centre of the back, and held her as tight as my strength could do, fifteen minutes later my mother relaxed and slept peacefully until 5.15am. When she had another stroke, I did the same thing again while one of ny sisters ran off down the village for our eldest sister to come and see the last of her. But when they arrived mother was sleeping again.

My eldest sister asked me what I thought of mother, I said, since the doctor says it must take its course, and there is nothing more that he can do, I suggest that you get the nurse early this morning and give mother an enema, and I think she will be ten times better before I have to go back.

Sister Ede carried out my instructions and my mother recovered so that she was sitting up in bed that same day and asked me to play some hymns on the little kind of organ.

From that day mother got about and done most of her housework beside her flower garden until she was 94.

Written by Alfred Brind, shepherd

Alfred wrote at least two books. One was a religious book called The Sacred Truth.

The other was a more folksy book called Book 2.

I have not managed to read them but they seem to be a mixture of religion, folk medicine and shepherding, with a little bit of family history thrown in.