The Boniface Reunion


June 14, 2003

At The Historic Fishermen's Club


Organised by Chris Bareford


Chris Bareford's Invitation

Everything is in order for everyone to have a good natter and meet the family. 115 on the list so should be a good gathering. The weather forecast is a nice sunny day, they could change their mind's before saturday, but we hope not. We don't want any rain if anyone brings sandwiches for the beach. Don't forget meals can be got in the club restuarant or a short distance away in Seaside.
If anyone is not on the list the Fishermen's will be a little flexable, but I will give them a new one Saturday morning.
Kick off 10 o'clock till late if you want. They have a group playing in the evening and anyone is welcome to stay all day and all evening.

Caroline, we probably will be staying on at the Fishermen's in the evening instead of the Alex, I will mail you my mobile number so you can check when you finish work if you like.

Anyone who does not know where the club is, it is on the seafront east end between the Redout and Princes Park / Soveriegn Centre. There is a large council car park, charges are 1 hr - £1.40, 2 hr - £2.20, 4 hr - £3.00, all day - £4.50. No charge with disabled blue badge. There is on-street parking around about but it does fill up quickly in the summer season.

I havn't managed to get name badges yet but I am trying a couple of places Thursday or Friday.

I have asked the local paper if they could come and take a group photo for publicity and further coverage of the BIG family.
The local radio gave us a further boost this week when I e-mailed a thank you to them.

Don't forget yor cameras, old photos, and bits of family gossip, and come to enjoy yourself at this BIG family gathering.

Sorry I havn't been able to arrange anything on the activity side due to shortage of time, family bereavement, daughter in hospital with appendicitus, holiday in Scotland etc., but Nuala and I will be taking Pauline and Louise up to Holywell around 3pm to show them where the old fishing village and our ancester's cottages use to be, weather permitting, and then to dinner somewhere before we go back to the club. We may even have dinner at the club, have to play it by ear a bit.
Anyone who wants to join us on the Holywell trip is welcome, or perhaps as a previous update you may want to walk, or Dotto train up to the pleasure boats for a trip.

See some of you on Saturday, and those who can't be there watch out for the report and photos.

Chris and Nuala.



The Group Photo

original photos by Chris Bareford, merged by Andy Kerr

Click Here to view the Names-Legend for the Group Photo


Chris Bareford's Official Report!

Hi group, here is the official !!!! report of the family gathering.

I awoke at 5.30 in the morning, thinking what have I done, 130 plus people coming to congregate in little groups not talking to one another.
However Nuala and I got to the Fishermens club around 9:15, put up a banner outside the club and a few balloons.
I put up the 15 inch by 20 foot printed tree of the 'Rich' descendants that I had to print in 3 sections as my program will only do 9 pages wide. The wall was not long enough so it had to go round the corner into the next room.
At 10 o'clock the doors were opened and a couple of cars spotted in the car park. Very soon the club started to fill up and my fears were dispersed. I tried to greet most of the attendees but I am very sorry if I missed any. Everyone was soon exchanging memorys, photos and other trees appeared on the walls. I had brought my camera and cam-corder. I even splashed out on a new cam-corder as my other was getting ancient and a bit old and bulky, but with all the chatting did not get a lot of time to use either. I have got a little bit of footage of people seeming to enjoy themselves.
I had just over 130 names on the list eventually but I think there was in excess of 150 family members present. Although everyone was thanking me I feel I didn't do a lot of hard work except play around on the computer with a few !!! e-mails.
Around 2 almost everyone left was asked to parade outside for a photo session. I took the group in 3 pictures although on seeing the finished product 2 would suffice. I will forward them to Michael for possible inclusion in the website Eastbourne Cousins.
Allan and Dorothy Martin have already put theirs in their website, if anyone wants to look them up.
Just after 3 Nuala and I went with Pauline, Louise, Michele, Yoshiaka and others up to Holywell for a walk !! along the beach to see what's left of the old family hamlet site. It has deteriorated a lot since I last went there.
From there we took Pauline and Louise along with my sisters up to the Beachy Head Pub Restuarant for a meal and then back down to the Fishermens where a few straglers were still in attendance together with late commer Caroline who had been working all day.
We had to leave them there just before 8 to go and get ready for my eldest grandson's 21st birthday bash.
Just after midnight we got home after an exhausting but very pleasant day. Thanks to everyone for making it such a success, we really enjoyed it, and judging from today's e-mails and the little survey note I had left on the tables so did everyone else.
Thanks also to the Fishermens Club committee and staff for making us feel at home.
Is it too early to start planning for next year ??
PS. As a glutton for punishment I have spent much of today helping my daughter with doors for her kitchen cabinets.

Chris, also thanks to my wife Nuala for all her support.


Pauline's Report!

The Boniface Reunion at the Fisherman's Club, Eastbourne on the 14th June 2003 was a great event for me on my trip from Australia to meet relatives & friends who had only been on the other end of an e-mail.

Especially to meet Chris/Roy Bareford who put the Reunion together if I did not say it on the day a BIG thankyou to Chris.

To have it at the Fishermen's Club was also like coming home for me with family members looking down from the photos on the walls.

It was a whirlwind of a day so many interesting people to talk to all asking where do I fit into the tree & many other questions I hope I got around to everyone sorry if I did not but if they still want to ask any questions drop me an email .

In the afternoon a few of us walked coming in from the beach side to view from there where the Boniface Cottages once stood at the cliffs edge it must have been cold to have lived there in Winter.

We then went onto the Beachy Head Hotel to have a late lunch I was so full from the Fish & Chips I had eaten at the Fishermen's I only had room for dessert.

We went back in the evening to meet a couple of people who could not get to the day time but in the end the eyelids started to drop so came the end of a beautiful day one I will never forget.

Later on in my trip of UK I went back to Eastbourne & spent a couple of months with a cousin who I had never met before Diane & her husband John Adams it was the highlight of my trip we got on so well I said one day good job we do not live near each other we would be dangerous.

I have trained Di well until my return trip back to UK going into Libraries, Record Offices & Cemeteries chasing a Cockney funeral white carriage drawn by 4 shire horses down the road & attending a Gypsy Funeral which had 10 black stretched Limos in attendance.

My husband Phil was lucky enough to spend enjoyable time with them as well so much so they are coming to stay with us in Australia next year.

So if anyone says is it a good idea to have or go to a Family Reunion the answer is yes & I hope I can get to the next Boniface UK Reunion.

View Excellent Photos of Pauline's Day at the Reunion


Lynn Marchant 's Report!

Well, I've just got in and it is just after 8pm. There is actually a party tonight at the fishermens, I think it is a birthday party, but some of us have called it a day!

I have to say that Chris did a brilliant job organising everything. It was a very successful day, loads of people turned up. so many people seeing people they had known all their lives and had not realised they were related to!!

I met Pauline at last. She is great, a lot of fun. This afternoon after the Fishermens we all went to see the old cottages (or ruins of) at the bottom of Beachy Head. But I had not planned on staying around for that but basically my friend's (Christine) mum (Pam) who I told you about, her sister had taken them all to the Fishermens and then had to leave, so effectively they were stranded so I offered to take them. So I drove up there and waiting for them to walk over all the rocks etc. I was wearing heels so could not join them or I would have done (better than sitting around, although one of the sisters stayed with me and we sat in the sun eating ice creams!!). Then when they got back from there we went up to Beachy Head for dinner. When I say we it was Roy (aka Chris), Roy is my friend Christine's uncle, (Pam's brother), and he was the organiser as you know. So Roy, his wife Nuala (or Norma as she is mostly known), Pauline, Pam, Hazel, Pat and Joy oh and me of course (Pat, Roy, Pam, Hazel being brother's and sisters, and Joy is a half sister, but not related to the Bonifaces, she just happened to be staying with Pam for the weekend). Hope this all makes sense.

It was so good to actually see a great big family tree stretching across the wall so you can see how everyone is related. Also found out more about the family boats. There were two boat charters in Eastbourne, Boniface and Allchorns. The Boniface boats became charters because a fleet of 10 or 12 went somewhere (came in half way through a conversation) and only two came back, so instead of being used as fishing boats as they were previously, they were converted into tourist charter boats. All that was new to me, but you might already know this info. It was such a shame you could not get here as I know it would have been something you would have loved to attend and you would have been in your element going round talking to everyone and asking loads of questions. But it appears that everyone would love for another one, so who knows you might be able to come to the next one!! We have requested that it be in Australia though!!!

Well I guess that is my news. Roy had hoped the local paper were going to attend but we have the tennis on right now (the ladies play tennis in Eastbourne the week before they go to Wimbledon (think it is for the seeding)) so we figured all their weekend staff were covering that. But Roy did get some photos - I had popped into town to run some errands so I missed them but came back and saw the crowd. So he will no doubt send you some, it did look like a digital camera.

Take care
love to you both and Austin of course
Lynn x



Ann Foord's Report

Sunday, 14th June 2003

This was the day I had eagerly been looking forward to. Weather-wise it was warm and sunny - perfect.

My two eldest daughters, Sandra and Jenny arrived at our house at 9.a.m. so that we could all travel down to Eastbourne in one car - driven by my husband, Ron. My son, Alan and his wife, Yvonne drove down separately. Unfortunately my youngest daughter, Barbara was unable to attend. We were all going to the Boniface Reunion. We arrived at the Fishermen's Club at about 11 a.m., having picked up my Sister-in-law, Sylvia on the way.

On entering the Club we were greeted by Chris Bareford. He had done a wonderful job organising everything. He had put up a Family Tree which started in the Foyer and went right along the wall into one of the main rooms. There were also labels to write our names and who we were related to, e.g. Ann Boniface, Granddaughter of "Old Tom and Elizabeth" was my label.

My two surviving brothers, Tom and George were at the bar - where else would they be!!

It became quite crowded and we drifted upstairs to the restaurant.

It was wonderful to be able to put faces to people we had been e-mailing for a long time and it was good meeting Pauline and Louise from Australia. My cousin Jean Allchorn and her husband, Colin, were over from Spain. We hadn't seen them for a few years. Also my cousins Barbara and Valerie were there. I was so thrilled to be reunited with Valerie - it was 55 years since we were last together.

On arriving home Sandra hugged me and asked if I had enjoyed the day. I said "I have had a magical day one I shall always remember".

A day is not long enough to meet everybody so hopefully we can get together again sometime. At least now I have a nice panoramic photograph of nearly everyone.

Ann Foord (nee Boniface)


As Reported in the Eastbourne Herald

article courtesy of Chris Bareford


View Photographs kindly provided by Andy Kerr


View Photographs kindly provided by Keith Boniface


View Photographs kindly provided by Michele (Boniface) Tsuji


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