As a follow up to his article about Fish Hoek lifesavers in the 1960s
Godfrey Mocke submitted the following:
“And yes Mike (Halliday)….those nicknames hey! Although at the risk of boring you…you were ‘n lightie hanging around there on Muizenberg’s Sunrise Beach (popularly dubbed “Christian Beach”!) and I don’t actually recall whether or not you were qualified ‘enough’ to have been given a nickname, hmmm?
But you may well remember the day when we decided to have an impromptu beach-party ‘braai’ after a bather-intense and very hot summer Sunday’s “squad-duty”? They (the False-Bay clubbies) disasterously somehow managed to burn the ‘clubhouse’ down during the early evening of that famous Sunday – summer-night…..you surely must remember that very bad ‘one-for-the-record’, hey?
Our then beloved False Bay ‘clubhouse’, since inception in 1962, had been a double-sized beach-hut virtually on the water’s-edge off the southern-end of Muizenberg’s Sunrise-Beach car-park, our occupancy negotiated by “Schnoize” Solomon’s dad, London Barrister Frank (Snr) “Judge” Solomon…probably on a rent-free ‘contract’ basis to us from a well-disposed “Mr Yeld”….I think he was…the then CC-Council’s Bathing-Amenities Manager.
The clubhouse was razed down to beach-sand level & after our ‘Great Muizenberg Fire’, our members were obliged to continue performing voluntary week-end bather-safety squad duty-patrols using parked cars as Observation Points for 2 years and until Mr Yeld (I think?) arranged for False Bay LSC HQ to be moved temporarily to a ‘basement-boathouse’ under the Promenade on the northern-most end of the new Pavillion (then still under construction) and situated right on the Sandvlei Estuary mouth’s south-bank and also diagonallyopposite & overlooking the famous ‘Snake-Pit’ sun- worshippers beach.
The most ingenious nickname ‘conjuror-up’ in the club at the time was mischievous Keith McClarty (Brian “Block” McClarty’s younger brother) who oddly enough didn’t have a nickname himself! Keith’s most apt ‘names for us and which still ring clearly in nostalgic-memory are (the legendary) Cliffie “Hey-Bow” Edwards, “Riempie” Adams, Peter “Piggs” Moir, Tony “Evvie” Euvrard, Chris “Captain” Bakker, Peter “Black-Bass” Bassford, Ian “Chuncky” or “Pineapple-Chunks” Meggy, Frank “Flash” Chalmers, Tony “Gweeenne” Green, and Trevor “Higgy” Higginbotham.
And who will forget those other house-hold lifesavers and their nicknames…..Robin “Schnoize’ Solomon, Robby “Gillette” (or “Grubb”) Thomas + his dog & constant companion, “Whiskey”. Then there was a formidable Mike “Hondbal” O’Neill, Melvin “Pea-Brain” Frieslaar,, Erwin “Orang” Venter, Terry “Ten-Bob” Lancaster, Barry “Ugly-Bugly” Hanratty, John “Doddles” Dodd, Martin “Stopp” van Rensburg, John “Bosbok” Bush, Mike “Fifi” Taylor, Andy “Fido” Taylor, Andy “Spange” Spengler, Trevor “Pogg” Espey, Pierre “Muncher” Meintjies, (referred to as “General Rockjaw” at times), Andrè “Crybaby” de Villiers, Geoff “Me-Olde” Glenn, Jack “Jacko” Brownrigg, Michael “Micky-Dee” Brownrigg, Peter “Slob” English, the two “Vlokkie” Vlok brothers and Brian “Zakkie-Murals” Delport?
I don’t think Keith McClarty had a regular nickname for erstwhile club-captain Colin Haytread but if I were to have given Colin a ‘name I would probably have gone for something like “Hammer” Haytread or “Vuilbek” Haytread, yet Keith – from the first day I saw him on Christian Beach in December 1963 – has referred to me as “Godfour”, and that name has stuck to this day, hasn’t it, although there are some references made to me as “Goddy”? Enjoy reminiscing!!”
PS – False Bay vs Fish Hoek?
Although tough competition was provided by other prominent lifesaving clubs like Clifton, Milnerton & Strand at regular week-end inter-club lifesaving carnivals, there was little love lost between main rivals False Bay & Fish Hoek where Fish Hoek club spear-headed by the big imposing frame of Villager RFC kingpin & their WP Lifesaving & club captain Steve van Rooyen were often bated as “Mrs Barling’s little Darlings” by the rough-&-tough False Bay crew – referring to prominent Fish Hoek ‘royalty’ Mrs Joyce & Mr Denis Barling who were considered Fish Hoek patrons & benefactors. Top competitors lining up for the hot-shot Fish Hoek squad in that 1964/1965-era would have been Brian Sturman,Clive & Doug Wakeford and Ivor Wright in the surfski events, Kenny Kingma, Trevor & Allan Doble (surf-swimmers), Vic Grebe, John Reid & John Woods in the Kneeboard-paddling races, Hugh Hutton & Ross Currie as beach-sprint specialists, supported by all-rounders John Rice, Warrick Neville, Clive & Derick Duffel, Peter & Roy Wright, “Carrots” Wright and Hylton Ross.