David Baker

David was born at Churchills. He walked to school at Hulverstone from 5 years old and can just remember Brook Hill House being built. David moved to Chessell Farm cottages in 1969. The Smith family lived there before him; Ernie Smith, his wife and family. Henry Browning was the farmer for Westover and Chessell in those days. When the farm was split up David became a cowman.

Later he worked for Steve Ross at Shalcombe Manor and Farm. Shalcombe Farm had then been a large farm. When Hanson Rowbothom, who owned the farms at Chessell and Afton, died, it marked a change and coincided with the time when machinery took over from men, fields got larger and men moved to work across farms.

In David’s time, Shalcombe has known five owners: Max Berryman, Stanley Ball, Stephen Ross, Mr Van Halle, Michael Clark and Colonel McKenzie-Walker. David’s father, Jim Hookey and Margaret Morris all went to school together at Hulverstone. When David Hookey’s grandfather, Davy, shoed Akbar, Jack Seely’s military horse, as a perk he used to enjoy riding the horse.