Gerald Ponting
writer, publisher, lecturer, photographer
based in central southern England
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Gerald Ponting

Fordingbridge and the surrounding area is a fascinating corner of Hampshire (England), almost isolated from the rest of the county by the heathlands of the New Forest. The town itself nestles in the valley of the River Avon, with its distinctive bridge at what was always an important crossing point.
To north and south lie the fertile ‘valley villages’ of Breamore, Burgate and Bickton. To the east, the ‘forest-edge villages’ of Hale, Woodgreen, Godshill, Blissford, Stuckton, Frogham, Hyde and North Gorley are different in character; while to the west, Rockbourne, Damerham, Martin and Whitsbury form a third group-the ‘chalk downland villages’.
The area has a long and varied history, with the ancient past represented by the Iron-Age hill-fort at Whitsbury and the Roman Villa at Rockboume. In A.D. 519 a battle at Charford marked the beginning of the Kingdom of Wessex and thus, in a sense, the birth of England.
Fordingbridge in Pictures - two books by Anthony Light and Gerald Ponting
Fordingbridge and District book cover

by Anthony Light and Gerald Ponting
The 76 illustrations in this book , together with carefully-researched captions, they give an excellent impression of the town from the late Victorian era through to the early 1960s.
Published by European Library, Zaltbommel, 2002
(out of print)   ISBN 90 288 3676 4
Fordingbridge in Old Picture Postcards
With Fordingbridge as its focal point and market town, the area survived the problems of the Middle Ages and the religious and civil upheavals of Tudor and Stuart times. Rural life and landscapes changed little till the coming of the railways and, fortunately, photography arrived soon after, to record the ancient scene and then the changes of the late 19th and the 20th centuries.
In a superb selection of carefully captioned old photographs, the authors provide fascinating glimpses of life in Fordingbridge and the surrounding villages throughout the Victorian and Edwardian eras and up to 1959. They reveal farmers, workers and shopkeepers, children at school, people at play in early football and cricket clubs or at the famous Fordingbridge Regatta; weddings, celebrations, outings by charabanc and many other aspects of the local past.
Residents of the area will find much to arouse interest and evoke memories, in this book. It will also have strong appeal to the increasing number of visitors who choose to spend their holidays in this delightful corner of Hampshire.
by Anthony Light and Gerald Ponting              
ISBN 0 85033 897 2
Published by Phillimore, 1994, 250x190mm, hardback, 181 photographs
GBP 12.95 (Current special offer, GBP 6.95)
Fordingbridge Town Hall
See also our more comprehensive book on the History of Fordingbridge, also my presentation on Edwardian Fordingbridge and guided tours of the town.
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Latest revision of this page  March 2009
All material copyright - see copyright notice