WHISPERING SMITH: Saucy postcards originated in Littlehampton

Chris Adam Smith
Chris Adam Smith

WAY back in the day, traditional seaside postcards, often depicting a chubby fellow lounging in a striped deck chair with a knotted handkerchief on his head and his town trousers rolled up to his knees, were very common.

You will usually find a handsome young woman close by and in all likelihood a youngster passing an innocent observation that could be taken as an inappropriate comment regarding the young lady’s posture. The inevitable ‘Carry On’ remark.

These saucy postcards (my mother called them ‘smutty’), penned by such comedic artists as Donald McGill and Trew, among many others, were on sale in most seaside shops and inevitably sent home to mates sweltering in towns and factories far and wide.

Searching through a friend’s collection of seaside postcards, I found the ruder ones to have originated in Littlehampton, published in the 1970s by Constance, a printers once situated in Beach Road.

It appears that the majority were later printed in Amsterdam but still carried the Littlehampton address.

I posted some on the Flashback Littlehampton website and I am grateful for the information garnered there, excellent reference material from Len Barrett and also memories of Littlehampton folk whose parents sold the cards and remember boxes of them about the house. Hmmm, probably worth a bob or two on ebay now.

CHATTING with Mr Grumpy last week, I wondered if he knew the origin of the saying ‘to talk the hind legs off a donkey’.

He seems to have an answer for most things, but this one stumped him, as it seemingly does Google or anyone else I know, for that matter.

Google does offer several unlikely suggestions, even involving different animals, anything from dogs to elephants losing their rear wheel drive because of incessant chatter.

WENT to the farmers’ market in Arundel, which seemed to be shrinking a little, as indeed did the Arundel Festival.

Still, I came away with a super old Resistol Homburg hat bought in the local antiques market and some tasty organic carrots grown on Daylands Farm in Ashurst where, incidentally, the last farm walk of the year (followed be a cream tea to die for) is on September 27, at eight quid a head, with proceeds going to charity.

It is very good value. You will need to book though – ring 01403 711057.

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