David Neil Jones' Memories

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Mr David Jones Transcription, recorded on the at Paul Sartori House, Haverfordwest

Present David Jones (DJ) Sue Young (SY) and Kiara Quimby (KQ


00:00:01 SY: so, Thank you, Mr. Jones, for coming in. It's, it's really useful to speak to people who've known Father Paul Sartori in the past. Can we start by me asking you your full name?

00:00:13 DJ: David Neil Jones,

00:00:16 SY: OK and do I have permission to record this interview?

00:00:19 DJ: Yes, yes, you carry on, yes.

00:00:22 SY: Where and when were you born?

00:00:24 DJ: Lambeth, London.

00:00:29 SY: Approximately when?

00:00:31 DJ: 1937, Fourth of March.

00:00:35 SY: There you are, thank you and how did you first meet Paul, Father Paul Sartori?

00:00:41 DJ: Or that I've to say, since I've been a little boy, I've always played with boats at one sort, another on Rhoose Ferry Beach.

00:00:51 DJ: And he just appeared there with the boat. And they, It used to go from there to Creswell Quay, as far as I know, with a couple of nuns sometimes and er other than that, I've just known him to talk to, like, but I couldn't say that we were friends or anything like that but he was just Father Sartori, and it was Father Sartori’s boat and that was about it, really.

00:01:21 SY: So, is that your earliest memory of him? On the boat?

00:01:25 DJ: yeah, oh yeah, never, never known him other than that, no. No, and that was quite a few years back. ‘cus I mean, I don't know a long time back, but he's been gone now 40 years hasn’t he?  only has to be before that, yeah. No, it's. Say I'd never sort of live in. That was the joke with him occasionally.

00:01:55 DJ: And I know somebody wants asking if he's going to walk on the water before he was going off with the boat, he said “try me when I come back,” There was an occasion somebody said that they'd, they'd asked him the same thing, really, and he'd walked into the waters of up his knees and said “I haven't quite got the hang of it”. But er, that’s about I know about him really.

00:02:24 DJ: Come on out on occasions which i suppose that was his sort of get away because going, going that far afield, I mean, he wouldn't be known. You know, if you'd been in the pub around Haverfordwest, everybody's known him, I suppose.

00:02:47 SY: Yeah. So, the next question is, what is your earliest memory of him? So, is, is it down with the boat?

00:02:53 DJ: Well, well, that's it. That's about it. Really. Yeah, I wouldn't. So, say I'm not of a Catholic faith. I wouldn't have known him rather than that, and we lived out in the wild herself. Once we'd left Haverfordwest.

00:03:10 SY: And how would you describe Father Sartori?

00:03:19 DJ: oh, I don’t know really, he was just a man, like the rest of us, I suppose, except that he was a priest. Of course we all knew that. But uh. You know quite, quite few people that had boats would have known him, but I think I was probably one of the youngest till there, not many of us left. Now they're all gone.

00:03:50 SY: And and what sort of boat did he have?

00:03:53 DJ: Ah, a Shetland what is known as a Shetland or a sheltie? They were known as, which was about, it was about 16 or 18 feet, not a big boat. Something which you could carry on a trailer.

And but they were very popular. Very popular. But they're still about today, like crowds of them with an outboard motor.

00:04:18 SY: I was going to say, was it outboard motor or rowing boat?

00:04:19 DJ: With an output with an outboard motor. Yeah, I think they were about 16 or 18 feet, yeah. And he, he would have kept it on the trailer and launched it when he was going. But of course you could only. You would only go when the tide was right anyway, cause Cresswell Quay you couldn't get to. No, he might have gone to Lawreny sometimes, which you could get to at any time. But you know, I say I shouldn't go off, but where he was going, could, could have gone anywhere.

00:04:55 SY: As far as you know, did he fish from the boat?

00:04:58 DJ: No, not that I'm aware of. No, no, I don't think so. No, I think he only went just for a drink really. Yeah.

00:05:10 SY: You've, you've talked about some of the stories, but have you got any other favourite stories you can think of when you saw him down at the river?

00:05:17 DJ: Well, not really. No, I don't. as i say, I didn't know him. Well by any means, as I say,  he's just somebody like others that came with the boat and we knew he was Father Sartori, yeah.

That that was about it, really, I. I've never had anything to do with the, the church as such, but he was Haverfordwest, wasn't he? the only contact I've had with Catholic Church was. As I worked for a company in Haverfordwest, we fitted out the Chapel in the convent in Milford, which was uh. What was that? Saint Theresa? Was it in Milford priory? Then we fitted out the whole Chapel there. Nothing to do with Sartori, of course but I know we put down an oak floor and we made all the pews and altered the altar, if that's what you call it was.

00:06:22 SY: I I'm gonna ask an extra question just cause I'm, I'm being nosey really. When he was in the boat, was he in casual clothes or did he wear his colour?

00:06:34 DJ: No, I think it was. No, I think he wore. It's just his usual clothes cause the nuns were in their habits. He brought them. So they were just.

00:06:41 SY: Right. So, they were recognisable as nuns and a priest, yeah?

00:06:48 DJ: I I ohh. I think so, yeah.

00:06:52 SY: Yes, there you are, OK. The, the next question probably you've answered, but did Father Sartori impact on your way on your life At all, really?

00:07:06 DJ: Well, not, not really, no. It's just he's somebody we knew at the time. I say we because we were always the group on the beach together, you know? And he just came and went. Yeah, yeah.

00:07:25 SY: And if you had to sum up Father Sartori in three words, What would they be?

00:07:31 DJ: In three words. What I say. Just, just, the person I knew, I suppose I. Only there one and another. Then other than being there.

00:07:53 SY: That's fine. Is there anything else you can think of that you want to?

00:07:58 DJ: Well, that's, that's about it, really. I mean.

00:07:58 SY: Tell us about.

00:08:03 DJ: To say I was quite young then at that time, not far off my age was he wouldn't have been today. I'm 86 now.

00:08:11 DJ: You'd have been a bit younger than me, I think, wouldn't he?

00:08:14 SY: Just depends. Yeah, yeah.

00:08:15 DJ: Yeah, not, not a lot. It's. He was unlucky. You have to go, yeah.

00:08:25 SY: That's that's really interesting to hear the perspective on what he did in his spare not spare time, but in his leisure time really. Or how he how he relaxed.

00:08:34 DJ:  Yeah, well, that's, that's why I. that's why I formed in the first place because I thought well. Not many people would have known. But he kept the boat out there. Put them in No. What? Where did he actually live?

00:08:53 SY: In Haverfordwest, next to the by the church. Yeah. So. Yeah, there you are. Well, thank you very much for that. It's been really helpful.