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Peter Carr Gallery

 

 

 

Born 1946 in Leicester, UK, from school; doing best at Art and sport, well rugby and swimming, Peter left in 1964 to do what would now be called a gap year on VSO (Voluntary Service Overseas) in Bechuanaland Protectorate, now Botswana. Working for the Government there, initially as Registration Officer to be followed by various Election officer titles and finally as a Famine distribution official. The main early roles relate to impending independence and the run up to the Election in March 1965.

His Time in Botswana started in Kanye, but having been quickly given a gun or two, a truck and expenses book it was mainly camping out in the bush explaining and organising the “registration of voters” around all the villages. This was usually with Richard Sturdee, another VSO, who taught him the ropes.

After three months or so of Chief Khosi Bathoen II’s generous hospitality and occasional meetings with quality local candidate (Sir) Quett Mosire, Peter moved north to Maun, the wild-west town of BP. For an eighteen year old growing up in strange settings was sometimes surreal, though in the fond retrospect of nostalgia it had a huge impact on him. Maun time progressed into the actual election and seven hours of vote counting in Nokaneng with Phil Brown (a local veterinary Official). Living out of the famed Riley’s Hotel rather stretched the VSO’s daily allowance of one shilling and sixpence. Bar inhabitants included many famous and infamous characters from the African hunting scene.

Once the Election was over it was to Serowe for Peter and further rather varied Govt support work with fellow VSO Peter Lewis in and around the area. It was here that he occasionally met, as a near neighbour, (Sir) Seretse Khama, sometimes in Steinberg’s Store, realising only years later on reading the relevant histories what a na´ve young thing he had been at the time. For the final two months he left Serowe for Francistown to do Famine relief work for a couple of rather lonely months; doing a lot of reading in a sparsely furnished flat and no friends. Returning to UK and College via hitching through the last days of Rhodesia to fly from “Salisbury” in a DC7. Quite noisy compared to the Comet 4 he’d flown out in.

 

 

All photos taken circa 1965

 

Click on the thumbnails to enlarge the photo

Ian Murray, Botswana Police at polling station

Peter Carr at Nokaneng election count

Phil Brown, Presiding Election Officer, Nokaneng

Polling station

Ian Murray meets Vivien(?) at Wenela plane

Lionel Palmer organising recovery of various stuck Land Rovers at impromptu Sunday afternoon rally at Thamalakane Bridge hippo pools

Riley's Hotel manager's Land Rover in towing mode. Kenny Kays' Land Rover at back

Kenny Kays on left watching Lionel Palmer and ?

George Ross bowling in the "last" cricket match

Wenela DC3 brings Francistown cricket team

Wenela and Francistown cricket teams. Ian Murray, Bob Gilkes, Lionel Palmer etc

Samadupi Drift Crossing in elections Land Rover

Peter Carr in forward control Land Rover

Phil's Folly: Phil Brown's weekend cottage near Nokaneng

Riley's Hotel manager leaps into river at Thamalakane Bridge hippo pool - this is reportedly not a suicide attempt...    

 

 

 

 

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This web page was last updated on: 04 December, 2012