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Edith Catherine Peed 


(1881 England - 1965 NZ) Norman’s mother

Norman’s mother, Edith Catherine Peed (1881-1965), was born in London and moved to New Zealand at age 11 with her parents Edward Lightwood Peed and Susannah Steerwood, aboard the ship Tongariro. She passed her teacher’s exam at age 21, with a special mention for domestic economy. She lived to age 84. 

Her brother William Arthur Peed died age 28 in WWI and is buried at Damascus Commonwealth War Cemetery, Syria.4 Her sister Imogen died age 13 by accidental drowning. 

4 7th Australian Light Horse. Died of wounds 29th March, 1918


Edward Lightwood Peed 

(1861 England -1938 NZ) Norman’s maternal grandfather.

Edward Lightwood Peed was a nurseryman and florist from Lambeth, Surrey in England. His father John Peed (1832-1901) was also a nurseryman / horticulturalist in Lambeth; while his grandfather Jonathon Peed (1791-1854) was a shepherd on Haling Park Farm. 



1861 Census lists John Peed, Nurseryman & Seedman of Croydon (head), wife Elizabeth, and sons William G (age 5), Thomas (age 3) and Edward L (9 mo).   

Notice of death for Jonathon Peed, shepherd and wife Sophia.


Susannah Steerwood

(1855 England – 1930 NZ) Norman’s maternal grandmother.

Edith’s mother was Susannah Steerwood also born in London. Susannah’s family was from Bethnal Green (inner East London) where her father John Matthew Steerwood (1822-1903) was a dyer. Both of Susannah’s parents, John Matthew Steerwood and Charlotte ‘Susan’ Nash, lived to around age 81. 




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Southern France

Touring in the South of France

September 2014



Off the plane we are welcomed by a warm Autumn day in the south of France.  Fragrant and green.

Lyon is the first step on our short stay in Southern France, touring in leisurely hops by car, down the Rhône valley from Lyon to Avignon and then to Aix and Nice with various stops along the way.

Months earlier I’d booked a car from Lyon Airport to be dropped off at Nice Airport.  I’d tried booking town centre to town centre but there was nothing available.

This meant I got to drive an unfamiliar car, with no gearstick or ignition switch and various other novel idiosyncrasies, ‘straight off the plane’.  But I managed to work it out and we got to see the countryside between the airport and the city and quite a bit of the outer suburbs at our own pace.  Fortunately we had ‘Madam Butterfly’ with us (more of her later) else we could never have reached our hotel through the maze of one way streets.

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Fiction, Recollections & News

The Greatest Aviation Mystery of All Time



The search for Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 was finally called off in the first week of June 2018.

The flight's disappearance on the morning of 8 March 2014 has been described as the greatest aviation mystery of all time, surpassing the disappearance of Amelia Earhart in 1937.  Whether or no it now holds that record, the fruitless four year search for the missing plane is certainly the most costly in aviation history and MH370 has already spawned more conspiracy theories than the assassination of JFK; the disappearance of Australian PM Harold Holt; and the death of the former Princess Diana of Wales; combined.

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Opinions and Philosophy

When did people arrive in Australia?






We recently returned from a brief holiday in Darwin (follow this link).  Interesting questions raised at the Darwin Museum and by the Warradjan Cultural Centre at Kakadu are where the Aboriginal people came from; how they got to Australia; and when. 

Recent anthropology and archaeology seem to present contradictions and it seems to me that all these questions are controversial.

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