I must have previously missed this thread. You are correct that Ken Williams Sensei was the first student of Aikido in the UK with Kenshiro Abbe Sensei. The British Aikido community owe a great deal to the efforts of Williams Sensei in those early days.
Tohei Sensei never visited the Hut Dojo.
I have no axe to grind with Mr Muspratt, I have never seen any claims by him that I would dispute.
I would though dispute Grahams claim that Mr Muspratt was training at the Hut Dojo in " the beginning "..( 1955 ).I personally have no memory of Mr Muspratt training at the Hut Dojo, I don't doubt that he may well have visited in the 60s.. I do remember Foster Sensei visiting the small dojo in Watford of Mr Muspratt..
Kenshiro Abbe Sensei invited several teachers from France to visit the UK, Tadashi Abe 1958? ~ Mikoto Nakazono 1960 ? M Noro 1963.
I looked at the said photo, I did not recognise anyone other than Tohei Sensei. The dojo looks rather nice and modern, where as the Hut Dojo looked more like ``Stalag 17 ``
I am sorry to say Graham, having watched your video, I can assure that Mr Muspratt would not have learned any of that from the Hut Dojo and the instructors there.
Hi Henry. I have since found that the photograph with Tohei Sensei was a summer camp, and as he always told us the history of Aikido in England, mentioning the hut I assumed he had trained there, maybe right, maybe wrong, but nonetheless he was around involved in the scene during the time of Abe Sensei and was indeed trained by Noro Sensei.
I personally have his original printed out curriculum from the seventies of his own Aikido group which is based on shin shin toitsu. On the top left of the document it says through 'AIKI-KAI of watford. Across the top of the page it reads Aikido harmony-spirit-way.
He later named his Aikido Zen Shin Kan Aikido of which I also have copies of the curriculum complete with criteria for examination from 5th kyu to sandan.
He also had criteria for advancement.
The criteria for examination was divided into four columns:
RANK. REQUIRED HOURS. REQUIRED BASIC TECHNIQUES. OPTIONAL TECHNIQUES CALLED FOR BY INSTRUCTOR.
The criteria for advancement had five columns:
RANK. AGE. REQUIRED HOURS. UNIFICATION OF MIND AND BODY. KI DEVELOPEMENT EXERCISES.
This should give you a basic understanding of what he was about and which direction he took and where his main influences come from.