A Lecture at the Picture Palace on the Navy

em>You may remember that Mrs Thornton had been absent since the 12th, due to the return home of her soldier husband. This was causing difficulties for her colleagues.

Sunninghill
18th February 1919

Mrs Thornton is still absent, & as a consequence 4 teachers are managing 5 rooms, & each teacher has charge of 2 classes – an instance of overwork of which we have had much undesirable experience of this school.

Speenhamland
Feb 18th

About 120 children of the Upper Standard attend a Lecture at the Picture Palace on the Navy; they will be required to write an Essay on what they see and hear and prizes will be given for the best.

Receipt for £1.1.0 received from the Organiser of the King’s Fund for the Disabled.

Ascot
February 18th 1919

Through lack of coal great difficulty is being experienced in keeping the rooms warm enough for the boys to work in any degree of comfort.


Log books of St Michael’s CE Mixed School, Sunninghill (88/SCH/32/3); St Mary’s CE School, Speenhamland (C/EL119/3); Ascot Heath Boys’ School (C/EL110/4

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Many months of anxiety and trouble for the alleviation of the sufferings of others

The hard work of women from Newbury and Speen during the war is reviewed.

RED CROSS WORKING PARTY

The Parish Red Cross Working Party, under the superintendence of Mrs L Majendie, was started by her at the Rectory, Newbury, on May 1st, 1915.

The first meeting was hastily summoned for the purpose of making respirators, but as it was found these were not required, being provided by the War Office, work for hospitals and other objects was substituted.

Mrs Majendie carried on the meetings at more or less regular intervals from a fortnight to three weeks, with suspension of these generally during Lent.

She was assisted, first by Miss Boldero (who also held a number of supplementary meetings for mending for Newbury District Hospital), and later by Mrs and Miss Majendie, Speen.

The number of names on the books was between 50 and 60, and of these over 30 attended regularly from the first meeting, May 1st, 1915, to the last, February 18th, 1919. Thanks are due to all the members, but more especially to these last, also to the various hostesses who provided tea, and lent their houses for meetings (many more would have been glad to do this, if lack of space had not forbidden it).

The hostesses were Mrs L Majendie, Miss Boldero, Mrs A Majendie and Miss D Majendie, Miss Godding, Mrs Gould, Mrs Hawker, Mrs Porter, Mrs Camp, Mrs O’Farrell, Mrs Colbourne, amd Miss Bellinger. Some entertained at their own houses, some at the Conservative Club, and a large number of meetings were held at the Parish Room.

Some members have left Newbury, including several Belgian ladies, who worked regularly for a time.

The objects worked for were very numerous, 24 in all, and included the following:

1. Reading War Hospital, twice.
2. Newbury District Hospital, 9 times.
3. Newbury War Depot, 6 times.
4. Miss Power’s Hospital, once.
5. General Hospital No. 18, France (to Miss Hayne), once.
6. The Minesweeper Newbury, 7 times.
7. HMS Conquest (to Lieut. Burgess), once.
8. Submarine F3 (to Lieut. Burgess, once).
9. The Navy League, 3 times.
10. Dr Heywood’s Hospital, Malta, once.
11. Malta and Near East Special Red Cross Appeal, once.
12. Dr Heywood’s Hospital, Rouen, twice.
13. Dr Heywood’s Hospital, Stationary, No. 3, France, 12 times. Extra parcels were often sent to Dr Heywood’s Hospital at other times.
14. Ripon Camp Hospital (Dr Mackay), twice.
15. French Red Cross, twice.
16. French War Emergency Fund, 11 times.
17. National Committee for Relief in Belgium and Northern France, twice.
18. Belgian Red Cross, once.
19. Italian White Cross, twice.
20. Russian Prisoners of War, once.
21. Serbian Relief Fund, 7 times.
22. Syria and Palestine Relief Fund, 5 times.
23. Air Raid victims in London, once.
24. Soldiers’ Children Aid Committee, twice.

Making 73 meetings in all.

The many grateful letters received are too numerous to quote, but each one showed clearly how much the recipients appreciated the parcels of well made clothing despatched from Newbury. Not only were new clothes sent, but many gifts of garments slightly worn, but in good condition were also sent to various Societies. These were received with special thankfulness for the many refugees in France, Belgium, and Serbia, and as the work of repatriation in some of these terribly devastated regions will have to be carried on for months to come, parcels might still be forwarded from time to time if members cared to collect for them.

Thanks are specially due to those members who were kind enough to continually lend their sewing machines for ten meetings, and to several who undertook from time to time cutting-out at home.
The sum of £92 7s 8d was collected in donations and subscriptions, and was expended in flannel, flannelette, linen, twill, sheeting, muslin, gauze, lint, and cotton wool, which were all worked up into about 2,653 different articles, comprising, roughly speaking, the following:

735 treasure bags, 386 bandages, 376 miscellaneous things (such as washers, dusters, hot water bottle covers, table napkins, etc), 253 children’s garments, 210 men’s shirts, 177 knitted articles (socks, helmets, mufflers, operation stockings, etc), 128 collars and ties for hospital wear, 108 men’s vests and other underclothing, 106 women’s underclothing and blouses, 86 towels, 68 pillow cases and sheets, 20 pair steering gloves (leather palms): total 2,653.

The pleasant fellowship in which the members worked so untiringly through many months of anxiety and trouble for the alleviation of the sufferings of others, may well have strengthened not only parochial and personal ties, but also many wider ones with those they were privileged to help.

Newbury parish magazine, April 1919 (D/P89/28A/14)

“The news of his death was only received after the signing of the Armistice”

There was a particular poignancy when news of a death came after the war had ended.

Roll of Honour.

Frederick Pither.

The news of his death was only received after the signing of the Armistice and the blow, therefore, come with added force to his wife and children.

We would desire to convey to her the very real and special sympathy of all.

Military Cross.

Lieut. R. Palmer – to whom heartiest congratuilations.

Blinded Soldiers’ Fund.

The total sum received is £32; made up as follows:-

Carol Singing £22 10s., Christmas Dinner Table envelopes £9 10s. This latter sum is for the children of Blinded Soldiers.

Wokingham St Sebastian parish magazine, February 1919 (D/P154C/28A/1)

Rules in abeyance owing to the War should now be observed

Wartime conditions had ed to some cutting of corners.

14th February 1919

The Board of Governors of the Maidenhead Cottage Hospital feeling that the rule with regard to the opinion of the consulting Surgeon being sought in serious surgical cases, has been somewhat in abeyance owing to the War, now wish to call the attention of the Medical Staff to its observance.

Maidenhead.
14th February 1919.

Maidenhead Cottage Hospital governors’ minutes (D/H1/1/2, p. 370)

The immediate need for comforts for the soldiers is over

A sewing group decided to move on from wartime work to raising money for the church.

CARE AND COMFORTS WORKING PARTY

On February 12th the vicar visited the Working Party to review the work that has been done since its inception in 1915, and to decide as to its future.

It was started by the Rev. T. Guy Rogers in April, 1915, as a Parochial Working Party, primarily to bring together members of St John’s and St Stephen’s congregations for friendly intercourse. This was to be fostered by a common interest, viz work for our local hospitals. The meeting was held on Wednesdays at the Institute until the Flying Corps took possession, when it adjourned to the Princes Street Mission Room. Miss Homan and Mrs Morley were in charge, and when Miss Homan left Miss Britton took her place.

£47 15s 9d has been collected in the parish for materials, and 3,572 things have been made.

The immediate need for comforts for the soldiers being over, the question arose as to whether it should come to an end, or, if not, under what conditions it should be carried on.

It was suggested that it should revert to its original name – Parochial Working Party – and that its raison d’etre should be to work on a business basis for the CMS, buying materials and making things for anyone who would give orders – all profits to go to the CMS. But the Working Party should also do any needlework when needed for either of the churches, e.g. mending communion linen, surplices and cassocks.

It should meet on Wednesdays from 2.30 to 4.30, and any member of either church should be welcomed, provided only that she could sew. These suggestions were agreed to.

Reading St. John parish magazine, May 1919 (D/P172/28A/24)

A home for these men, who had come so far from their kith and kin to fight

Our wounded allies were nursed in Sulhamstead. The house is now the Thames Valley police training centre.

The Convalescent Auxiliary Hospital which was organised and carried on by Lady Watson at Sulhamstead House has now been closed, after rendering splendid service. The hospital was opened in May, 1915, for the reception of 15 convalescent soldiers from Reading Military Hospital, and this number was increased to 22 in July, 1916. Lady Watson’s main object was to receive overseas troops, and as far as military rules allowed, to make a home for these men, who had come so far from their kith and kin to fight. The number of convalescents passed through the hospital was close on 400. The work has been a great pleasure to Lady Watson…

For the last two years Sister Helen Parker has devoted herself unselfishly to the most important duty of caring for the health and happiness of the men in hr charge. A word of thanks is also due to the indoor and outdoor staffs, who were keen to help with the work of the hospital and arrange the men’s amusements, not forgetting Mr Ralph the engineer, who willingly gave up two evenings weekly all through the winter, while the hospital was open, to give the men cinema entertainments.

(From “The Reading Mercury”.)

Sulhamstead parish magazine, February 1919 (D/EX725/4)

It has been decided to not “repatriate” the British born wives and children of enemy aliens against their will

Windsor had provided a home for the inmates of a Surrey workhouse during the war.

11th February 1919

Mrs Bartholomew

Letter from Local Government Board read, stating, in reply to an enquiry by the Clerk, that in cases where the husband of a woman in receipt of an allowance as a British-born wife of an interned alien has been repatriated, the allowance may be continued to the wife and children, also that it has been decided to not “repatriate” the British born wives and children against their will, but they will be permitted to follow their husbands if they so desire.

Richmond Military Hospital

Letter from the Richmond Union (Surrey) read stating that the Military Authorities have asked permission to remain in occupation of that Union’s Institution until 31st March 1920, and asking whether the Board will agree to such of their inmates as are Boarders at this Union’s Institution remaining as such until that date.

Resolved that the Richmond Inmates be allowed to remain at this Institution until 31/3/1920, provided the circumstances remain the same.

Minutes of Windsor Board of Guardians (G/WI1/26)

The value of the new buildings, fittings and military adaptations

7th February 1919

War Hospital Displacement Purposes: Poor Law Institutions

The Clerk reported the receipt of a letter from the Divisional Officer, Royal Engineers, Reading, stating that he had been instructed to enquire as to the local feeling regarding the handing back of the Institution to the Guardians, and also whether the Guardians would be prepared to take over at a valuation any of the new buildings, fittings or adaptations to military requirements, which had been constructed.

Also reporting the receipt of a letter from the Reading Education Committee, stating that the Committee wished Grovelands School to be handed to them at the earliest opportunity.

Recommending that steps be taken for the return of the Institution to the Guardians, that the Clerk obtain a schedule showing the value of the new buildings, fittings and military adaptations, and that Mr W R Howell be engaged to prepare a list of the dilapidations to the original premises, such schedules to be submitted to a further meeting of the Committee.

Report of Emergency Committee, Reading Board of Guardians (G/R1/58)

A doctor returns from France

A doctor returned home after serving at the front.

6 February 1919
Sister Bertha Margaret went away from Clewer being no longer needed as doctor, Dr Attlee having returned from France.

Annals of the Community of St John Baptist, Clewer (D/EX1675/1/14/5)

“An incalculable amount of pain, many limbs, and indeed many lives must have been saved by the timely arrival of the bales”

Wargrave had been at the heart of work providing surgical supplies during the war.

Wargrave Surgical Dressing Society

This Society, which has just brought its work to a close owed its existence to the energies of Miss Choate.

At Millward’s, generously lent by the late Mr. Henry Nicholl and recently by Major C.R.I. Nicholl, was started by her in March 1915, a work which grew to such an extent that during the four years some 500,000 dressings and comforts were dispatched to the wounded from Wargrave. These were not, of course, all made in the village. Under Miss Choate’s organisation, branches were started at Dartmouth, Ledbury, Loughton, Pangbourne, Peppard, Shiplake and Wimbledon, while welcome and regular parcels were received from Twyford, Kidmore and Hoylake. But all were packed for shipment and consigned from Wargrave.

The parcels went to Hospitals and Casualty Clearing Stations at almost every fighting area – to Mesopotamia, to Gallipoli, to Egypt, to Serbia and to American and Colonial Hospitals in England and in France.

It is impossible to ever estimate the value of the work. An incalculable amount of pain, many limbs, and indeed many lives must have been saved by the timely arrival of the bales. As a lame man said to the writer “Only we who are still suffering the effects of the shortage of medical comforts at the beginning of the war can appreciate fully the work these people have done.”

In the early days, consignments were sent in response to urgent appeals from Commandants and Matrons of Hospitals, but since 1916 the Society, in common with other of the larger Societies in England, has worked under the direction of the Department of the Director General of Voluntary Organisations at the War Office.

A.B.

A meeting of the Society and the subscribers was held on Wednesday, Feb. 5th, at Millwards to decide upon the disposal of the Balance in hand. Every provision had been made for carrying on the work through the winter if the war had continued, and the funds amounted to over £200.

In the absence of Capt. Bird, the Vicar was asked to take the chair. After a full discussion it was unanimously resolved that £200 be given to the Ward Fund and Recreation Fund of the Manor Hospital, Hampstead.

It was a great happiness to all concerned to feel that the money should benefit a work with which Miss Sinclair was so closely associated.

It was resolved that the remaining balance be given to the Royal Berkshire Hospital, Reading, for a Care and Comforts Fund for the Soldier Patients.

The accounts have not yet been audited but it is expected that the amount to be given to Reading Hospital will be about £20.

These resolutions, together with the audited accounts, must be submitted to the Charity Commissioners for approval, but there is every reason to think that they will be endorsed by them.

The men in the Manor House Orthopedic Hospital, Hampstead, for discharged Soldiers and Sailors, wish to send their grateful thanks to the Members of the Surgical Dressing Emergency Society, Wargrave, for their splendid gift (£200) to be used for their Care and Comfort. As many Wargrave ladies have consented to be god-mothers in the wards, it is the wish of the men that some of them should be on the new Committee, called the Care and Comforts Committee, who from time to time will decide how the money shall be spent. The appreciation of the men is very touching in its sincerity and sense of sympathy.

Wargrave parish magazine, March 1919 (D/P145/28A/31)

“He speaks well on the whole of his treatment in the prisoners’ camp”

Cigarettes were this year’s Christmas gift for Maidenhead soldiers.

OUR SOLDIERS.

A letter of Christmas greeting was again sent to each of our soldiers, and a packet of cigarettes to those who were overseas. We hope that in a very short time the majority of them will be back amongst us. Robert Bolton and Alfred Isaac have already been discharged. Reginald Hill was at home for Christmas leave, looking quite recovered after his long hospital experiences. Wallace Mattingley and George Ayres are in Germany.

We are glad to hear that 2nd Lieut Edgar Jones, son of Rev. G H. Jones, of Marlow, who, after a few days in France was taken prisoner about 17 months ago, returned home in time for Christmas. He speaks well on the whole of his treatment in the prisoners’ camp.

Maidenhead Congregational magazine, January 1919 (D/N33/12/1/5)

Treatment for gas poisoning contracted in the trenches

One of the many institutions run by the Community of St John Baptist was a Convalescent Home in Folkestone, Kent – the ideal place for one of the clergymen who assisted the Sisters to go to rcover from his war experiences.

27 January 1919
The Sub-Warden went to St Andrew’s Home in order to have treatment for gas poisoning contracted in the trenches.

Annals of the Community of St John Baptist, Clewer (D/EX1675/1/14/5)

In a prisoners’ hospital in Germany

Some PoWs were in a bad state.

We are glad to welcome home John Tidy, Richard Taylor and Percy Huxford, who have been prisoners of war, and to hear that Arthur Francis and Ben Ferns have arrived in England, though they are at present in hospital. Mrs. Ednie has heard that her son Victor is in a prisoners’ hospital in Germany, but he is expected to be moved home soon.

Winkfield District Magazine, January 1919 (D/P 151/28A/11)

Our prisoners of war are slowly returning

PoWs were starting to come home.

Notes from the Vicar

I wish you all every happiness and blessing for 1919. May we be found worthy of the peace that it will bring, and worthy of the great sacrifices made for us by our brave men.

Our prisoners of war are slowly returning. Before very long now we may hope to welcome back the Rev. H.A. Smith-Masters, C.F., and the others from the parish.


Intercessions List

Sick and wounded: Lieut. Thomas Rudd; Private William Lay.

Departed: Private Robert Aldridge, R.A.M.C. ; Lieut. Henry Eyres, R.A.F.; Maria Goodship; Elizabeth Gillmor.

Reading St Giles parish magazines, January 1919 (D/P96/28A/36)

A collection for the King’s Fund for the Disabled

Jan. 21

We made a collection for the King’s Fund for the Disabled and I am sending £1.1.0 as the result.

St Mary’s CE School, Speenhamland (C/EL119/3)