The Church Lads join the Cadets

The new Wargrave branch of the quasi-military Church Lads’ Brigade were settling into their existence.

On May 2nd and Whitsunday the Church Lads Brigade attended Morning Service at our Church. We are glad to publish the following report.

St Peter’s Church Lad’s Company
No. 3184

The Lads are making steady progress in their drill and other work. The Sunday Class and Church Parades have been well attended. They have now received their full equipment and look quite smart.
On Monday evening, April 5th, the Company were invited to join the Cadets, in camp at Bartletts, by Capt. Marrow (Commanding Officer).

On reaching the ground the Company were inspected by Capt. Marrow, who complimented them on their smart appearance, and in course of a short address appealed to them to aim at becoming efficient by prompt attention to all the duties they were called upon to perform.

After being dismissed the Lads joined the Cadets and a pleasant evening was spent in games, songs, etc. At the close Capt. Marrow thanked all present for their share in welcoming the Cadets at Littlewick. He said they had been shewn every kindness by everyone and they had done their utmost to make their stay pleasant. Especially he wished to thank Mr. Bates for their ideal camping ground.

We have to thank several Littlewick friends for the sum of £3 6s. 0d. towards our funds; and there are other promised gifts yet to be received.

It is hoped to give a full list of Subscribers and a statement of accounts, as soon as the Pass Book is received form Headquarters.
We have to record that Corporal A. Arnold has joined Kitchener’s Army.

Signed
T. Butterworth, Capt.
F. C. Barham, Incumbent.

The Vicar has been asked and has consented to act as Parish Representative of the “Inns of Court Officers Training Corps.” He has papers on the subject to show to any who would like to see them. There is an urgent need for well-trained Officers.

Wargrave parish magazine, June 1915 (D/P145/28A/31)

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Making dressings for wounded soldiers

20 women in Wargrave set up a working party to manufacture dressings to treat wounded soldiers.

On April 27th, in connection with the Wargrave Emergency Surgical Dressings Society, a Branch was opened at the Working Men’s Club by Miss Sinclair; in the unavoidable absence of Miss Choate.

Mrs. Bulkeley has kindly consented to be President. The Working Committee consists of Mrs. W. Dulley, Mrs. Hawkins, Miss Lovett, Miss Oliver, Mrs. T. Whitbread, and Mrs. Wrigley.

At present there are about 20 members. Three boxes of dressings and linen for the wounded have been sent to Headquarters, at Wargrave, to be sterilised and sent to the Front.

Thanks are due to the Club Committee for the use of the room, to Mr. and Mrs. Wrigley for a Social, which realized £1 7s. in aid of the fund for materials; to Mrs. Bulkeley for materials for Respirators and a subscription, and to Mrs. Baker, Mrs. Barham, Mrs. Brunsden, Mrs. Dell, Mrs. Hawkins, Mrs. Marshall and Miss Maskell for linen; to Miss Sinclair for a subscription.

New Members will be gladly welcomed. The Meetings are on Thursdays, between 3 and 6.30 p.m.

Old Linen, Collars, etc. will be greatly appreciated.

M. Firbank, Hon. Secretary.
May 22nd, 1915.

Wargrave parish magazine, June 1915 (D/P145/28A/31)

Bugles and drums needed for Wargrave Church Lads

The semi-military boys’ club at Wargrave was doing well, as the following report attests.

St Peters Church Lads’ Company

Since the last report the members of the Company, have made steady progress.

They are somewhat disappointed at the non-arrival of the Belts, but still they look quite smart in their Caps, Haversacks and Putties. The first Church Parade was on Easter Sunday, when the lads turned up well and the Vicar welcomed them.

On Easter Monday [5 April] a Route March was arranged. Leaving Headquarters they marched through Wargrave to Henley. Here the contents of their haversacks were eagerly attacked.

Tracks were then made for Shiplake in a round about way and thence across the ferry to Wargrave. Once more the march was continued and Headquarters were reached about 5 after an enjoyable day’s outing, the lads seeming none the worse for their long trudge.

The Bible Class on Sunday mornings is well attended.

On Sunday, April 18th, the Company paraded and went to Littlewick Church. After the Service the Vicar spoke to the boys. We are glad to say that the Rev. T. Wrenford has consented to act as Chaplain to the Company and has contributed a sovereign towards the funds.

We are still in need of Bugles and Drums but considering the times we have done very well and hope that some kind donor will yet come forward to our assistance when the present state of affairs improve.

Signed
T. Butterworth, Captain
F. C. Barham, Incumbent

It is with pleasure that we can say that there are over 50 serving with the Colours who have attended the Knowl Hill Schools. We are very proud to say that many more from the village are also serving.

Wargrave parish magazine, May 1915 (D/P145/28A/31)

Bibles and rifles for boys in Wargrave

Teenage boys in Knowl Hill and Wargrave were inspired by the war to join the Church Lads’ Brigade, a youth organisation which drew inspiration from both military and religious ethoses. They attended Bibles study classes, but also practised drill – with real guns. The Wargrave parish magazine reports:

St Peter’s Church Lads’ Brigade

Now that the Company of the Church Lads’ Brigade formed in connection with our Church has been duly enrolled and recognized as Company 3184, 4th Battalion, Oxford Regiment, something definite can be said about the work.

The Company, now some 30 strong, has been some time in getting together, as recruiting was slow at the beginning and, generally, the Headquarters only allow 24 as the minimum for a new Company except in small Parishes.

Some recruits have been accepted from other parishes where there is no Company and now matters seem in a very healthy condition.

The object is to give the boys from 13 to 19, a military training and encourage attendance at Church and Bible Class. A Bible Class is now held on Sunday mornings except when there is a Church Parade.

The boys have to be provided with equipment which is the property of the boy only so long as he is a member of the Company.

Each signs an agreement to give up the same when requested to do so. After six months they must be provided with carbines which cost only the nominal sum of 2/- each. (The carbines are only used for drill and parade purposes and are kept at Headquarters). These two are necessary for the carrying on of the Company.

Other requirements which can only be obtained as fund allow, are Bugles, Side-drums, two ordinary Rifles and a range for teaching the boys to fire correctly.

Anyone who feels disposed to give either Bugles, Drums, etc. will be helping on a worthy cause.

The Captain will be only too pleased to see any kind of donor and give any further particulars with regard to work.

To the many who have made it possible to provide equipment the Company offer their sincerest thanks, especially when so many have urgent calls upon them in other ways.

It is expected that the equipment which is on order will be here for Easter.

So far £9. 0s. 6d. has been received in subscriptions. The boys (who pay 1/6 Entrance Fee and 1d. per week) have contributed £2. 7s. 6d.

The equipment has cost £7. 10s. 8d.

All accounts, Stock Books, etc., are inspected by an officer appointed by Headquarters and are open for inspection to Financial Committee consisting of six members of Company and six others.

In closing this report the officers hope that every one will do a little towards making the Company a success.

Signed
T. Butterworth, Capt.
F. C. Barham, Incumbent Chaplain.’

Knowl Hill
The Vestry Meeting on April 6th was attended by 12 of the Parishioners… The Vicar … referred to the terrible war and the noble way in which very many of the young men in the Parish had responded to the call of duty. The Church Lads Brigade who attended Church for the first time on Easter Day, promise well for the future.

Wargrave parish magazine, April and May 1915 (D/P145/28A/31)