It’s a long long way to Tipperary … from Newbury

Girls attending a youth club at St Nicolas’ Church in Newbury put on a concert to entertain Belgian refugees. It isn’t clear if the ‘Tipperary’ mentioned is the famous ‘It’s A Long Long Way To Tipperary’, which was very popular during the war, or another popular song of the period also called ‘Tipperary’.

Social Evening for the Belgians
On December 16th, the members of the Girls’ Club invited some of our Belgian guests to an Entertainment in the Parish Room. Thanks to Mr.Stillman, a splendid stage was provided with first-rate lights. The first part of the programme was undertaken by the Ladies of the Thatcham Fruit and Flower Farm, whose charming rendering of “Dresden China,” with its stately dance was loudly encored. They also gave some French and English songs, and Miss I. Flint contributed a Violoncello solo. Mr. Witts’ “Tipperary” raised rounds of applause, the chorus apparently equally well known to both English and Belgians. The Evening closed with the singing of the English and Belgian National Anthems.

Newbury parish magazine, January 1915 (D/P89/28A/13)

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A Bible for a church’s ‘old boys’ at the Front

St John’s Church in Reading was anxious to provide spiritual sustenance for the young men it had sent off to war:

The War

We publish a further list of boys or ‘old boys’ connected with our congregations who are now in training or actually engaged in active service on behalf of the Empire. We are always glad to hear news of our boys and they are constantly remembered by us in prayer. George Townsend, Cyril Keatly, Alfred Richard Allum, Horace Arthur Church, Albert Stevens, William Ernest Charles Egan, Arthur John Robert Egan, Albert Fanstone, Ralph Shepherd, Sidney J Luker, Viney Flint, Percy Froude, William Grantham, Arthur Walters, J J Cooper, A Beckett, Walter Crane, Basil Sutton, Edmund Terry, John Edwin Hopcraft, Durward Sydney Hopcraft, James Lyons, William Lyons, – Allaway, A Blake, T J Blake, O L Stagg, W Phipps, A Phipps, Lionel Dymore-Brown, Hugh Dymore-Brown, Arthur Robotham, Arthur Richard Penson, E W Hunt, Victor Fowler, J H Cane.

The Clergy will be very glad to write to any of our lads and to enclose an attractive little copy of S. John’s gospel, which contains also hymns with their tunes and pictures, and Lord Roberts’ letter to the troops, if they are asked to do so. Will parents and friends please communicate with whichever of the clergy knew the young man, giving the full address on paper. In cases where the young man is unknown to the present staff the Vicar will be glad to write.”

Reading St John parish magazine, November 1914 (D/P172/28A/23, p. 4)