Essays in connection with the Navy League

Apr 10th
Letter from Mr Godding to say the Mayor would present the prizes to the winners of the best essays in connection with the Navy League next Wednesday aft. Ap. 16th.

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

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Westminster Chimes in the Tower or a Calvary or Crucifix in the Churchyard?

Newbury began to consider its war memorial.

A Meeting of Parishioners was held at the Parish Room on January 22nd to consider the question of a War Memorial to the memory of those fallen in the War. There was a fair attendance, though more might have been there. Various suggestions were brought forward and considerable discussion took place. Finally, it was decided to consider the putting of a Memorial of some kind in the Church to contain the names of the men; the putting of the Westminster Chimes in the Tower; and the erection of a Calvary or Crucifix in the Churchyard. For this a Committee was appointed, consisting of the following: the Rector and Churchwardens, The Mayor, Mr C Hawker, Mr G W Roberts, Mr D Geater, The Mayoress, Mrs L R Majendie, Mrs H E Pratt, Miss Godding, Miss Plows, Miss K Harrison, Miss L H Barnes, amd Miss P Belcher, with power to add to their number.

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

The necessity of an equal distribution of all foodstuffs

Newbury was preparing to implement food rationing.

Meetings of the [Food Control] Committee and Sub-Committee were held on the 22nd December 1917, the 7th, 16th, 23rd, 25th, 28th and 31st of January last, and the 11th, 15th and 19th of February inst.

A meeting of Representatives of the Food Control Committee for the Borough of Newbury and the adjoining Rural Districts was held on the 21st of December, 1917, at which meeting a resolution was passed that it was desirable that a general rationing scheme for the Areas should be prepared, which was accordingly done, and approved by the Food Control Committee. At a further meeting of the Representative bodies on the 31st January last, it was resolved that steps be taken to obtain immediate official sanction of the scheme, which it was proposed should be brought into operation on the 25th March next.

Subsequently, the Divisional Commissioner having declined to approve the scheme on the ground that it was now proposed to bring in a general scheme for the whole of the South West Division, based on the London and Home Counties Food Scheme, to come into operation on the 25th March next, the Committee decided not to press forward the local scheme, but to make the necessary arrangements for bringing into operation the Divisional Scheme on the above mentioned date, and appointed a sub-committee consisting of the Mayor, Alderman Lucas, Councillor Geater, Mr Godding, and Mr Draper, with power to add to their number, to consider and take such steps as might be necessary with regard to the matter. The Committee at their meetings had also under their consideration the following matters:

1. The distribution of margarine based on the sugar card system, and the arrangement made by the sub-committee in charge of the distribution have now been effectual in preventing the assembly of any queues.

2. A fair and equal distribution of the meat supply, which presented very considerable difficulties, having regard to the quantity which the retail butchers were permitted to sell per week, and to the large numbers of people from areas outside the Borough, but who now come into Newbury for their meat supply. The difficulty has been more or less overcome by the retail butchers being permitted to supply only 3/4 lbs of meat per person per week, and on production of sugar cards, which were to be marked; it is apparent, however, that a satisfactory distribution can only be obtained by means of the introduction of rationing cards.

A Deputation of the National Union of Railwaymen, on behalf of their Society and the general working men, attended the meeting of the Committee on the 11th February last and urged upon them the necessity of an equal distribution of all foodstuffs, including cheese, and other kindred matters, which were fully discussed with the deputation, who were informed as to the exact position of the meat and margarine supplies, and assured that everything was being done by the Committee to bring about the desired end, and they expressed themselves satisfied with their interview.

The Enforcement Officer of the Committee reported from time to time upon the work undertaken by him, and prosecutions were ordered for breaches of the Orders issued by the Ministry of Food.

The Sub-committee appointed to take charge of the arrangements in connection with the rationing scheme, decided as follows:

Application forms to be delivered to every householder in the Borough, by a sufficient staff of volunteer helpers, who will at the same time bring away the application forms completed, and where necessary, assist the applicant to fill up the forms.

This to be done by the 5th March.

Each Volunteer will then apply to the Local Food Office for ration cards, for the applicants in his district, and after filling up the same, will deliver same to the Food Office for stamping.

After the ration cards are stamped, the same will be distributed to the applicants, on production of their sugar cards, at the Corn Exchange, at a date to be publicly announced: –

And have issued a public notice to the above effect; they propose to follow the same course as was adopted in 1915 for the distribution of the National Registration papers, and have approached the Education Committee for the enlistment of the services of the teaching staffs in the schools, with whose co-operation they have no doubt of being able to carry through the necessary arrangements to a successful conclusion.

Report of Food Control Committee to Newbury Borough Council meeting, 26 February 1918 (N/AC1/2/9)

“Every additional sand-bag may mean the preservation of a soldier’s life”

As Newbury men fell at the Front, the town’s women were trying to save lives by making sandbags.

The War has been lately still further brought home to us by the casualties which have occurred among our old lads. We should like to express our sincerest sympathy with the parents of those who have been killed or wounded, or reported missing, among the latter being Sydney Isaac Hughes, Joseph Alfred Hopson, and Harry Brice Biddis; and especially with Mr Gregory and his family on the death of his only son, William George, one of our old choir-boys, who was killed at that terrible scene of war, the Dardanelles. Willie Gregory was one of our best choir-boys, and was a young man of much promise, and we now hold his memory in special honour for his noble death of self-sacrifice. It has been truly said that ‘the blood of the martyrs is the seed of the Church’, and those who die today in the sacred cause of truth and justice, are adding strength and glory to the Church to which they belong, and are giving fresh incentive to us to lead a true Christian life.

A special War Intercession Service for men has been organised by Mr Rupert Adey, and has been held on Monday nights in the Parish Room. It is possible that this will be combined with the Men’s Bible Class, which starts again on the first Monday in October.

A Committee has been formed for the purpose of providing additional sand-bags for our troops. The committee consists of Mrs A Camp, Mrs H Cooke, Mrs C A Hawker, Nrs G W Roberts, with Miss Boldero as Treasurer, and Mrs L R Majendie in the chair. A large number of bags have been cut out by Mr H Godding, and these can be obtained at the Parish Room on Tuesday mornings from 11 to 12, beginning with Tuesday, October 5th, and Thursday evenings, from 7 to 8, beginning with Thursday, October 7th. We hope that many people will come and take the bags home to sew up, instruction as to which will be obtainable at the Parish Room: and the Treasurer will be very glad to receive subscriptions towards the cost of the material, which is between six and seven pounds. Every additional sand-bag may mean the preservation of a soldier’s life.

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

“A very acceptable collection of fruit and vegetables for the Navy”

The home produce donated by Newbury St Nicolas churchgoers at their harvest festival was gratefully received by the Navy.

The following letter has been received by the Rector from the Vegetable Products Committee, Newbury and District Branch, for the distribution of fruit, vegetables, etc, to the Navy and Army, a quantity of fruit and vegetables having been sent from the Harvest Thanksgiving:

October 4th, 1915
Dear Sir,

Will you kindly convey the thanks of this Committee to those who contributed the very acceptable collection of fruit and vegetables for the Navy received from your church.

The consignment is sent to the Naval Base at Aberdeen and will I am sure be appreciated by the men of the Fleet.

Yours faithfully

J H Godding
Hon. Sec.
Ellerslie
London Road

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

“There is a great necessity for more doctors and nurses at the Front”

Five doctors from Newbury volunteered to go to treat the wounded.

The local doctors are responding well in their country’s need: Drs Graham, Coplestone, Heywood, Parsons, and Thompson, having volunteered their services and having been accepted: there is evidently a great necessity for more doctors and nurses at the Front, and we would not grudge their going to tend the brave men who are doing and suffering so much for us.

We hope that the Magazine will be in the hands of our readers by Sunday, October 3rd: in that case may we remind them that it is the Sunday of our Harvest Thanksgiving, and express the hope that they will not fail to attend church, and also make some tangible return to God for His Mercies… Any gifts of fruit or vegetables will be devoted to the wants of the Navy, for which Mr H Godding collects so assiduously – and we should remember that we owe a very great deal to the Navy just now.

We hope that during the winter months our thoughts will be not too much distracted by the war, and that the Church’s work will be carried on all the more earnestly.

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