Collections for the sufferers in Palestine from the war

There was sympathy for the plights of civilians in wartorn Palestine.


Two lectures on Jerusalem were given by the Vicar on December 20th at 3 p.m. and 7 p.m. They were illustrated by many lantern slides. Collections were made for the sufferers in Palestine from the war, and realised £1 22d. 9d. and many collecting boxes were taken by old and young.

Cranbourne section of Winkfield and Warfield Magazine, January 1918 (D/P 151/281/10)


Shot at dawn for “cowardice” caused by shell shock

John Maxwell Image wrote to his friend W F Smith, who was staying at Hindhead in south west Surrey, not far from the big army camp at Aldershot. Normally very gung-ho in support of the war, Image’s compassion had been aroused by stories of court martials and teenagers shot at dawn. The Revd Thomas Pym (1885-1945), in peacetime the chaplain at Image’s college, was serving as an army chaplain.

29 Barton Rd
6 Dec. ‘17
My very dear old man

The military cars to and fro Aldershot must surely be more or less an interesting sight.

The poor Tommy comes under this [?not clear] penalty quite frequently. Not often from cowardice, poor boy. Most often (I believe) it is from slinking off to some girl in the rear which is called “desertion”, tho’ he would have returned right enough.

Just before I was married there was shown to me a letter from a young Trin. Officer at the Front, describing a visit from one of our Trin. Chaplains, begging this young friend of his to “pray for him”, for he had to pass the night with a boy of 18 who was to be shot at dawn. Pym spoke then of a night with another poor child (of 17!) who had been shot the previous week, for what the CM was pleased to style Cowardice – though he had twice behaved with exceptional bravery, and it was only after seeing his two brothers killed at his side that on this occasion his nerve broke down. In an officer it would have been called “shell-shock”, and the interesting sufferer sent home to a cushy job in England. I know of 2 thus treated. Pym’s words brought the tears to my eyes. I see that he has told the story (slightly altered) in a book that has recently come out by him, Characteristics of the Army in Flanders.

Sir Arthur Yapp at the Guildhall last Friday. The Signora went (non ego) and returned enthusiastic – she and her Cook – over the great man’s dignity and sweetness. That evening he lectured the students (and I believe also them of Girton) in Newnham College – and left by the 9.9 for London.

One remark of his: “The vessels sunk by the U-boats during the week ending Nov. 24 (I forget how many that was) might have carried enough bread to feed Cambridge for nearly 7 years, or enough meat for 8 ½ years, or enough sugar for 64 years.”

He said that Food Tickets have changed Germany to a nation of forgers. He dreaded the like fate for England.

Yours ever

Letter from John Maxwell Image, Cambridge don, to W F Smith (D/EX801/2)

“Many empty lorries driven by the men of the Flying Corps pass daily through the village”

Cranbourne people were invited to grow vegetables, while church services were disrupted.

For the purpose of saving fuel and light in Lent week, Evening Services will be held in the Sunday School on Wednesdays at 7 p.m., and Evensong will be said on Sundays in Church at 3 p.m. instead of 6 p.m., until we can do without the gas. It seems to be almost impossible for the Coal Merchants to deliver fuel just now, there is coke and coal at the stations, but no carts are to be had. Many empty lorries driven by the men of the Flying Corps pass daily through the village, how helpful it would be if they could “dump” a few sacks of coal for us at some central place.

Two lectures on “Vegetable cultivation in War time” have been given in the Reading Room by Mr. F. W. Custin, F.R.H.S. Unfortunately there was not the large attendance that might have been expected when all of us are being urged to add to the food supply of the nation. The lectures were most practical and helpful. Great stress was laid on the need of spraying not only potatoes, but the young vegetable plants. The lecturer gave the following recipe for a spray of paraffin emulsion:- ¼ pint of paraffin, ¼ -lb. of soft soap, 3½ -gallons of water. Mix the soft soap with a little hot water, whisk it up and then add the paraffin slowly, beating it up as it is poured in, then add the remainder of the water. This should be used for onions and celery in May and June. Potatoes should be sprayed with Bordeaux mixture at the beginning of July and also early in August. We expect the delivery of the seed potatoes at an early date.

Cranbourne section of Winkfield District Magazine, March 1917 (D/P151/28A/9/3)

Excellent war pictures

People in Mortimer attended an illustrated lecture on various fronts of the war.

War Pictures
On Mar. 12th S. John’s Hall was crammed from end to end with a responsive audience for Colonel Lynden-Bell’s lecture on the Somme, Russian, and Mesopotamia fronts. The pictures were excellent, the lecturer most interesting: the only flaw was the failure of the supply of hydrogen at about half time. But the lecturer has kindly offered to come again and finish his programme. £4 15s. 6d. was given at the door – for the Russian Red Cross. It was a pleasure to have Colonel W. P. Nash in the chair.

Stratfield Mortimer parish magazine, April 1917 (D/P120/28A/14)

“Our part in the struggle for liberty”

Sir Charles Hunter (1858-1924) of Mortimer Hill was an experienced soldier and, during the First World War, held a post on the General Staff. He gave a patriotic talk to his neighbours in the church hall.

The War

On Monday evening, June 12th, in S. John’s Hall, Sir Charles Hunter gave a very interesting and illuminating lecture on the War. The Speaker was listened to with rapt attention, and we are sure that the very good audience were were both charmed and cheered – charmed as they heard of the grand way in which we are taking our part in the struggle for liberty, and cheered to know that there is no doubt as to the ultimate result of that struggle. Sir Charles was accorded a hearty vote of thanks for his goodness in giving the lecture. “God save the King” was sung, and the proceedings closed.

Stratfield Mortimer parish magazine, July 1916 (D/P120/28A/14)

Women on the land

You may recognise the name of Miss Pott from the extracts we have reported from the National Relief Fund Berkshire Committee. Gladys Pott (1867-1961), daughter of the Revd Alfred Pott, a former Archdeacon of Berkshire, was a well known speaker against female suffrage, but she was a strong speaker and organiser. She served as a Woman Inspector of the Women’s Branch of the Board of Agriculture from 1916 to 1919, and was awarded an MBE for her efforts after the war.

Women on the Land

A well attended meeting was held in S. John’s Hall on the evening of Thursday April 6th, to consider the question of the employment of women in gardening and general farm work, to take the places of men called up for military service.

The chair was taken by Mr. Alfred Palmer, who was supported by Miss Gladys Pott, Miss Ludlam, Miss Watson and Mr. Job Lousley.

The Chairman, in opening the meeting, spoke in glowing terms of the splendid way in which the women of the cities had come forward to help with the work on the land, and pointed out how the local women could help in this good work. He said instruction in dairying and farming was provided by the Berks Committee for those who could leave their homes, and for those who could only give a part of their time Miss Watson had offered the use of her garden and grounds every Saturday afternoon to all women (or others) who desired instruction in gardening. Those who wished to aid in the movement were urged to give in their names to Miss Ludlam, the Registrar.

Then Miss Pott, in a most interesting speech, told how much had been done by women since January, 1915, to the present time, and insisted that the question of the food supply was one of the supremest importance, and that every woman could do something to increase the productiveness of their own gardens and allotments, even if it were simply to make two lettuces grow where only one grew before.

Mr. Lousley gave some practical details of the movement, and referred to the successful outcome of women’s outdoor work in his parish and on his own farm.

After the speeches, pictures showing the work of wives and daughters of the French farmers were thrown on the screen. Miss Potts, who explained the pictures and had herself been present as a member of the Women’s Mission to France when these pictures were taken, said, that what they saw in France proved conclusively the glorious way in which the French had understood and answered the call of their country, and such an object lesson should serve to animate English women with a like spirit of devotion to their native land.
Miss Potts thanked Mr. Methold for manipulating the lantern, and a vote of thanks to the chairman and speakers brought the meeting to a close.

Stratfield Mortimer parish magazine, May 1916 (D/P120/28A/14)

The horrors of this war will lead the nations back to God

Windsor women who belonged to the Anglican Mothers’ Union were invited to a lecture on the war.

The Mothers’ Union

Mrs Bosanquet very kindly invited a meeting of Mothers’ Union workers to the Bank House on February 7th, when the Hon Lady Acland have a very beautiful and thoughtful address on “Some Lessons of the War”.

It is impossible, she said, to explain the reason for the permission of evil in the world: to reconcile God’s love with the horrors of this war. It cannot be done in logical terms: our only way is to look for the good through all the pain and suffering; to realise that they lead to the glory of Sacrifice. And it is certain that these are a great purifying force, leading the nations back to God: for they all, with the one great exception of Russia, had fallen away from God during the years of peace…

Prayer and Sacrifice – they are the duty of us all. God accepts the sacrifice our men are making, and He will accept that of our girls, too, for whom life will be a more serious, and in many ways a harder, thing than ever before. Through all the sorrows and the changes the truths of God stand fast, like the Crucifixes of which we read, that remain unharmed in the battlefields of Flanders.

New Windsor St John the Baptist parish magazines, March 1916 (D/P149/28A/21/1)

The religious work of the war

The people of Sulhamstead heard a lecture about evangelistic work in the trenches.

A lecture accompanied with the exhibition of Lantern Slides will be given on Friday, January 7th, at the School, at 7 p.m., by the Rev. J. Hobson, MA, London District Secretary of the Religious Tract Society, on Religious Work at the Front and in the Trenches.
Admission 2d and 1d. There will be a collection to support the work.

A box into which anyone may place small contributions to help support this stall at the S. Eastern Railway Station, Reading, is on the counter as the Post Office. These stalls are doing a great work throughout the country, and the Post Office Mistress will be grateful for any donations.

We regret to state that Lieutenant Albert Marsh, RNR, has been missing since the “Tera” was sunk in the Mediterranean. A body of some 300 men was seen on the shores of Africa, about 300 miles west of Alexandria, and it is hoped they are safe, and that he is among them.

The lecture went ahead, as the February issue of the parish magazine reported:

The Lantern Lecture on the Religious Work of the War, by the Rev. J Hobson of the Religious Tract Society, with Sir George Watson, bart, as Chairman, was given to a crowded audience. The views of the trenches and camps were very fine, and we wished we could have had more of them. The entrance money and collection amounted to £2. 11s. 10d., which was handed over to Mr Hobson for the work amongst the soldiers.

Sulhamstead parish magazines, January and February 1916 (D/EX725/3)

Khaki testaments

People in Hare Hatch were interested to hear that the Bible Society was supplying Bibles to soldiers from the colonies, our allies, and even captured enemy soldiers.

Hare Hatch Notes

A Most interesting Lantern Lecture was given on Wednesday, December 1st, at 6.30 p.m., by the Rev. E. W. G. Hudgell, Diocesan Secretary for the British and Foreign Bible Society. The lecturer, after having introduced us to the Society’s Headquarters in London, gave a vivid description of the noble work done among the brave soldiers and sailors of our Empire. He next told us how the Bible is translated into the various languages of our Allies, thus bringing them under the influence of the Society’s good work. We also learnt that even our enemies, so far as it is possible, are supplied with the little ‘Khaki Testament’ printed in their own language. It is interesting to note that wherever a missionary goes the work of the British and Foreign Bible Society follows him.

Wargrave parish magazine, January 1916 (D/P145/28A/31)

Approaching the crisis of the war

The poet Hilaire Belloc, half French by birth although he was raised in England, spoke and wrote extensively on the war. Florence Vansittart Neale of Bisham Abbey attended one of his public lectures in London, and was most impressed.

12 May 1915
To Hilaire Belloc’s lecture – very good. Russia & Dardanelles. Approaching crisis of the war. If line not broken both sides, & if narrow won! Then victory!

Diary of Florence Vansittart Neale (73/3/17/8)

Shirts for Serbia instead of Christmas presents

The people of Cookham Dean took an interest in the civilians of Serbia, who were suffering badly from living in a warzone, as the April 1915 edition of the parish magazine reveals, with the children giving up their Christmas treat:

The League of Honour
The Lantern Lecture on The War, illustrated by slides kindly lent by the Central Committee in London, was well attended and most attentively listened to. As no special lecturer could be sent by the London committee, the vicar himself gave the lecture, being very kindly assisted at the lantern by Mr H Edwards. After paying for the carriage of the slides on their return journey, a sum of 18/- remained out of the admission money, and was given to the Relief of Serbia.

A parcel of twelve well made flannel shirts has been sent as a first instalment of our gift to the Serbian Relief Fund. The flannel was purchased with the money which would otherwise have been spent at Christmas on the Children’s Sunday School Treat presents, and skilful and willing hands made up the material. A second instalment will be forwarded shortly. The Vicar received the following acknowledgement of the gift on March 26th- ‘The Committee of the Serbian Relief Fund beg to express their thanks to the Rev. H. F. Hunt very warmly for the parcel received on March 25th containing gifts from his parish.

Cookham Dean parish magazine, April 1915 (D/P43B/28A/11)

‘Misery, brutality and wickedness’: Lantern slides will bring home the awful reality of the war

The people of Cookham Dean were informed about the war by means of an illustrated talk. The vicar wrote in the parish magazine with his views on how this should energise people’s responses:

Mrs Hunt has been at some trouble to arrange a Lantern Lecture, in connection with The League of Honour, on the subject of The War… It is open, of course, to all comers, but I distinctly wish it to be understood that it is not an ordinary Entertainment. The Lecture, and the pictures that will be shown, should bring home to people in this village the awful reality of the War, and God’s infinite mercy to our country in having so far preserved us from the misery, brutality and wickedness to which so many of our Belgian and French Allies have been subjected. It will be seen that the Lecture is intended to stir up people to their religious duties in connection with the War, to summon the careless and indifferent to prayer, and to give deeper earnestness and reality to the prayers of those who do pray; and I shall be very disappointed if the lecture does not help us in these ways. It is sad to see how little trouble even some of those who have husbands, brothers, sons at the Front, will take to come to our Intercession Services, whether held on a Sunday or a week day. A nominal charge will be made for admission to the lecture, and the proceeds after paying expenses will be given to the Serbian Relief Fund.

Cookham Dean parish magazine, March 1915 (D/P43B/28A/11)

Entertainments in Winkfield for war funds

Ladies in Winkfield raised money to help the war effort by putting on a series of concerts for their neighbours.


Miss Graham Loyd repeated her excellent entertainment on Tuesday, December 29th, and a large audience enjoyed the programme provided.

Miss Loyd contributed two capital songs. Comic songs by Major Egerton and Messrs Green, Company and Woollatt were much appreciated, as was the song contributed by Mr. Worsfold, and those by Colour-Sergeant Brett, who received vociferous encores. The dialogue in costume, “Geese,” by Mrs And Miss Loyd, was excellently rendered and evoked well merited applause.

Miss Montgomerie is much to be congratulated on the success of the entertainment organised by her in the Parish Room on January 19th and repeated on the 22nd, on both occasions to a crowded house.

The first part was the play, “Hansel and Gretal,” which was prettily staged and excellently acted by Master L Guinness, the Misses M and T Guinness, Miss Viva Montgomerie, Miss Violet Sandford, Miss Camilla Finlay, Miss Frances Osman, the Misses F and A Wilder, and Miss Jean Baikie.

The children threw themselves thoroughly into their parts, and the acting of Master L Guinness as Hansel, Miss M Guinness as Gretal, and Miss T Guinness as the Witch, was especially praiseworthy. Mrs Guinness went to great trouble and expense in arranging the stage and scenery, and her efforts contributed largely to the success of the play.

The second part of the entertainment consisted of a Lantern Lecture by Miss Hunter who gave a most interesting account of her travels in far off lands, illustrated by a large number of splendid slides from photographs that had been taken on the spot. The net proceeds amounted to £7 18s. 3d.

Winkfield section of Winkfield District Magazine, February 1915 (D/P151/28A/7/2)

A parting of ways

The Ascot parish magazine acknowledged the loss felt by those whose loved ones had been killed. Meanwhile, the Church Lads’ Brigade were drilling with real guns.

WE WISH OUR PEOPLE every Blessing from GOD during the year of Grace, 1915. We deeply feel with many of them, who have been called upon to part, who have been called upon to part, so far as this present life is concerned, with those who are precious, very dear indeed, to their hearts. But the parting is for a time only, and we “sorrow not, as those that have no hope.” We have a very glorious Hope indeed: and the “Roll of Honour” is enclosed in the Frame of Immortality. “I believe in the Resurrection of the body, and the Life Everlasting.” We ourselves return this new year to our work for a little longer, until our own turn comes to pass on into the “Beyond”.

Our deepest sympathy is tendered to Mrs. Phillips, a former parishioner of All Saints, on the loss of her two sons who have given their lives for the sake of their country. The Eternal Resurrection Morning will reunite many families of this fair English land, over whom for the present there has come a parting of ways.

The Recreation Club at All Saints Parish Room is much appreciated by many of the men. During the past month two musical and variety entertainments have been arranged by Mr. And Mrs. Tottie, and one by Mr. Tidy. An excellent lecture on the War has also been given by Mr. Patton.

The Church Parade Services on Sundays at 9.45 a.m. have been delightfully hearty. We warmly welcome the continued presence among us of the Territorials.

We are under very great obligations to Captain Thomas (who has volunteered for the Army) for his continued interest in our Company. He still comes over form Windsor from time to time on the Tuesday evenings. Subjoined is the Report of the Annual Inspection.

C.L.B. Ascot Company.

The following extract from the official Report to the Governing Body has been received from Captain Everett.

In common no doubt with others, this Company has suffered recently from loss of services of some of its officers and warrant officers, and consequently there has been, I was informed, some lack of regularity in attendance and of keenness among the lads.

This was not apparent however in those who paraded for my inspection: and the performance of the Squad, Physical and Company drilling showed solid work had been done.

In the Company drill greater attention should be given to the use of the commands laid down in the “Guide” for the various formations.

The general turn-out, steadiness, and behaviour on parade was good, with one or two exceptions. The carbines should in some cases be “pulled through” oftener.

With encouragement, the Company should do well, as there is promising material in its ranks.

Ascot section of Winkfield District Monthly Magazine, January 1915 (D/P151/28A/7/1)

Lantern lectures on the war

Lectures on the war were offered to both civilians and servicemen in Winkfield.

C. E. M. S.
The usual monthly meeting was held at the Vicarage on Wednesday, Dec. 18th at 8.15 p. m. After joining in Intercessions for the War… the Vicar then explained that he was anxious to make the great day of National Intercession on Jan. 3rd as widely known as possible, and it was arranged that, as the magazine would come out too late for the purpose, the members should take round a special letter on the subject to every household in the parish.

The members are to be congratulated on the success of their house to house collection for the Belgian Refugee Fund, since their efforts resulted in the raising of £17 1s. 10d.

We have now sent up to this fund the sum of £22 13s. 10d., made up as follows:
£ s. d.
C. E. M. S. collection 17 1 10
Donation from Choir Men 2 0 0
Choir Girls of S. Mary the Less (in lieu of having their Annual Treat on Nov. 5th) 1 10 0
Offertory at Church Parade (Dec. 6) 2 2 0

A Public Lecture on the War, illustrated by 80 Lantern Views was given on Dec. 2nd in the Parish Room at 8 o’clock when the chair was taken by Lord George Pratt. The members of the C. E. M. S. worked hard to sell the tickets, with the result that the attendance was very good, and after all expenses had been paid the sum of £4 8s. 4d. was sent to the Prince of Wales Fund.

Another War Lecture entitled “How the British soldier fights” was given on Dec. 15th. This was a free lecture for “service men” only and about 70 attended.

Our warm thanks are due to the Secretary of the C. E. M. S. for kindly working the lantern at both these lectures.

Winkfield section of Winkfield District Monthly Magazine, January 1915 (D/P151/28A/7/1)