“A rebuilt organ, although it would be a good thankoffering for peace, would not be suitable as a memorial”

How best to recognise the service of the country’s fallen, and those returning alive?

St John’s Parochial Church Council

The fourth meeting of the Parochial Church Council was held at the Princes Street Room on Monday, January 20th, 1919, at 8.15 p.m….

Mr W. H. Pountney moved the following resolution: That the question of providing a new organ for St John’s Church be re-opened by this Council; and a scheme devised forthwith to secure the end in view in memory of those who have fallen in the great war, as a thanksgiving for the blessing of peace, and as a matter of expediency.

This was seconded pro forma by Mr Aldridge.

… This was seconded by Mr Sutton, supported by Miss Sutton, Mr Fanstone, Mr Churchill and Dr Murrell, and Mr F. Winter, several of the speakers saying that whatever was done as a War memorial should be something in connection with both churches, and not for St John’s only. The vicar said he thought the form of memorial should be in accordance with the views of the relations of those who had given their lives, and that a rebuilt organ, although it would be a good thankoffering for peace, would not be suitable as a memorial…

Mr Haslam then moved the following resolution: That a committee be formed to consider the best form for a Memorial to those parishioners or members of the congregations who have given their lives for their God, King and Country in the great war, and to report to this Council.

Mr L. G. Sutton seconded this resolution and it was carried unanimously.

The following committee was elected to carry it into effect: the vicar, the churchwardens, Mr L G Sutton, Mr H A Kingham, Mr F H Wright, Mr Fanstone, Mr Murrell, Miss Britton and Miss Winter.

Mr E C Pearce moved the following resolution, which was seconded by Mr H R Sutton, and carried unanimously:

That a committee be formed to consider and report to the vicar how best to welcome the men and women returning from War Service to the parish, and to take steps to attach them if possible to the parish life.

The following committee was elected to carry this into effect: the vicar, Mr E C Pearce, Mr H R Sutton, Mr W Wing, Mr Fanstone, Miss Simmonds, Miss Rundell, and Cap. Blandy, with power to confer with others.


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

Advertisements

Missing, wounded and dead

There was bad news for several Reading families.

Notes from the Vicar

Intercession list.

Missing: Leman John Cross (Berks Yeomanry);

Wounded: Private Charles Edward Pearce, Royal Berks Regt.;

Departed: Private Forrest (one of our old C.L.B. boys); Edwin Wilson. R.I.P.

Reading St Giles parish magazines, January 1918 (D/P96/28A/34)

“We hope none have been forgotten”

Christmas presents were sent out again this year, with even wounded soldeiers helping to wrap them.

Warfield

CHRISTMAS PRESENT FUND FOR WARFIELD MEN ON SERVICE.

A meeting was called early in October and a Committee appointed as follows: the Vicar and Mrs. Thackery, Mr. H. Lawrence, Mr. and Mrs. Crocker, Mrs. Crailsbam, Miss Leach, and Miss Hardcastle (Hon. Treasurer.)

The appeal for funds again met with a warm response as will be seen by the figures given below. Special thanks are due to Mr. Pearce and Mr. W. Lovejoy, who took much pains in collecting from a large part of the parish.

The contents of the parcels were chosen by Mrs. Thackery and Mrs. Crocker, and wee as follows, the total number of parcels being 101. For men at the Front, 77 – sock,s writing case, soap, trench powder, potted meat. For men in England, 24 — socks, handkerchief and writing case, potted meat or soap, chocolate. The parcels were packed at the Brownlow Hall by the ladies of the Committee assited by a few others, and each one contained a card with the words: “With all good Christmas wishes from your friends at Warfield.” A great many acknowlededgments have already been received by Mr. Lawrence, all expressing much satisfaction with the parcels and appreciation of the remembrance.

The balance, after paying all expenses of the parcels, was expended on presents for the widows of the six men who have laid down their lives during this year.

Account of the Fund.
Received. Balance from 1916 £1 9 7
Proceeds of Whist Drive 6 10 2
Subscriptions, 1917 13 0 6
£21 0 3
Spent. Contents of Parcels 15 12 1
Paper and String 0 9 1
Postage 4 4 0
Presents to 6 Widows 0 15 0
£21 0 3 ‘

The Warfield Schools War Savings Association have now £207 12s. 0d. to their credit. This is mainly due to the thrift of the majority of the 113 members who have paid their contributions each Tuesday without a break.

Bracknell

CHRISTMAS PRESENTS to the Men Serving.

Parcels have been despatched to all out Bracknell and Chavey Down men serving abroad; we hope none have been forgotten. The money to pay for these presents had been collected by many kind workers, and a great number of people made some contribution. The parcels were packed and sent from the Vicarage, a number of people, including some of the wounded soldiers, helping to do them up.

Cranbourne

SOLDIERS’s PRESENTS

A Christmas present has been sent from Cranbourne to each of our men serving in His Majesty’s forces. A Christmas card has also been posted with a note saying that a present has been sent in a separate parcel. To defray the cost, £7 was contributed from the takings at the recent concert, donations amounting to £5 10s. 0d. have been received, and a house to house collection realised £6 8s. 0 1/2d. We are grateful to Miss Dodge, Miss Jennings and Miss Smith for their kindness in making this collection.

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

A chaplain among the departed

Prayers were requested for men from Reading serving or fallen.

Notes from the Vicar

Intercessions list: 2nd A.M. Clout, R.F.C; 2nd Lieut. A. Herman Turner, R.F.C.; Trooper M.T. Butler, Berks Yeomanry; Private A. Goodger.

Sick and Wounded: Gunner Goulden; Gunner H. Whitbread; Privates G. Wise, H. Standing, C. Beazly.

Departed: Sergt. C. Spencer; Private R. Egginton; Lce-Cpl. J. T. Foulger, R.E.; Privates Hugh Willis, R.A.M.C., E.A. Pearce, T.M.B.; The Rev. E.P. Carter (priest).

Reading St Giles parish magazine, November 1917 (D/P96/28A/32)

Two sons killed, two more at the front

More news of Reading men. One mother had now lost half of her children.

Intercession List

Privates Alfred Goodger, A. Palmer, G. Clack.

Wounded: Corpl. E. Durman, 2nd Lieut. G.A.F. Gillmor.

Departed: Capt. A. Hudson, R. Berks Rt.; Hugh Willis, R.A.M.C.; E.A. Pearce, R Berks Rt. (attached T.M.B.)

R.I.P.: Private Pearce was one of our most regular Sunday school teachers and servers. Our sympathies go out to the widowed mother, two of whose sons have been killed, while two more are at the front.

Reading St Giles parish magazine, September 1917 (D/P96/28A/32)

A real “Godsend” to the boys

Churchgoers in Reading and Windsor paid for a recreation “Hut” behind the front lines.

Notes from the Vicar

Intercessions list

Ptes. W.G. Pearce, 2nd Worcestershire Regt,; H.A.T. Wicks, 33rd Training Reserve Batt,; H.W. March, 47th Canadians.

Missing: Lce,-Cpl. Harold Walker.

Sick and Wounded: Pte Green; Pte. Bailey.

Departed: Lce,-Cpl. J. Cole; Gunner W. Shaw. R.I.P.

C.E.M.S.

The following report has been received about the Reading and Windsor Federation Hut.

“Everything has been done to make this Hut one of the most attractive and comfortable in this area. Crowds of men pass through daily, and much use is made of the stationary Literature, and Games provided for their comfort. Concerts are held, Lantern Services and Voluntary services of all kinds. It’s a real “Godsend” to the boys.”

Subscriptions are still needed to supply the above Hut. And will be gratefully received by the Hon. Sec. Mr. Lane, 5/-

H.J. HINDERLEY, Hon. Sec.

Reading St Giles parish magazine, May 1917 (D/P96/28A/34)

“We wish him God’s protection on the field”

A Warfield man headed for the front would be sorely missed at home.

CHOIR SUPPER.

The Vicar and Mrs. Thackery entertained the senior members of the Choir to supper at the Vicarage on Thursday, December 30th, at 7.30. Only two were absent; Mr. Brockbank was away from home and Mr. Dyer was unavoidably prevented at the last moment from coming. After supper we enjoyed some music and singing, after which a variety of games brought us to a late hour, when Mr. E. Pearce, our senior member, kindly expressed their united thanks for the pleasant evening.

There was general regret expressed from perhaps a selfish point of view at the approaching departure of George Higgs, though we do not grudge his services to the King and Country. He is one of those wonderfully apt fellows who fills in the odd corners and remembers to do all the endless little things amounting in all to a great thing, which others are apt to forget. We felt that we should be lost without him, and strive as we do to fill in the odd duties, we have been “at sea” more than once, and say that this or that would not have happened if George had been here. We are glad to hear that he is getting on well at Andover, where he seems to be sampling the bells in various towers. He expects shortly to be going to the front, and we wish him God’s protection on the field and a safe return to his old place in the Choir and Belfry of Warfield Church.

Warfield section of the Winkfield District Magazine, February 1916 D/P151/28A/8/2

Two more families send off their sons

More Reading men (several from the same family) had joined the Royal Berkshire Regiment, while one local man had been killed.

For the Intercession list

Pte. Walter Frank Pearce, 9th Batt. Royal Berks Regt.; Pte. Charles Edward Pearce, 9th Batt. Royal Berks Regt.; Pte. Ernest Albert Pearce, 3/4th Royal Berks Regt; Major W.R. Colan; Capt. H.N. Colan.

To the list of the departed, Frank Pawley.

Reading St Giles parish magazine, April 1916 (D/P96/28A/33)

Simple, honest and personal work among the troops

Reading St John’s parishioners were very sorry to lose their vicar, Guy Rogers, to an army chaplaincy. They made sure he (and his housekeeper) got a good sendoff.

PRESENTATION TO THE VICAR AND MISS HOMAN
St John’s Hall was crowded by parishioners on Saturday evening, the 9th October, when a Presentation was made to the Vicar on his resignation of the Parish, and to Miss Homan.

595 subscriptions were received and the gifts were as follows:

An Illuminated Address:
To the Reverend Travers Guy Rogers, BD, Vicar of St John the Evangelist (with St Stephen’s), Reading.
You have been led under Divine Guidance to resign this benefice so that you might respond to the call to take up the special work of an Army Chaplain to the troops at the front.
We recognise in this a call from God to ourselves to make a sacrifice which costs us much…
Signed on behalf of the Subscribers
H. Reginald Sutton
Frank Winter
Churchwardens

An Album containing the names of the Subscribers
Chaplain’s Uniform
A Pair of Field Glasses
A Purse containing a Cheque for £111
A Cheque for Miss Homan to purchase a Fur Coat or such other article as she may desire.

The Mayor presided and was supported on the platform by the Churchwardens and most of the Sidesmen and Members of the Church Board; and after he had spoken other speeches were made by Mr H. R. Sutton, Mr C. Pearce, Mr Fanstone and Mr F. Winter.

The Rev. T. Guy Rogers, who was wearing the uniform which had been presented to him, thanked them all most heartily for the very kind gifts they had presented to him and Miss Holman. The money would be a real help to him, because the income of a chaplain made no allowance for extras – indeed it was considerably less than the income he had enjoyed at home; and therefore the generosity they had shown in the matter relieved him of all financial anxiety for the time being. He was very glad too that they had presented him with his uniform, and that the Maltese cross was on it; for he loved to think that he was going, under the symbol of the Cross, to be an ambassador of Christ on their behalf. On the following Tuesday evening, all being well, he sailed from Folkestone to Boulogne, thence to make the best of his way to the headquarters of the British Army and report himself as one unit, and there he would receive his job. What his job would be, he had not the least idea; but it was his earnest hope to be allowed to do some simple, honest and personal work amongst the troops, trying to make them feel at any rate that in their chaplain they had a friend. He wanted to be a help to men who were going through so much for us, and to do something definite in the way of work for Christ.

Reading St John parish magazine, November 1915 (D/P172/28A/24)

A club for soldiers’ wives

St John’s Church in Reading provided a place for local soldiers’ wives to meet up:

Soldiers and Sailors’ Families Association
Our new club for soldiers’ wives made an excellent start on Friday, November 20th at the Institute [Fatherson Road]. Mrs Benyon very kindly gave the opening tea and came herself to welcome her guests. It is intended to open the club two afternoons each week – Tuesdays and Fridays. The Hall is arranged so as to provide opportunities for conversation, writing, reading illustrated papers, and music, and other entertainments are provided at intervals. The club is open to all women living in Victoria Ward whose names are on the list of the Soldiers and Sailors Family Association. The Hall has been beautifully decorated with flags through the kindness of Messrs Plumer, Pearce and Allum.

Reading St John, November 1914 (D/P172/28A/23)

A privilege to do one’s duty

The parishioners of Warfield felt the church was in danger, presumably from foreign invasion, and rallied round to help, as the church magazine bears witness:

NIGHT WATCH AT THE CHURCH.
“England expects that every man will do his duty” has been exemplified by the noble way in which the men of Warfield have come forth to guard their old Parish Church during this period of anxiety. One feels sure that they need no thanks, being always a privilege to do one’s duty. It is also right that the Parish Magazine should chronicle their names which are taken as they stand on the list before the Editor.

Messrs. J. Street, R. Searle, Fairminer, Goddard, Haines, E.Street, Pearce, Chaney, Peat, Higgs, Lovejoy, B. Bowyer, Brockbank, Johnson, G. Woodwards, C. Dyer, Bowyer, S. Moss, W. Dyer, E. Gale, H. Crocker, W. Bowyer, Crewe, Rickson, Parks, Dixon, R.Crow, J.Crow, G.Lewis, Joe Lewis, Dyer, Vicar, E.Gregory, B. Gregory, Inglefield, Lovejoy, S. White, Gill, Lewis, S. Bowyer, T. Bowyer and Son, Staniford, S. Stacey, Gale, Inskeep, A. Bowyer, Clee, Banham, Jakeman, Thatcher, Campbell, W. Excel, L. Bowyer, Carding, E. Bowyer, Ward and Woodwards.

Ascot, Bracknell, Cranbourne and Winkfield District church magazine, August 1914 (D/P151/28A/6/8)