A social evening for soldiers and sailors

7 May 1919

A social evening was held by the members of the HWI on Wednesday May 7th at the Girls; School to entertain the soldiers & sailors who had returned from serving with the colours.

Hurst WI minutes (D/EX1925/33/1/1)

Welcoming the soldiers and sailors home to Hurst

2 April 1919

Arrangements were made for entertaining all the Hurst soldiers and sailors who have returned to their homes, in May.

Hurst WI minutes (D/EX1925/33/1/1)

A thrilling escape

Philip Godsal, sone of a Welsh landowner, was captured early in the war, and eventually made a daring escape in 1917.

5 February 1919

Monthly Meeting

A most interesting lecture was given by Capt Philp Godsal on his experiences as a prisoner of war in various camps in Germany, and his thrilling escape to Holland.

Hurst WI minutes (D/EX1925/33/1/1)

“We hope this most important work of re-construction will appeal to those who have till now given their time up to war work”

Women were invited to join in the work rebuilding the country after the war.

Hare Hatch Women’s Institute

The Women’s Institute was started in August, 1918 and Mrs. Noble agreed to be Hon. Secretary for three months. Twenty-three members have been enrolled, the meetings have been well attended and the members seem to appreciate the advantages offered to them. Lectures have been given by London speakers on Food Production, Children’s Welfare and Fuel Saving. We are asked now to make the land girls living in our midst Honorary Member of the Institute. The Hospitals and Depots will shortly be closed. We hope this most important work of re-construction will appeal to those who have till now given their time up to war work.

More Members are wanted. Will anyone volunteer now, or after their present work is over, and enrol their names as Pioneers in the Re-construction of Village Life.

Will anyone willing to help, kindly send her name to Mrs. Winter, The Vicarage, or to Mrs. Wilson Noble, Hon. Sec., Kingswood, Hare Hatch.

M.C.N.

Wargrave parish magazine, December 1918 (D/P145/28A/31)

Queen Mary’s noble example has helped us be brave

Hurst WI rejoiced at the end of the war.

To Her Most Gracious Majesty Quueen Mary from the Women’s Institute of Hurst, Berks, membership 95.

We the members of the Hurst Women’s Institute being deeply sensible of your Majesty’s sympathy with our services & trials in the last few years beg that you will accept our humble congratulations in the termination of the war. We know that whatever have been our sufferings & deprivations that they have been equally shared by our Queen, & this knowledge has enabled many of us to be brave. Now that a calm joy fills our hearts we are anxious to share this also with your Majesty whose noble example has uplifted us all & whose personal sympathy has done so much to rivet the people’s affections ever more firmly to your Majesties.

Signed
Alice Martin
President

Wed Dec 4, 1918

Draft address to Queen Mary from Hurst WI (D/EX1925/33/5/2/1)

Soldiers saved from paupers’ funerals

The Comrades of the Great War Society was established to help discharged soldiers and the families of those killed.

5 June 1918

Monthly Meeting

The meeting opened with an excellent address by Major Vaughan Williams on the objects of the “Comrades of the War” Association for the after-care & comfort of our fighting men. He showed how they look up all claims for pensions & give all legal advice required, & help in every way to assist widows & children.

They had already in Berkshire saved soldiers from paupers’ funerals. Major Vaughan Williams spoke most strongly on what we owe to the devotion of our soldiers.

Hurst WI minutes (D/EX1925/33/1/1)

“2049 articles had been made in the last 4 months”

Hurst was the first WI in Berkshire, and its early work involved helping the Red Cross in war work.

2 January 1918
A meeting was held at the Working Men’s Club on January 2nd….A report of the Red Cross work connected with the Institute was read by Mrs Mellor. 2049 articles had been made in the last 4 months (9789 in the last 16 months) and these had been distributed to the hospitals.

Hurst WI minutes (D/EX1925/33/1/1)

A new opportunity for women

The Women’s Institute seems as though it has been part of English life since time immemorial, but in fact it first came to the country in 1915.

The Women’s Institute

In May of this year, Mrs Watt, who is well known for having started WI in many parts of England on the model of those which have been so successful in Canada, visited Burghfield for the second time and gave an address on “The Work of Women’s Institutes”. Inspired by what she said it was desired to form a branch. The first monthly meeting was held in the Jubilee Room on Thursday June 7th and nearly 40 members were enrolled.

The aims and objects of the Institute are as follow: a) Study home economies [sic], b) provide a centre for educational and social intercourse, and for all local activities, c) encourage home and local industries, d) develop co-operative enterprise, e) stimulate interest in the Agricultural Industry. Each monthly meeting has been well attended and interesting discussions have taken place, also songs and recitations have done much to enliven proceedings. It is hoped that the members will realise that the success of the Institute depends greatly on each member trying to take an active part by giving suggestions, entering into discussions at the various meetings, bearing in mind the words on the membership card, “to do all the good we can, in every way we can, to all the people we can, and above all to study household good in any work which makes the betterment of our home the advancement of our people and the good of our country.

Burghfield parish magazine, October 1917 (D/EX725/4)