Nether Heyford Tennis Club – November 2020

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Nether Heyford Tennis Club – 2020 Tournament results

Mixed Doubles – Frances Dickson and Andy Lawrence
Men’s Doubles – Gavin Wright and Ian Brodie
Ladies Doubles – Jo Ellison and Lynne Adams

Would you like to come and try out our new courts?

Please get in touch if you would like to come along and play.

Coaching – Adults – Saturday mornings
Beginners 9.00 am
Improvers 10.00 am

Free Friday Tennis – half term – 10.00 am – 3.00 pm

NEW to the tennis club in November – WALKING TENNIS

This is a slowed down version of the traditional game. Who is it for – anyone! No membership or tennis skills required.

Benefits:  Playing walking tennis can bring real benefits, aside from the physical health gains, players benefit from the boost of being outdoors with the mental health benefits of exercise, interaction with others, and a sense of achievement of developing new skills.

Starting Monday 16th November – 10.30 am to 11.30 am and then the three following Mondays at Nether Heyford Tennis Courts. Sessions will continue after this if there is demand. Equipment will be provided and there will be no charge for these 4 sessions.

For further information and to book a space please contact Jo using the details below.

For further information – please find us on Facebook or contact Jo on 01327 349094 / 07749 822016

Email: jodickson@btinternet.com

Website: clubspark.lta.org.uk/NetherHeyfordTennisClub

Full facilities and location details can be found on our Nether Heyford Tennis Club page.

Do you need help? Grants available from the Arnold’s Charity

DO YOU NEED HELP? GRANTS AVAILABLE

Need Help Box

The Arnold’s Charity is able to offer grants to residents of Nether Heyford and Upper Heyford who find themselves in need of help financially.

The grants which can be applied for are varied and include two categories.

Social Grants: All ages

The social grants are available to help residents who may be struggling financially. This could be an unexpected expense i.e. new glasses, dental treatment, a larger than anticipated bill, the need to travel to hospital appointments, heating, clothing, medical costs etc.

Eligibility: Resident of Nether Heyford or Upper Heyford

Educational Grants: Persons under 18 & Persons 18-24

Cash grants for Apprenticing and Education are available to or on behalf of persons who have not attained the age of 25.  This could be for learning purposes i.e. books, equipment, tools, etc.

Eligibility: 1. Under 25 years old. 2. Lived in Nether Heyford or Upper Heyford for over one year OR have been educated in the parish for over one year. 3. In need of financial assistance for educational purposes, subject to the terms of the scheme and approval of the trustees

The applications are considered by the Trustees at their meetings twice a year, in April and November. Deadlines for completed application forms are March 31st and October 31st.

Next deadline for application forms:

March 31st 2021

2021-03-31T23:59:00

  days

  hours  minutes  seconds

until

Grant Application Deadline

Application forms are available from:

Rev Stephen Burrow (Parish Church) – Trustee

s_p_burrow@yahoo.co.uk | 01327 344436 | 07511 544375

Jez Wilson (The Prattler)

heyford_prattler@yahoo.co.uk | 07761 672376

Nick Adams – Trustee

nick.adams@farmline.com | 07812 032509

Marina Eaton (Clerk to the Trustees at Wilson Browne Solicitors)

meaton@wilsonbrowne.co.uk | 01604 876697

Alternatively – Download, Print, Complete and Return:

Charity History:

The Arnold’s Charity was founded by the will of Edmund Arnold, in or about 1689. The Charity was set up to help five Parishes in the County of Northamptonshire – Stony Stratford, Nether and Upper Heyford, the Ancient Parish of St. Giles -Northampton, Stowe-IX-Churches and Weedon Bec and also Merton College, Oxford.

Edmund Arnold:

Born: Nether Heyford, Northamptonshire

Baptised: Stowe-Nine-Churches, Northamptonshire, 1607

Graduated: Merton College Oxford, 10th October 1661

Career: Lawyer – Doctors’ Commons, Knightrider Street, London (Described in ‘David Copperfield’ and referred to by Sherlock Holmes)

Died: Kensington, London, 27th March 1676

Buried: Beneath the chancel in St Bartholomew’s Church, Furtho, Northamptonshire

Edmund Arnold’s Charity – Registered Charity number 260589

Arnold’s Education Foundation – Registered Charity number 310590

https://heyfordprattler.org/arnoldscharity

The Story of Heyford: Civil Justice in 1819 V3C17

In 1819 William West and Joseph Masters were employed by Thomas Adams to transport thirty-nine thousand bricks by boat from Heyford to Northampton. It appears that they performed the task but were not paid. So they took their case to the court in Northampton. The following pages are copied from the legal documentation which shows how the case proceeded.

The Agreement – 24th March, 1819. The agreement to transport the bricks consisted of the following hand-written note, written presumably by Thomas Adams.

March 24th, 1819. Mr Thomas Adams for Joseph Masters and William West of Lower Heyford for boating from Heyford to Northampton 39 thousand bricks @ 2s per thousand which comes to £3.185s.od. Due to the said Joseph Masters and William West.

The Complaint – 13th Novemer 1819. When they were not paid they took their case to court in Northampton:

Northamptonshire to wit. Be it remembered that this thirteenth day of November in the year of our Lord One thousand eight hundred and nineteen, William West and Joseph Masters of Nether Heyford in the county aforesaid, labourers, complaineth and maketh oath before me, one of His Majesty’s Justices of the Peace for the said county, that in March last the said William West and Joseph Masters were hired by Thomas Adams of Nether Heyford in the county aforesaid, yeoman, to be labourers in the business of removing bricks to him the said Thomas Adams for the wages of 2s per thousand, and that they the said William West and Thomas Adams did accordingly as aforesaid enter upon and afterwards perform the said service, and that he the said Thomas Adams hath refused to pay to them the said William West and Joseph Masters the sum of three pounds and 18s justly due for the said service, and thereupon they the said William West and Joseph Masters prayeth that justice may be done in the premises.

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The Summons — 13th November 1819. As a result of the complaint, the constable of Nether Heyford was commanded to summon Thomas Adams to appear before the court the following week.

County of Northamptonshire to wit. To the constable of Nether Heyford in the said county. Whereas information and complaint hath been made unto me ].S.W. Tamwell Esq. one of His Majesty’s Justices of the Peace in and for the said county , upon the oath of William West and Joseph Masters of Nether Heyford in the said county, that in March last they the said William West and Joseph Masters were hired by Thomas Adams of Nether Heyford in the county aforesaid, yeoman, to be his labourers in the business of removing thirty-nine thousand bricks for the wages of two shillings per thousand and that they the said William West and Joseph Masters have duly performed the said service and that the said Thomas Adams doth refuse to pay to them the said William West and Joseph Masters the wages justly due unto them for the said service amounting to three pounds and eighteen shillings. These are therefore to command you forthwith to summon the said Thomas Adams to appear before me at the Record House in Northampton in the said county on Saturday the twentieth day of November instant at the hour of eleven in the fore noon of the same day, to shew cause why the said wages should not be paid. And be you then there to certify what you shall have done in the premises. Given under my hand and seal the thirteenth day of November in the Year of Our Lord One thousand eight hundred and nineteen.

J.S.W. Tamwell

The Summons is delivered. The justice of the Peace heard from the Constable how the summons had been given:

County of Northampton to wit. William Robinson of Heyford in the said county stated on his oath that he is Constable of Heyford aforesaid and that he gave to Thomas Adams the summons now produced and saw him take and read it.

The Judgement – 20th November 1819. It seems that Thomas Adams didn’t turn up on 20th November for the hearing and the justice of the Peace gives his judgement.

Northamptonshire to wit. Whereas information and complaint hath been made unto J.S.W. Tamwell Esq. one of His Majesty’s Justices of the Peace in and for the said county upon the oath of William West and Joseph Masters of Nether Heyford in the said county that in March they the said William West and Joseph Masters were hired by Thomas Adams of Nether Heyford in the county aforesaid, yeoman, to be his labourers in the business of removing thirty-nine thousand bricks for him the said Thomas Adams. And that they the said William West and Joseph Masters hath duly performed the said service. And that he the said Thomas Adams doth refuse to pay to them the said William West and Joseph Masters the wages justly due unto them for such service as aforesaid. And whereas the said Thomas Adams was duly summoned to appear before me to shew cause why the said wages should not be paid to the said William West and Joseph Masters, but has not appeared and hath not showed any just cause as aforesaid, and hath not paid the same. We therefore having duly examined into the Truth and Matter of the said complaint, and upon due consideration had thereof, do hereby judge, determine, and order, that he the said Thomas Adams upon due notice hereof do pay or cause to be paid to them the said William West and Joseph Masters the sum of three pounds and eighteen shillings which appears to us to be just and reasonable to be paid by him the said Thomas Adams to them the said William West and Joseph Masters as and for their wages as aforesaid. Given under our hands and seals the twentieth day of November in the year of our Lord One thousand eight hundred and nineteen.

The order is delivered. Following the judgement, the constable of Heyford, William Robinson then served the order on Thomas Adams.

The above William Robinson on his saith that on the twenty third day of November last he served the order hereto annexed on Thomas Adams therein named and who read the same in the presence of this informant. Sworn before us this 18 December 1819.

The outcome. There are no further documents with these records so we don’t know if the debt was eventually paid or whether there was any further legal action. But these documents do give us an insight into the workings of civil justice in the early 1800s.

~~

Extract from “The Story of Heyford” – Local book series published in the late 1990’s

Volume 3 of 4 | Chapter 17 of 17 | Page 30 to 32

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Heyford’s Historical Heritage  |  How the books were created

Index  |  Covers

The Story of Heyford (Extra): Nether Heyford WW2 veteran Hugh Adams recalls VE day in 1945

Northampton WWII veteran who was involved in liberating Denmark recalls celebrations in the street – Hugh ended up watching England winning the World Cup with Danish friends he made after VE Day

A Second World War veteran who was in Denmark when the end of the Second World War was announced is recalling memories as the 75th anniversary approaches.

Hugh Adams, who is now 96, was part of the Royal Dragoons, the regiment that was responsible for liberating Denmark three days before VE Day.

As the war was drawing to a close, there were tens of thousands of German soldiers in Denmark and it was Hugh’s regiment that was tasked with liberating them.

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Hugh with the President of Danish Rotary at the celebrations for the 50th anniversary of VE Day.

The great-grandfather-of-four said: “We travelled through northern Germany and some of the towns were in complete devastation. They were really badly damaged and it was a startling experience to witness that.

“I even got some poor shots on my little camera as we went through.

“As we arrived in Copenhagen on May 4 I was driving the jeep. Half of Copenhagen were on the streets.

“The reception we got was something that I shall never forget.

“It was so different to anywhere we had seen in the previous six months.”

On the night of the liberation on May 5, 1945 Hugh and his regiment stayed in Copenhagen before travelling to Odense, the following day where they remained for the summer.

Hugh added: “My regiment moved back to Odense where we spent the summer and looked after the repatriation of Germans in Denmark.

“Germany was keen on looking after Denmark because it was a source of food.

“They called it the land of milk and honey.

“We made friends with Danish people and got to know quite a lot of the resistance people who did a fantastic job.”

As the liberation of Denmark happened a number of days before the end of the war was announced, VE Day was not as iconic for the Royals.

“VE Day brings back memories and so forth, but I was actually back in Odense in a school when the news broke through the radio that war was over,” Hugh continued.

“It was, to me, a bit of an anti-climax after the excitement of liberating Denmark days earlier.

“Obviously we celebrated then with the Danish people who were wonderful and it was a great experience.”

Hugh, who still lives at the family farm in Nether Heyford, was granted an early repatriation in the September of 1945, due to his family’s important work.

“We were short of food after the war and my family were farming so I needed to get back to help with that,” he said.

“I was 21 when I was demobilised and I settled in Northampton where the family farm was and that was my career from then on.

“That was the end of my connection with the army until 50 years later when we went back to celebrate.”

Hugh married in 1950 and also kept in contact with some of the Danish people he made friends with.

The veteran and his family went back to visit Denmark 21 years after the war ended.

“I stayed with a delightful family with whom I had befriended in 1945. They were all very musical and we sang all the old wartime songs and drank lots of Schnapps,” Hugh added.

“We also watched England win the football World Cup on their television.”

Hugh, who is one of the founding members of Northampton West Rotary Club, also visited Denmark again, alongside many other British veterans, in 1995 when the people of Denmark invited them to celebrate the 50th anniversary of VE Day.

Published in the Daventry Express – Monday May 11th 2020

The Story of Heyford (Extra): Heyford Residents who served in WW2

Many Heyford residents served in the Second World War 1939-1945 in the various services.

Hazel Adams – Red Cross Nurse, Royal Navy

Hugh Adams – Royal Dragoons

Albert Beharrell – Army

Richard (Dicky) Bishop-Bailey – Army

Ken Boyes – Army

Helen Cadman – WAAF (Women’s Auxiliary Air Force)

Arthur Charvill – Royal Navy & Army (MP)

Harry Charvill – Army

Charles Copson – Army

Tom Davies – Fleet Air Arm / RAF

Ralph Faulkner – Bevan boy / Army

Gordon Hayes – RAF

Marjorie Hamborg – Red Cross

Frank Higginbottom – Army

Frank Hyde – RAF

Donald Jafkins – Argyle & Sutherland Highlanders

Ernest Jones – Army

Bill Kingston – RAF

Nan Kingston – WAAF (Women’s Auxiliary Air Force)

Jack Lee – Royal Engineers

Joe Matthews – Army

Charles Masters – Army

George Masters – Royal Army Medical Corps

Sheila Masters – ATS (Auxiliary Territorial Service)

Sid Masters – Army

Ray Metcalfe – Army

Cyril Mitchell – Royal Army Ordnance Corps

John Moore – Merchant Navy

Rita Moore – NAAFI (Navy, Army and Air Force Institutes)

Alec Nial – Royal Navy

Bill Norrie – Royal Navy

Tom Oliver – Royal Navy

Joan Pearson – Woman’s Land Army

Dorothy Reeve – COD (Central Ordnance Depot)

Margaret Reeve – Woman’s Land Army

Derek Roberts – Royal Marines

Paul Rogers – Royal Army Medical Corps

William Rogers – HAC (Honourable Artillery Company)

Jack Rossiter – Royal Army Ordnance Corps

Dennis Searle – Merchant Navy

Frank Townsend – Army

Arthur Turland – RAF

Mabel Wallace – WAAF (Women’s Auxiliary Air Force)

William Wallace – Highland Light Infantry

Dennis Weaver – Royal Army Intelligence Corps

Bert Wilkinson – 13/18th Hussars

Rev Wintersgill – Queens Royal Regiment

 

And those sadly killed in action:

Charles Leslie Foster – Flight Sergeant (Air Gunner) RAF – Killed in Action 23.5.1944 – Aged 24

Frederick Heeler – Lance Corporal Army – Killed in Action 24.7.1944 – Aged 28

Frederick Watson – Sapper Army – Killed in Action 10.10.1944 – Aged 22

John Bennett Whiting – Lieutenant Army – Killed in Action 1.9.1942 – Aged 25

 

 

Published in The Prattler – July & August 2020

Many thanks to Hugh Adams for originally compiling a list and to those that have contacted us and added to it since the original publication via the

Facebook “Nether Heyford Past” group

Jez Wilson

Nether Heyford W.I. – June 2020

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Here we are – another month on and still waiting for life to go back to normal! What can you put in an article about a group which hasn’t been able to meet since March? Well, one thing that came to mind was the news that, in December 2020, Nether Heyford WI will celebrate their 90th Anniversary! During a conversation with Mo Wright (a long time member) I discovered that she had a back copy of The Prattler with an article about the 50th Anniversary celebrations – memories galore with many good old Nether Heyford names that people will no doubt remember.

During 1930 three ladies, Mrs J. O. Adams, Mrs Punch and Mrs George were walking back to their homes in Nether Heyford. They had been attending the monthly meeting of the Womens Institute in Bugbrooke, where they had been members for three years. As they walked along the quiet lane, they discussed the formation of a branch of the W.I. in Nether Heyford and Mrs Adams volunteered to see the County Secretary at W.I. House in Northampton. When the required 10 ladies had been gathered together, the great day arrived and the foundation papers were duly signed in November 1930. In actual fact there were 48 members present, far more than the required 10! Mrs Adams was the first President, Mrs George the Secretary and their monthly meetings were held in the school where Mrs Carrington, the Headmaster’s wife, supplied the hot water to make the tea. Cups and saucers were loaned by the Baptist Chapel, carried over in a clothes basket and then washed up at home before their return!! By the first Annual Report on December 3rd 1931 they had purchased ‘6 doz of crockery and spoons, an aluminium tea urn and a large tea pot’. Obviously the clothes basket was too heavy!

Their activities were varied, sometimes a speaker on a subject of interest to countrywomen, competitions of all kinds, an Old Tyme Dancing class and Keep Fit classes run by Mrs Blaney. Subscriptions were 2/6d. They corresponded for many years with a group in Queensland, Australia and forged another link, nearer to home, with the Delapre Townswomen’s Guild. It was realised that the village needed a focal point for expanding activities. Fund raising of all kinds, including a Garden Party at Manor House, then occupied by The Vice President Mrs Shiel, raised a sum of £100. ”An ankle competition had been suggested and the Secretary was asked to see Capt. Shiel, Mr Knight and Mr Whitton with regard to judging same”. The minutes never revealed which gentleman was given the job!! As you know, the Village Hall was eventually built by volunteers in 1960 and is still the meeting place of Nether Heyford WI.

Our WI has taken part in raising funds for many charities, assisted at the Blood Donor Clinics, held Annual Produce Shows, have attended the Queen’s Garden party at Buckingham Palace, won the shield for handicrafts at the County Show In Nether Heyford and won the County General Knowledge Quiz in 1968. This was all in our first 50 years – what we do next is down to us!

So, we look backward to our Golden Jubilee Celebration and forward to our Ninetieth Birthday Celebration and see how life has changed in 40 years. There are many differences – those in travel, technology, communication and attitudes being just a few. Some of these have altered the way in which the Women’s Institute functions and few letters change hands now with emails having taken over. But the pandemic has brought some of the WI’s original baking skills back into fashion, with the entire nation rushing to buy flour and cake ingredients! However, the basic foundation of the WI hasn’t changed. In Nether Heyford there is still as much friendship, good humour and interest in other people’s life stories and crafts, as well as the love of our village life, that there ever was. If, when all this is over and you feel you would like to come to join us for an evening, please do. We would love to see you!

Mary Rice – Heyford Lodge – 01327 340101

 

The Story of Heyford (Extra): VH 60th Grand Opening: 7th May 1960

Nether Heyford Village Hall 60th Anniversary

Grand opening: 7th May 1960 

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Left to Right: Lieut.-Colonel C C S Genese, Miss L N D La Touche, Viscount Althorp, Major W Blaney, Viscountess Althorp, Mr R H Adams, Mrs M M Bartlett and Mr C E North.

Their children and grandchildren will owe them gratitude

‘A memorial to industry and good sense’. That is how Viscount Althorp described Lower Heyford’s new village hall when he declared it open on Saturday Afternoon. Not one penny, he said had been spent on labour costs since the first soil was turned by the villagers in 1958, apart from the short period when the roof was being erected by contractors. He mentioned the generous help from the Rural Community Council and the grant from the Ministry of Education. Village organisations he mentioned with gratitude were the Parish Council, Parochial Council, Methodist and Baptist Churches, British Legion, W.I., Darby & Joan, School managers and the local Athletic Club.

Viscount Althorp said he was sure the Hall would not become a passive venture –
this was most likely to happen when there was a lack of youth among the committee members. The children and grandchildren of those concerned in the building would owe them a great debt of gratitude. Viscount Althorp, accompanied by the Viscountess was introduced by Major W Blaney (president of the building committee) who said the opening was an outstanding day in the life and history of the village. The committee had been exceptionally good, and he mentioned especially Mr George Masters and Mr H Thorneycroft.

Mr Hugh Adams (committee member) gave a history of the building from the first decision (by the W.I. in 1933) to form a special building fund and praised the determination and loyalty of those who gave up their spare time to work on the hall. He also paid tribute to Major Blaney as chairman of the committee. The hall must now be utilized to the fullest extent he said. The building committee would hand over to a management committee.

Mrs M Bartlett, chairman of the executive committee of the Northamptonshire Rural Community Council, said the hall should be used for everybody in the village and supply the social needs of both the old and the young. She mentioned a conference to be held in the County Hall, Northampton next October at which representatives of all village halls in the county would meet. She paid tribute to the help give by Lt-Col Charles Genese (secretary of Northants Rural Community Council and Miss L N La Touche (HM Inspector, Ministry of education). Mr C North voiced thanks to the speakers and Major Blaney a comprehensive vote of thanks. Two visitors from London who attended the ceremony were Miss M Hann (Architect from the National Council of Social Services and Miss O Emerson-Price from the Ministry of Education.

An opening dance was held at the hall in the evening.

An article from the Mercury & Herald – Friday 13th May 1960

Published in The Prattler – May 2020

The Story of Heyford: Nether Heyford Women’s Institute V4C1

One day in 1930 three ladies were walking back to their homes in Nether Heyford. They  had been attending the monthly meeting of the Women’s Institute in Bugbrooke, where they had been members for three years. They were Mrs J.O. dams, mother of Mr Hugh Adams, Mrs Punch, and Mrs George. As they walked along the quiet lane they discussed the formation of a W.I. in Nether Heyford, and Mrs Adams volunteered to see the County Secretary at W.I. House in Northampton. When the required ten ladies had been gathered together, the foundation papers were signed – with nervously shaking hands – in November 1930.

The Programme from 1938

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TheStoryOfHeyford-NetherHeyford_W1_P3The early years
Mrs Adams was the first President and Mrs George the Secretary. Their meetings were held in the school where Mrs Carrington, the Headmaster’s Wife, supplied the hot water to make the tea. Cups and saucers were loaned by the Baptist Chapel, carried over in a clothes basket and then washed up before their return. The activities were varied, speakers on subjects of interest to countrywomen, competitions of all kinds, and classes on old-time dancing and keep fit. Subscriptions were 2/6d which though seeming a small amount, was about on a par with those paid today.

A link was formed with a W.l. in Queensland, Australia, and members found much interest in exchanging news and views with an organisation on the other side of the world. During the War, parcels were gratefully received by members, in particular those containing soap, which was in very short supply. Another link nearer home, and in more recent days, was formed With Delapre Townswomens Guild. This continued for many years into the 1980s, with enjoyable get-togethers and exchange of ideas.

For many years meetings were held in the Baptist Chapel Schoolroom, but quite early on the W.I. had an ambition to have its own hall, so a Building Fund was established and money-raising events of all kinds began, including a garden party at the Manor house, then occupied by Mrs Shiel (Vice-Chairman at the time). The sum of £100 was raised, but the W.l. Hall was not to be and the money was eventually passed on to the committee set up to establish a Village Hall. This was eventually completed in 1960 on ground that had belonged to Mr Adams, With the help of village volunteers from all walks of life.

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Wide ranging activities
The activities of the Institute are far—reaching. The subjects of our speakers and demonstrators are extremely varied. “Jam”? Yes, why not? And pickles, cakes, and grub of all kinds. Not to mention handicrafts, art, gardens, games and sport, local and family history, wild life and conservation, public speaking. “Jerusalem”? Well, no, not these days at our local meetings, though it is always sung with gusto at county and national events.

An annual produce show, open to all village residents, started in 1969, still continues in 1999, and creates much interest and fun.

Teams from our W.I. have done well in general knowledge quizzes run by the County Federation. In 1968 Mrs Judy Ward, Mrs Sheila Masters and daughter Hilary were the winners, and in 1994 we triumphed again, this time with Mrs Hyde, Mrs Essery and Mrs Joan Wright joining Mrs Masters.

For many years W.I. members have helped at the Blood Donors Clinic which is set up in the Village Hall twice a year. We serve the donors with the welcome tea and biscuits after they have given their life-saving blood.

Fund raising is a perennial occupation for all village organisations, and the W.I. is no exception. As well as making sure that we cover all our own expenses – speakers, hall fees, etc – these days we concentrate on raising funds for the Village Hall, now our regular and familiar meeting place. Money-making events include antiques evenings, occasional lunches (appropriately called ‘Nosh and Natter’) where senior citizens enjoy good food and good company, concerts (with, of course, nosh) and a stall (selling, of course, home—made nosh) at the annual Village Hall Fete, at which members have been known to dress up in weird and wonderful array — St Trinian’s and the Mad Hatters Tea Party are amongst the more memorable.

In the wider world our members take part in County Federation events. There is a tree planted in our name in Brixworth Country Park. Each year we discuss and vote on resolutions to be brought up at the National General Meetings, the results of which are passed to Governments, so that our W.I. plays an integral, if small, part in bringing subjects of importance to government attention, and action has been taken in many areas from these. Every few years we send a delegate to represent our W.I. and several others, and their reports are heard with great interest.

Canadian origins
All this started, not in England’s green and pleasant land, but in a small Canadian town called Stoney Creek, where a farmer’s wife, Mrs Hoodless, lost a child and realised that this was happening far too often to women of her generation owing to ignorance of simple health and hygiene rules. She made it her life’s work to help educate women so that they could have happy and healthy families. And on 19th February 1897 the first W.I. in the world was inaugurated at Stoney Creek.

The movement came to Britain in 1915 – the first W.I. being formed in Llanfairpwll in Anglesey, and the national Federation was established in 1917. One can scarcely believe that in those days it was difficult to find the 2/- (10p) subscription and to obtain the husband’s permission to attend meetings. However the enthusiasm of those early members surmounted all obstacles, and while the emphasis was on skills for country living, their horizons were immensely widened. I suppose it would be called ‘empowerment’ these days. Women who would have said they ‘couldn’t do anything,’ suddenly found that they could hold a meeting together, speak in public, demonstrate their skills and share their experiences. Many members have increased their skills and developed their talents at Denman College, the W.I.’s own Adult Education College in Oxfordshire. Opened in 1948 and named after Lady Denham, the first National Chairman, it offers courses to members on anything from painting to philosophy, from lace-making to local government, opening to women whole new worlds.

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Seventy years and still going strong
Nether Heyford W.I. has passed its Silver, Golden and Diamond jubilees, and our ‘70th’, whatever that is called, comes up in the year 2000. It would take too much time and space to enumerate all the fine personalities who have graced our membership down the years. But we remember with pride some of those who have gone from us. Mrs Adams, the first and longest serving president – twenty-two years non stop. Mrs George, founder member and long time secretary and president. Mrs Nora Humphrey and Mrs Lou Garrett (later Robinson), both stalwart members and both serving as treasurer for many years. Mrs Ellen (Nen) Blaney, enthusiastic and generous-hearted member, Mrs Hilda Chapman, long serving secretary, instigator and for years the organiser of our produce show. Mrs Eve Gothard, County Committee member and enthusiast for our overseas connections. And Mrs Nellie Clements, willing, skillful, tireless committee worker, the kind of member who is the backbone of our movement.

Back in 1897, Canadian women chose for their motto, ‘For home and country’, and despite all the changes and modern improvements that have taken place down the century, it is difficult to think of a phrase that more closely reflects the purpose of the Women’s Institute movement.

Sheila Masters (with the help of Maureen Wright, and other members)

~~

Extract from “The Story of Heyford” – Local book series published in the late 1990’s

Volume 4 of 4 | Chapter 1 of 8 | Pages 2 to 6TheStoryOfHeyford_NetherHeyford_Footer

Heyford’s Historical Heritage  |  How the books were created

Index  |  Covers

The Story of Heyford (Extra): Sheep Dipping in the early days at Whitehall Farm – Hugh Adams

Sheep Dipping in the early days at Whitehall Farm

We used to take the sheep to be dipped at Upper Heyford. Jack Perkin and I would leave the buildings at Whitehall Farm around 1pm with 40 sheep, driving them along the road towards Heyford. We would pass High House Wharf where the West family (Coal Merchants) lived. On the right side of the road would be the house on the bridge where Ted Grey and his wife Ellen lived. Carrying on down the hill on the right by the side of the canal and past Mr and Mrs Fry (he was a carpenter) following on down the road towards the village, on the left the French family (now Adrian Hayes) – past the Cemetery – down the hill on the right, the Johnson family.

We are now in the village and on the left was Sid Eales shoe mending hut, past the little green. We would pass on the right the Butchers shop kept by Sid Capel (now Glen). We had to keep an eye on the sheep at this point otherwise they would escape down Church Street!! Next was Chapel Cottage, Mrs George. David Browning kept the shop, past the Foresters Arms, the landlord was Tom Rolfe. Now the sheep would take to the green where there was lots of good grass! Turn left into Middle Street past the School and School House where Mr Carrington, the headmaster lived with his wife and 6 children. Next to the Sun Inn was the Farmhouse, Mr and Mrs Will Smith, past Bens Orchard (full of Apple Trees), now it was plain sailing on the way to Upper Heyford.

Our destination was Dovecote Farm where Mr Cosford would be expecting us. The sheep would be put through the dipping bath. This would take about one or two hours. After a cup of tea and then the journey home with two tired men and a very wet dog called Nell. She had been dipped too.

Hugh Adams

Letter published in The Prattler – March 2020