The Story of Heyford (Extra): Pensioners Club – Christmas 1989

NetherHeyfordPensionersClub1989

“My nan Florrie Coles would have been 111 today. This is the Nether Heyford pensioners club in 1989. She came to live with us in 1985 from London and was welcomed into the village by all these lovely people. She is 7th from the left front row, in black. Anyone recognise their relatives ?”

Photograph published on the Facebook group Nether Heyford Past “Thanks for the Memories”

By Jeanette Bradstreet Letts (with Ray Bradstreet & Stephen Bradstreet)

3rd April 2018

Back Row (Left to Right):

  1. Mr Weaver
  2. Mr Denny
  3. Mrs Hardwick (?)
  4. Mrs Smith
  5. Mrs Wallis
  6. Mr Tandy 
  7. Mr Jones
  8. Mrs Osborne
  9. Mr Humphrey
  10. Mr Perkin
  11. Mrs Hale
  12. Mrs Peggy Redley
  13. Mr Randall
  14. Mrs Marjorie Hamborg
  15. Mrs June Masters
  16. Mrs Weaver
  17. Mrs Shelia Masters
  18. Mr George Masters

Middle Row (Left to Right):

  1. Mrs Dunkley
  2. Mrs Gowan
  3. Mrs Butt
  4. Miss Reeve
  5. Mrs Lyons
  6. Mrs Wilkes
  7. Mrs Randall

Front Row (Left to Right):

  1. Mrs Kingston / Mary Butcher (?) 
  2. Mrs Jones
  3. Mr Fred Browning
  4. Mrs Phyllis Matthews
  5. Mrs Joan Clarke
  6. Mrs King
  7. Mrs Florrie Coles
  8. Miss Weaver
  9. Mrs Cornelius
  10. Mrs Wright
  11. Mrs MeDade (?)

For any corrections/additions to the names please contact Jez Wilson at The Prattler

13/10/2020

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

The Story of Heyford: A Concert in 1865 V3C6

A Concert in 1865

The poster shown opposite advertises a concert which took place in the village in 1865. An original of this poster is held in the Public Records Office at Wooton Hall in Northampton and it is to them that we owe our thanks for allowing us to reproduce it here. It raises several interesting points.

The School room
You could be forgiven for assuming that this might have been the Church Sunday School Rooms or the Chapel School Room. However neither of these buildings existed in 1865. Also the poster states that the room was ‘lent by Thomas Stanton for the occasion’. Thomas Stanton was the School headmaster at that time so the concert presumably took place in the School. However the current school building wasn’t built until 1879 so the concert must have taken place in the original school which stood on the site where the playground now is. The old school consisted of one room. Hence the concert took place ‘in the school room kindly lent by Thomas Stanton for the occasion’.

Those who left their homes when on fire
The concert was held ‘for the benefit of those who left their homes when on fire’. In the days of candle light, open fires, and thatched roofs, fire was a real hazard. With no insurance available for ordinary people, fire could leave a family destitute. Had there been a particular fire in the village or was the concert to raise money for more general funds to help fire victims?

The Blind organist
A key figure at the concert was Mr Beaver of Flore, the blind organist. We have a personal memory of Mr Beaver in the words of Bob Browning who was born in Heyford in 1892 and died in 1997 aged 104. Some details from this poster were published in the Prattler in May 1996 and Bob Browning responded with the following letter.

Dear Mrs Hamborg,

Many thanks for the Prattler which I find most interesting. I was interested in the May
issue which reported an item regarding a concert in the School—room in 1865 by Mr Beaver the blind organist.

Well, that gentleman taught my mother the organ and piano. When she was a girl she played the organ at Heyford Baptist Chapel and built up a good choir. When she was married the choir and members presented her with a marble clock and five oratorios which I still have and am very proud of. She often used to tell as children about the blind organist and how he used to walk from Flore to give her lessons. Some of us children wondered how he saw his way home in the dark. What a wonderful thing memory is!

Kindest regards and best wishes,

R. Browning

TheStoryOfHeyfordV3C6Concert1865

~~

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

Volume 3 of 4 | Chapter 6 of 17 | Page 12 & 13

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The Story of Heyford: The Jubilee Hall V1C7

The Jubilee Hall used to stand just behind the memorial green, on the opposite side of the road to where the Butchers and Patisserie are today. It was a stone barn with a thatched roof and was used as a meeting place for clubs and events much as the village hall is used today .

It was an ancient building, possibly built in the late 1600’s at the same time as ‘The Springs’, the thatched stone house which still stands today just behind the site of the Jubilee Hall. In the late 1800’s and early 1900’s the house and barn were occupied by a family called Smith who ran a laundry there. Bob Browning who was born in 1892 recalled the laundry but we don’t know for sure whether it was run from the house or the barn.

The name Jubilee Hall is believed to have originated from Queen Victoria’s Jubilee, probably her Diamond Jubilee of 1897. It may be that this was when the barn began to be used as a meeting place rather than as a laundry.

In 1914 the house and barn which had been owned by the Church were bought by the Ward family  The Jubilee Hall continued to be used as a meeting place until around the time of the second world war, and we have several local memories of it from the 1920’s and 1930’s.

The Jubilee Hall

JubileeHall_NetherHeyford_1920

Photo lent by Janet Randall

This photograph, lent by Janet Randall, was taken in 1920. n the far right is the old Post Office. To the left of this can be seen the scaffolding from the building of the New School House. In the centre of the picture is the thatched house known as ‘The Springs’, and in front of this is the war memorial.  Note the size of the oak tree beside it. The building on the left is the Jubilee Hall.

Memories of the Jubilee Hall
In March 1981 there was an article published in the Prattler, written by Marjorie Hamborg, based on information from Mr and Mrs Amos Lee, which gives a good insight into its use. This article is reprinted here in italics but we have also added some additional information based on the recollections of a number of other local people.

From The Prattler March 1981
“Our readers may have noticed that to the left of the thatched cottage facing the Memorial Green there is an old wall built of Northamptonshire stone. As this is now being reshaped to camouflage the building of a garage, I thought it would be of interest to know a bit about the history of this part of Heyford. So I visited my friends Mr and Mrs Amos Lee in Furnace Lane as they can give us new villagers some of the history of the Jubilee Hall that used to stand on this site.

At one time this was the only place where the young folk could gather, and here they came to play darts, skittles, rings, bagatelle, and a bit of boxing.”

It was also used for private parties. Dorothy Kingston had her Wedding reception there and Tommy Rolfe of the Foresters supplied them with a ham for £1.

The Pussyfoot Club
“The hall was mainly used by the men of the village, was teetotal, and was given the name ‘Pussyfoot Club’. The ladies of the village were invited when a dance was held there. Mrs Dorothy Kingston remembers them well, the fiddle being played by Lily Porch and Bern Kingston, and the piano by Lily’s sister Phillis. I also understand that Mrs Cameron from the school also used to take part. There was a small stove around which wet clothes could be dried in bad weather.”

Bob Browning who was born in 1892 recalled that ‘it was open six evenings a week between 6 pm and 10 pm. You could buy drinks there and play skittles. Sometimes there was also boxing, done in those days with bare fists.’

Bill Nickolls also remembers the Pussyfoot Club. The youngsters came from 5 pm to 8 pm. They paid a halfpenny per night to play darts, billiards, skittles and cards. Later the older ones came. They took it in turns to run the bar. Bill remembers on one occasion how somebody put a firework in the keyhole. The door jammed and they had to escape through the toilet window by climbing on the bucket.

Bill Kingston remembers the dances on Saturday nights. His father Bernard, and Lily Porch (later Mrs Green) played the violin. They danced waltzes, the military two-step and the lancers (a formation dance).

“However partly due to agitation by mothers whose sons became too fond of the card games carried on there, and partly to difficulty of getting committee members to organise events, the hall fell into disuse.”

The Laundry
“Before Mr and Mrs Ward came to live in the cottage Mrs Lee’s stepmother had a laundry there and Mrs Ada Smith can remember as a child seeing Mr Lee trundling his basket of clean laundry up Furnace Lane.”.

Cobblers Shop
Another person remembered with the Jubilee Hall during the 1930’s was Sid Eales. There was a small wooden hut next to the Jubilee Hall in which he ran a cobblers shop. He had been injured during the first world war and walked with a limp. He not only mended shoes, but would also take bets on your behalf if you wanted him to.

Fire wood and the black market
Jack Haddon had a timber yard a little way up Weedon Road Where the Randalls now live.

“Mr Lee tells me that during the second world war years the hall was used for chopping firewood and he remembers what a grand employer Jack Haddon was, working alongside Mr Lee, Mr Andrews, three or four women from the village and others, and there was a good trade with the bundling machine working at full blast. The wood came from as far as Brockhall Park and was stored in the paddock at the side.”

Jack Haddon apparently also did some black market dealing there during the War. There’s a story which says that while a deal was being struck inside the hall there was some panic because the local bobby was seen approaching. “Don’t worry,” said Jack reassuringly, “he’s only coming to pick up his joint!”

The Final days
When at last the hall was no longer used it fell into disrepair. Around 1954 the building had become unsafe, and when David Ward removed one of the beams it finally collapsed. Mr Ward had the wall built along the boundary line and many of the remaining slabs of stone disappeared in various directions.

Weedon Road/Furnace Lane

JubileeHall_NetherHeyford_FurnaceLane

Photo lent by Janet Randall

This photograph shows the view along the Weedon Road. The Jubilee Hall is on the right hand side and Sid Eales Cobblers shop can be seen at the end of the building.  On the left of the picture is the butchers shop and slaughterhouse. Note also the telegraph poles and the lack of proper kerbs and pavements.

Margorie Hamborg and Stephen Ferneyhough

~~

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

Volume 1 of 4 | Chapter 7 of 13 | Pages 13,14 & 15

TheStoryOfHeyford_NetherHeyford_Footer

Heyford’s Historical Heritage  |  How the books were created

Index  |  Covers