1950-59 Records of WI members' monthly meetings

Hilary Roadley and Janet Birchmore from WI record books


January  – Rug making class to begin. Thanks to Mrs J Lawrance for the gift of a tray.

February– suggestion members turn up in force at next Parish Council meeting so that a resolution for better drainage and lighting could be sent to Chesterton Rural District Council. Appeal for tinfoil, milk bottle tops and for spare magazines for the forces by WVS. Talk by Mrs Pemberton ‘visits to Denmark’ (one visit by 52 WI members).

March  – members encouraged to go to Parish Council AGM to show support for better drainage, lighting and bus service.

April  – proposed outing to Royal Mint and Tower of London.

May  – collection for British Sailors Society in Harston. Talk by Mrs Peck ‘Days in the life of a mayoress’.

June  – talk by Miss Warrington ‘Today and the world we live in’- ‘members felt what an age of wonder and achievement we lived in and could only hope that all these experiments might be used for mankind and not destruction’.

July  – garden party at the vicarage. Objection made about the advertising board for teas was put on the grass by the memorial, letter to be sent to County Council.

September  – agreed to have house to house collection in aid of St, Dunstan. Talk by Mrs Guest on lampshade making.

October  – letter of sympathy to be sent to the Greenes on the death of Sir Graham Greene. Talk by Mr Seddon on ‘Can we cope with rising prices’

November  – WI piano sold for £10. Talk by Mrs Shufflebottom om ‘Little England beyond Wales’

December  – talk, film shown by Ministry of Information,  ‘the common cold’, ‘that nice cup of tea’ and ‘ food poisoning’.


January– dress making classes to begin. Talk by Miss Barr ‘drama’. Few members at the meeting due to bad weather.

February – talk by Mr Dunlop ‘Can we cope with rising prices’ , he suggested work more hours and put more work into these hours and have more production to sell over seas.

March  – announced outing to ‘Festival of Britain’ in June. Notice given next member to be held in the garden of ‘The Limes’.

April  – talk by Mr Peacock ‘Life in Burma’. Collection of eggs for Addenbrookes.

May  – whist drive held at ‘The Limes’ in aid of the Deaf Society and raised £3.18.9.

June  – £8.6.0 collected in the village for British Sailor’s Society.

July  – agreed to employ a man to tend to the war memorial when members were unable to do it. AGM in London, Lady Tansleysoke about the ‘Guild of Learners’ which is open to all WI members and numerous handicrafts can be learnt.

September 1951 – speaker ‘Why we pay rates’ unable to attend but her sister spoke about travel.

October 1951 – talk by Mrs Weightman ‘Prison life’ of women prisoners in Holloway jail.

November 1951 – talk by Mrs Peck ‘Christmas memories’.

December 1951 – Appeal for books for the troops. Miss Hurrell led a debate on ‘It is better to talk too much than too little’. 


January  – whist drive raised £6.6.0 for St. Dunstan.

February  – no meeting because of the death of King George 6th.

March  – Agreed outing to Norwich which included a tour round Colman’s factory. Agreed to hold a whist drive in aid of Addenbrookes Radio Fund.

April– arranged a visit to the Chelsea Flower Show cost 9/-. Talk by Doctor Young ‘ Changes in medicine during the past 100 years’, stressing the improved conditions of today were brought about by the growth of knowledge in medicine, physical science, chemistry and biology. 73 eggs collected for the hospital and large box of tinfoil.

May  – Talk by Miss Payne ‘work of Dr. Barnada’s Homes’ who stressed the importance of suitable foster parents for the children.

June  – Talk and demonstration about ‘Hoover washing machine’.

July  – Talk by Dr, Walker ‘Blood Transfusion’.

September  – Talk and film by Miss Larter ‘use of solid fuel cookers’.

October  – Talk by Miss Lucy Smith ‘Baghdad and her time with 3 Moslem princesses.

November– Talk and demonstration of cake making by members of Eastern Electricity Board.

December  – Talk by Mrs Tunkentine ‘weather and superstitions and old tales’. Announced Harston to be attached to Great Shelford, Little Shelford, Stapleford and Thriplow W.I.’s.


January – craft classes to start in January.

February 1953 – money £6.13.6 sent to St. Dunstan’s. Talk by Rev. Gibbon ‘a state in South America, where she lived for some years as a missionary. She showed clothing and utensils made by the natives.

March  – guests invited from ‘over sixties’ club. Agreed an outing to Whipsnade Zoo, calling at a factory on the way. Agreed a donation to the Coronation Committee.

April  – outing to Whipsnade, going to Hatfield House instead of a factory. 46 eggs collected for Addenbrookes. Appeal for sorters of gift clothing for flood relief. Talk by Mrs Mitchell ‘Durham College’.

May  – raffle tickets to be sold in aid of Cambs and Isle of Ely Agricultural Show. Talk by Mrs Marshall ‘this sense of humour’. Film shown on road safety.

June  – talk by Miss Sertry? ‘flower arranging’.

July  – agreed to send resolution to Annual Council meeting ‘manufacturersto increase supplies of special fittings of childrens shoes and sandalsfor broad and narrow feet. Talk by Miss Rundell ‘bottling fruit by pressure cooker’.

September  – resolution about shoe fitting rejected. Talk by Mrs Peck, who gave out 20 questions about the WI, after members answered them, she gave full explanations of the answers.

October  – members asked if they would like to have ‘letter friends’ from America as part of Overseas Links. Talk by Mr. Shoote, headmaster Harston school, on ‘Education’.

November– letter received from WI president in Malaya stating they would be pleased to receive a parcel of various small needlework articles.

December  – talk by Miss Lucie Smith ‘Persia’.


January  – dress making class to begin. Talk by Rev. Garett Jones ‘life of a hospital padre’.

February– talk by Miss Marshall ‘Finland’ where she had lived for 6 years.

March – St Dunstan collection £5.1.6. Letter to be written to Parish Council about the open drain running through the Main street and time it was piped.

April  – letter to Chesterton Rural Council about piping the drain. Agreed a bursary to a member who wishes to go on a course at Denman College. Talk by MrPateman ‘superstitions’explaining where they originated. Motto for the year ‘the best way to kill time is by working it to death’.

May  – letter from Chesterton Rural Council stating arrangements had been made for regular and adequate cleaning of the drain. Wi to check this is done. Talk by Mr. Cramp ‘gardening’.

June – members asked for gifts for a lucky draw at the ‘Heating Fund Garden Party’ to be held at Colonel Hurrell’s. W.V.S. urged members to collect milk bottle tops. Talk by Mrs. Dorothy Hon ‘Malaya – climate and customs’ dresses from the country were shown.

July – Mrs Armstrong to hold the W.I. garden fete in her garden. Talk by Miss Hutchinson ‘child psychology’ stressing that home love and security played very important part of a child’s life.

September – new tablecloth and the badge to be embroidered on by Mrs Kendon. Talk by Miss Rundle ‘winemaking’.

October –  no talk but musical group of Mr. & Mrs. Moore and family giving a performance of 18th centuary music, mainly Handel and Mozart.

November   – talk by Mrs Mitchell, lantern slides ‘Switzerland’.

December– agreed to send a resolution to the spring Council meeting, namely ‘that children on buses with ½ fares should not occupy seats if adults were standing’. Talk and demonstration by Mrs Fawcett ‘Patchwork’.


September  – Discussion on the dolls that had been sent from our link in Malaya.


May– A letter of thanks from Addenbrookes Hospital for the gift of 108 eggs.

June  –  It was agreed that a box be put in a suitable place at future monthly meeting to receive small subscriptions for the purpose of buying flowers or a small gift to the sick when garden flowers are not available.  The box to be called The Blessing Box.

Mrs Passley appealed for old clothes, books and magazines for Fulbourn patients.

September  – Mrs Armstrong appealed for greater support for the Drama Group, with a view to entering two plays for the WI Drama Festival in 1957.


February – The Malayan link correspondent read a very interesting letter from Malaya, saying that two Malayans were shortly coming to England to study WI methods and hoped that they would be able to visit our Institute.

April  – Miss Smith reported on her visit to the Home for  Elderly people, Langdon House to which this WI make a contribution.

September  – A letter from the parish Council was read regarding the road names in Harston and unfortunately nothing further could be done until the Government agreed to the necessary funding.


January – A letter of thanks received from Fulbourn Hospital giving grateful acknowledgement for the proceeds of the Social Evening.


September  – A letter was read from the Parish Council stating that there would be no objection to the WI approaching the appropriate bodies directly concerning the dangerous roads in the Village due to fast moving traffic.











This page was added on 29/04/2020.

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