Chitterne Now and Then
Blog Archive - November 2011

Sunday 27th November 2011 - WW1 Talk Online

For those of you who missed GD's fantastic talk about the men of Chitterne who gave their lives in World War 1, the text and some of the photos are now available to see and read online via people pages orclick here

The World War 1 heroes included are: William Feltham; Walter Sweet; Arthur Feltham; Harold Robinson; John Wallis; Hector Down and Edward Burgess. GD's powerpoint may also be available later.

Now if you'll allow me I'm going to crow a bit as I can't hold it in any longer. At the beginning of this year we had one grandson, courtesy of daughter A, now we've got three grandsons and another grandchild coming. How come? Our eldest daughter K, a career girl up till now, is adopting two little brothers who were in care, which has me looking on in awe. K and her husband D have had the boys, aged 7 and 5, for 6 months. They have no children of their own so the learning curve has been almost vertical, and it has turned their lives upside down. They have both given up their jobs, K to take maternity leave and D to take a year's sebatical in order to give these poor little boys all their attention. So far all goes well, nightmares and eating problems aside, and the boys are growing again. They have all been down to Chitterne a few times but last Sunday we went to London to see them at home, it was a joy. I feel so proud and so lucky. Here are the four of them in their local playpark. The fourth grandchild? Daughter A is expecting again. It's due in the new year.

Tuesday 22nd November 2011 - Sale Poster

This week R & LS are leaving the village, which is very sad because they are into local history, but they have kindly passed on this magnificent 1919 poster for the sale of Chitterne's Glebe lands. Glebe is land belonging to the church, which could be sold off by the local vicar under the power vested in him by the Glebe Lands Act of 1888. So, together with the sale brochure, which we already have, it's an important piece of evidence concerning Chitterne's history. I just wish we had the map that went with the brochure as well, as it would enable me to finally sort out The Manor lands and Glebe Farm lands. When the poster is framed I hope it will hang in the village hall where everyone can see it. The typefaces are so beautifully evocative of that post-war period, producing oohs and aahs from our arty offspring.

To fill in a bit of background: Farmer Frederick Wallis of The Manor had rented most of the Glebe land from the vicar since 1893. He and his family ran The Manor farm and Glebe Farm in tandem and I think farmer Wallis bought some of the glebe land at the sale and added it to The Manor, which is what I would like to be able to sort out. Before WW1 Glebe Farm was run by Frederick's son, John Buckeridge Wallis. But John Buckeridge Wallis was killed in WW1, as some of you may know if you attended GD's talk on the 11th November, and this probably had something to do with the reason for the sale.

The lots for sale previously rented by the Wallis family included the yard and buildings, which were on a site immediately in front of St Mary's Chancel, now occupied by Birch Cottage, and about 125 acres of arable, pasture and meadow land opposite the yard. There was no Glebe Farmhouse at that time; the Wallis family used Holmcroft as the farmer's house, which was renamed Glebe Farmhouse after it stopped being a farmhouse! 80 years later, when a Glebe Farmhouse was finally built Holmcroft became Glebe House.

Saturday 12th November 2011 - Kneeler 13

We have finished stitching the majority of the first altar rail kneeler, except for the church dates at one end. Yesterday we took it into the church and placed it in situ by the altar rail, see above. It will be shaped at the top right-hand corner to fit around the altar rail post, and the row of gold crosses will fold down to form the front edge when it is upholstered.

After lunch yesterday as we stitchers were standing around drinking coffee a young lady popped her head around the kitchen door and asked if she could talk to us about broadband speeds in Chitterne. She was from BBC Radio Wiltshire and three of us ended up being interviewed by her, but we have no idea when the interview will be broadcast because we forgot to ask.

As we were about to pack up GD turned up at the hall to set up ready for his Friday evening talk on Chitterne's World War One dead. So I was back in the packed hall again three hours later to hear the results of his twelve months of research, which turned out to be very impressive. He had cleverly melded the seven men's stories together into one chronological history of their part in the war, illustrated with maps and pictures along the way. I was fascinated and ended up learning a lot more about the First World War than I ever knew before. I've been promised a transcript of the stories in due course to add the history pages of the village website.

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