Mary S.W. Pollard diaries | 1930-36

MSWP (& FEP) diaries

Diary, 1930–36

by Mary S.W. Pollard

 

 

[Note: The original diary is not currently available for full transcription. What follows is a selective transcript, made some years ago. Dates were not usually transcribed verbatim. All original text is enclosed in quotation marks, and is verbatim.]

Key

NB If a name is not listed in the key the person concerned has not yet been identified.

1888–92

1893–95

1896–98

1897 (FEP)

1896–99

1899–1900

1901

1903

1904 (with FEP)

1904–07

1907–10

1911

1910–15

1915–20

1920–22

1922–26

1926–29

1930–36

1936–37

1938

1939

1940

1941–42

1942–46

1946–52

1950–58

1958–61

‘1930

1 Jan ‘Teachers’ Guild at L’ P. . . . One evening went up to entertainment & dance till nearly 11.0 p.m. I had a modern dance with Marg. & enjoyed it!’

15 Jan ‘F. began his lectures again at I. of Wight. I forgot to say that last week M. & Ruthie went to see the Italian pictures, & R. & I went to Olympia.’

17 Jan ‘F. & I saw Ruthie off to York.’

5 Feb ‘F. at Isle of Wight where he is continuing his course of lectures.’

15 Feb ‘F. to Sidcot for week-end I’ve just come across an old letter saying that after the Copik conferences the Bishop of Liverpool wrote to Frank:– "As to your contributions, several members of the Commission have told me of their entire satisfaction, especially with the earlier ones . . . . [ellipsis in original] Personally I am most grateful to you for your help, to my mind you have saved us."’

5 Mar ‘Marvellous performance of "Messiah" at University. F. sang in tenors.’

8 Mar ‘F. to Letchworth . . . Yesterday we heard that Rob. has got a post at £250 yearly as clerk to Mr Hardcastle in London—firm (where he worked before) & Eliz. as sec. to an antiquarian in Cheshire.’

Monday, 17 Mar ‘I went to York. Met by B. in car—had tea, then went to Mount to see Ruthie. She has had a sort of influenza & been in nursery about a fortnight I think—was sitting up in her dressing gown. Marg. Wood also in nursery. Ruthie was sweet. Then I went to see Dr Kemp about her & got back to dinner.’

18 Mar  . . . ‘then motored to Farnham (nr Knaresboro’) & saw Lucy Shann & "Biddy"—home at 6.30, changed; I went to the boarding house to dinner & then spent evening & stayed night at Edna’s flat. Snowed hard.’

Wednesday, 19 Mar ‘Took Ruthie back to B. Croft; to convalesce.’

20 Mar ‘Dia, Bertha, Ruthie & I motored to Potter Hill—made our own lunch, & went round the farm & a walk, but bitterly cold. House is charming & will be perfect in Spring I think.’

21 Mar ‘Ruthie got a lot of riding on the pony.’

23 Mar ‘Ruthie & I went to Homestead instead of meeting . . . later I went to the Mount & sadly left Ruthie, who has been so sweet & loving & I think the change has done her good. She is a pet, & it was lovely to have her to myself, sleep with her, etc.’

24 Mar ‘Left B. Croft after a lovely time.’

26 Mar ‘Spring cleaned C. & R’s bedroom.

28 Mar ‘    "         "     stairs (lower ½) Minnie did splendidly & got all the polishing finished.’

29 Mar ‘Robert left Mr Dyland’s office after 5½ years there.’

8 Apr ‘Ruthie came home. I met her.’

29 Apr ‘Ruthie & I took lunch & went to get fritillaries at Fiseley, first having helped M. to spring clean study.’

30 Apr ‘Badminton tournament. Gt fun. My partner was Geo. Herford & we stayed in to Finals. Ruthie & Clifford in last set & just lost 17—21. R. played splendidly.’

1 May ‘Ruthie took Minnie to London by bus—1.0 o’clock to see Tower. They had tea & got back about 8.30 I think. It was to celebrate M. having been here 4 years & instead of giving her extra for spring cleaning. Ruthie was so sweet about it & felt very important & M. did enjoy it.

3 May ‘Took C. & Ruthie to see "Bulldog Drummond."’

6 May ‘I saw Ruthie off to school. She went quite happily. I shall miss her; she is so sweet & affectionate—kissed me over & over again yesterday. She has been working at a Mertens [?] prize essay on L. of N. Union.’

7 May ‘Minnie did out 2 rooms yesterday, so as to help me this morning, & she made heaps of sausage rolls. She went out in aft.

8 May ‘Book club.’

13 May ‘Dining room cleaned—Mrs Hobbs helped. Had stove out & chimney done.

20 May ‘Men came to paint scullery & clean out ideal boiler.’

21 May ‘Men painting scullery. Robert went to-day to live at Penn Club again.’

‘On the 15th we had Mr Mrs & Hooton, Frank Pollard, Mary Reynolds & Leonard in to play bridge . . . Minnie was out.’

22 May ‘The men had finished the scullery & Minnie had finished spring cleaning it.’

26 May ‘I went to Y.M. F. came in aft.’

7 June  . . . ‘evening F. & I cycled to Bucklebury Slade to Miss Robins where Ruthie & I had stayed nearly 3 years ago. We started about 5.0 & by dawdling got there at 8.0. (Minnie went home & the Petos fed the cat. Rose did the washing on Whit Monday, & M. came back in evening.) We had a very nice supper & a lovely night in the peace & quiet, listening to the owls, etc. It was the first time F. & I had been away to the country alone to stay for years—I think the last time was when we lived in York.’

Monday ‘Started home directly after tea & got back in about 1½ hours.’

23 June ‘Rob. & Miss C. went away. R. has been so jolly & I feel miserable to lose him & even long for the gramophone which he has taken with him, for it means he really is going to live away from home.

‘F. & I play Badminton sometimes in evening.’

27 June ‘At tea-time the fearfully exciting news of M’s 1st .’

28 June ‘C. had needlework exam, so could not get to Rachel Merz’s wedding. V. disappointing. F. went to Test Match (Australians & English) & managed to get in, but most crowded & uncomfortable. Denis [Richardson] & I went to London by 12.16 had some lunch. Wedding at St. Barnabas church 2.30. Rachel in patterned chiffon ? dress & hat. About 50 or 60 guests. Charles & Stella held the reception . . . Rachel & Vivien Paull are both only 21!’

Friday, 27 June  . . . ‘I anxiously awaited a telegram from Margy about her Finals—if she did not wire it meant she had only got a 3rd or worse! About tea time I felt very depressed & had nearly given up hope—I was alone in garden having tea—when suddenly a telegram arrived:- "A First Heaven knows how. Margaret." I was so delighted & thrilled that I cried from sheer joy, & could hardly wait to tell Caro who came in soon after & kept saying "She’s marvellous". Frank was in London, so only heard at 8.0. She does deserve it for she had worked so hard & she & her friends are the first women in M/C to take the Classics degree in 3 years instead of 4. Later we heard from Margy & she is the only woman with a First class, & there is only 1 man!’

Thursday, 3 July ‘F. & I left by the 12.16 train for M/C. . . . We had had tea in train, so we soon went on to Disley . . . It grew chilly & perhaps I caught a chill, anyway I was poorly most of the night (I was sleeping in spare-room—F. in Erica & Mabel’s.) Stayed in bed July 4th & just had cup of tea, but got up in time for a little dinner & then Evie, F. & I went into the Degree giving which began at 3.0.’

5 July ‘I was alright again.’

Sunday, 6 July ‘F. went on to Ackworth at 12.0 (about) to invigilate.’

7 July ‘I left, feeling very sad, for this is the last visit to Disley & the beautiful home there, at 9.10. Met M. & we arrived home about 3.0. . . . Also Minnie gave us nice welcome.’

14 July ‘Saw darling C. off to the Bensham Grove Settlement where she is going to help in the new nursery school for a month.’

17 July ‘Frank came back from invigilating at Ackworth.’

29 July ‘Ruthie came home—I met her.’

30 July ‘M. R. & I to see Disraeli—a Talkie picture.’

31 July ‘R. not very well.’

1 Aug ‘R’s temp. 102o.’

4 Aug ‘Aft. Ruthie & I called on Mrs Stansfield. Ruthie is better, but it was her first time out.’

5 Aug ‘R. & Mr S. played ping pong & draughts—bridge in evening.’

16 Aug ‘C. M. Ruthie & I played tennis at University courts. My first game this year.’

20 Aug ‘Seemed to be going to be fine, so we hastily decided to have "Play Hour" children, & Ruthie & I rushed out to ask them . . . 14 children came at 3.0 & stayed till 5, most successful. M. C. & R. were splendid. Played with ball, balloon, skipping, soap bubbles etc. Tea at 4.0 in garden.’

Friday, 22 Aug ‘Started by 9.12 train. Mrs Mc’David arrived just before we left, as she & her niece are coming to the house while Minnie has her holiday too . . . Arrived Plymouth soon after lunch. John Eliot (aged about 22 I think—nearly a lawyer) kindly met us & took us all in his car & all our luggage, 10 miles to Newton Ferrers, & then rowed us across to our House Boat "Chonita"—c/o Mr Austin—Lifeboat House, Newton Ferrers, So. Devon. . . . The boat is splendid—a large saloon on deck,—bathroom & W.C. at other end—each of the girls has a cabin & F. & I have one with 2 berths, but often I sleep in saloon. We cook by oil. Large saloon below deck. Plenty of deck space—about 14 yds. long. In the night thunder & tremendous rain which came thro’ a bit, & most of us slept badly. Ruthie & I were quite frightened.’

‘We had a delightful fortnight . . . One day the Richardsons came to tea & we had a great bathe together playing with an inflated ball in the water. Another day they took us up the river, & then took Ruthie & me to lunch & Denis, she & I & Leslie motored to Dartmoor near to Sheep’s Tor, & saw ponies etc, but it was not very clear.’

‘We left on Sept. 5th Friday for home, much to the girls regret; & had rather a hot, crowded journey. F. & I took a taxi, & got home about 5.15 & Mrs Mc’D had a beautiful tea ready for us & had cooked a lot of things for supper. She went afterwards & Minnie came at 9.0.’

12 Sept ‘F’s birthday. Evening sad note from R. as Elis. had been up to see him & was very miserable, as she loves him. It is so tragic. Had to tell the girls that R. has broken off the engagement & we were all utterly miserable. I can hardly bear it.’

18 Sept ‘C. & R. & Mabel to London to matinée of Henry IV at old Vic. in which Ralph Richardson was Prince Hal. They went round to see him.’

20 Sept ‘Spent the aft. with Evie—had lunch tog. They have just left Disley for good & are going abroad for a year.’

Monday, 22 Sept ‘Aft. Françoise Delain came for 3 months. Exchange with Caro (if she ever goes there!) We all—I anyway—felt horribly nervous.’

23 Sept ‘I saw Ruthie off to York. She cried last night & seemed to mind going back more than usual. . . . Aft. C. & I & Mabel & Françoise went to a tea to hear Miss Glyn Grylls, the new Liberal candidate (aged 25) speak. She is attractive & speaks well.’

Friday, 26 Sept ‘Frank went to Woodbrooke at 2.30 for his year’s scholarship. I saw him off with great sorrow, but I think he will enjoy it & he will come home for week-ends occasionally.’

5 Oct ‘Heard yesterday of dear Aunt Gertie’s death—only dear Aunt Hope left, alas! of the real Aunts.’

10 Oct ‘F. came home in evening . . . He went back by the 7.40 on the 13th.’

4 Nov ‘F. came home to attend C.E.C. in London.

9 Nov ‘F. went back to Woodbrooke. I was horrid last night.’

22 Nov ‘F. came in aft. & stayed till Monday 24th. He gave a splendid lecture on Erasmus on 23rd at Meeting House.’

28 Nov ‘I went to Woodbrooke by 2.30.’

1 Dec ‘F. saw me off, & I arrived home at 6.30 . . . It has been lovely to see Frank so happy, but I feel a little jealous of everyone having him except me! He has made a lot of friends.’

12 Dec ‘M. C. & I to hear Ramsay Macdonald (Prime Minister). Very good.’

13 Dec ‘Met F. at 11.25. It is lovely to feel he is going to be at home now till next term.’

Monday, 15 Dec ‘Heard from Ruthie that she was in the nursery, feverish & sore throat—she went there on Sat. 13th.’

16 Dec ‘In evening (Tuesday) telegram saying Ruthie has got scarlet fever & has been taken to the isolation hospital at Acomb. It is miserable.’

17 Dec ‘Heard that Ruthie seems comfortable & happy, & fortunately she has only a slight attack.’

19 Dec ‘Book club at Miss Stevens’s.’

20 Dec ‘Françoise departed for France in evening, Robert seeing her across London. She is a nice girl, but it felt the very greatest relief to me when she had gone.’

Tuesday, 23 Dec ‘F. M. C. & I by train about 1.30 for York (via Banbury) . . . At York I believe about 7.0—took taxi to B. Croft.

‘Minnie is coming along every day to feed Jerry.’

24 Dec ‘To see darling Ruthie thro’ window. She seems happy & the ward (private 5 guineas a week) is gay with decorations & has a huge fire. V. kind nurse.’

Xmas Day ‘Lovely presents at breakfast time. F. & I to see Ruthie, Rob. & girls later. B. Betty & Dia did a play. Lovely Xmas dinner—also tea & supper. Crackers at tea. Carols, Xmas tree, songs. Cuthbert Bowes, Ber & Robert played bridge later! I didn’t approve!’

Sunday, 28 Dec ‘I went to see Ruthie.’

29 Dec ‘We all left in aft. arriving home between 9.0 & 10.0. It has been a very happy Xmas.

‘The Weisses are at Pension de la Fontaine, Tusinge sur Blonay.’

1931

‘The rest of the holidays was quite happy. Margaret & I white washed her bedroom & papered it (with a little help from Frank) We got no skating, for the ice did not get strong enough round here, tho’ I bought C. boots in readiness.  . . . F. went back to Woodbrooke on Jan. 12th . . . Ruthie came home on Sat. 10th & it was just lovely to have her.

‘On 15th she, C. & I went to London by bus to the Federation of Music Clubs festival at Grotrian Hall.’

‘Ruthie went back to the Mount on Jan. 30th very reluctantly.

‘Marjory Fox from Banbury began coming to us on Jan. 19th as a paying guest from Mondays till Thursdays—15/-. She is only here for breakfast & supper—is lecturing in French at Univ. as the lecturer is ill & can only do ½ time work. She is very nice, but a great talker.’

5 Feb ‘F. came home during Jan. on a Sat for dinner & tea & the following Monday for dinner. He had been to speak at Welwyn.’

7 Feb ‘I had dreaded my 56th birthday & was very depressed yesterday & everything seemed wrong, but Caro was so sweet, & I had a very happy day alone with her. F. sent me Lascelles Abercrombie’s poems, Robert "Perisable [sic] Goods" by Dornford Yates, Marg. a pale blue bowl with 2 pink & 1 blue hyacinth (chosen by Caro & so lovely) Evie had sent me 30/- & Ruthie has a present to follow, & C. gave me the beautiful leather writing case she had made & I had letters from Frank, Robert, Evie, Ernest, Teresa & cards from Marg. Ruthie & Mabel so I felt rich indeed.’

16 Feb ‘Minnie got the bedroom spring cleaned. I helped a little.’

19 Feb ‘Spring cleaned study I think.’

20 Feb ‘Our longed for week-end at last. C. & I by 12.30 bus to London—got out at Derry & Toms & shopped. Then on to Thackeray Hotel, Gt Russell St. where we have nice tiny bedrooms (3) with hot & cold water in them on 3rd floor.’

Sunday, 22 Feb ‘Delicious tea in drawing room of hotel for 1/- paid bill (8/6 each per day) & gave 2/- to porter . . . caught 5.30 bus home & arrived to a very cold house.’

3 Mar ‘F. came in evening for 3 nights to attend C.E.C. meetings in London.’

10 Mar ‘Play Hour children sweet & absorbed in story of teeny tiny woman which I told!’

12 Mar ‘Mrs Farrier came & we spring cleaned our bedroom.’

18 Mar ‘Cleaned china pantry.’

20 Mar ‘I had big baking, etc, but gardened hard in aft. Most of wallflowers killed with cold, alas.’

21 Mar ‘Aft. Archaeoological meeting (I have just joined.) Most interesting address on "Timber Architecture of the Home Counties" with beautiful slides by P.M. Johnson.’

‘At 7.0 22 people came to Friendly Circle—that made 24 of us. Mr Kelson spoke on Austria-Hungary & his experiences there during the war. V. good supper at 8.30, then C. played, Mr Kelson sang, & C. sang "Cherry Ripe", charmingly.’

23 Mar ‘L. of N.U. annual meeting 2.30 . . . In evening annual meeting of N.B.W.T.A.U.’

‘Spring cleaned childrens room. Got Mrs Farrier to help.’

24 Mar ‘I gave bathroom one coating of paint.’

25 Mar ‘I gave bathroom another coat of paint. At it nearly all day—most fatiguing.’

28 Mar ‘Frank came home with Laila Thrapp-Meyer, a Norwegian girl.’

31 Mar ‘Ruthie came home.’

14 Apr ‘Book Club! Very few came—voted for new members & most disagreeable evening.’

15 Apr ‘F. went to "Christ & Peace Conference" at at Somerville College . . . Caro, Ruthie & I to Goring Heath Post office by bus. (Mrs Bailey.) . . . We got there in time for dinner & left after tea on Friday 17th (we were out to one tea) & she charged 35/- altogether, but I had the little girl’s bedroom with no washing apparatus.’

17 Apr ‘Pouring when we arrived home about 6.30. Margaret arrived back from France about 8.30 & Frank from Oxford about 9.0. Both had been happy.’

24 Apr ‘Frank went back to Woodbrooke. It is horrid without him.

‘A miserable week-end.’

27 Apr ‘Ruthie & I to Ladies’ Club at Bulmershe Court to see "The Slippers of Cinderella" done by some children.’

28 Apr ‘Ruthie went back to York.’

7 May ‘Miss Fox went & we began kitchen. Had sweep at 11.0 & men to do boiler in afternoon.’

8 May ‘Man to white wash & colour walls.’

9 May ‘Charwoman & Minnie spring cleaned kitchen & scullery.’

14 May ‘Charwoman & Minnie spring cleaned drawing room. I stained it. Sent carpet away to be beaten.’

15 May ‘Minnie spring cleaned hall & now the cleaning at last is absolutely finished, except garden tool shed. It is a relief.’

21 May ‘Frank came at 8.25. Lovely.’

22 May ‘F. & I by 9.20 to Y.M. . . . I went straight to Chelsea Flower Show. Disappointing. After lunch met F. We didn’t get home till 10.30.’

Sunday, 24 May ‘Aft. to London. Tea there. Frank gave the address at Friends’ House on a "reasonable religion". All the downstairs part pretty well filled. Sophie & Wilfred there, also Erica & Charlie Weiss & Elisabeth Pinhorn.’

25 May ‘Minnie had aft. off, but came back at 6.30. Y.M. has been fairly interesting. Most of the people I know have gone to York (Mount centenary) & I rather wish I was there. Nice to see Herbie Corder. It is horrid at home without Frank.’

30 May ‘Minnie went off to Eastbourne for a week with Adult School women & Effie Ryle—first time she ever remembers staying away from Reading. C. & I got the 11.15 train to Cambridge. M. met us & we went to 147? Huntingdon Rd to stay with the J.W. Grahams.’

31 May ‘Called on Cousin Jenny Sturge. She was full of the Mount & what a wonderful school it was. She is marvellous & over 90!’

1 June ‘Left by 9.5 train . . . Home 12.30.’

6 June ‘C. & I left by 12.10 for Birmingham. F. met us at 2.29. We went straight to Woodbrooke—F. & I have spare room, C. Miss Fowler’s room as she is away (housekeeper) & has placed her sitting room at our disposal, which is very nice . . . Tea at Woodbrooke, then L. of N. Union at Geo. Cadbury’s (Primrose Hill.) . . . Then 2 scenes read, in costume, from Pride & Prejudice. F. as Mr Collins proposing to Elizabeth (Joyce Wells) . . . Both very good.’

8 June ‘C. & I seen off by F. at 9.0. It has been a lovely week-end & it’s horrid leaving him, but nice to get home. Minnie there which is also nice. She has been away 10 days & had a lovely time at Eastbourne.’

Saturday, 27 June ‘M. & Frank both at home . . . F. went back on Sunday night.’

11 July ‘Frank & Margaret came home, both having left Woodbrooke & Cambridge for good.’

15 July ‘I went to York—Bertha & Ruthie gave me warm welcome. We had tea at B. Croft, then took R. to Mount & B. Betty & I motored to Potter Hill for the night.’

 

16 July  . . . ‘then to B. Croft.’

20 July ‘B. saw me off at 10.0 & F. met me. I’ve had a lovely time.’

31 July ‘Ruthie arrived with Diana Marriage—R. has been ill a week in the nursery, & missed going to Snainton with Diana & 2 other girls.’

21 Aug ‘Frank, Marg. Ruthie & I went to Southampton after tea. Minnie went off for her holiday. Robert met us there & we went across to Caen starting at 8 p.m. & arriving Caen in the early morning . . . Train on to Cherbourg about 1.0. Met there with motor car & drove about 16 miles to Hotel au Moulin a Vent, Saint Germains des Vaux, par Beaumont Hague (M. Mesnil). Fine when we arrived, about 3.30 I think . . . R. in hotel, F. & I & Ruthie in one house, M. & C. in another. . . . We stayed here nearly a fortnight, & the young people greatly enjoyed it, but I was thoroughly bored, & thankful to leave . . . Another day F. & Ruthie expended 1 guinea X word prize on taking us a long motor drive, but unfortunately it was misty & wet. . . .

‘We left earlier than we had intended. . . . We left on Sept. 2nd about 3.0 o’clock, going to Cherbourg by car, thence 3rd class rail to Bayeux, Hotel Lion d’or.’

4 Sept ‘Left about 9.0 for Caen . . . Started on "Princess Eva" about 1.0 . . . Arrived Southampton about 1.0 a.m. Sept 5th, Sunday & stayed on board till after 6.0 . . . got home about 10.30. Minnie cross, as we were late, & had not got things very nice, but it is lovely to be home again.’

9 Sept ‘C. not well enough, so Ruthie came with M. & me to Joan Edmundson’s wedding at Friends’ House . . . F. interview about his "book" (Relation of Intellect to Morality & Religion) with "Allen’s" in London.’

11 Sept ‘F. went after 6.0 by Hook of Holland to Holland, where he is to give 2 lectures at Barchem.’

16 Sept  . . . ‘Ruthie & I had a lovely hour on the river together.’

18 Sept ‘Frank arrived home from Holland about 9.0 a.m. & we all went to see Ruthie off to York at 10.25. I hate letting her go, & she does not want to go; last night she said:– "Oh do let me stay here." She quite seems to dread it. She has been so sweet & loving, constantly kissing me.’

26 Sept ‘F. went in morning to lecture at week-end summer school at Penscot (not v. far from Street)’

Friday, 9 Oct ‘I went in the aft. to Street to see Margaret . . . Went to her lodgings which are charming, & soon had a meal.’

Frank, Mary, Caro & Ruth Pollard, 1931

10 Oct ‘F. went to Broxbourne for the week-end to speak . . . Margaret & I went by bus to Glastonbury (I am staying at the Bear Hotel almost next door to her lodgings—very comfortable & I am the only visitor) & there Mr Dale ("Reg.") met us & showed us over the exquisite ruined Abbey . . . Mr Dale came to supper & we played bridge.’

12 Oct ‘Said goodbye to darling Marg. who seems very happy. I’ve had a lovely time. F. met me at 2.38. Evening to Liberal Meeting. Decided not to run a candidate, but it’s a pity. It’s a wicked election.’

15 Oct ‘F. & I to hear Sir Oswald Mosely (New party) Town Halls packed & we had to come away.’

16 Oct ‘Listened to Sir J. Simon as the Election is so difficult (Nat. govt etc) & spent rest of evening in discussion!’

2 Nov ‘Aft. to tea with Ella & saw over the house which we liked very much. We want to see ours, & rent.’

Sunday after 3 Nov ‘F. spoke on Disarmament or Peace in Pangbourne church.’

12 Nov ‘F. to Woodbrooke for week-end.’

24 Nov ‘F. spoke on ‘John Bright’ to W.L.A.’

25 Nov ‘Glorious concert at Univ. F. sang in Choral . . . Friends’ Sale in evening. C. accompanied Jack Jowitt (violin) beautifully, & F. excellent as Sir Lucius O’Trigger in some scenes from "The Rivals." Read, not done by heart.’

15 Dec  . . . ‘Minnie fell at breakfast time (just before it) & dislocated her elbow. We sent for the Dr at once & he took her to hospital to have it put right & then home. It was v. painful & she was very plucky.’

‘We had a busy time having no help at all over Xmas, but we all were happy . . . Frank, later, went to Teachers’ Guild at Woodbrooke.’

30 Dec ‘M. went by bus to Liverpool to stay with Reg. Dale & his people near Widnes.’

‘1932’

1 Jan ‘Caro, Ruthie & I spent the day at Guildford with the Weisses in their lovely new home.’

14 Jan ‘I told Minnie’s Mother 2 days ago, that I must give her notice, as she has been at home a month & wont be fit for hard work for ages. It is hard on her, but she gets wages & board. (accident compensation) We shall miss her in some ways, for she has been here 5½ years, but at present everything is running more smoothly with a good woman 9–11 (8d hour) & again 2–2.30 & Frank does the fires.

‘Minnie came to see her us to-day & wept & it was rather sad; but I think she’ll soon recover!’

15 Jan ‘F. & I have been fearfully busy over changes of furniture. Saw darling Ruthie off at 10.37. Spring cleaned Robert’s room which Ruthie is going to have.’

20 Jan ‘Vera Roe came instead of Minnie. She is a nice girl of 16, but knows nothing.’

22 Jan ‘V. turned up at 5 mins. to 7 a.m.—had had a tooth out, she says!

‘Next few days I largely devoted to her, & very tiring it was. In fact I was too tired to go to meeting on the 24th & we had a nice quiet Sunday. Vera only came to wash up. She usually comes 7.0 to 2.30 about.’

Thursday, 28 Jan ‘I left Vera happily about to begin breakfast. When we had finished ours I went into kitchen to speak to her & found her on floor near gas stove in a sort of fit with gas full on & oven door open. Awful shock. C. went for Dr Field. Ages in this faint, about an hour & a half. Dr encouraging. I went for V’s Mother & when V. recovered she took her home. I like her, & am sorry not to be able to keep her. She is so quiet & ready to learn.

‘So we were over a week with no one except occasional charwomen.’

1 Feb ‘F. & I to meeting for Prayer for Disarmament Conference (beginning to-morrow) in St. Mary’s Church.’

4 Feb ‘I went to Mrs Marshall’s to tea. About 11 ladies there (I only knew Mrs Castle) & we played guessing games. I got a prize for questions the answer of which had to end in "king" "trekking", "sinking" etc.’

Sunday, 7 Feb ‘Presents . . . Ruthie—Beautifully made hdcf. case with a pin & a blue hdcf. inside marked with M.’

8 Feb ‘"Mabel Slade" (just 17) came. She comes from 7–5.30 or 6.0. Nice, respectable, small girl, but it is tiresome to have to teach again, tho’ she knows a good deal.’

10 Feb ‘M.M. Excellent lecture & songs by Rodney Bennett in his own house, owing to mistake about Kendrick Hall. Modern composers.’

‘There have been heaps of engagements, but I don’t mention unimportant ones, such as regular W.L.A’s.’

8 Feb  . . . ‘heard officially (but privately) of darling Margaret’s engagement.’

11 Feb ‘F. went to Woodbrooke.’

13 Feb ‘F. returned. He has joined archaeological Soc. (I joined last year) & we went to a meeting in aft.’

22 Feb ‘F. & I met Margaret and ‘Reg’ at 6.2 & had about 10 mins. with them. It is the half term & they have been celebrating their engagement in London. Most exciting & lovely to see them . . . Then F. & I to Folk House where about 16 unemployed men met a lot of us Friends to discuss opening it as a recreation room.’

25 Feb ‘Aft. went to Folk House. It was opened to-day for the unemployed. About 50 or more there.’

27 Feb ‘F. to York . . .

‘Did heaps of B.W.T.A. work.’

29 Feb ‘To Folk House in aft. Heaps of men, & started tea at 1d cup & 1d cake, but not many took it. F. came home.’

3 Mar ‘F. has been made chairman of the Liberal Assn. Good meeting, but not many there. Ramsay Muir on Free Trade. Frank proposed vote of thanks excellently. I had to sit on front row of platform too, but it wasn’t bad.’

4 Mar ‘F. & I to Meeting for Sufferings . . . I stayed night at 6 Guildford St . . .’

14 Mar ‘Had 10 or 12 people to tea & to meet Mr Todd, the Liberal candidate & his wife & son Jim. He spoke afterwards & there was a discussion. Very successful I think. About 19 of us altogether. ‘Mabel’ managed well for it was her first time for this sort of thing.’

18 Mar ‘I spent all day at Annual N.B.W.T.A.U. Berks. meetings in Oxford Rd Wesleyan church. Came back to dinner. Frank spoke very well in aft. on "Peace & Disarmament" & we both stayed to tea.’

19 Mar ‘Got a woman (Mrs Curtis) to start spring-cleaning our bedroom.’

24 Mar ‘C. & I & "Mabel" did Pace Eggs.’

26 Mar ‘Shut up house, & Frank, Rob. Caro & I & Janet Rawlings by 10.30? train to Haslemere, then bus to Punchbowl Inn, Hindhead, kept by Miss Kennedy, a Friend. Special terms for us as large party of 10/6 a day.’

29 Mar ‘Then F. & I went to Haslemere by bus & I got out of train at Witley & went to see Cousin Alice Foster . . . got to Reading at 4.0.’

11 Apr ‘Ruthie came back from the Lakes on April 8th I think. She had enjoyed it very much.’

18 Apr ‘I cooked hard for Book Club & Ruthie helped me. Aft. had to go & make tea at Folk House for the men.’

26 & 27 Apr ‘I went to W.L.F. Annual meetings in Kingsway Hall.’

28 Apr ‘Frank went to Clacton-on-Sea to Nat. Lib. Fed. meetings. Started soon after 6.0 a.m.’

29 Apr ‘Caro & I saw darling Ruthie off at 10.35. She has been so sweet & loving & slept with me last night. We’ve decided to let her stay till Xmas, anyway, but she wants to leave before.’

‘F. in B’ham.’

14 May ‘F. to York—I to Street. (Mabel & Rose spring cleaned kitchen & scullery.) . . . I stayed at Bear Hotel.’

16 May  . . . ‘arrived home about 3.0. Empty house & I slept all alone.’

17 May ‘F. came back in aft.—C. in evening. Both had much enjoyed O.S. & F. took 4 wickets!’

18 May ‘The great day! F. went to Y.M. London in aft. C. & I by 5.8 train. F. & I to small devotional meeting (Woodbrooke Comtee chiefly) for ½ hour, then at 7.0 in to the Swarthmore Lecture. Room almost absolutely full & it holds 1400. I sat on platform! Audience a fine sight. Frank Sturge chairman & so very good. F. spoke (or rather read, but it seemed like speaking) splendidly & was very well heard. Nearly an hour. It was excellent, one or two said one of the best there had been. Evie there, Robert, Agnes Hill, Chas. Weiss etc.’

19 May ‘I went to Y.M. for day. V. dull, but lots of people spoke about F. & I was proud.’

Sunday, 22 May ‘V. nice visit from Bedford. He sang song he had composed.’

1 June ‘Liberal garden party at Mrs Darvall’s. Frank in chair.’

Friday, 3 June. ‘F. & I to Meeting for Sufferings, then F. saw me off to York about 1.30.’

4 June ‘Went up to Mount at 11.0 & saw my precious Ruthie for ½ hour, then met Ber & to town to arrange about tea. Ruthie came to dinner . . .’

6 June ‘Went at 11.0 to say goodbye to Ruthie. Horrid leaving her. She is a Senior now, & it was nice to see her little study. She shared one last year.’

‘C. & Jack! met me as F. at Comtees, & did not get in till 9.30. ‘Mabel’ has managed very well while I’ve been away, & now does the breakfast.’

10 June ‘F. in Woodbrooke for the night . . . Evening, Nursery School conference reception at Kendrick School.’

27 June ‘Liberal (women) garden party at Mrs Catley’s. Grt fun.’

30 June ‘To M. for Sufferings.’

Saturday, 1 July ‘Erica came in aft. for week-end—(she is engaged to Godfrey Wicksteed).’

16 July ‘Mrs Timms & I to fête at Bellehatch Park. Lots went in char-a-banc. Fortunes told by our hands—mine "yours is a hand for the violin, very musical hand—money will be left you—you have travelled a lot in foreign countries—you have good brain, think, literary, have good business head; someone in family or near who suffers from shortness of breath—care must be taken. (Caro?)

‘Good meeting—Megan Lloyd George & Lord Rathcreedan (young) in chair.’

20 July ‘N.B.W.T.A.U. fête at Coley Park. I cut cucumber sandwiches all morning.’

21 July ‘F. & I. to Liberal meeting at Caversham in evening.’

26 July ‘Ruthie came home & brought Marg. Mc’Clelland with her.’

27 July ‘F. R. Marg. Mc’C & I to Mr Sherborne’s exquisite old house Reddish Manor at Kidmore End, to an L.N.U. workers’ rally & conference. About 60 there.’

28 July ‘In evening C. & I to Liberal Summer School at Oxford.’

Saturday, 30 July ‘Prof. Coatman (paper read by someone else) & H.G. Wells. Aft. Bowes & Betty came. Garden party in University College grounds (Sir Michael Sadler.) Caro & I had to go home after dinner.’

31 July ‘Frank went to Summer School at Woodbrooke on the 29th.’

1 Aug ‘Mabel’ had aft. off.’

5 Aug ‘Ruthie not particularly well.’

8 Aug ‘Frank came home, having had a good time.’

23 Aug ‘F. Ruthie & I started on a bicycling tour, leaving men papering the stairs & hall. Caro went for a week to Guildford, then to Sophie’s at St. Albans. We had a glorious time, doing 250 miles altogether, usually about 30 per day, never more than 39, & we had perfect weather, except when the wind was against us.

‘The first day (Tuesday) we bicycled to Blewbury over a wild Down; could not get in there, so on to West Hendred, to a nice little Inn, The Hare, bed, supper & breakfast 4/6 each.’

24 Aug ‘Went thro’ Faringdon to Burford. "The Highway"—very old Inn 500 years old. Charming. Lovely rooms & meals. Dinner, bed & breakfast 10/6 each I think.’

25 Aug ‘Via Broadway to Evesham—rather poor temperance hotel.’

26 Aug ‘On to Worcester. Near it Ruthie changed from her shorts (in which she looks so nice, grey shorts, white jumper with short or no sleeves) in a field to a dress, & went to Deanery where the Dean & Mrs Ede gave us a warm welcome. I recalled my happy visit there with Mother during the war. . . . To Tenbury Wells—the Swan Hotel . . . 39 miles to-day, our longest.’

27 Aug ‘Saw the outside of Stokesay Castle. Wonderful. Saw Bernard Shaw & his wife outside the church. Went on to Bishop’s Castle & 3 miles further on to "Mrs Morris" the more. Got there about 6.30 or 7.0 I think . . . Here we were glad to arrive & feel settled & we spent a very happy week . . . Ruthie met by joyful news that she had passed Higher Certificate Exam. V. good.’

3 Sept ‘Nearly every evening after dinner we play patience. R. goes to bed at 9.0 or 9.30.’

5 Sept ‘Said farewell sadly & left at 9.0 to ride 18 miles to Shrewsbury . . . left about 2.0 I think by train via Banbury & Oxford . . . Arrived Reading & had to cycle in pouring rain home, about 6.0.’

20 Sept ‘Darling Ruthie went back to school. C. & I saw her off. She is now 2nd Head. She put her hair up once or twice these holidays & looked very nice. It didn’t alter her much.’

26 Sept ‘Rose came to start coming for ½ day only (afternoon).’

30 Sept ‘Robert came home in evening. He arrived (after 3 weeks in Russia) in London last Sunday, very poorly, but went to work during week. Did not seem well when he got home & went to bed after bath early.’

1 Oct ‘Robert feverish 101 I think digestion bad, etc. so I got Dr Lambert. He came in aft. R’s tem. 103.2 in evening & tongue awful.’

Sunday, 2 Oct ‘Dr Lambert came in aft. I think. R’s tem. then about 102 I believe. I had been giving him barley water, milk, calves’ foot jelly, but he may not have latter & on no account may he have an aperient. I asked Dr L. if he suspected typhoid & he said ‘yes.’ R. drank water on board ship which was, he was told afterwards not good, tho from a tap. Aft. R. showed F. & me his Russian postcards, posters, etc, & was quite lively, tho’ he would get out to have his bed made, & couldn’t wait till it was finished. Evening temp. 104o.2. I was alarmed, but R. would not have me sleep in his room, tho’ I had a bell to ring thro’ to mine.’

Monday, 3 Oct ‘R hardly slept at all last night & rang for me at 7.30. (He only slept a bit on Sat. when he had a sleeping draught, but he slept in London.) . . . soon after 10.0 a.m. Dr Lambert came. After seeing R. he said he detected spots & that he must go to Greenlands Nursing Home at once, as he needed really skilled nursing. I was miserable & said couldn’t I do the day nursing, but he said, "no, certainly not," so when F. came in (R. had seemed quite pleased) we sent to tell the Dr we agreed, & I put R’s things up. Aft. about 3.45 ambulance came & he was carried into it, & I went too & saw him after he was in bed no. 17 upstairs.’

4 Oct ‘Started Play Hour again. . . .

‘Next few days visited R. every aft. for short time . . . Heard one day of Elsa’s wedding. Rather awful.’

12 Oct ‘M.M. Robert is getting on so well that we have decided to go to Dia’s wedding.’

Friday, 14 Oct ‘I was allowed to see R. for few minutes in morning, then F. saw me off to London. Arrived York 4.49. Edna & Marian Prout met me with car, & we drove to Edna’s flat . . . My precious Ruthie came to supper at Edna’s at 7.0.’

Saturday, 15 Oct ‘Went to Mount to see Ruthie & her study. F. arriving in time for wedding & Caro also from Westhill. Evie, Ruthie, & I had lunch in town, then to meeting house. . . . Crowds of people we hadn’t seen for years—Jameson & his wife—(he is still in the office 50 years there) . . . Dia & Hedley went off at ¼ to 5.0. . . . F. & I caught the 1.45 a.m. train to London . . . Got home about 10.0 a.m.’

19 Oct ‘Liberal Bazaar. Helped in morning. Viscountess Erleigh opened it at 3.0. F. (as chairman of the Assn) Mr & Mrs Todd, Mr Hampton & I received her outside Town Hall & were photographed. She made a splendid speech. I took her round stalls; she was simple & amusing & delightful. A few of us had tea with her.’

21 Oct ‘F. to Derbyshire for conference about Friends Schools. I got Mabel to sleep in—first time she has done so.’

31 Oct ‘Frank Pollard came to make his will.’

4 Nov ‘I went to Meeting for Sufferings & in afternoon to see Sophie at St Albans. . . . I think it was yesterday that Robert sat in a chair for ½ hour for first time. It is over 5 weeks since he went to Greenlands Nursing Home.’

5 Nov ‘F. went to St. Albans for week-end.’

7 Nov ‘Yesterday F. returned & we both went to Liberal Executive in evening.’

Thursday, 10 Nov ‘Went to Robert at 3.0 & found he has got empyema (pleurisy with pus) the Dr had drained some off in the morning. The poor boy, it is so dreadful for him & he has to have an operation. He was "panic stricken—& simply terrified." Implored me to ask the Dr to try to cure it some other way. It was awful to see him. He lost control of himself & nearly wept & allowed me to hug him for the first time since he has gone to Greenlands.’

‘Poor Frank Pollard is in Middlesex hospital having radium treatment.’

Saturday, 12 Nov ‘At 5 mins. to 6.0 I saw him carried back & heard he had taken the operation very well & all was over successfully.’

17 Nov ‘R’s temp. now normal. Splendid. F. went to Woodbrooke after tea, so ‘Mabel’ stayed the night here.’

24 Nov ‘Evening F. & I to see Dr Lambert. He says R. is "critically ill." Afraid of right lung. He was very depressing, & we are very anxious, but feel we ought to be told more than we are.’

Saturday, 26 Nov ‘About 9.30 we got a telephone message from the home to go there, between 10 & 11. We went & heard Rob. was much worse, bad night & very ill indeed. I saw him for a minute or two. It was so pitiful, gasping for breath. (breathing 52 instead of about 20) We saw both doctors & as Sunday was next day, they advised us to get the girls so we sent off the sad telegrams. . . . Poor Ruthie arrived about 9.0 . . . The girls were all absolutely sweet, but of course very upset.’

Saturday, 3 Dec ‘They think he has really turned the corner. Of course R. does not know he has been so ill & I think as he still felt ill he was rather annoyed that everyone was saying how much better he was!’

9 Dec ‘I went to my first Comtee for ages (N.B.W.T.A.U.) & to see R. in evening.’

Saturday, 10 Dec ‘‘Mabel’ not well & couldn’t come.’

12 Dec ‘I am very busy as ‘Mabel’ has got tonsilitis & has not been here since Friday night (9th) & will be away some time I expect.’

14 Dec ‘When I got home I found F. had had £50 from "a friend whom you do not know" & £90 by same post from the Stansfields, H.R. Smith’s, Mr Wallis & the Alexanders. V. overwhelming, but awfully kind & first mysterious.’

Thursday, 15 Dec ‘Expected C. on Sat. but owing to influenza they broke up, & she came home this morning, not v. well, so lucky Minnie arrived at 10.0 a.m.’

16 Dec ‘I met Ruthie at 3.39. Very sad to think our connection with the 2 schools at York, after nearly 40 years has ceased. She was very sorry to leave, as it had been her happiest term & she had enjoyed the responsibility of being 2nd Head. All the same she feels it was best.’

Saturday, 17 Dec ‘As R. is so much better, I went to Erica’s wedding. At 12.15 at Registry Office, Guildford.’

19 Dec ‘To town with Ruthie to Thomas’ where she got her hair thinned & after 4 or 5 different trials put up very nicely. She looks quite dignified & so sweet! Minnie went at 10.0 & Mabel came back. Minnie has been a great help & it was nice having someone in evenings again to do supper, hot bottles, etc.’

23 Dec ‘Bertha sent me £50 & Hugh £25, the latter if possible for Ruthie’s study abroad.’

1933

New Year’s Day. Jan. 1st 1933.

‘Robert has gone on improving very rapidly now, & to-day sat in a chair for short time . . . He has begun to realize what a strain we have been through.’

2 Jan  . . . ‘M. Ruthie & I went to pantomime (matinée) but R. felt poorly so we came out. Put her to bed early. On 3rd had Dr Field, who said she had slight tonsilitis, but she was very stupid, & Ruthie was really very feverish & in bed all the week, really poorly. Dr F. ill, & sent another woman, but I stopped her, as I was doing R. more good myself!’

11 Jan ‘Caro & Ruthie (who is almost well again) welcomed him, & he had dinner with us, though we cannot make a noise!’

Saturday, 14 Jan ‘Ruthie & I to Archaeological Lecture on Hurley by Col. Rivers Moore.’

16 Jan ‘Telegraphed to W.T.A. about room & Robert & I departed by 1.10 to Brighton, where we arrived at about 3.30. He stood the journey well. Taxi to Chichester Mansions, 18 Marine Parade. . . . Had to come back via London in new electric train & got home before 9.0.’

18 Jan ‘F. Ruthie & I to Book Club at Alexanders—England 1592–1692 (about) Mr Robson on Architecture & V.W.A. on French history—F. on Spenser. . . . Ruthie is having coaching & is working hard.’

27 Jan ‘In aft. Mary Stansfield took Ruthie & me to Kingsmere. Lovely skating. Ice good & sunny day. I fell tho’ & hurt my wrist a bit.’

Saturday, 28 Jan ‘I went by 9.25 to B’ham. C. met me & we went by bus to Westhill—my first visit to her.’

Sunday, 29 Jan  . . . ‘caught the last train home—8.20.’

1 Feb ‘Ruthie & I to "Bitter Sweet". Very good. She thought it marvellous.’

10 Feb ‘Horrid N.B.W.T.A.U. Comtee. F. to Woodbrooke.’

11 Feb ‘F. came home.’

13 Feb ‘Liberal Annual Meeting & Social. F. did splendidly.’

14 Feb ‘Spring cleaned C’s room. W.L.A. & Play Hour & 2nd class too.’

16 Feb ‘By 5.0 bus to Maidenhead to supper with Mary White who is going abroad.’

Saturday, 18 Feb ‘Robert came home just after lunch.’

20 Feb ‘Town’s Women’s Guild formed in evening.’

24 Feb ‘Mabel never came.’

25 Feb ‘Mabel never came again.’

28 Feb ‘Very busy with temperance subs. etc. Ruthie began her Oxford scholarship exam. Took it at Reg. Robson’s. French in morning—English Essay aft. 3 hours each. . . . Mabel off again.’

1 Mar ‘Ruthie had French translation in aft. Mabel off?’

3 Mar ‘Ruthie finished her exams in morning, & I saw her off to York by 1.45 train to stay at the Mount. She has been fearfully excited about it, & at going back in her pretty new grown-up clothes; & she does deserve a holiday, having worked regularly since Xmas about 6 hours a day, sometimes more. F. & I to Friends of University dinner—rather dull.’

6 Mar ‘Liberal Executive in evening.’

7 Mar ‘Usual things. Spring cleaned spare room. Play Hour, etc. I met Ruthie at 9 p.m. She stayed last night at B. Croft. She has enjoyed herself hugely, & everyone so pleased to see her, but she didn’t feel at all well. I think her hard work tired her out, & after she came home, for 2 or 3 mornings she stayed in bed till nearly dinner time & slept a great deal, though went to bed before 9.0.’

Sunday, 12 Mar ‘All to meeting except Father. He is speaking at Friends House to-night.’

15 Mar ‘Spring cleaned our bedroom—cd not get charwoman, but F. & Ruthie helped a bit & we got it done beautifully.’

16 Mar ‘Spring cleaned bathroom, & in aft. had charwoman for 3 hours who started the stairs. We had the carpets up for 3 days—a good plan.’

17 Mar ‘Finished stairs, thank goodness.’

18 Mar ‘Ruthie to Old Girls Hockey Match & tea at Abbey School. F. & I to Archaeological . . . Poor darling Ruthie, after all her hard work, has not got into Oxford & is very disappointed, but v. good about it. We are very sorry for her.’

19 Mar ‘F. to speak at Charlbury. Ruthie & I entertained a Persian student (man) & Miss Clay (Czecho Slovakian) to tea with Miss Cree, Mrs Robson & Pat. The 2 foreigners delightful. We played "Earth, air, fire & water" etc.’

21 Mar ‘Book Club. Ruthie & I made Layer Crèmes, but I bought most of the food. . . . "Bill" came in the middle for ½ hour with car Ber is lending us.’

22 Mar ‘Ruthie & I short drive with Leonard to see houses.’

23 Mar ‘Mabel spring cleaned, scullery cupboard, etc.’

24 Mar ‘Ruthie to Street to stay with Marg. She is so affectionate & sweet. We do miss her. In morning I had my first motor car lesson—terrified beforehand, but got on A1 the man said—nearly an hour in a "Triumph" car (Oliver Hodgkin’s) I went along Shinfield Rd & back, but the man took it up Alexandra Rd. Aft. F. & I to L.P. Parents day.’

Sunday, 26 Mar ‘O. Hodgkin took his car & left us Bertha’s. She has given me £10 for petrol, etc. Awfully kind. Nice quiet Sunday. No visitors. F. to speak at L.P. in evening.’

27 Mar ‘Lesson in B’s car. Found it harder than the small one, & rather lost my nerve as nearly had an accident.’

28 ‘V. short motor lesson.’

30 ‘Drove about 13 miles, Shinfield Rd, etc.

31 Mar ‘F. & I to Aylesbury—3 changes. Stayed at King’s Head Hotel.’

1 Apr ‘Ruthie was alone last night, but Mabel slept in.’

Sunday, 2 Apr ‘Caro, Eileen & Mr Clacey (garage proprietor) came for us in the car at 5.30, so we said goodbye to Robert & arrived home about 7.0. It has been a pleasant little rest (which we needed after R’s long illness—I have only had one night away & that was at Westhill) but Aylesbury v. unattractive—just a dull town, & yesterday I had headache part of day. Robert delightful. Expensive hotel 13/6 a day.’

3 Apr ‘Did washing with Ruthie’s help.’

6 Apr ‘Malcolm’s death about this time Very sad. April 6th—funeral 2 or 3 days later.’

13 Apr ‘Frank went to an Easter School at Bedales where he is giving 2 lectures.’

18 Apr ‘Frank came home to my joy . . . He enjoyed Bedales.’

21 Apr ‘At 5.30 F. Ruthie & I & Mr Clacey (teacher of car) drove to Ewelme, had a few mins. there & got back at ¼ to 8.0. Stormy looking, fine views. Mr C. drove thro’ town to Caversham Bridge—I drove all the rest of the way (about 35 miles I think) via Woodcote & back by Henley, thro’ the Cemetery & home & feel much more confidence now.’

Saturday, 22 Apr ‘Ruthie had her hair bobbed. I felt miserable, for she looked so sweet & uncommon with it up in 2 plaited buns at the back (low down) but she says she can’t get hats to fit & she is lazy about it too, so now looks more like everyone else. Suppose I’ll get used to it, but I don’t like it at all!’

Thursday, 4 May ‘Poor Ruthie to France (c/o Madame Parisot, 4 Rue de Montchapel, Dijon) & now for the first time we will have no bairnies at all at home for a month or two. She is so loving & sweet, I shall mess her dreadfully. Often says "I love you". . . . I saw them off at 2.0, Ruthie looking rather melancholy. She doesn’t want to go a bit. Is staying to-night in Paris with Miss Fox. I got home to an empty house (except Mabel), & felt very dreary.’

6 May ‘Card from Ruthie from Boulogne to say all well so far.’

Monday, 8 May ‘Cheerful letter (on the whole) from Ruthie from Dijon—not cheerful one from Caro, poor lassie. I left by 1.37 for York. We are shutting house up to-morrow & are going to have a holiday at last. Bertha met me & we drove to B. Croft. Funny to have no children at either of the schools. The car is still at Reading!’

9 May ‘Frank went to Ackworth—Mabel has a week’s holiday, then does spring cleaning.’

10 May ‘Poetry competition. Hugh, Bowes Edna & I judged. 8 competitors. Prize to Joan Edwards. Didn’t enjoy it much. F. came to hear end, & stayed night at B.C. Betty actually arrived with the car.’

Thursday, 11 May ‘F. & I to Penrith by 10.0? train, then bus to Patterdale & in little car to Deepdale End where we arrived about 5.30. It looked exquisite & Jeanie gave us lovely welcome.’

Sunday, 14 May ‘Walked round Brothers Water & called on May Spence. Aft. sat in garden & read luxuriously. May S. to tea. Interesting, but terribly tiring talking about old relations many of whom I never knew.’

Monday, 15 May ‘Left with gt regret—Jeannie has been so kind & Ellie Fry too. . . . Arrived Wheel Birks about 3.30, or rather Stocksfield . . . W. Birks has been altered & has electric light & is very nice.’

17 May ‘Left by 10.0 train. Everyone has been most kind, but not v. easy to get on with, so it was rather a strain. Had a nice call on Aunt Hope . . . Molly saw us off, & we got to Scarboro’ about ¼ to 6.0—had a meal in a café & went to Breece, 7 West St. where we had a nice bedroom only next 2 lavatories which made a dreadful noise 5/6 bed & breakfast.’

18 May ‘Mayoral civil welcome to delegates. Business. Ramsay Muir made President. I think last time I was at N.L.F. meetings was when Father was President!’

19 May ‘Left by 5.0 train & went to B. Croft. No-one there but Bowes later.’

Saturday, 20 May ‘After breakfast I dashed up to near the Mount to see Dr Hewett. I have got "tesnia" [?] a fungus rather like ringworm only not that, in my left foot. The Mount has had it & I guess I got it from Ruthie—awful irritation. He was v. nice. Also asked about my jaw, but he says a "cracking jaw" is always a cracking jaw." (Rheumatism). F. & I caught the 10.5 to Reading. Mabel gave us a nice welcome & the garden is lovely—irises, pink lupins which Marg. gave me last birthday, etc, etc. We had tea at 4.30 feeling a bit melancholy (though very glad to be at home, thankful I was) at having no bairnies to greet us, then I unpacked & Ella sent down to say Frank was very ill. He was taken suddenly worse on Thursday—I went to see her at 7.0 & he died at 11.0 p.m. quite peacefully. It is a mercy. He was at meeting last Sunday & played bridge on Monday, but went to the hospital in London on Thursday. Perhaps it is due to reaction from the treatment. Cancer is dreadful & his throat was terribly swollen, so one can only be thankful for the quick end.’

22 May . . . wire came that Robert was coming immediately on important business & we spent the aft. discussing whether he cld buy a partnership. Mr Tomkins is seriously ill with tuberculosis & unable to do any business for a year (he has been ill for several weeks, but this was quite surprising, for he is fairly old) & either R. must become a partner or the business must be sold. We agreed to lend him £1200 if Mr Dryland approved of it, & Robert went off after tea to see him in great excitement. So excited that he had to smoke a lot!’

23 May ‘Heard from Robert that Mr Dryland has given him good advice, & in a day or two Mr Tomkins agreed to letting him buy a partnership for £900 & he must put £200 in the Bank for office working purposes. He is very young to have sole charge—only 26" but the responsibility, if not too much, will be good for him.’

24 May ‘F. & I in car with Ella’s party to Crematorium—nice service—Frank spoke beautifully . . . Geoffrey Pollard motored us to catch 5.8 to London for Swarthmore Lecture by Shipley Brayshaw on "Unemployment & Plenty." Frank in chair. Place packed. V. good lecture.’

25 May ‘Rose & Mabel spring cleaned dining room & I found them at it when I returned at 6.15 & had to help a bit.’

26 May ‘F. to Y.M. I had much to do at home—have felt so rushed lately. There has been no spare time since the holidays with being away, & then Frank’s death & Y.M. Evening I went to L.N.U. meeting.’

29 May ‘Spring cleaned study—Mabel, F. & I. Fearfully tiring.’

30 May ‘F. to Y.M. Mabel & I prepared drawing room . . . Robert has got his partnership & all so far goes well—no clients left.’

31 May ‘Rose & Mabel finished the drawing room.’

2 June ‘Rose for ½ day & she & Mabel spring cleaned hall. I’m sick of it but it is finished at last (except 3 bedrooms wh. are not to be done now) all but one or two little things.’

Whit Monday, 5 June ‘‘Mabel’ out for day—no washing. . . .

Robert is at a place in Sussex (Royhill) M. Reg. & Caro (latter at Penn House) at York, & Ruthie still in Dijon where she is happy & gay.’

6 June ‘V. hot. I had sketching lesson (St. Giles’ Buildings) with Mr Rawlings. I did enjoy it, for I have not done any properly for years, but seem to have lost the art.’

7 June ‘Another sketching lesson.’

Friday, 9 June ‘F. to Woodbrooke for night. I all alone. Not quite so hot, & windy. Had committee of N.B.W.T.A.U. in garden. Mrs Shawney presided. Had ices first. Full Comtee of 19. Tea in dining room, sandwiches & cakes. ‘Mabel’ managed well, & Ella helped to hand.’

10 June ‘F. came back.’

12 June ‘Feel v. depressed.’

Saturday, 17 June ‘F. & I went to Street, arriving Wells about ¼ to 1.0.’

Sunday, 18 June ‘Meeting. F. spoke, & others. All 3 to Frank Clark’s to dinner, to tea to Theodora’s (by bus)—she met us at end of bus with car . . . M’s to supper. She came to the Bear for breakfast this a.m.’

19 June ‘Got home about 2.45.’

20 June ‘Frank spoke to W.L.A. on Licensing report.’

23 June ‘Heard that Robert’s chief—Mr Tomkins died yesterday. He was only about 61. Robert liked him much & it is very sad, & was very sudden. . . . Robert is now, at 26, left in sole charge of the office, all the Clients & all the Staff older than him. It is an old & very respected firm.

‘Frank is correcting exam papers.’

26 June ‘Another disturbing letter from Ruthie.’

1 July ‘In aft. I went to Grimsbury Bank, Hermitage, to stay with Ella, who is looking after house while the Childs’s are away.’

3 July ‘I left in morning . . . Aft. about 4.0 Lucy Jackson came . . .’

Wednesday, 19 July ‘N.B.W.T.A.U. fête at Coley Park. Glorious weather. F. came there for tea. I helped with tea tickets. I left at 6.15 as Ruthie was coming back from France. She had spent the day in London with "Alec" & "Fraser". Got home (F. met her about ¼ to 7.0, looking, thank goodness, just the same. She rushed round to side door & half way upstairs & flung her arms round me, & was so sweet, sitting on my knee, etc & chattering away.’

21 July ‘Yesterday I had my first bathe this year at Freebody’s Caversham with Ruthie. It was lovely & so warm.’

Saturday, 5 Aug ‘By packed trains to London where Robert joined us & on to Royhill, Buxted, Sussex, where we arrived in time for lunch . . .

‘About this time (August I think) the cyclometer I bought last September for cycling tour got broken. It had registered nearly 1000 miles.’

‘Left on Aug. 8th & Marg. & I spent the day in London shopping, mostly kitchen things.’

 

‘On 15th we tried arranging the presents & decided to have 2 rooms. In the evenings we played ‘cheat’, frizzeler, etc.’

Saturday, 19 Aug ‘Margaret’s wedding day.

‘The weather favoured us, & we had a perfect day, not too hot or windy, but lovely & sunny. We had to have breakfast out of doors as both dining & drawing rooms were full of presents, & so it was nice a mercy it was fine. D. Brain sent heaps of flowers which the girls arranged beautifully on the chimney pieces. The flowers (sweet peas) for the bridesmaids arrived far too dead, because of the drought to be of any use, so we sent them back to the Co-op, & Marg. rushed to town & got ordered pink larkspur at Vindens, & then met Mr & Mrs Dale, Florrie & Mr Harrison (Reg’s Uncle) & brought them here. They were quite helpful. Bertha & Bowes had arrived last night & came to see us & are staying at Sonning. Ber kindly came in morning & made my bouquet beautifully, pink roses & asparagus fern & gypsophilum, & Mrs Dale’s of yellow roses. We had lunch at 12.15 in garden, Marg. in my Jap. dressing gown. The sun was rather hot. ‘Mabel’ rather lost her head, but we had a beautiful, cold lunch, nothing hot except mashed potatoes. In the middle the best man, Mr Low Clarkson, & his wife arrived, unasked! so there were 12 of us, as Robert had come in the morning. Then we rushed off to dress—Florrie in his room, the Dales in the spare room. I had not even time to do my hair as I had to help Marg. She looked really exquisite in ivory silk crepe de chine with a knot of orange blossom (not real) that Mabel & her daughters, I think, had worn, & a chaplet of white carnations & blue delphiniums in her hair—no gloves—bouquet of same flowers. The bridesmaids looked lovely too, Caro & Ruthie in white silk with pink rosebuds on it, & Florrie in pink, the same. They carried pink larkspur. Reg. wore a light grey suit with white heather buttonhole & looked extremely nice. Best man, Frank & Robert wore white carnations (F. dark bluey grey suit.) Mrs Dale blue & yellow voile I think, v. pretty, I in black lace with a pink roses spray. We were all ready in time & had 2 cars. Mr & Mrs Dale, Mabel (maid) & I went first at 2.0—best man had his own car. Then bridesmaids & the Dales & I went in to meeting about 2.5. It was pretty full & beautifully decorated by Rosamund Wallis & her friend & Mary Stansfield—in the 2 corners large tall yellow sort of sunflowers, etc given by Rawlingses, Castles etc, & just behind the Bride a beautiful bowl of white Jap. anemones? The bride & her father arrived punctually & the bridesmaids followed them in, M. looking rather shy with eyes cast down. Soon she & Reg. said their says very well & clearly & then a beautiful meeting followed of about 20 mins. Chas. Stansfield, Chas. Robinson, Mr Leach prayed & Marg. Lloyd spoke. Afterwards certificate signed—then bride & bridegroom home by car—F. & I & C. & Ruthie in 2nd for C. to play wedding march & rest followed in due course. People clapped as we went off! We—F. & I—& Marg. & Reg. stood in Hall to receive the guests who then went into the garden for tea. It was a beautiful tea & quantities of strawberry ices, & everyone was so jolly & friendly. About 76 of us in all I think. I had 2 waitresses from the University (one came at 11.0 & one at 2.0) & Mrs Mc’David helped with tea & washing up (for nothing). About We were photographed in various groups & Caro took some snap shots. M. cut the wedding cake, made by her & me in April, only we got white icing done by Scholes. There were 4 tiers weighing about 25 lbs. before icing I think. We had 2 sprays (5 lilies) lilium harisii on the top in a silver vase with white ribbon round it & smilax trailing down. Everyone said it was delicious! The tea was on a trestle table in corner of garden near scullery—food on another where bird bath used to be. Trestle table of presents in drawing room, & our own table in dining room. About 4.0 o’clock M. went up to change into her pretty blue flowered shantung frock, blue coat, hat of same material, grey shoes & stockings. I said goodbye to her on the stairs, & at 4.45 she & Reg. went off to station amid a lot of confetti, & old slippers on back of car. The bridesmaids, Rob. Bertha & the Dales, etc. went in cars to see them off, & we said goodbye to most of the visitors. The happy couple went to Southampton & had dinner in an hotel, then on board ship to Guernsey where they arrived next morning & stayed several days, & then went to Sark for a fortnight. M. wrote a card from Southampton, so sweet of her, to say they had loved the day & thanking us, & saying all was lovely.

‘ . . . Caro & Ruthie too tired to do much, so F. & I did a lot as presents had to be moved for meals next day.’

wedding party, Reg & Margaret Dale and others, August 1938

21 Aug ‘I think I helped Ruthie with her clothes.’

24 Aug ‘Ruthie went to Morpeth to stay with the Mc’Clellans. At last minute said she didn’t want to go, but had a splendid time there for a fortnight & more.’

30 Aug ‘C. & I to London for day . . . I bought myself a grey fur coat (£6) at London Fur Co.’

Friday, 1 Sept ‘C. & I left F. alone & went to get Margaret’s house ready. "Tor Height", Greenfield Avenue near Guisely . . . At Bradford about 6.30 & got bus to Hawksworth Lane & walked (10 mins.) to Guisely, where we stayed at Mrs Attenborough’s, 1 Fieldhead Rd. Bed, breakfast & light supper 5/- each per day.’

Tuesday, 5 Sept . . . ‘decided to go home by 10.0 train from Bradford. Just missed it, so had to get the 10.40 round by London . . . Finally got home at 5.30 . . .’

Friday, 8 Sept ‘‘Mabel’ went off for a week’s holiday.’

14 Sept ‘Expected Ruthie, but she has put off till to-morrow. She left the Mc’Clellans on the 12th & went to B. Croft.’

15 Sept ‘Mabel back again. Rather a relief. I met Ruthie in aft. She has had a splendid time.’

21 Sept ‘F. & I to see film "Good Companions". V. good, but I didn’t care for the end & I don’t really like the cinema, much.’

25 Sept ‘F. to York to B. Croft to attend School Policy Meetings. On the 27th he went to stay with Margaret, her first staying visitor. I felt envious. On 30th (after a happy time) he went back to York & stayed with Donald Gray’s. Gave Sunday evening address at meeting house.

‘Ruthie & I had a quiet, peaceful week. After much consideration between B’ham; & Reading with the chance of Oxford, F. & I decided on the latter, so we made all the necessary arrangements at the University & R. began reading a lot of French.’

2 Oct ‘Frank came home, to my joy. Liberal Committee.’

3 Oct ‘W.L.A. Miss Maplesden on the unemployment here. Committee.’

4 Oct ‘Ruthie to interview with Prof. de Burgh.’

5 Oct ‘Ruthie started at University at reception in afternoon. Is going to work for Intermediate. Met her friend Winnie Mumford whom she met at Dijon.’

6 Oct ‘F. & I to Meeting for Sufferings About Germany, Nazis treatment of Jews, or others, very interesting, & terrible.’

10 Oct ‘Began Play Hour.’

11 Oct ‘Ruthie went to bed, absolutely tired out, early & stayed in bed all next day.’

12 Oct ‘Wonderful Anti-Slavery Play in Town Hall. Poor Ruthie couldn’t go.’

15 Oct ‘Q.M. Ruthie’s first dance at University.’

Sunday, 16 Oct ‘Q.M. F. led peace discussion.’

21 Oct ‘F. & Ruthie had been very long walk on Fair Mile & were tired out.’

23 Oct ‘Tired out with yesterday & had a headache, but tried to collect Liberal Subs.’

26 Oct ‘To tea at Steven’s. Lesson on smocking.’

4 Nov ‘Evening 6 Friends to Comtee. Coffee. They asked me to be an Elder, but I said ‘no’ & now they have asked me to be an Overseer. Fireworks. Jolly.’

8 Nov ‘F. & I to re-opening of Palmer Hall by Lord Clwydd, a jolly old man, who spoke well—Welsh. A great teetotaller—F. told him who I was, & he asked who had painted Father’s portrait.’

9 Nov ‘F. & I to London—bought book shelves for Ruthie at Oetzmann’s. Lord Mayor’s SHow. Wedged in great crowd in Cheapside & hated that—show not v. interesting. Lunch at Eustace Miles, then Wyndham’s for "Sheppey". Evie & Elsa came. E. had given us tickets, front row of Upper Circle. First time we had seen Ralph R. act. He is the chief character—Sheppey, a barber. V. good indeed.’

10 Nov ‘F. early to Woodbrook. I to Comtee N.B.W.T.A.U. Ruthie to debate at University. She loves it now. Is working v. hard for Oxford, but really wants to stay at Reading.’

11 Nov ‘F. came back.’

19 Nov ‘Ruthie’s birthday. I fear she found it a little flat, as last year she was at the Mount . . . It was a pity for we tried to make R. have a happy day.’

Monday, 20 Nov ‘Ruthie began (for the 2nd time) her Oxford entrance exam. She took it at the Bowman-Smiths—9.30–12.30 in morning & 2–5 in aft. She had this (not always so long) till Thursday—finished at 1.0 on Thurs. They were dreadfully difficult, some of them, but she doesn’t mind whether she gets through as she is enjoying Reading. She was very tired afterwards, as lately she has worked very hard, so stayed in bed part of Friday morning.’

21 Nov ‘I have been made an Overseer, & had a long meeting in evening—quite interesting.’

25 Nov ‘Ruthie to Univ. dance.’

Sunday, 24 Dec ‘Marg. has awful cough & cold. She & F. & Ruthie all coughed in meeting.’

Monday, Xmas Day ‘C. in bed to breakfast, so we took our family presents up to her bedroom afterwards. Lovely things. F. gave me a letter box, R. photo of himself, Marg. embroidered a case for Radio Times, C. an engagement calendar & "Tweedledum & Tweedledee moth balls (she made the net case for them) & Ruthie 4 unbreakable glasses & matches. Then some of us v. busy with the dinner, to which Bowes & Bill came—10 of us counting ‘Mabel’. Turkey, chestnut stuffed, etc. Bowes & Bill gave us presents & had brought a huge cake, apples, huge box of choc’s, etc. Some did jig saw puzzle in aft. Bowes & Bill to a friend’s to tea near Abingdon. After they came back C. & Ruthie did amusing play called ‘Quits’. They did it extremely well considering they had only had 1 proper rehearsal just before, as C. had been so poorly. Then Bill & C. dressed up, he as shepherd boy in smock & C. as peasant girl & sang "There’s an ’ole in my bucket dear Liza". It was awfully good. F. sang "Whenever I start singing, Scots wha’ hae with Wallace bled". Then Gackie’s carols, even Xmas tree & ending with "Goodnight." Also the piece from "Christ & his soldiers." Supper table decorated with crackers, room decorated with streamers & so on. Ginger cream, chesnut [sic] cream & trifle etc. It has been a very happy day, & went much better than I had dared to hope.’

31 Dec ‘Frank to speak at Friends’ House.’

1934

9 Jan ‘Started spring cleaning, Ruthie’s room I think.’

11 Jan ‘I’ve been made an Overseer (at last!) & went to a visiting Comtee at Mrs Robsons (Marie B.)’

12 Jan ‘Had headache & came down late to find letter from Westhill saying C. had had a motor car accident & broken a rib. Very distressed & did not know whether to go, but they said no need for anxiety. Sent telegram to C.’

15 Jan ‘Play Hour Treat. Gt success. Mr Herford as Father Xmas & Ruthie in beautiful Chinese dress. I stayed on for treat for older children.’

Sunday, 21 Jan ‘I was sick in night, so Ruthie & I did not go to meeting.’

22 Jan ‘Annual social of B.W.T.A.’

Thursday, 25 Jan ‘To stay with Margaret & Reg. It is a long time since I have been away, & it is most exciting to be going to stay with a married daughter.’

Monday, 5 Feb I left at ¼ to 9.0 for home . . . F. met me about 3.30 & Ruthie was at Denmark Rd. It is lovely to be with them again—‘Mabel’ has done well & all seems in order.’

7 Feb ‘My 59th birthday & such a happy one. F. gave me a handbag & a lovely frame sketch of Loch Maree by Mother—Marg. & Reg. the game ‘Lexicon’, Caro & Ruthie bath salts & a brooch, Evie a gaslighter & choc’s & tulips, Jeanie, tray cloth & scissor sheath, & I had letters from Ber & Bowes, etc. (Sponge bag from Elisabeth later) Robert forgot, for the first time in his life, but remembered a week later. In evening we went to see Chu Chin Chow (reserved seats) done by amateurs. Quite enjoyable; rather too scanty clothes sometimes.’

Sunday, 11 Feb ‘Ruthie to tea at St. Andrews Hall (Winnie Mumford).’

12 Feb ‘Liberal Assn Annual Meeting at Mc’Ilroys’. F. re-elected chairman & nice things said. He spoke well . . .’

13 Feb ‘W.L.A. Sewed for bazaar.

‘I gave ‘Mabel’ a holiday all Sunday, & she never came again till Thursday as her mother had "important business" & the landlady was ill. I was much annoyed.’

14 Feb ‘F. has a pupil at last.’

15 Feb ‘Mabel spring cleaned her bedroom in aft. (ordinary work in morning.)’

16 Feb ‘F. in London yesterday & to-day. B.W.T.A. Joint Comtee. Ruthie at Inter Hall Colleges Debate. Book Club at Rawlings. F. opened discussion on the motives of profit making. V. good. Amusing.’

17 Feb ‘I did a lot of spring cleaning of drawers & cupboards. Also British Women work.’

Sunday, 18 Feb ‘Ruthie to Students Tea. F. to speak in London St Chapel in aft.’

19 Feb ‘I let Rose & Mabel spring clean our bedroom, & I did the washing, & also all our curtains, & got a lot of it ironed in aft. It was tiring, but was worth it, for it was a lovely day & they dried well.’

20 Feb ‘F. put up the curtains & frills for me, & the room got finished. All upstairs done except spare room & bathroom.’

23 Feb ‘British women meeting lecture on milk—interesting. Evening F. & I to hear Lady Astor on ‘Peace’. Most amusing!’

24 Feb ‘Our little party—I had rather dreaded it, for Ruthie said it was ‘queer’ to have a games party & that her reputation depended on it, so I took great pains with every detail. We asked the people 7.30 to 10.0 & they went about 10.20. It was a great success & all came except one who had a cold, & we had quite enough for the room. We had Mr Melville, Mary Reynolds, Mary Milligan, H. Davies, Jean Hawkins, Winnie Mumford, Ralph Smith, Ted Nash & Khin [?]. I didn’t keep "Mabel" but she set the supper & cut sandwiches in aft. & came back at 9.30 to wash up. We started with chumps (v. good) then ‘disguised dogs’. At 8.30 I made coffee & we went in to supper—sausage rolls (not v. popular) ham sandwiches, egg ditto, coffee, lemonade, & plenty of cakes & biscuits. Then we played acting game—a person’s name "Bach" & then saying as many words as possible in one minute beginning with a certain letter & that ended the evening. F. was full of good stories & helped greatly.’

26 Feb ‘Helped with washing, etc. Rose & Mabel started spare-room in aft. & I ironed. They got on well.’

27 Feb ‘Men came to paper & paint bathroom & lavatory. Mabel went on with spare room etc. W.L.A. Comtee Play Hour, Townswomen’s Guild.’

2 Mar ‘F. & I to Meeting for Sufferings. F. v. disappointed that the Message he & others had taken hours to prepare (on peace) was not accepted . . . Got home to find a clean bathroom, tho’ paint not quite dry. Men finished that & lavatory.’

3 Mar . . . ‘Ruthie went to the much looked forward to St. David’s dance. Her friend Dorothia Buckwell also went & stayed night here. They got back about 12 p.m. & F. & I were in bed, but she came in to tell us about it.’

7 Mar ‘We finished all the Spring cleaning upstairs quite early, & also did the drawing room & study—former because we got a ‘Hoover’ free for 2 days. I had Rose to help a bit & we got on well.’

Saturday, 24 Mar ‘Ruthie went to Westhill for the week-end (a dance) so F. & I went to Evie & Ernest’s for our first staying visit. I saw Ruthie off at 9.30 & F. & I were going to catch about 10.0 to Guildford & I missed it by a minute! We got there about 12.30 . . .’

26 Mar ‘Left soon after breakfast after a lovely & refreshing time. Ruthie got home about 9.30 p.m. also having had a delightful time.’

27 Mar ‘Ruthie & I to Townswomens’ Guild.’

29 Mar ‘Ruthie went a long ramble. Got home about 9.30.’

Easter Monday, 2 Apr ‘Mabel had aft. off.’

3 Apr ‘Ruthie went a bicycle ride 35 or 40 miles to Aldworth, Compton etc with 2 other girls & 4 or 5 young men students. Got back at 7.0 not too tired.’

9 Apr ‘F. formally asked to oppose Cap. Simonds a Brewery Director, as a Progressive Independent. People at Lib. Exec. v. nice about him.’

10 Apr ‘F. agreed to stand & Mr Darvall in charge. Ruthie long bicycle ride with students—about 50 miles. . . . Next few days v. busy doing Liberal work, & delivering F’s election addresses.’

18 Apr ‘F. & I had canvassed etc all day. Quite fun.’

Thursday, 19 Apr ‘Election day. Heather Gardiner, etc, helped well. Quite exciting at ¼ to 9.0 Ruthie & I were outside Town Hall—Mrs Ryder inside. Few there. Simonds 768, F. 493 Majority 275 F. did v. well considering his strong opponent & that many Labour people didn’t vote. Feels rather flat.’

Friday, 20 Apr ‘Robert’s engagement to Bernice Mansell. He wrote a very nice letter, & I had really expected it (though not so soon) but it was rather upsetting on top of the election & Book Club to-night! on Wm Morris.’

24 Apr ‘Last Play Hour. Numbers have kept up well.

‘To Town Hall at 6.0 to decorate our Stall (plain) for Liberal Bazaar.’

Wednesday, 25 Apr ‘Liberal Bazaar. It has been a great worry, & 2 night ago heard that Lady Reading couldn’t come to open it (unwell.) However she sent v. nice letter & 10 guineas & Mr Mander opened it charmingly; F. proposed vote of thanks & Mrs M. said his was the best speech. I took her round. We got about £14 at our own stall, I think. 2 girls had been working twice a week since Xmas & had made over 600 tulips to decorate the stalls! I had to stay till 9.p.m. Elsa’s baby born to-day.’

26 Apr ‘Ruthie went back to University.’

Sunday, 29 Apr ‘F. went last night to Letchworth till Monday.’

1 May ‘I went to N.L.F. meetings in London. V. interesting. Alison Garland made President. (I introduced myself & she said "what lovely times we had at Bensham & I adored your Father & Mother.) Mostly Disarmament, Sanctions, traffic in arms, etc . . . I went to Anti-Vivisection meeting in Reading in evening.’

2 May ‘N.L.F. meetings again. Still more interesting, employment, agriculture, etc. Sir Francis Acland, Megan Lloyd George, etc. Isaac Foot on "Incitement to Seditions Bill."

‘I left just before 3.0 & met Ruthie at Oxford Circus. We chose her a dress in Berwick Market, tried, unsuccessfully, to get into Covent Garden, so saw "Scotts Antarctic Film" & "Charlemagne" films. Home to supper. F. went to Lib. Fed. meetings in Bournemouth & stayed till 5th.’

5 May ‘Leonard came in after supper & we played frizzeller, old maid, pounce & donkey & Bernice learnt them v. quickly. . . . in aft. F. Ruthie & I cycled to Bluebell Wood! Exquisite. Home to tea.’

Sunday, 6 May ‘Robt. & Bernice are not demonstrative, in public anyway. She is quite sweet, full of the coming marriage. I do wish she was a Friend. Robt. talked to me a little in bedroom, but I fear I have again failed him rather, just when he needs sympathy & love to help. How I hate myself, & I do try to be so different.’

12 May ‘Lovely, v. hot day & F. Ruthie & I started on river at 3.30, for tea at Lock House, then Ruthie & I had a lovely bathe at the French Horn, got home about 6.30 or 7.0 I think.’

14 May ‘Began to whitewash pantry—Rose finished it.’

15 May ‘Book Club at Robsons. Wm Morris again. F. good on his poetry. Ruthie bicycle ride with students.’

18 May ‘Ruthie went to stay at Burton C. for Whitsuntide directly after dinner.’

Sunday, 20 May ‘No visitors, but C. & I to L.P. in evening to hear Vera Britain on League of Nations, etc. Good.’

22 May ‘Ruthie had travelled all night, & arrived just before breakfast. Had had a v. nice time, but heaps of rain, only fortunately fine for garden party.’

Wednesday, 23 May ‘After false alarms of telegrams during last few days, one really arrived at 12.15, saying something like "Mother & son, both well, congratulations grandmother." It was fearfully exciting & Ruthie & I kept telling people—our first little grandchild! We heard afterwards details. It was born during the night—about 6 lbs. 10 oz. Marg. is in a Maternity Home at Shipley. I think she began to feel poorly on Monday night, but did not go into the home till Tuesday about 10 p.m.’

25 May ‘F. & I at Y.M. the whole day. . . . Rose & Mabel spring cleaned kitchen.’

Saturday, 26 May ‘Y.M. Peace. F. introduced it, but young Friends tiresome—would not separate it from social order & nothing got done. I came home before evening sitting, but went to Woodbrooke tea with F.’

29 May ‘Ruthie has been lent Herford boat & every day goes with her friends rows up a little then they work.’

30 May ‘I went to London to see Betty do short scene in ‘Merry Wives’ & stayed night at Queen’s Gardens, Hyde P. with her.’

‘I heard from Robert that he & Bernice have just put off their wedding. I am very troubled about it.’

31 May ‘I came home early. Mr Jones had liked house & in spite of wanting to rent agreed to buy for £1000. We did not want to sell this year, but it seemed stupid to refuse our only fairly decent offer, so reluctantly we agreed. F. Ruthie & I on river all aft. working reading & resting in Harford boat. Continue to get pretty good news of Margaret & ‘Francis Rowland’.

1 June  . . .’Ruthie had Herford’s boat no longer. F. to Woodbrooke. Ruthie had headache & slept in aft. She is working very hard.’

2 June ‘F. came home in evening. I went round seeing houses.’

Tuesday, 5 June ‘Left by 10.35 for Leeds to stay at Tor Height. Got there about 6.0 I think & Reg. gave me warm welcome.’

Saturday, 9 June ‘Then began a really rather awful week. I had everything to do, fires, washing napkins, cooking, baby’s food, taking meals to M. putting fomentations on her every 4 hours & keeping house clean. My back ached terribly with the low sink & one day I nearly gave in (only could not do so) feeling quite ill. . . . On the 22nd M. was pronounced alright to our very great joy, & now she is a great help & we go tiny walks (leaving baby all alone!)’

Tuesday, 26 June ‘Left at 3.0 for Reading & F. met me at 9.0. Lovely welcome from him & Ruthie. They & ‘Mabel’ have got on well while I have been away. . . . spent next few days chiefly house hunting, till we heard that perhaps after all our house was not sold! Annoying. Ruthie having sort of holiday after exams.’

4 July ‘Ruthie heard that she has passed ‘Inter’. We are so pleased. I went to London at 5.5 to meet Robert. Bernice has definitely broken off the engagement. At first he was very unhappy, but now he feels she has been deceitful & has treated him badly, so he has recovered & he was very sweet. In a way I am glad it is over, but I wish he could be happily married. I went to Hackney with him & heard him do 4 or 5 "poor man’s lawyer cases" with great interest, though they were sordid & sad. He had to meet Sir Robert Gower at House of Commons later, so I got 10.0 train home. I forgot to say that a week or two ago, R. got Sir Robert for a partner. I think it is wonderful of him to have carried this through after nearly a year’s work, & the firm is now Gower, Pollard, Thorowgood & Tabor. Good for R. who is only 27!’

5 July ‘Ruthie to going down dance.’

6 July ‘I saw Ruthie off to Goathland; at last has come "the day she has been longing for, for a year"!! She has taken a lot of pains getting up this reunion with her Dijon friends, & Bertha has lent her Brereton Farm—difficulties because of Betty starting a café, but it got arranged at lost.’

10 July ‘W.L.A. Have been busy taking round Liberal leaflets, washing duvets etc.’

11 July ‘Most of day at temperance fête. Lady Anne Macleod opened it & was sweet to me afterwards. Said she remembered staying at Bensham quite well, & I had started her on vegetarianism.’

13 July ‘Free Church Council meeting. Lady Hosie spoke. Disappointing.’

20 July ‘After all our house is not sold. I’m quite glad!’

Friday, 27 July ‘Ruthie came home after a glorious fortnight at Goathland & nearly a week at Tor Height where she adored little "Rowland! She met ‘Alec’ & ‘Tony’ in London & they all arrived together to dinner about 1.30. Aft. they went to Léonie’s to tea, but came back to supper, & we had music & a nice evening. They are nice young men.’

28 July ‘Breakfast 7.15 & then Ruthie saw the two off soon after.’

Wednesday, 1 Aug  . . . ‘Frank & C. saw Ruthie & me off to Germany by the 5.35 train. Got some tea & eggs in Liverpool St. station, then on to Harwich—sailed about 11.0 p.m. . . . Got to Hook of Holland about 5.0 or so & went to our train . . . Changed at Hildesheim & Hanover. Got to Goslar about 3.0 & took omnibus to Hahnenklee . . . Dr Elling & Liselotte met us & we walked to their pretty little wooden Norwegian house "Auerbach Villa", & had a warm welcome from Frau Elling . . . She takes us in, as we are ‘Quakers’, for 4 marks a day. With "registered marks" that is only a little over 4/-.’

6 Aug ‘Owing to Hindenburg’s death concerts are stopped for a week.’

Wednesday, 8 Aug ‘The whole family & my sweet Ruthie saw me off by the 2.0 o’clock omnibus.’

9 Aug  . . . ‘was home in Reading before they expected me before 10.0 a.m.’

 

14 Aug ‘F. C. & I left by 8.10 for Sedbergh. About 6 changes! Left Mabel to shut up house . . . Arrived about 6.0 & got a bus to c/o Mrs Bainbridge, 3 Highfield Villas. Had dinner. We have whole house for £4.10.0 separate room for meals.’

Sunday, 19 Aug ‘Father (Frank) spoke beautifully this morning on peace, quoting from Ruskin.’

28 Aug ‘F. C. & I left at 9.2, the beloved mts soon receding in distance . . . home about 6.30. Mabel gave us fairly nice welcome, but was soon in tears having quarrelled with her young man. Alterations to scullery very nice.’

9 Sept ‘Gave Mabel notice.’

14 Sept ‘Darling Ruthie got back from Germany early in the morning. She looks taller & fatter & so well & bonny & was full of interest. It is lovely to have her back. Mahjong in evening—1st time for ages!!’

21 Sept ‘Ruthie out with Dix!’

22 Sept ‘F. to Jordans for week-end conference with Rufus Jones, etc.

‘‘Mabel’ left after 2½ years here. I shall miss her for she has been splendid in many ways, but lately she has often had to be called about 7.15 or 7.20 & it was getting on my nerves, & in spite of warnings she did not seem to care, so I told her she must leave. She was getting so slack, & after a week in her new place the mistress came to ask me about her as she said she was not doing the work thoroughly! All the same I am sorry I had to let her go. She wanted to come back & asked me to change my mind. Ruthie & I had the week-end alone. She is a pet.’

24 Sept ‘Started Play Hour.

‘For about 3 days we could not use scullery sink, as drain outside had to be altered . . . We were thankful when the mess was over.’

28 Sept ‘F. went to Dryderdale (C.E.C.) Ed. Hodgkin’s till Monday & enjoyed it very much.’

Frank, Mary & Caro Pollard, Reg, Margaret & Rowland Dale, Sedbergh, August 1934

1 Oct ‘R. & I very tired—did drawing room & study & ironing. Play Hour—& Lib. Comtee in evening.

4 Oct ‘R. to reception at University. She is a Senior student now.’

15 Oct ‘Harry Barnes came to do out drawing room, & I decided to engage him temporarily at 1/- a week. He comes at ¼ to 7.0 & stays till he has washed up the dinner things. He is an old soldier, about 54 yrs old, & is wonderful, & so kind & nice. He does the fires so well that we never have any bother, & I’m thankful I let M. go & wish I had not kept her so long. Q.M. in evening.’

16 Oct ‘Q.M. Mary Carey good on Germany. All had dinner at Q.M. I left Harry alone—he has the latch key!’

20 Oct ‘F. to Jordans for week-end.’

24 Oct ‘F. & I to London, met Evie & Ernest & had lunch with them at a German restaurant, then to Duchess theatre where met Ruthie & all saw "Eden End" in which Ralph Richardson took one of chief parts. V. good indeed. Life in 1912—2 sisters & Dr father. Afterwards we separated—Weisses & F. to Dr Schweitzer’s lecture—R. & I to see Ralph who was delightful—also spoke to a young actor called John Teed.’

26 Oct ‘Caro came for ½ term with Joe Hardie, & they came to the meeting.’

1 Nov ‘2 teeth (front) stopped.’

2 ‘Meeting for Sufferings. Aft. Ella & I to see South Africa House, then to Dr Levy (oculist) about my eyes. Quite satisfactory. Says they will last for years! but must have new glasses & put in drops every day for some weeks as I’ve got conjunctivitis.’

Saturday, 3 Nov ‘Came back to Miss Snell’s play at Folk House "Thos. Ellwood." . . . The play is very good, & Frank was excellent as Milton. I wished the play was longer!’

5 Nov ‘Harry Barnes’s last day. He has done so well & been so kind that I feel very sorry he is leaving, but I have a maid coming. His weak point is ‘washing up’!’

6 Nov ‘Florence Webb, aged just 17, came, at £27 a year. I can hardly understand a word she says, & at first, tho’ very willing, she seemed rather stupid, but I hope she will do.’

7 Nov ‘F. never can come at present as he is giving a course of lectures at the Mary Ward Settlement on "International affairs". Nice to have a maid in in evenings to do supper & bottles, etc. after 2½ years doing it ourselves, but ‘Mabel’ had been doing the breakfast for some time, & I have to do that again now.’

17 Nov ‘To-day A. Neave Brayshaw lectured on "Historical Background to Quakerism." R. at dance in London. Stayed night with Robert.’

19 Nov ‘R’s birthday. Alas! She has left the "teens" & is 20. We gave her a bureau instead of next year, but her presents dribbled in, even a day or two late, so she did not seem to have many, & I was disappointed. Evening we took her to see an excellent pacifist play "Dragon’s Teeth".’

12 Dec ‘M.M. Rosamund Wallis gave most interesting, but terribly harrowing account of the Germans. She has been at the Friends’ Home of Rest, which was started a year or more ago I think, & is now at Bad Pyrmont. The torture some of these people have endured is almost unbelievable—some even have been beaten to death. It is too horrible.’

13 Dec ‘R’s going down dance.’

17 Dec ‘F. to Jordan’s for night.’

21 Dec ‘Ruthie to dance with John.’

Xmas Day ‘All went off quite well, but I felt it a great strain. C. & Ruthie had got up a little programme of music, & sort of little plays e.g. the Spanish Tragedy, & we had carols, & very good food, the lovely cake that B. had given us the year before. Florence went out for tea, but returned for supper I think. Nice presents.’

Frank Pollard dressed as Milton

Boxing Day  . . . ‘Florence out nearly all day . . .’

Monday, 31 Dec ‘I took M. Reg. C. & Ruthie to G.W.R. hotel for dance, & Jerry Heath & John Dix.’

1935

Monday, 7 Jan ‘F. & I had meeting of Nat. Declaration on Peace. Commander Lewis very good.’

11 Jan ‘R. back to University.’

24 Jan ‘I think it was this morning that I went to town & bought new curtains for the drawing room, & then after dinner Frank told me (he only knew just before dinner) that the house was sold to the same people who looked at it in the summer for £1040—we had put the £40 on for alterations done in summer & they wouldn’t pay more than £1000, & I felt settled. However after getting over the shock I really felt very pleased & at once began looking at houses to rent. As Frank & I are Secretaries for the National Peace Ballot for Redlands Ward, & have had to get all the streets allotted (over 1000 houses) & call on heaps ourselves, we are very busy.’

Sunday, 27 Jan ‘F. at Q.M. on 26th & 27. He acted as clerk as Marg. Gillett unwell.’

Feb ‘Every day we count the Peace Ballot papers & look at houses!—at least we did the canvassing first & often had to call 4 or 5 times, & did the counting after the first fortnight or 3 weeks. It took a good many days (not working all day) before it was finished.

‘We have just had our 4 post bed cut down; rather sad, but a great relief to me not to have so many curtains & frills to wash & iron.’

7 Feb ‘My birthday. 60! F. waste paper basket, M. something she had made, C. a book cover, Ruthie silk nightdress ‘sachet’ (v. pretty) Robert book, Jeanie stockings. F. Ruthie & I had tea in town.’

8 Feb ‘B.W.T.A. Meeting & Social. F. to St. Albans to speak to Modern Churchmen’s Guild & Friends.’

11 Feb ‘Liberal Assn (main) Annual Meeting. F. made splendid chairman, & he & Mr Todd spoke very well.’

12 Feb ‘Heard to-day that Sophie died yesterday. It is very sad. Fortunately F. saw her last week. He had been going to stay with her, but went to Winifred & Eric’s as she wasn’t well. She was so devoted to F. & so proud of him, & really caught cold ‘hardening’ herself in going out in cold winds, so as to hear F. speak on the 8th or 9th.

‘I have started painful attack of lumbago—went to Craft & have a plaster on.’

14 Feb ‘Sophie’s funeral at Jordan’s. Beautiful day, & all very nice & simple. All the Sparkes’s looked ill, but were extremely nice . . . Harry & Mrs Darbyshire spoke in meeting house—he about how well Sophie had brought up her 4 boys, & so on. She was rather wonderful, & a good head of the family. I was very fond of her. Many people there.’

Sunday, 17 Feb ‘We have practically decided to take 2 The Mount.’

18 Feb ‘Have now decided that "The Mount" is too small.’

19 Feb ‘Went to see Cintra Avenue & have decided to take it.’

Sunday, 24 Feb ‘I stayed in with C. ‘John’ & Ismail Hassan, F’s pupil (nephew of King of Egypt) to tea. Ruthie & I to hear Horace Alexander on Peace Making.’

1 Mar ‘We have now seen Cintra Av. several times, & decided on what things we will buy from present tenants (the Browns.)’

Tuesday, 5 Mar ‘I went to stay with Margaret, via London (10.10 from King’s X) to Bradford.’

9 Mar ‘Left by 10.0 train from Bradford thro’ to Reading. . . . Frank met me. Icy day. Lovely welcome from him & Ruthie & Florence has done quite well.’

21 Mar ‘Got possession of house. Met owner—Mr Lewis—at 9.0 & went over it. The men were in already. He is putting up a cycle shed in garden, mending tool shed, papering 2 bedrooms (C’s & boxroom) painting spare room & colouring stair walls—also putting new basin in bathroom. Awfully pleased with the house.

‘Next few days kept going up & taking things.’

23 Mar ‘Ruthie went to stay with Marg. & Reg. She is not v. well.’

Sunday, 24 Mar ‘Only F. & I at home for our last Sunday in dear old 9 Denmark Rd.’

25 Mar ‘Last washing day with Rose. She has been with us 10 years, so it seemed rather sad. I gave her £1 to celebrate it. As a matter-of-fact Florence & I did the washing & she did other things. Nearly every day Florence goes to clean at Cintra Avenue.’

26 Mar ‘Our last day! Man came all day & packed china & other things, & we have no comfort anywhere with huge packing cases about. F. not at all well—has not been so for a day or two.

‘22 Cintra Avenue.’

‘Rent £75 for 3 years. About £6 rates.’

‘Cintra Avenue. (Cottingham)’

Wednesday, 27 Mar ‘Men came at 8.0. Got the first van up at 11.30 or 12.0 so F. & I cycled here & got things in their places. Rose here for day—Florence stayed at Denmark Rd. (Gave them pies etc for dinner.) F. seemed quite ill, but had to help . . . After a bit I cycled down to D. Road & sat in garden (did stilts to show Florence) & did various jobs, then back here. Made F. some tea & expected men. They never came till about 6.0 & we had wasted ½ the afternoon. Rose had gone back to D. Rd & she & Florence did not arrive till about 7.30. We had a great rush unpacking china, etc. Men went at 8.0 p.m. Gave them 25/- & they seemed pleased. They have worked well, but found these stairs difficult, & they ought to have brought a van up in the afternoon. Still they were very obliging. Rose stayed till 9.30. We were tired.’

28 Mar ‘I could have cried when I came down & saw the awful muddle, & F. was in bed too. I sent for Dr Holden & think his medecine did F. good. We had not had him before. Could hardly cook at all, but gradually Florence & I restored a bit of order to kitchen & scullery.’

1 Apr ‘Florence & I managed the washing well—I sent some out.’

2 Apr ‘Ruthie came home from Tor Height, v. critical of everything, but I tried to be patient. She ought to be pleased with her lovely room.’

Monday, 8 Apr C. & I to London, early. Shopped, etc. Epstein Gallery "Behold the man." I don’t like it much, but it is impressive. . . . Got back to "Fotheringay" 17 Gordon St. at ¼ to 12.0. Close to Friends’ House—5/6 bed & breakfast. Most comfortable.’

9 Apr ‘Back to tea.’

18 Apr ‘Frank has not been well, tho’ fortunately the Dr says he is quite alright in all essentials, so he went away for a week—first to Esther’s at Stocksfield, then on the 22nd to Margaret’s.’

Saturday, 20 Apr ‘I let Florence off for week-end in aft.’

Easter Monday, 22 Apr ‘Florence came back.’

25 Apr ‘Frank back. . . . R. started Univ. again.’

6 May ‘Jubilee Day. 25 years K. & Queen have reigned. Glorious & hot. Ruthie & I to Prospect Park—far too gt. a crowd. R. with John in evening on river etc.’

Saturday, 11 May ‘F. at Peace conference at Swanwick, went yesterday. I walked in temperance procession & in evening took Florence to see the crowning of Reading’s first temperance Queen at Palmer Hall. Delightful evening & singing v. good. R. & John by 5.5 to London to see the flood lighting. Marvellous they said; got back about 1.0 a.m. I think, v. tired. Had walked & stood all the time & had had no supper. Saw K. & Queen on balcony of Buckingham Palace.’

13 May ‘F. came home. He had been chairman & had to sum up proceedings which he evidently did splendidly.

‘There is an Anti-War Exhibition at Folk House. We (R. & I) went to opening by Dr Howitt M.P.’

21 May ‘Y.M. began & F. spent most of the week there—I went up with Ruthie on Wed. 22nd for morning on peace.’

Wednesday, 12 June ‘M. & Ruth went to ‘Love on the Dole’ . . .’

19 June ‘M. had stayed an extra day, as Ruthie wanted to celebrate her 21st birthday in advance by a river supper party. There were going to be 15 of us, her Univ. friends & ourselves, & we had an extra special supper with strawberries & cream to take on the river (6–10) (about 6½ lbs. straws. cost 7/6) Just as we were going to start it began to pour. It was terribly disappointing. Ruthie then took them all to the cinema & they came back here for a picnic supper & went away about 10.30. They seemed to enjoy it.’

Thursday, 20 June  . . . ‘Ruthie saw me off to London at ¼ to 12.0 & I met Vida & Edna at 2.30. Edna has been ill & I am going with her to Lyme Regis. I felt v. nervous beforehand & wondered how we would get on, but it was just lovely being with her & we had a very happy week . . .

‘I left Edna alone . . . on the 27th going at 1.55 & meeting F. in Paddington. We arrived home about 8.0 p.m. Ruthie v. glad to stop doing the housekeeping wh. has been difficult in the heat.’

28 June ‘R. & I shopped. I gave her a coat & skirt for abroad. I had bad headache in morning. F. at Nat. Peace Congress in London.’

 

29 June ‘F. again at Nat. Peace Congress. R. to Abbey School Old Scholars in aft.’

‘I am very sad, as I hear Mary White died on the 24th. I was so fond of her & she was very kind to me & such fun. All our relations & friends seem to be dying.’

Friday, 5 July ‘R. Frank, John & I by 9.25? train to Padstow . . . Arrived Padstow after 5.0 & had taxi to:–

Porthcothan House

St. Merryn,

                    Nr Padstow (Cornwall)

‘At first Ruthie & I were rather disappointed with the place, but I grew to love it & we had a splendid 3 weeks, very hot weather (but coolish at nights) & practically no rain except one day when Robert took some of the party to Tintagel. He came on Aug. 14th & John went away on the 15th. I had been rather afraid of having him but he fitted in very well indeed & was kind & helpful. He & R. used to get up about 6.30 & light the fire & then go & bathe & I got up & did the breakfast.’

‘On Monday Ruthie went to a ‘reunion’ of Dijon people near Tavistock. It took her all day to go that short distance. There were 6 of them 3 women & 3 men. They had a caravan & a tent & she enjoyed it hugely. ‘Alec’ was there, etc. . . . C. longed to stay longer, but we had to leave early on Friday, July 26th. Ruthie met us at Okehampton. At Exeter she & I had a hasty visit to Cathedral. We got home in time for tea (taxi from station) & Florence had everything very nice, flowers in bedrooms, etc. Next few days we were very busy, Ruthie & I, preparing for France. John came to tea on 27th & R. went there on 29th.’

Wednesday, 31 July ‘Ruthie & I went by 5.35 train to London, registered luggage, had to have taxi across to Victoria, had supper, & then I saw the precious lassie off for her year abroad at 8.20 p.m. . . . I can’t think what I shall do without her coming in from the University with all her news, playing Mah John in the evenings & being so sweet. We heard later that she had a good journey, only lost her luggage. Was met at St. Etienne & motored to

c/o M. Perrin-Pelletier        

54 Rue Victor Hugo,

Firminy (Loire)

Frank, Mary, Robert & Ruth Pollard, Cornwall, 1935

‘She is there to teach 2 hours English to girl of 16—otherwise as a visitor. 3 maids, chauffeur, gardener—‘mansion’ she calls it. She likes the people very much, & so far is having a very good time. She arrived at St. Etienne about 4.0 on Thursday & never got her luggage till the following Tuesday. Most trying. I went home sadly by the 9.25 p.m.’

3 Aug ‘I had to have a tooth out—the gold crown had broken off in Cornwall.’

Sunday, 1 Sept ‘I had to take Children’s Meeting, 2 little girls of 10 & little Christ. Alexander. I quite enjoyed it. F. & I all alone for the rest of the day, very unusual, & rather restful.’

6 Sept ‘Meeting for Sufferings. F. spoke very well on Italy & Abyssinia & what the Peace Comtee are going to do. He has to write to Archbishop of Cant. to thank him for his letter in ‘Times’ & to Arch. of York to protest against some of the things he said about war. A suggestion that he shd write to P.M. about something else & everyone laughed when he said he had enough to do "with 2 Archbishops on my hands".’

12 Sept ‘Frank’s birthday. He got quite a lot of nice things. Unhappily I had to be out to tea at a Visiting Comtee at Ethel Stevens’s. I gave him a lamp to put over our bed.’

23 Sept ‘Started Play Hour with 6 children. Beautiful day. Discussion, opened well by Frank, in Institute on govt air raid circular.’

25 Sept ‘F. to Norwich for night to speak on School policy report.? Stayed at Arthur Eddington’s.’

‘For weeks past our minds have been full of the threatened war between Italy & Abyssinia. Pray Heaven it may still be averted, but Mussolini seems bent on war.’

3 Oct ‘War began (alas) between Italy & Abyssinia, Italy invading Abyssinia. It is terrible.

‘Now our govt & the other Powers are hoping to use the L. of nations machinery to try & put pressure on Italy & so get the war stopped. Italy has far more arms than Abyssinia, who is at a great disadvantage in many ways. It’s a disgraceful thing on Italy’s part.’

8 Oct ‘In evening I decided to join a German class at University under Mr Kelson & got into the wrong one. (perhaps it was last week.)’

11 Oct . . . ‘F. went to see me off at St. Pancras by 2.20 train to Loughborough which I reached at 4.00 & drove to Caro’s lodgings, having missed her! 128 Herrick Rd.’

14 Oct  . . . ‘I had reluctantly to say goodbye & caught the 9.7 to Oxford where I had a delightful visit to May Gretton & Mrs Van Aimie at 17 St. Giles. . . .

‘Home at 5.30 & nearly straight off to Q.M. . . .’

15 Oct ‘Q.M. Junior membership discussed etc. I came home to dinner having left Florence alone so much. German lesson in evening.’

16 Oct ‘Liberal Bazaar opened by Lord Meston. I got some nice things. Florence came & had tea with me.’

18 Oct ‘Frank’s pupil nephew of King of Egypt was not a satisfactory boy & has left England, but I’m glad to say F. has a pupil twice a week, Dr Price’s son.’

24 Oct ‘F. went to speak at Weston Super-Mare & stayed night. In evening I heard from Evie that Elsa has had a miscarriage, & she was going at once to see her . . .’

1 Nov ‘The Govt have sprung an election on us (most unfair) & on the 24th Oct. our executive decided almost unanimously to run Mr Todd. We shall have to do it on about £250 (Mr Travis the agent will be £40) so it will mean much voluntary work. I undertook to address envelopes for Redlands Ward & there are about 3700 voters in it. I did the main part, but Caro, the Rawlingses & one or two others did a few.’

6 Nov ‘F. & I are now working very hard for Mr Todd. Quite a good meeting on the 7th in Small Town Hall. One day I stayed at Comtee room till 10.40—others have worked harder. F. spoke twice for Gerald Bailey in Aldershot division.’

11 Nov ‘V. hard at work folding literature, or distributing it. I think I did latter on 12th & Florence did some.’

Thursday, 14 Nov ‘Polling Day. F. & I went at 8.0 to be first. Poured in aft. Mary Reynolds took me in car to get voters, but they had been. Nothing for me to do, so came home. Todds came to a hurried supper at 7.15, & took us down to Comtee room at 8.20. Before 9.0 a lot of us were in Town Hall for the counting. I had been fearfully excited, but our spirits soon sank. Result declared about 12 p.m. Howitt first, then Somerville Hastings, & Todd had lost his deposit. Terribly disappointing. He bore it well. He ought to be in Parl. for he is so good & wd be such a help. Went to Lib. Club for short speeches—F. first Mr Todd & Travis the agent. All good. Mrs Gardiner said a few words. Todds brought us back at ¼ to 1.0. a.m.’

Saturday, 23 Nov ‘I left here by 8.20 bus I think & on from London to Leeds by 10.0 something train. Got there about 2.20 & then buses to Margaret & Reg’s . . . I had a happy 3 or 4 days, but M. was feeling poorly, & I wished I could stay & help her, but I heard that C. was ill at Loughborough, so left M. at 2.0 on Wed. 27th (in tears) & had a very long slow journey to L. arriving about 8.0—taxi—C. in bed looking white. We had supper together & I stayed at 128 Herrick Rd.’

29 Nov ‘I left just before lunch . . . Nice welcome from F. & very glad to be home again. Florence has done quite well.’

30 Nov ‘F. & I met Robert in London about 12.45 & he drove us to Winchelsea.  . . . Got to Winchelsea about 4.0 (about 70 miles I think) & took up our abode at the "New Inn", really v. old!’

1 Dec ‘Parted from Robert at the Oval & F. & I home to supper.’

16 Dec ‘Last Play Hour before Xmas. Jolly class of over 20—only Miss Copper & me as D. Brain is still ill.’

17 Dec ‘Last German lesson at present. Mr Darvall at W.L.A. good on election.’

18 Dec ‘Florence & I in aft. bicycled to near Swallowfield & then on to some woods & got lovely holly tho’ few berries. 12 miles altogether. Back to tea. I was frozen.’

19 Dec ‘Madame Prender’s also my first manicure—latter great waste of time!’

Xmas Day ‘Last night we opened a lot of our presents, as we wont have much time today. Had the family ones at breakfast. Lovely things. I gave F. a letter box—he gave me a wooden fender . . . Olive Macartney her poems . . . Edmund 10/- for C. & Ruthie . . . Florence actually gave F. tobacco, C. a hdcf. evening [?] & she sent one to Ruthie & me cork table mats—we were touched. . . . Left in his car at 2.0 (letting Florence out till 9.30) for Haslemere. Pretty drive, but rained a good deal. Arrived Guest House, Kingsley Green about 4.0 & had welcome from all the Weiss family . . . Robt F. & I started home about 6.0 & got back about 7.30 I think. About 80 miles there & back. Curious Xmas day, but very nice, but we missed Marg. & Ruthie terribly. We had lovely letters from both of them . . . R. is at Marseilles over Xmas with the son & daughter-in-law & the Father & Mother.’

Boxing Day  . . . ‘Florence out for aft. & evening . . .’

Saturday, 28 Dec ‘F. & I went to London by 5.35 & carried my suit case & a small case also & a bag. I did not take either umbrella or mac. but travelled in fur coat, & took my woollen coat strapped outside my case. (The Customs officers never opened anything either going or coming.) . . . train went at 8.20 . . . Smooth crossing. Reached Paris 5.23, & we rushed to a brassière brasserie & got a cup of refreshing coffee & a ‘croissant’. V. cheap. Then by bus to Gare du Lyons . . . Left Paris about 8.0 a.m. & had an extremely pretty journey to Montpellier . . . Reached Montpellier 7.21 on Sunday night, & there was my darling Ruthie looking so lovely in her new bluey green ‘suit.’ We had a joyful meeting, & walked about 12 mins. to 12 Rue Salle l’Evêque leaving case to come in a bus. Introduced to M. & Madame Teissier du Cros & had dinner at once. Claudie & Rémi are away, though the latter, aged 15, returned after a few days. I have R’s bedroom & she has gone into Claudie’s. I had a wood fire & we sat & talked there till bed-time. It was so cosy, & lovely to hear R. chattering away.

‘I got an excursion ticket from London to Paris, & another from P. to Mont. altogether about £11.0 I think.’

31 Dec ‘Meals are rather frightening for my French is so bad, but the Du Cros’s speak a little English & R. can talk in French so well.’

1936

2 or 3 Jan ‘R. went back to the University.’

5 Jan ‘This week M. & Mme were away for a day or two pour "tuer le cochon."’

Saturday, 11 Jan ‘Said goodbye to the T. du Cros’s who have been most kind & are so cultivated & interesting (charged me same as R. 400 francs for the fortnight about 7.6 a day) & got to station early, but muddle about ticket & R. had to rush back in taxi for more money, so I only just caught the train. It was horrid saying goodbye to my pet, but F. & C. haven’t been well, & it will be lovely to see them again . . . reached Reading about 8.15 p.m. where Frank me [sic] me—this is Sunday, & I had a most lovely welcome from him & Carina, & later Florence.’

Wednesday, 15 Jan ‘The rest of the week I didn’t feel, well, sick & stupid, tho’ I went about.’

Sunday, 19 Jan ‘King George V dangerously ill—he was out riding 3 or 4 days ago. It is very sudden.’

20 Jan ‘In evening we listened to wireless—at last "The King’s life is drawing peacefully to a close." It was very pathetic, & is the first time wireless has been used like this, & one felt almost as if in the room with the Royal Family sharing their sorrow. There was then a short beautiful little service, then bulletins every ¼ hour, but we went to bed at 10.30 or so, & the King died just before 12.0. It is really sad, for he has been such a good King & seemed like a strong bulwark when the world is in such chaos. I am sorry for the Queen & the Prince of Wales.’

21 Jan ‘At last I have recovered from the journey or whatever upset me (after a large dose of castor oil). The whole nation is mourning & many people in black.’

Friday, 24 Jan ‘I took Florence to London by 8.50, & we went straight to Westminster Hall to see the lying in state of the King. V. impressive, but quickly over. Then Westminster Abbey & saw Kipling’s new grave, & Royal Tombs. Abbey v. crowded—then to see outside of St. James’ Palace & Buckingham Palace, lunch & finally a good News Reel, & home by 1.55.’

Sunday, 26 Jan ‘Most beautiful service in evening on wireless—Archbishop of Canterbury almost too moving in describing King’s last days. One of his favourite hymns "Abide with me" was sung. Archbishop appealed to the country to try & lead better lives & to remember God & so on. The King used to read his Bible every day.’

27 Jan ‘Florence spring cleaned her bedroom as well as doing the washing.’

28 Jan ‘King’s funeral. Florence & I listened in morning to the description of the funeral procession walking to London Paddington, but it was too long & so much the same. After 1.0 we listened to the funeral service at Windsor. Then there was no more wireless for that day.’

30 Jan ‘F. went to Margaret’s.’

31 Jan ‘F. returned in evening, thank goodness.’

Monday, 3 Feb ‘Florence & I did washing & then finished spring cleaning the boxroom—½ was done a few days ago, & we have finished nearly all the drawers & cupboards upstairs.’

4 Feb ‘Florence & I spring-cleaned C’s room—much easier than at Denmark Rd. Sent the carpet to ‘Pounds’ & he returned it same aft. Fl. also washed linen cupboard shelves.’

Thursday, 6 Feb ‘Treated to-day as my birthday & F. gave me a lovely chenille tablecloth (sort of red colour) . . . F. went to London by 9.25—I by 11.15. (Let Florence spring clean lavatory) I walked to Hyde Park Corner & went to Argentine Club, met Charles & Stella & had lunch. Also met Herbert Minshall, who spoke of Bertha’s & my ‘beautiful’ voices—knew me by mine. . . . By bus to Gordon St. (Fotheringay) & at once to bed; F. had headache.’

7 Feb ‘My real birthday. V. good breakfast, then to Meeting for Sufferings. It finished in morning. F. & I in aft. to Charing X & from 4.10–5.10 saw "Battleship Potemkin" at Forum—the 1905 mutiny (Russian.) It was very clever, but very terrible. F. caught 5.30 to Hastings where he was to speak—I the 5.37 home.’

Wednesday, 12 Feb ‘Aft. Fl. started spare room & I sent carpet to ‘Pounds’.’

13 Feb ‘Flor. & I finished spare room in morning except polishing furniture & one or two other things.’

15 Feb ‘F. to Street for week-end.’

22 Feb ‘This morning we heard from John that Ruthie has got thro’ her foreigners course exam with ‘honourable mention’. It is splendid, but she has got very swollen glands & I am worried. She has gone to Venice with a party for 2 or 3 days—rather horrid while the Italo-Abyssinian war is on, but it was to be so cheap & she has saved up money by giving Eng. lessons, so it seemed a good chance.’

‘Finished up my B.W.T.A. Sub work next day or two.’

26 Feb ‘Mock League of Nations in Town Hall. V. good. Many schools took part.’

Thursday, 27 Feb ‘F. saw me off at 10.0 or so to Leeds direct—slow journey. Reached Margaret’s after 6.0 . . . I hated leaving Frank all alone, but spent 10 days most happily at Tor Height . . .’

3 Mar ‘Got to Marg. Shields about 2.30 & she & Mr Shield gave us a v. warm welcome & a delicious tea. Marg. looked lovely but frail & Mr S. does all the work. She talked of Bensham nearly all the time, & showed us the ‘master’s’ rug & some of the Bensham pictures she had bought at the sale, & repeated a Norwegian poem & talked about Mother & her knowledge of poetry. It was lovely. I did enjoy it.’

4 Mar ‘Bowes took B. & me to see the wonderful museum (Dr Kirkwood’s collection), quite fascinating. The old prison wall is being pulled down & it is going to be housed there. We saw that too.’

Tuesday, 10 Mar ‘I left by 10.0 train at Bradford . . . I went via Huddersfield to Loughborough & walked to the school & saw C’s classroom, then with her to her delightful new lodgings (250 Leicester Rd) & such a nice situation. . . . She saw me off at 6.27.’

11 Mar ‘Hirsch Quartette. V. fine. Also got to part of M.M. & read report about Play Hour. International situation v. grave. I think it was on 9th that we heard Hitler had moved troops to the demilitarised zone. I can hardly sleep with thinking how near we are to war again. It has all been so sudden.’

12 Mar ‘F. to Woodbrooke for night. I started an absolutely drenching cold.’

14 Mar ‘I’m much better. News slightly better.’

16 Mar ‘Started spring cleaning Ruthie’s room—it got finished in bits. Flor. did bath room while I was away.’

17 Mar ‘I washed & ironed our bedroom curtains, etc.’

Wednesday, 18 Mar ‘Florence & I spring cleaned our bedroom. Much easier than Denmark Rd, but took all day, only I went out cycling in aft. with F. to get primroses near Arborfield. Found 2! Music Club. Composers Evening. Good. Upstairs finished now except stairs & landing.

‘Warm day at last. International situation slightly better.’

24 Mar ‘Last German lesson. Tho’ shy, I have greatly enjoyed them, but they are rather a burden, for there are so many things to do.’

26 Mar ‘V. interesting Anti-Vivisection meeting.’

Monday, 30 Mar ‘Last Play Hour for present. Gt peace meeting. Excelled our hopes—large Town Hall packed & small T. hall taken too, & even then people turned away. It has been got up by F.C.S. Stansfield, Knox Taylor & a man called Goodson. F. in chair, & did splendidly & made v. good short speech. I sat on platform next Sheppard. Heaps of clergy & ministers there. Rev. Carter v. good, then J.H. Hudson (ex-Labour M.P. & a Friend—came instead of Salter who was ill) & then Dick Sheppard who was both interesting, moving & amusing. Audience enthusiastic—if only it is not a passing phase. We are living in most anxious times—Germany has militarised the Rhineland Zone & France is terrified. Anthony Eden (Eng. foreign minister,) is doing well.’

31 Mar ‘Townswomens’ Guild. ‘National Mark.’ Films of egg production, butter making etc v. good, but speaker from Ministry of Agriculture outrageous. Pressed us to ‘pester’ our grocers etc till they sold national mark goods—apparently it is almost wicked to buy foreign goods & of course none of them are half as good as English! I got v. angry.’

4 Apr ‘F. to Ealing in case he was needed to speak at an overflow peace meeting.’

Monday, 6 Apr ‘C. & I to London in morning. Early lunch, then to see Charlie Chaplin in "Good Modern Times." Quite clever & amusing. Also pathetic.’

Easter Monday, 13 Apr ‘Florence & I did the washing—I let her have her dinner early & then she went off. Dry, but cold. I washed 2 blankets.’

Tuesday, 14 Apr ‘I went up to London early to see Wells’ film "Shape of Things to Come," but did not find it as impressive as I expected, tho’ very wonderful.’

22 Apr ‘‘Nelly’ came & we spring cleaned dining room.’

23 Apr ‘F. & I to lunch at Criterion Restaurant (Evie gave us tickets) of Moral & Social Hygiene to celebrate Jubilee since C.D. Acts repealed. Prof. Gilbert Murray, Maud Royden, French lady, & 2 Butlers spoke—the grandson particularly good.’

30 Apr  . . . ‘Ruthie has been poorly again.’

Friday, 8 May ‘Florence is having her holiday now too. F. & I got ‘Flying Scotsman’ at King’s X & arrived Stocksfield about 3.30.’

9 May ‘Bus to Jeanie’s where we arrived about 6.30 . . .’

Sunday, 10 May ‘Played "Kan U Go" in evening.’

Monday, 11 May  . . . ‘to Maryport, not a very attractive little town, & John & Lily’s house, tho’ large, is not pretty . . . First time we have stayed with J. & L. Cuthbert & Ruth came in later. Lily has been ill, & little Chris’s death upset her greatly, but she is better. Both she & John are very deaf—J. uses a trumpet always. He is so interesting.’

14 May ‘Next day or two went along Pony Path & round Rydal, over Wordsworth’s Cottage & the museum (the old lady who sells the tickets asked someone if I was a relation of Miss Richardson as I was so like her) . . . F. & I to Alcock Tarn (bought by Chas.) & to see the new bathing pool. We both find mountain walks tiring & one of my knees hurt, but we improved! round Grasmere, to wishing gate etc.’

Sunday, 17 May ‘Walk with T. up Brackenfells which now belongs to Charles!’

19 May ‘F. went to London for Y.M. He is staying close to Friends’ House.’

20 May ‘I had a long journey to Margaret’s, but got there before tea . . .’

22 May ‘I arrived home about 9.30—Florence rather queer, not as nice as usual. She had only come in to-day.’

Saturday, 23 May ‘The drawing room has been re-papered. ‘Nelly’ came & we all 3 spring cleaned hard—finished their part in morning, so did the scullery too & it is all finished at last. F. came home late in evening, & we had a great talk. He has much enjoyed Y.M.’

Sunday, 24 May ‘Bedford spent day here. Spoke beautifully in meeting on the psalms.’

Friday, 5 June ‘Left about 10.30 F. seeing me off. H.M. Wallis travelled to Banbury with me & told awful German atrocities. Changed at B.’ham & travelled rest of way with Mabel Backhouse who was very kind & very amusing . . . Arrived after 5.0 at Barmouth & met by Mrs Brockbank & Stephen. (I didn’t know them before.) They motored me to our lodgings close to station & on main street (v. noisy) c/o Mrs Griffith Jones, High St. 2 bedrooms & sitting room 3 guineas a week—everything except food. Then we went on 4 miles to the cottage (Cragean Bychain, Bontdore) & I saw Caro who was up & looks frail . . .’

13 June ‘Left at 10.30 . . . I got home before 6.0 . . .’

19 June ‘F. to London. I to L.P. in aft. to hear Gerald Heard on "Esprit de Corps"—Essential or Fatal". V. interesting. To London by 7.25 & met F. & went to Liberal Reception at 9.0 at Sir Walter & Lady Rea’s. Delightful. He had taken 2 or 3 houses specially for occasion. Glorious flowers & splendid refreshments. Mr Hirst glowing about Father as orator, man, Liberal, etc. Spoke to Sir Archibald [Sinclair: Liberal leader], Lady Bonham Carter, Elliot Dodds, Lady Aurea Macleod, Lady Bryce etc.  . . . caught the 11.0 p.m. . . .’

25 June ‘F. went to Peace Congress . . .’

Tuesday, 7 July ‘I went via London to stay at Tor Height. . . . I don’t think I said before that Reg. has got a new post at Stepney, so this may be my last visit to this lovely place—it is so wonderful at night when the lights of the factories below are lit. Also Reg. got his Master of Education degree (a musical thesis) & excellent testimonial . . . The new baby was expected on Friday, 10th but didn’t arrive.’

Wednesday, 15 July ‘At 7.15 Reg. went to telephone came back, v. excited for baby girl had been born (nearly 8 lbs.) at 10 mins. to 6.0. . . . In evening I went to see her & the darling little Rosemary.’

16 July ‘The charwoman came, so I took Rowland to see M.’

17 July ‘Up early & washed up, etc. Mrs Wright charwoman came about 8.10 & soon after went with Rowland & me to Bradford to help us.’

‘Occasionally I got a girl called ‘Gladys’ to take him [Rowland] walks. Ruth had been coming home on 31st but wrote from Paris that she would arrive Wed. 29th in time for breakfast. V. exciting. F. met her at Reading station. It was glorious to see her again & she was as sweet & affectionate as ever. She spent ½ the morning seeing poor John who has suddenly been found to have consumption (one lung.) It is hard on both of them, & a pity it wasn’t last year.’

30 July ‘Ruthie has shown us heaps of interesting photos & cards.’

Sunday, 9 Aug  . . . ‘we all (except Marg.) even Robert, went to meeting. It was nice. I left Rowland with Florence.’

13 Aug ‘Ruthie took Rowland home to Yorks.’

17 Aug ‘Ruthie came home from M’s.’

28 Aug ‘F. went to Westhill for a S. School.’

Sunday, 30 Aug ‘Ella, Albury & Gladys Pollard to tea with Ruth & me. V. nice. Coloured photos.’

31 Aug ‘Florence & I bicycled in aft. (Ruthie out on river with "Gerry" etc) to Stoke Row to see a house which we didn’t care for.’

2 Sept ‘Ruthie & I had nice bathe at Freebody’s, but weather disimproving.’

3 Sept ‘F. came home in morning to my joy.’

‘Ruthie to London to meet ‘Alec’ . . .’

14 Sept ‘John went to Isle of Wight Sanatorium in morning. Ruth said goodbye yesterday & was very sad, tho’ plucky. She went to Cinema in evening. "Max" turned up & kept took her a drive till after 11.0.’

Sunday, 13 Sept ‘Frank has been a lot several of meetings here lately, speaking on peace. Big one with Marg. Bondfield & Vyvyan Adams.’

‘John Irwin died suddenly & F. went to the funeral & was away 2 nights.’

19 Sept  . . . ‘he went to Letchworth for week-end.’

Sunday, 20 Sept ‘Mr & Mrs Maison & Peter aged 12 to tea. Refugees (German—partly Jewish) from Majorca. The civil war in Spain is ghastly.’

29 Sept ‘I went up to London . . . M. baby & I taxi to Fotheringay, Gordon Square.’

Thursday, 5 Oct . . . ‘I heard that Robt was ill at the Clock House, Nutley, Sussex & I went off directly after lunch.’

7 Oct ‘Pretty place & comfortable private hotel.’

Saturday, 10 Oct ‘I went home arriving about 3.0. German girl to supper (Refugee).’

21 Oct ‘F. to Woodbrooke for night.’

Saturday, 24 Oct ‘Ruthie took Frank & me to Salisbury with £3 or £4 which she had saved from her allowance being raised (or having a dividend) . . . got very comfortable bed & breakfast (7/6) rooms at the "White Horse."’

Sunday, 25 Oct . . . ‘caught the 7.15 home arriving just before 10.0 p.m. We have had a splendid time, thanks to Ruthie’s tremendously kind idea of giving us this treat. It was sweet of her.’

12 Nov ‘F. to Woodbrooke for night.’

24 Nov ‘Townswomen’s Guild. Debate on "the girl of to-day is happier than 50 years ago." I spoke against, very badly.’

Wednesday, 25 Nov ‘Heard that Hugh had died in his sleep on Monday night. Very grieved to think we shall so him no more. He was so good & kind & clever & has been a friend for many, many years & a beloved brother-in-law. After various telegrams I went to York via London leaving here at ¼ to 2.0 & Bertha met me after 8.0 . . . Only Betty at B. Croft.’

26 Nov ‘B. Betty & I by 9.40? train to N/C. Here I bought lilies & white lilac for Colin & we had a drink. To Stocksfield where Colin met us & drove us to Wheel Birks—found Evie there. After lunch, coffin put on farm cart, surrounded by holly & wreaths & taken by large horse, labourers walking beside, to Hindly Church. We went straight to graveside, & Laurie read 90th psalm & spoke most beautifully on the husbandman who plants trees & does not see the result thereof. Colin read Whittier’s poem "call him not heretic" & Donald Gray spoke v. nicely. It was all very pathetic. We went back to tea, & then it began to pour. Molly motored us to her house to see the children & we got back to York after 9.0.’

28 Nov ‘I left at 10.10 & F. met me at 3.39. Ruthie had gone to I.O.W. to see John, but Caro here.’

Sunday, 29 Nov ‘Ruthie came back late. Had had lovely time.’

Friday, 4 Dec ‘Ruthie to stay night in London (& go to dance) with David Claxon—then on to Essex. News of the King & Mrs Simpson yesterday or before.’

Sunday, 6 Dec ‘Ruthie came home latish.

‘Most thrilling, dramatic week. Baldwin spoke splendidly in ‘House’.’

Thursday, 10 Dec ‘King abdicated. Best thing.’

11 Dec ‘At 10 p.m. King broadcast. Dignified & good. Then he went abroad. It is all rather sad, but it was a pity he got into bad set of friends. Duke of York now King George VIth.’

 

[Transcript by Benjamin S. Beck]

 


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