Lady Holland, wife of the distinguished soldier and popular Member of Parliament for Northampton, had much to say on Saturday last in praise of the village nursing association. The occasion was the fifth annual fete to raise funds for the Hanslope and Castlethorpe Nursing Association of which her ladyship has been president for the past five years and in the success of which she takes so deep an interest. General Sir Arthur and Lady Holland with their customary kindness desire to help in any cause, had kindly placed the grounds of their beautiful home, Hanslope Lodge, at the disposal of the organizers, and throughout the day the committee had no more enthusiastic workers. Both entered heartily into the charitable enterprise and did everything possible for the comfort and enjoyment of their friends and neighbours of the two villages and of others who came from a distance to give a helping hand to a good cause.
The fete was splendidly organised. There were attractive stalls arranged under the shade of the stately trees which are such a feature of the grounds, and at convenient intervals one came across novel attractions and amusements, or were able to enjoy the excellent music played by the Futurist Band from Newport Pagnell, who occupied a position on the main terrace facing the residence. Then there were games and a most enjoyable programme of old English sports.
The great attraction to visitors was undoubtedly the privilege afforded to wander at will over the artistically laid out grounds and to admire the beauties of the rose garden. This concession added in very large measure to the pleasure of a well arranged holiday and the public are grateful to General Sir Arthur and Lady Holland for their great kindness.
Everyone was more than delighted to see Lady Holland after her long and serious illness, once again able to take a leading part in an effort for the village nursing association, and all will hope that her recovery to health will be permanent and that she will be able once again to actively participate in the charitable and social amenities of the district in which she has always been keenly interested. Her ladyship has only recently returned from foreign lands where she has been recuperating and she brought back with her many interesting mementoes of her travels abroad. Many of these she displayed on a stall at Saturday’s fete. They were offered at the most reasonable prices and sold readily.
The fete favoured with charming weather, and though the attendance during the afternoon hardly came up to the average there was quite a big gathering in the evening and it was a merry party which entered heartily into the joys of dancing, which continued until ten o’clock. From every point of view the fete was an unqualified success.
In opening the proceedings shortly after 2.30 Lady Holland mentioned that during the five years she had been president of the village nursing association they had got along very well. She found that the services of the nurse were appreciated, and she was glad that was so. Illness came upon them at any time and sometimes when outwardly they were feeling well. She had had experience of that herself in her sudden illness. They had to remember that fact and be prepared for illness by keeping their nurse going thoroughly well. It didn’t mean a tremendous amount of money if everybody would help and if household in Hanslope and Castlethorpe would help. All sections of the community ought to put their shoulders to the wheel, otherwise it was an unequal burden. She was extremely anxious to have a good fete so that they could help their funds up. They had always been able to show a good balance in the past and she was very anxious that a sound financial position should be maintained. She was delighted to come amongst them again and she hoped they would realize the importance and value of the nursing association and do all in their power to support it. Coming of a sporting family and living in a sporting district she was naturally very anxious to keep up the average and even to go one better this year then they did last year.
During the day a donation of £1 was received from Mrs. Watts, of Hanslope Park, and in the morning Nurse Selmes, who is very popular in the two villages, sent a telegram to Lady Holland wishing all success to the fete. The nurse was away on her annual holiday and in consequence was unable to be present at the fete.
The stallholders and other workers were:
Fancy stall Lady Holland and Miss Holland
Sweet stall Mrs. H. Beasley and Miss Penn
Produce Stall Mrs. F. Tompkins and Miss M. Tompkins
Jumble stall Mrs. Willingham and Miss Crick
Buttonholes Miss Finnigan and Miss S. Tompkins
Ices Miss Clarice Herbert and Miss E. Chapman
Bran tub Miss Constance Robinson
Hidden treasure Guiders Mabel Rainbow, Marjorie Tite, Elsie Breary, Clasie Eakins
Clock golf Mr. R. Garrett
Fortune telling Miss Margaret Tite
Pony rides Miss Kitty Johnson
Happy Benny Messrs. Atkinson and Kingston
Bowls for a prize of £1 given by Lieut-Gen. Sir Arthur Holland, K.C.B., K.C.M.G., D.S.O., M.P. Mr. H. Willingham and Mr. A. MacLennan
Cocoanuts Mr. J. Evans and Mr. Bert Evans
Weighing machine Mrs. Mayes
Excellent teas were served at small tables dotted about the lawn by Mrs. Mayes and Mrs. Johnson, assisted by Mrs. Evans, Miss Keeves, Miss Smith, Mrs. Lansbury, Mrs. Gibbons, Mrs. Howe and Miss Weston.
In the early evening there were races for children and adults on the lawn, the prizes being generously provided by Sir Arthur Holland and Lady Holland. In the evening dancing was enjoyed by a very large company.
The following completed the committee responsible for the organising and carrying through the fete: Lady Holland (president), Mrs. J. E. Whiting (vice-president), Mrs. Mayes, Mrs. Johnson, Mrs. Willingham, Mrs. H. Beasley, Mrs. F. Tompkins, Mrs.Howe, Miss Crick and Miss Burbidge, and the secretarial duties were ably discharged by Mrs. Hidderley.