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Raynes Park Afternoon Townswomen's Guild - April 2014

On Thursday, 20th February the speaker at our afternoon meeting was Mrs Sandra Morgan.  A self confessed ‘royalist’ wearing a royal purple skirt, Mrs Morgan arrived carrying a large My Fair Lady style black and white hat box.  Her talk was entitled Royal Garden Parties.  Mrs Morgan (a retired magistrate) and her husband obviously enjoyed their visits to Buckingham Palace on the two occasions they were invited, relating the details to us.  The hat box not only contained the very smart hat she chose to wear and a photograph of herself and husband in morning suit, but additionally other royal souvenirs she had collected from childhood and brought for us to see.  The vote of thanks for this entertaining talk was given by Mrs Florence Mahoney. 

Sixteen members travelled to Durnsford Road, Wimbledon to lunch together at The Woodman Pub on 6th March.  Members enjoyed well cooked meals and friendly service, seated on three adjacent tables in The Woodman’s side annexe which was light and airy in the sunlight.  Made from a renovated railway station this is an interesting room. 

What a delight the Ragged School Museum proved to be!  Blessed with sunshine that day, after the long District Line journey to Mile End we enjoyed the leisurely stroll through and across Mile End Park, with its banks of daffodils and fountain playing, to the banks of the Regents Canal.  The Museum is in an old warehouse building beside the canal which was taken over by Dr Bernado for his Ragged School.  Welcomed by friendly volunteers, we were pleasantly surprised to find that there were groups of children in the museum (probably year 5) on a school trip for an authentic and memorable experience of Victorian life.  They had all found themselves a period costume from a big box of clothes.  In the school room upstairs, with them sitting in rows on the Victorian bench type desks complete with ink wells, an actress (also in period costume) got the children thinking about how lessons would have been at that time.  On one blackboard was a summary of the old £ s d system, and on another, examples of the joined up writing taught at the time, as well as a cane on her desk!  Next door in the ‘kitchen’ the children were being introduced to and using Victorian aids like the old wringer and the carpet beater.  The children told us that the trip was in connection with their current project on Victorian England.  Like us they were enjoying themselves.  We walked back along the bank of the canal before finding a welcome snack in a coffee house on the Mile End Road, to set us up for the journey back to Raynes Park. 

On Tuesday, 1st April the lunch club will gather at Superfish, Morden from 12 noon.    The following week on Tuesday,  8th the visit will be to St Bartholomew the Great, the ancient priory church in West Smithfield for a guided tour .  The next monthly meeting will be on Thursday, 17th April at 1.30 pm at St Saviour’s Church Hall when the speaker will be Carol Harris talking about ‘Wartime Fashion’.  Visitors welcome. 


For more information about the Towns Women’s Guild please telephone Dorothy Raymond on 020 8395 9489.

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