Abingdon 100 years ago – March 1921

5th March 1921

By the will of the late Mr. W. J Hedges, solicitor, Abingdon, a bequest of two landscape paintings by B.W. Leader, R.A., has been made to Abingdon Corporation and accepted.

The Abingdon Town Council have appointed Alderman J.T. Morland as representative of the boroughs of Abingdon and Wallingford to the Thames Conservancy, in place of Mr Hedges of Wallingford.

At the Abingdon Borough Police Court, Harold Hatherall, 22, alias Brown, being described as a commercial traveler, was charged with embezzling various sums of money, received by him on account of his employer, William Barnett, sweet manufacturer, Ock Street, Abingdon. Prisoner pleaded guilty and was sentenced to six months hard labour.

12th March 1921

At the Abingdon Baptist Chapel on Wednesday last the Rev. J. B. Morris gave appreciative lecture on Women hymn writers and their hymns. Councillor W. B. Langford presided and there was a good attendance. The choir sang several of the hymns.

At the Abingdon Congregational Church last Wednesday evening a social gathering took place. The occasion was taken of presenting Mr and Mrs Wake, who had been the caretakers of the Chapel for 21 years, with a token of appreciation of their work. The presents took the form of a pipe and pouch for Mr Wake and a handsome teapot for Mrs Wake. Refreshments were served and a capital programme of music was rendered.

On Wednesday evening, the 9th inst., at the Abingdon Exchange, a large gathering convened by the Abingdon Liberal Association for the purpose of forming a combined Liberal Association for the North Berks polling district. Rules were submitted, and the officers and committee appointed. Mr. E. A. Leasing, Kingford House, gave an address on ‘Russia under Bolshevik Rule,’ illustrated with lantern slides from snapshots taken by him. Following the short lecture, refreshments were served, and a humorous entertainment given by Mr. and Mrs. Reynolds, of Oxford. The meeting concluded with a dance, the music being supplied by the excellent, Abingdon Pavlova Orchestra. The arrangements were under the management of Mr. William Benthall, Liberal Agent for the Division.

At the cattle market last week there was a fair supply of stock. The top price for fat beasts was £68 10s, and that for sheep £7 12s.

At the annual meeting of the Cottage Hospital, last week, the report for the past year, showed total receipts from all sources of £1,159 2d, as against £775 last year. There was, however, a deficit of £26, but at the meeting it was announced that Mrs Dockar Drysdale, of Wick Hall, Radley, had sent a cheque to pay off this deficit. Out-patients during the past year numbered 2,056, patients admitted 85, accidents 19, anaesthetic given in 8 cases, and 538 visits paid by the District Nurse. Votes of thanks to the various donors and helpers of the hospital were passed and the officers re-elected for the ensuing year.

19th March 1921

In aid of the Radcliffe Infirmary the Abingdon North End Slate Club, Vineyard, Abingdon, made a collection amongst the members, and have sent the sum of £3 14s. as a donation to the institution. A scheme of systematic contributions by the members has been undertaken and is now being formulated throughout the town. (A Slate Club is a group of people who saved money in a common fund for Christmas.)

The appointment of Sir Mortimer Singer, of Milton Hill, as High Sheriff for the County of Berks, is popular amongst Abingdon townspeople, Sir Mortimer Singer being a considerable supporter of many local objects.

The funeral took place in Abingdon Cemetery on Thursday afternoon. the 10th inst., of Mr. Charles Gillett. aged 86 years. He retired from farming at Lower Hadden, near Bampton, about 15 years ago, afterwards taking up his residence at Abingdon. He was a considerable breeder and exhibitor of Cotswold sheep, and afterwards of Oxford Down sheep.

The Abingdon Choral Society on Wednesday, at the Corn Exchange, gave a sacred, concert, consisting of two cantatas ‘Daughter of Jairus,’ and Mendelssohn’s 42nd Psalm, under the able conductorship of Mr. H. Sheldon Peach. There was a large and appreciative audience. The proceeds were in aid of the Radcliffe Infirmary and Abingdon Cottage Hospital.

The terminal athletic sports took place on the school grounds, Park Road, on Saturday afternoon. There was a fair attendance of spectators. In the open long jump for the challenge cup and prizes there were six entries, N. O. Carr winning with 17ft 7½ins. Then. N. A. Carr won the high jump, 5ft. 2ins. and C. Ellis, for under 16s, 4ft. I. Williams was successful in the quarter-mile (open); S. L. Buckle, throwing cricket ball; N. O. Carr, 100 yards open; R. Waterhouse (100yds), half-mile handicap; and N. O. Carr, putting the weight. The prizes were presented at the close by Mrs. Frank Morland.

26th March 1921

The Board of Guardians of the Abingdon Union have made a rate of 6½d. in the pound, this a penny less than in the same period of last year. The remainder of the Oxford inmates in the institution were taken back to Oxford on Wednesday. There were twenty-one children chargeable to the Abingdon Union in the Cowley Poor Law School and a committee is considering the possibility of obtaining a house for their accommodation.

At the County Bench on Monday last Walter Candy, farmer, Blagrove Farm, Foxcombe Hill, Sunningwell, was fined £5 for selling milk from a cart on February 24th, at Sunningwell, adulterated with 14 per cent, of water.

A series of monthly united Sunday evening services are being held in the Abingdon Corn Exchange, the first speaker being the Vicar of Abingdon, and the second the Rev. C. H. Gill, Congregational minister. The third will be the Rev. Morris, Baptist minister (April 10).

The body of a newly-born infant was found floating on the river between Culham and Abingdon by Mr. H. Botterell, boat builder, Abingdon, whilst returning from Culham. It was a fully developed female child and had apparently been in the water several days. An inquest was to be held at Cottage Hospital on Thursday in last week but the doctor who examined the body was of the opinion the child had not had a separate existence, and consequently an inquest was not held.

The Abingdon branch of the Comrades of the War held a whist at their club rooms in Ock Street, on Thursday evening. the 17th inst. The prizes were given by the tradesmen of the town. Refreshments were served during the interval.

Thank you for the extracts to the Faringdon Advertiser and Vale of the White Horse Gazette on the British Newspaper Archive. Pictures from Abingdon Town Council, newspaper adverts from the Gazette including the picture from an advert for Doan’s Backache Kidney Pills, picture of Cowley workhouse men from the Oxford Illustrated Journal.

2 thoughts on “Abingdon 100 years ago – March 1921

  1. Pat Bryden

    I believe Sir Mortimer Singer or his family had something to do with Singer sewing machines. Does anyone know more?


Leave a Reply to Pat Bryden Cancel reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.