RURIDECANAL MAGAZINE SEPTEMBER 1914: THE WAR. - Those who are not giving their lives in active service, fighting for their country, lie under a deep obligation to do all they can in the present crisis at home. There are three ways in which they can fulfil this obligation. They can diligently keep things going at home as much as possible in their ordinary course. They can provide of their means, money or material where it is needed; giving for instance to the National Relief Fund or the Red Cross Society. And last, but not least, they can constantly present their supplications to Almighty God, in Whose hands the issues lie, for their country in this her great need.
A daily service of intercession is being held in the Church at 9.15 every morning.
A generous response has been made throughout the parish to the appeal for work for the Red Cross Society. Articles have already been received from Miss Payne and Miss Brown, and many others are at present preparing their gifts. Will any who wish to help in the work, but who have as yet made no promise, communicate with Mrs. Young as soon as possible.
RURIDECANAL MAGAZINE OCTOBER 1914: THE WAR. - Recruits have been coming in from Birdbrook, and now we have fourteen representatives serving His Majesty in the Army. A list of them is kept on the Church door, and it contains the following names:
C.A. Bryce, Major Coldstream Guards
Lt. Commander Naval Divison
H. Hinton Corporal R.F.A.
W. Plum Corporal Farrier R.H.A.
R. Chaplin Private Yeomanry
J. Underwood Private Suffolk Regiment
F. Rawlings Private Essex Regiment
G. Mortlock Private Essex Regiment
J.B. Haggart Private Essex Regiment
E.W. Backler Private Essex Regiment
H. Ralling Private Essex Regiment
C. Barnes Private Essex Regiment
H. Coote Private Essex Regiment
J. Wiffin Private Essex Regiment
R. Hannibal Private Essex Regiment
A recuiting meeting was held in the Schoolroom on Tuesday evening, September 15th. Colonel Adams and Captain Courtauld came over from Halstead to speak, and brought with them Colour-Sergeant Goldsmith to enrol the recruits. After they had spoken, Dr. Bartlett made a stirring appeal to those present to take their part in fighting for their country. Twelve came forward to enlist in the Army, and all but one were passed by the sergeant to proceed to Chelmsford for medical examination. On the following morning the school children lined the road and many others came out to give the eleven recruits a hearty send off. Seven of them were passed by the doctors at Chelmsford, but some of the others will probably be wanted when the standards are lowered again.
CAPTURE OF a GERMAN. - We do not see many Germans in our midst, but we were all glad to hear that a Birdbrook boy, J. Shellon, was the means of the capture of a German spy in the neighbourhood of Berwick-on-Tweed while away on his holiday.
RURIDECANAL MAGAZINE DECEMBER 1914: THE WAR: - We have to congratulate Sergeants Hinton and Plum on their promotion.
The following Birdbrook men have recently joined the Army:
Oliver Rawlings Private Essex Tertitorials
George Bacon Private Essex Regiment
Herbert Kendall Private Royal Fusiliers
Richard D. Hunt Transport Driver Army Service Corps
FOOTBALL MATCH: - On Saturday, November 14th, Sergeant Hinton brought from Colchester a football team of the Royal Field Artillery. It is said that one or two of its members are of more than local fame, they defeated Birdbrook by 11 goals to nothing. Let us hope that their shooting against the Germans will be as accurate.
RURIDECANAL MAGAZINE JANUARY 1916: THE WAR. - A good many of the able-bodied men who are left with us have enrolled themselves under Lord Derby's scheme, and so we must expect that from time to time some of them will be called up.
THE SUNDAY SERVICES. - The new orders as to lights at night have made it impossible to continue the Sunday evening services a 6.30. Consequently evensong will be held at 3 o'clock on Sundays until further notice.
RURIDECANAL MAGAZINE APRIL 1916: The Military Service Act affects many in Birdbrook, we hope to give a list next month of those who have joined the Army in consequence of it.
WOMEN'S LABOUR ON THE LAND. - A League has been formed to promote the labour of women on the land. the Vice-President for this part of the county of Essex is the Hon. Mrs. Ives, and the Registrar for the parish of Birdbrook is Mrs. Young. The first step to be taken by the league is to make a register of all women who are willing to help, with a statement of what they are willing to do. No one is to be asked to undertake any task for which she does not volunteer. It is pointed out that in France where the country is to a very great extent denuded of men, the bulk of the work is being undertaken by the women. And as the need for this form of labour increases here, it is confidently expected that the women of England will rise to the emergency. Mrs. Young will be glad to receive any offers of help.
RURIDECANAL MAGAZINE MAY 1916: THE WAR. – The following have joined the Army as privates:
John Barnes 10th East Surreys
Cecil Barnes 3rd/6th South Staffords
Basil Barnes 2nd/7th Essex
Josiah Harding Motor Transport
William Holden 3rd/7th Sherwood Foresters
Thomas Rawlings Royal Fusoliers
Albert Whipps 10th Suffolks
RURIDECANAL MAGAZINE JULY 1916: THE WAR. – The following have joined the Army as privates:
Charles Plum 1st. Suffolk Regiment
Samuel Hasler 27th Royal Fusiliers
John Coote 2nd Royal Fusiliers
Private Thomas Rawlings has been transfered to the 13th Devon Regiment.
COLLECTIONS BY THE SCHOOL CHILDREN. - The school children, acting under the initiative of Mrs. Skellon, have made the following collections: For British Prisoners of War in Germany 6s. 2d.; for the National Sailors' Society, £2 9s.
RURIDECANAL MAGAZINE AUGUST 1916: THE WAR. The following have joined the Army as private:
William Clarke 6th Battalion Middlesex Regiment
THE WAR CORNER. - A War Corner was opened in the Church on Sunday afternoon, July 16th; it is meant especially for the use of children - where they may offer prayers for their relatives who are fighting at the front. The photographs of those for whom they wish to pray are put up in the corner. There are also lists of those who are at the front, those who are in Hospital, and who are prisoners. The old roll of honour in the Church Porch has become so weather beaten that some of the names are becoming illegible, and it has been impossible to add new names for some time past as the cardboard will not take the ink; a new roll of honour has been prepared, and is brought up to date, it is hung up in the War Corner.
WOMEN WORKERS ON THE LAND. - Armlets have now been issued to a good many of the women in the Parish who have registered and have worked at least 30 days on the land.
RURIDECANAL MAGAZINE OCTOBER 1916: DEATH OF MR. JOHN ROBERT RAWLINGS. - They must be accounted happy indeed who die still actively serving their generation. And this happiness was granted to Robert Rawlings. He had indeed been laid by with illness on several occasions within the last few years, and it was well known that his life was uncertain, but he came forward in this time of stress ready to do the bit he could. He was actively at work in the harvest field when the hand of death was laid upon him - and there, even as he laboured, he quietly laid down to rest. We offer our sympathy to his widow and family, two of whom are engaged in fighting their country's battles.
RURIDECANAL MAGAZINE FEBRUARY 1917: THE WAR. - The following have entered the Army :-
Alfred Warren Mechanical Transport, Army Service Corps
Frank Metson Hertfordshire Regiment
SEED POTATOES. - A meeting was held on Friday evening, February 2nd, in the Church Schoolroom to discuss the Government offer of seed potatoes from Scotland. A letter on the subject addressed to the Chairman of the Parish Council, Mr. King Viall (who unfortunately was unable to be present) was read by the Rector who presided. After some discussion most of those present expressed a wish to avail themselves of the offer of the Government; and so orders for the potatoes were booked then and there. A suggestion that a War Loan or War Savings Association be started was then discussed, but this fell flat largely owing to the number of different clubs already in existence. It seems a pity that this very excellent opportunity of providing for the future, as well as of contributing a parochial mite to our country's cause could not have been adopted. An appeal on the subject of keeping pigs found even less favour with those present.
RURIDECANAL MAGAZINE MAY 1917: The following have joined the Army as privates :-
Charles Basham and Frank Jay Army Service Corps.
RURIDECANAL MAGAZINE JULY 1917: The following have entered the forces:
Joseph Skellon 19th Hussars as trooper.
Walter Coe Royal Field Artillery
We are glad to hear satisfactory accounts of all the Birdbrook wounded.
RURIDECANAL MAGAZINE AUGUST 1917: On Sunday, August 5th, the third Anniversary of the Declaration of War will be observed by special Forms of Service in Church at 11a..m. and 6.30p.m.
RURIDECANAL MAGAZINE SEPTEMBER 1917: THE SUNDAY SCHOOL. - In response to the request of the Food Controller, no tea was given to the Sunday School this year. But it was felt that there was no reason why the children should not be asked to spend an afternoon of play in the Rectory garden. They came on Saturday, August 11th, and fortunately the day was fine and sunny. A short service was first held in the Church, and then the usual games, voyages across the pond, and swings were enjoyed - while by the way of refreshment some pears had very opportunely come ripe. Mrs. Unwin kindly came to give away the prizes, and also supplied many pennies with which to reward the winners in the races and competitions; Masters George and James Unwin also came and brought with them cricket bat and ball. The prize-winners were Ida and Freda Bunton - who had obtained full marks for the whole year - Nellie Hayes, Rosie and Gladys Hannibal, Fred Amey, Ethel Hayes, Ada plum, Elsie Piper, Elsie and May Backler, Ethel Bunton, Walter Plum, Alfred and Stanley Hayes, Olive Hannibal, Willie Wiseman.
A word of acknowledgement is due to the teachers, who have taken great pains with the School, and whose efforts are much appreciated by all concerned. Miss D. Fitch takes principal charge in the morning, and has a class in the afternoon, Miss L. Herbert takes the boys in the afternoon, and Mrs. Young superintends in the afternoon and takes the girl's Bible Class. That all the teachers were able to come and help in the entertainment of the children, contributed greatly to the success of the afternoon. Miss R. Hanniball who is gaining experience as a pupil teacher in the day school, and has taken a class on Sunday mornings during the last year, has now begun to teach the infants on Sunday afternoons, thus relieving Miss D. Fitch of half her formerly overlarge class. We have to thank Mrs. Bryce for a gift of prize books, and Mrs. King Viall, Mrs. Unwin, Miss Payne, Mrs. Roy, Mrs. Purkis, Mrs. Chaplin, Mrs. Pannel, Miss Blacklock, Miss Herbert and Mrs. Young, for contributions to the prizes and presents funds; and also Mr. Price for the loan of a rope for the swing, and the use of a meadow for the rougher games.
RURIDECANAL MAGAZINE NOVEMBER 1917: CHESTNUTS AND ACORNS . - The children of the parish are endeavouring to do their bit in many useful ways. In response to the request of the Director of Propellant supplies, they, and others too, are collecting the chestnuts, and they hope to have quite a large harvest of them. They are also collecting the acorns for sale to the farmers, and they are giving the proceeds of their labours to the Red Cross Society.
The children at the school have also cultivated a piece of ground kindly lent by the Hon. Mrs. Ives, and have gathered a harvest of potatoes, which also are to be sold for the Red Cross Society.
RURIDECANAL MAGAZINE DECEMBER 1917: THE CHESTNUTS. - Altogether 42 bushels of chestnuts have been collected in the parish, largely by the chidren. They are being forwarded to the Director of Propellant Supplies.
RURIDECAL MAGAZINE JANUARY 1918: On Christmas Eve the men of the choir, greatly thinned in number by the war, went round the parish singing carols; thus keeping up a good old custom: at such times one thinks of absent friends, and hopes to see them back in future years, but alas there are some who cannot return.
RURIDECANAL MAGAZINE MARCH 1918: THE WAR. - In the War Corner in the Church besides the Roll of Honour, a list is kept of the soliders from the parish in hospital, and also of those at each of the different 'fronts'. A committee of three, Misses Ida Bunton, May Backler and Mr. F. Amey have undertaken to keep these lists up to date. Friends and relations of soldiers can help greatly in making these records accurate, by informing one of the Committee or else the Rector of any changes.
THE CONCERT. - A highly successful concert was held on January 25th, in the Church Schoolroom, in aid of the Essex Regiment Prisoners of War Fund. The room was crowded and everyone much enjoyed the programme. Altogether a sum of £12 3s. was realized, and sent off to the fund. In giving the programme we regret that we are not able to include the encores, which were kindly given by the performers.
Part 1: Overture, Selected Air, Miss Bonner; Song, They all Love Jack, Mr. Tom Warren; Recitation, Misadventures at Margate, Mrs. Long; Song, The village Pump, Mr. Irving; Song, God send you Back, Pte Jones; Dialogue Feigning, Mr. and Mrs. Macbeth; Song, The Baby on the Shore, Mr. Payne; soong, I've been using Sunday language all the week, Mr. Burgon.
Part 11: Song and Chorus, Ise Gwine Back Dixie, Mr. T. Warren; Recitation, the Submarine,Miss Mary Amey; Song, Now I've Got To call him Father, Mr. Irving; Duet, The Bying Boys, Mrs. Rallings and Mrs. Mason; Song, Long, Long, Trail, Pte. Jones; Recitation, St. George and the Dragon, Mrs. Long; Song, tomorrow will be Friday, Mr. Payne; Song, The farmers' Boy, Mr. Burgon. God save the King.
It is proposed to hold another concert on Tuesday, April 2nd, in aid of the St. Dunstan's home for blind soldiers.
On the initiative of Mrs. Payne it has been decided to adopt a prisoner of war for the Parish. This has been made possible through the generosity of Miss Payne and Mr King Viall, in the matter; and we feel sure that many others will gladly help in this worthy object. The cost of adoption is £30 a year, and this will keep one prisoner regularly supplied with food and tobacco sent in parcels from the London Offices of the fund.
WAR SAVINGS ASSOCIATION: - A meeting was held on January 31st, to promote a War Savings Association for the village. Mrs. Mallison and Mr. J. Hodgson came over from Haverhill to speak on the subject. It was decided to form the Association, and the following officers were appointed. Chairman: Rev. Dr. Young, Treasurer: Mr. C. Purkis, Secretary: Mrs. Skellon, Committee: Mrs. Young, Mrs. Hunt, Mr. R.O. Payne and Mr. Piper. About 50 members have joined. At the first meeting of the Association on February 14th, at which Mrs. Mallison and Mr. Hodgson were again present, over £4 was taken by the treasurer. The Association meets for business every Friday evening at 8.15p.m., in the Church Schoolroom. Every sixpence paid is a gain to the country and a gain to the subscriber.
RURIDECANAL MAGAZINE JUNE 1918: THE MUMPS. - Everyone is glad that the schools have been able to re-open after the very tiresome epidemic of Mumps. Fortunately no one had it badly; but the infection had to be stamped out for all that. Let us hope we shall now keep free from these troublesome complaints.
RURIDECANAL MAGAZINE JULY 1918: James Bolton has joined the Army.
OVERSEAS CLUB TOBACCO FUND. - On Empire Day the children attending the Day School contributed the sum of twelve shillings and sixpence towards the Overseas Club Tabacco Fund for our sailors and soldiers. This amount has been forwarded to the secretary by the head teacher.
RURIDECANAL MAGAZINE AUGUST 1918: ANNIVERSARY OF THE OUTBREAK OF WAR. - Special Services will be held on Sunday, August 4th, as that day is the fourth anniversary of the outbreak of war. We need to redouble our efforts in prayer to God that He will be favourable to our country in this terrible time; and chiefly that He will turn the hearts of the people to seek Him in sincerity.
RURIDECANAL MAGAZINE OCTOBER 1918: WAR SAVINGS ASSOCIATION. - The Birdbrook War Savings Association continues in its career of usefulness: usefulness which like mercy is twiced blessed, for it helps the members to save their money and get a good rate of interest for it, whilst it helps the state with means towards the tremendous nation expenditure during wartime. A branch of the association has been formed at Baythorne End, and Mrs. Holmes has very kindly arranged to receive members subscriptions at her house on Thursday evenings. Thus members at Baythorne End no longer will need to make the long journey to Birdbrook in order to transact business.
THE BLACKBERRIES. - At the request of the Ministry of Food, School children throughout the country are gathering in the blackberry crop. Birdbrook scholars are doing their share and up to the present have despatched 70 lbs to the agents.
RURIDECANAL MAGAZINE NOVEMBER 1918: THE BLACKBERRIES. - The children have been busy with the blackberry crop, they have gathered and sent off very nearly a quarter of a ton of blackberries, in response to the goverment appeal.
RURIDECANAL MAGAZINE DECEMBER 1918: PEACE. - The news on Monday morning, November 11th, that the Armistice had been signed was the signal for the ringing of the Church bells, and for the appearance of flags everywhere. A service was held the same evening to thank God for the great victory, and the Church was full. Thanksgiving services were also held on the following Sunday.
THE MAGAZINE. - The war stopped just in time to save our Parish Magazine, which was to have been dropped next year. It will now continue to appear as before; we hope that it will not be long before the price is reduced to the old figure, but we must wait for this until everything gets more settled. Will those who wish to take it for 1919 kindly let Mrs. Young know as soon as possible.