Beadnell WI, June meeting

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Beadnell members welcomed 12 visitors with an interest in local history to their meeting, since the subject of the evening’s talk was Beadnell in Mortal Danger.

First, Pat Brand introduced copies of the new programme devised by Nancy Wardropper and her team and reminded members to check regularly the social calendar provided by the social committee.

The meal at the Running Fox had been very enjoyable, with the luncheon club now looking forward to visiting the Joiners Arms at High Newton. Doreen Godfrey asked for names of members interested in forming darts or domino teams.

The four people who were lucky enough to be able to attend the recent 90th anniversary celebrations at North Sunderland and Seahouses WI told us how much they had enjoyed the event.

Great hospitality, teamed with a wonderful display of members’ craftwork.

Lynne Angus gave us an interesting account of the agm in Leeds. It had obviously been a worthwhile and stimulating visit, culminating in the passing of the motion to promote further organ donations.

Our speaker, Bill Riccalton, talked of Churchill’s ‘secret army’. It was fascinating to hear about local people recruited to act in an isolated and covert manner, behind enemy lines, should the Germans have succeeded in invading Britain in the Second World War.

As Bill spoke of locations familiar to us in the area which were used as storage bases for these defenders of our villages and mentioned a few names of individuals he had discovered through his research. There were small gasps of recognition among the audience. Perhaps we should all look more carefully at our neighbours.

Never able to discuss their training or potential subversive activities, these people were prepared to protect our way of life and cause mayhem for the captors. Their only recognition at the end of the Second World War was a private letter of thanks because they were outside the rules of war.

Competition entries for Second World War memorabilia showed an interesting range, making it difficult for Bill to judge. Jan Brunt’s model warship took first place. Liz Freeman won the raffle.