Lesbury WI, June meeting

POOR HOUSE: Lesbury WI’s June meeting was opened by our president Val Broks welcoming all on what was a fine summer’s evening.

Institute business was addressed, with Hazel reflecting on last month’s quizzes and how remiss she had been by omitting a number of farmed home-grown Lesbury quotations from the famous quotes round.

Often in these current times we cannot turn on the radio or TV without being reminded of the recession with cut backs, closures and general all-round belt-tightening.

Our guest speaker Jane Bowen’s subject though was from a truly austere period, with her talk about the Poor House at Belford.

Although it was not large by the standard of workhouses found in the metropolises, it must have been a phenomenally daunting prospect to have the misfortune to be sent there for a life of hard labour, to carry out such tasks as breaking rocks.

With the poor in Victorian times in mind, when children did not have the plethora of sophisticated electronic toys enjoyed by today’s youngsters, their only toy may have been the peg doll.

The monthly competition was to make one of these favourites of yesteryear. Elaine Foreman’s doll was adjudged to be the winning entry.

The birthday flowers for June went to Meg Irwin.

Val drew the meeting to a close and paid a special thank-you to those all too often unsung heroines, the tea ladies.

She reminded us that at our next meeting we have visitors and it’s a pooled supper evening.

This will be on Tuesday, July 12, which will also include a demonstration on Mediterranean cooking by Marjorie Goodchild and the monthly competition is three home-made savoury tarts.