Whitwell WI members have celebrated the group’s 70th anniversary. Diana Munro gave a talk about the branch formation back in 1947 with a synopsis of the first year of minutes and a list of past presidents. Current news at this time was the nationalisation of the coal mines, Princess Elizabeth’s marriage to Prince Philip and rationing was still in place. The building for Denman College was purchased and the ‘baby boom’ began — not sure if there is a link there!
There was a meeting of 26 women and two national organisers on 19th June 1947 where it was decided to form our WI branch with a minimum age of 15 years (nowadays the rules are ‘the age of majority’). There were 12 on the committee and subs were 2/6! In 1949 this rose to 3/6. Back then you had to be nominated for membership by another member.
The inaugural meeting took place on 9th July and Sheila Haywood was chair for the first 13 years.
Sheila Berry attended the meeting to present the 70-year certificate to members, received by Dorothy Hurst (president). A collection of songs from the 40s and 50s was performed by Razzle Dazzle. After that, members had tea with a special 70th anniversary cake. If you would like to see some video of the evening’s entertainment by Razzle Dazzle Productions there is some on Whitwell WI’s Facebook page and on www.whitwellwi.wixsite.com/whitwellwi.