Tag Archives: Scouts

Nottingham 1911 Veterans’ Dinner

This is the medal that was given to members of the Boy’s Brigade and Boy Scouts who lined the procession route for the Veterans’ Parade in Nottingham during the Coronation celebrations. The Scouts were, at that time, a new organisation compared to the Boy’s Brigade. The medal features two stags with very flat antlers. They have to be flat to allow room for all the wording.

I presume Mrs J A Morrison was the wife of J A Morrison DSO, who was MP for East Nottingham between 1908 and 1912, and was host of the dinner.

There is a book which lists the names of the war veterans who went to the dinner, which was held at the Empress Rink, King Edward Street, Nottingham. The skating rink is reported as burning down in 1910 and being rebuilt as a cinema, which opened in January 1913 so I’m not sure how it hosted the dinner in June 1911.

There were 1,600 veterans, with 2,475 medals between them. The oldest veteran was 90-year-old E Pratt of the 17th Foot, who lost eight toes to frostbite in the Crimea.

Each veteran was given a copy of the book as a souvenir, with Stewards being given silver jewels (which I have seen, though never been able to photograph), and Captain Morrison, as he was then, being given a gold and enamel jewel.

Edit: This is a link to the catalogue archive of auctioneers Dix Noonan Webb showing a picture of a silver stewards jewel.

Beavers!

What do you say?

One of the parents said: “They’re very excited about this visit.”

You could tell that from the fact they were milling about looking at everything and chattering. It was clear that this wasn’t going to be a night for reflection and following instructions, and although I had all the stuff ready for toasting marshmallows it was also clear that it wasn’t a night for naked flames!

If they ever come back I’m going to be sure to pack a rugby ball and my whistle plus some maps and compasses. As it was, we did think about running them round the farm but it started to rain. So it was visit the sheep, visit the chicks and keets, look at the young goats in their new field (they aren’t happy at being taken away from their mothers), view the guinea fowl doing impersonations of vultures, strain to see the geese (who had taken up a position at the back of the field) and go back to the centre.

Julia set them going on making folded paper animals (Orifarmi, as LEAF call them) and I set up the butter-making, which is generally enough to sap the energy from the most energetic of small people. It just about worked. We are getting more cunning as time goes on.

In amongst the frenetic effort there were quite a few questions to field too – about the building, farming and animals. Even whilst running about they didn’t miss much, and you need to be on top of your game .

It’s nice seeing all this youthful enthusiasm but I wouldn’t want to have to try and direct it every week. I really don’t know how their leaders do it.

I’m off home now – not sure what awaits us as the kids are cooking the evening meal. I suspect it will feature chicken, vegetables and salad. I’m sure it’s healthy and wholesome, but it’s not food as I know it.

(It turned out to be sausages in baguettes, with red onions and barbecue sauce and chips and a modest salad on the side.)

 

Third time lucky

We had a group of Guides on the farm today – spent three hours outside foraging in the hedgerows and garden. Pickings were a bit scant in the hedges but we managed a decent salad from the garden. That is mainly due to my poor weeding so maybe not something I should be boasting about.

The chickweed is really living up to its alternative name of winterweed, though I see there are other plants using the name. Best call it Stellaria media to be on the safe side. It was a mainstay of the mediaeval winter diet when pickings were slim and you can see why when you see how well it grows.

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We are also ┬áhave a good crop of goosegrass (or sticky weed or cleavers or sweethearts depending on what you call it) though it isn’t great for salads. Too sticky! I’ve never known a plant with so many different names. I don’t know if anyone still calls it ‘sweethearts’ – it was what my mother and grandmother used to call it. They come from Lancashire but I’ve checked up and it also seems to be used in the south and south-west, though it does seem to have been popular as a name before the war.

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I call it goosegrass and always have done. What do you call it?

And before you ask – the title of the post refers to the fact we’ve fed three groups on garden weeds now and haven’t poisoned anyone yet. And ‘today’ means Tuesday because I’m getting behind.