WW1 Memorial Day 20th July 2019

Lemsford Remembers

Report of our WW1 Memorial Day 20th July 2019

Lemsfoord Local History group marked the 100 year anniversary of the dedication of the Lemsford War Memorial on 20th June 1919 with an Open Day at St John’s Church, Lemsford. Geoffrey (Editor) Hollis will be writing a full report of the day in the Parish magazine . The build up to the event has been a long and full experience with all the group pulling together. It would also be appropriate to thank all the members of St John’s Church - Mandy Evans, St John’s School, Ramblers Holidays, Ian, Landlord of the Long & Short, Adam, Bar Manager of the Sun Inn and anyone I have missed for supporting this special event.

When researching for the event, we decided to build twenty display boards to represent the men who died in the Great War. Part of the ceremony will be laying a floral tribute by each man’s display board. Jean Mitchinson volunteered to help the group make the floral tributes. We decided to keep it simple with flowers from the garden that would have been around in 1919 with a simple ribbon tying them into bunches, based on a Mothering Sunday model. To help inspire our flower arrangers, we found a special image in the archives of the Lemsford ladies competing in the best Flowery Bonnet Competition at the Flower and Produce show in 1907. One of our members informed us the marquee was supplied by the Brocket estate and benefactors of the Parish, Lord and Lady Mount Stephen.

The War Memorial Event ends the season for Lemsford local History Group. It has been a full and interesting year; we have enjoyed several lunch time meetings, general meetings in the church annex, a quiz we ran for several of the local history groups, hosted by our friends in Welwyn at the civic centre. Our fete display this year was well received and repeated on Open Sunday 20th July 2019.

Our next meeting is Thursday 19th September 2019

The group changed its format from evening meetings six times a year to a more social group with lunch time meetings involving other local history groups joining us and afternoon meetings in the annex to develop ideas and have a chat over a cup of tea. We also gave opportunities to meet if we had subjects we wanted to research. If you are interested in meeting the group and find out more, we have our AGM on Thursday September 19th in the church annex start time 19.30. All are welcome.

With WGC celebrating 100 years in 2020, a possible subject for our 2020 display at the Fete is ‘The Development of Stanborough’. In 2019, I published images in the parish Magazine of the Great North Road Bridge under construction which showed a light railway for moving materials. This railway was an important tool in the construction of WGC. The OS map of 1923 shows the old Bull and eight cottages in the great North Road. The 1938 OS map shows the road full of houses. This was repeated for New Road and Brocket Road. If you live in this area and know about the history of your house or want to know how, when, who and why your house was built, join us at our AGM on the 19th at St John’s Church Lemsford Annex.