Thursday 16th November: Through the generosity of the William Harpur Lodge, between 60 and 70 wounded soldiers were entertained at St Mary’s Schoolroom, Bedford. The special guests arrived shortly after 2pm in cars lent by Messrs Crawley and Sons and in motor ambulances for the wounded stationed at Howbury. There were 30 men and 3 nurses from Howbury, 10 from Ampthill Road Hospital and 26 from the Barracks. The tea and entertainment were carried out by members of the Lodge Committee whilst wives of members of the Order assisted at the tea. The afternoon consisted of a singing competition and the prize a wrist watch. Cigarettes and chocolates were served out to the men. At 4.30pm, everyone sat down to a high tea, the menu including ham, tongue, roast chicken and roast beef. The flowers were contributed by the villagers of Haynes. During the evening, the men were treated to first-class musical entertainment by various artists. The event finished at 7pm and the men were sent on their way with soup and wished a speedy recovery.
Source: Bedfordshire Standard 17/11/1916
|Z1306/12/6/32, Postcard of troops marching down St Mary's Street, with Crawley and Sons on right, 1915 (Bedfordshire Archives)|