Stevens 1894-06-07

Text, letter

Finer and warmer, but still not the weather one expects. In June. Hole and I walked about the town and the pier. Dr Springett, Rector of West Tarring preached this evening. The congregations improve.

Cutting from Banbury Advertiser of 7 June 1894



   Sibford Friendly Society celebrated its fifty-fifth anniversary on Monday last. At the business meeting, at which the officers were elected, three new members were admitted into the parent society and four into the juvenile branch. The members afterwards attended divine service, at which the Rev. E. T. Stevens, M.A., officiated, the sermon being preached by the Rev. Norman Ramsey, M.A., vicar of Swalcliffe, from the text “Bear ye one another’s burdens, and so fulfil the law of Christ.” The rev. gentleman dwelt particularly upon Christ’s bearing in Himself the sins, sickness, and infirmities of all men. He thought it was a very good thing for the society to meet at church annually to ask God’s blessing upon the Club, as he considered a friendly society of that sort one of the best examples of his text. An excellent dinner was provided by the stewards. The Vicar occupied the head of the table, with Mr. John Lamb, (chairman of the club) at the opposite end, and they were supported by Rev N. Ramsey, Mr. H. Norris, Mr. Woolgrove, Mr. R. H. Lamb, Mr. G. Padbury, Mr. D. Sabin, Mr. R. B. Oddie, Mr. Bloxham (Swalcliffe), &c. Letters of apology for non-attendance were received from Sir B. Samuelson, L. M. Wynne, Esq., Major Norris, and Mr. G. H. Hall. The usual loyal toasts were given from the chair ; the Bishop and clergy by Mr H. Norris, and replied to by the Rev. N. Ramsey ; Success to the Society by Rev. E. T. Stevens, who referred with pleasure to the prosperity of the society, and the great change for the good witch had occured since he first became connected with the Society. He coupled with the toast the names of the chairman, Mr. John Lamb, and secretary, Mr. L. T. Poulton. The Secretary was the first to reply, and he stated that the funds had increased during the last three years £80. He also read and explained the valuation of the Society, just completed, much satisfaction being given that the Society’s position had so immensely improved, and that it was certain to have a prosperous career in the future. The Chairman, in support, made allusion to the sickness experienced during the past half-year, which had been heavy, referring with pleasure to the fact that the income for the time mentioned would meet the expenditure. Mr. O. Harris proposed the hon. members ; the Secretary, adding a few words in support, mentioning that in the past ten years nearly £150 had been subscribed from this source, and that at the present time there were 26 honorary members. Mr. R. H. Lamb, Mr. R. B. Oddie, and Mr. H. Norris suitably replied, congratulating the members on the efficiency and stability of the society. Mr. Norris expressed his great pleasure at the way in which the name of his father, Major Norris, and his late grandfather, H. Norris, Esq. (who it was said had so long supported the Society) had been received. At the close of the toast list, dancing, amusements, and sports were engaged in during the afternoon and evening, and, considering the weather, there was a large attendance. R. L. Routh, Esq., surgeon to the Society , attended the supper. Votes of thanks were accorded to all the officers, and to the Misses Dix, who with characteristic kindness had done so much for the Society in the shape of honorary subscriptions, use of the field for the sports, assisting in the decorations of the club room, and many other things.

   A special dance was held in Mr. Ainge’s barn after club hours, and was very largely patronised. A vote of thanks was accorded to Mr. Ainge at the close of the dance. Throughout the day music was satisfactorily supplied by the Sibford Brass Band. The Club consists of 86 ordinary, 26 honorary and 16 juvenile members, and has a capital of £312 12s. 5¼d., the sum of £18 2s. 4½d. having been added to the sick account during the year.