Movers & Shakers of Yesteryear

Phyllis & John Rice

Phyllis and John with some of their coronation mugs, collected over the years, the first one being George V

As told by Phyllis Rice

Phyllis has a certificate relating to an award for bottled fruit and it reminds her of this story:

“In 1954 in the village fete and produce show, there was a class for chutney on the agenda, and I made some tomato chutney and I got a 1st. So the next year, the same thing was on the agenda, and I put the same jar of chutney in, and the comment on it was … “needs to mature”! And that was a year after! I don’t remember who the judge was, so you see: the first year it won, but the 2nd year, it needs to mature!

“When the Women’s Institute was held here, we used to have it in the old Village Hall. Tim Place’s grandmother was President; the Honourable Pamela Walpole and Miss Fletcher were Vice-Presidents, and we had some really nice get-togethers: we always had a speaker and demonstrations. At one time we were about 40 women and then when the village hall was taken down, we held it in the school. This went on for some years and then it was moved to the Preston Room in Ashmanhaugh, where it continued successfully for several years.

“Pamela Walpole was the Kingpin! She had all the contacts, she was a JP, and she kept everything going. She dominated everything, and I know some people didn’t like that, but she got things done. You wouldn’t go against her! But if you wanted something done in the village, she’s the one you’d go to. You had those fields and ground for nothing, for the football.

“The youth club was good while it was going, run by Cecil Hewitt [Headmaster] and he worked hard but it eventually stopped, mostly through lack of support.

I remember the Bartlett’s. They were moneyed people and they gave us some huts to help the football, which was on the field which is opposite where Alex Sirkett’s house is now. And we would hold all the events on there. Then it moved over to the other side of the road, to Sid Page’s field, near to where the village sign is now.

Daniel Brothers had the large fruit farm which ran from Coltishall Road up to the chapel. There were about 30 – 40 men worked on that farm, there’s about 2 on there now. I remember the Daniel Brothers’ bell. They would ring it at 12 o’clock and they’d go home for their dinner; rang it again at 1 o’clock and they’d start again; 5 o’clock and they’d be off home. The clock was on the shed and you could see it – you always knew what the time was by Daniel Brothers’ bell! There was ‘DB’ on the gates. They had a nursery in Norwich too – there’s a roundabout still called Daniel’s roundabout.

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