Andover Lodge and Derby Brights

Maisie’s fond memories of Wherwell in the early 1900swas the title of a Press Cutting in the 1986 WI Scrapbook.

Maisie Margaret Hovvels (nee Broad) was born 13th December 1919, at Andover Lodge, Wherwell. Her parents were Albert Edward Broad, a painter and Elizabeth Lily Broad. Maisie’s godfather was Fred Hands (senior) from the Old Smithy. She remembers her mother and father telling her that when they all lived in the lodge it was like a Swiss chalet with an outside staircase. When it was damaged by fire it was rebuilt as a bungalow on the same site.


Mrs Hovvels writes “The late Lizzie Horne’s mother attended my mother when I was born. Mv two older sisters, Lillian and Winifred, and two older brothers, Fred and Harold, went to the village school. My mother told me that I never went to the village school because we moved to Goodworth Clatford in 1923. Colonel and Mrs Jenkins lived at the Priory at that time and my two sisters, who were in the Guides, attended the wedding of their daughter, Marjorie, Countess of Brecknock.”

“Oh yes, our water supply was fetched from the river in buckets, inside the estate, of course. Mv father was one of the ‘Derby Brights’ during World War One and while he was away in France my mother stitched literally

hundreds of soldiers’ shirts and my two sisters worked the buttonholes and sewed on the buttons. They then cycled to Andover — to The Priory in Newbury Street — collected money for the completed shirts and returned with a new batch to be done.” 

The phrase ‘Derby Brights’ is attributed to Edward George Villiers Stanley Derby, the 17th Earl of Derby, who was Director General of Recruiting during the First World War, initially under Kitchener (‘Your King and Country Needs You’) and later under Lloyd George. In October 1915, he instituted the Derby Scheme, a halfway-house between voluntary enlistment and conscription (which the Government was reluctant to adopt). The scheme was not sufficiently successful in spite of the fact that the execution of Nurse Edith Cavell by the Germans on 12 October 1915 was used in recruitment rallies and conscription was eventually introduced in 1916. 


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200 Years of Gurkha History

January 19th (2018), 8pm
Talk by Gavin Edgerley-Harris
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