A Legacy of Fun

The Children’s Society has many legacies left to it by people in their wills.  An example of such a gift was that left by a gentleman in recognition of the benefits provided to him for the period he spent in care at Hatton Home for Boys (1913-1944), a Children’s Society Home in Wellingborough, Northamptonshire.

Hatton Home for Boys, Wellingborough

Hatton Home for Boys, Wellingborough

Following a reunion of boys who were at the Home in the 1940s and that was held in Wellingborough in the 1990s, he wrote:

“As can be imagined, when this exciting reunion became a reality, floods of memories flowed and were exchanged.  There was special praise for our beloved Master and Matron Arthur and Kathleen Silverwood.

Mr & Mrs Silverwood, c1940

Mr & Mrs Silverwood, c1940

He continues:

“Memories of nights spent huddled in the Home’s huge cellar during air raids; helping Home Guards Units practice in the event of an invasion; pillow fights in the dead of night; summers spent under canvas at a nearby swimming resort”.

It’s wonderful to know that the gift this particular gentleman left was for the explicit purpose of being used to fund pursuits which were ‘fun and recreational’.  What a lovely gesture and idea!  In 2012 an award to this effect was set up and Programmes run by The Children’s Society can apply to it for grants.  So far funds have been awarded to Children’s Centres and Projects for activities and pursuits such as:

  • football training
  • music sessions
  • horse riding lessons
  • gym session
  • judo sessions
  • Easter fun sessions
  • swimming
  • an environmental play project
  • monthly youth club

and even an outing to a wildlife park, and a trip to the cinema.  Fun activities and recreational pursuits of which I’m sure our donor would have approved!

We know that the boys at Hatton Boys Home often went on Scout camp, where they would learn skills and have plenty of outdoor exercise.  The Home’s Scout troop had their own Latin motto ‘Vive ut vivas’, which means ‘Live that you may live’.  It could be that experiences such as these prompted our donor’s specific choice of legacy.

Although the following photograph is not of boys from Hatton Boys Home it’s a good example of the fun our donor and his friends might have had at camp.

Group of boys from the Harvey Goodwin Home at a Scout camp 'making straw mattressess', c1913.

Group of boys from the Harvey Goodwin Home at a Scout camp ‘making straw mattressess’, c1913.

For more history about The Children’s Society, and to see more images from the archive please visit Hidden Lives Revealed.

Click on the links to find out more about Hatton Home for Boys and Harvey Goodwin Home for Boys.

 

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