Other events

Club Days were big annual events which combined business with pleasure. There were the Tradesman's Club, the Men's Club and the Women's Club.

Vicarage Garden Party

Vicarage Garden Party in the 1900's.

Club membership enabled the villager to obtain medical insurance and financial assistance in times of sickness. These clubs disappeared as national health insurance schemes developed, the Women's Club lasting until 1947.

Small circuses travelled quite frequently in rural areas in the early years of the century and were very popular.

Sometimes the animals would be paraded around the Square. The last circus came to Bradworthy towards the end of the 1950's.

Miniature Wedding At Fête
The annual garden fête in connection with St. John the Baptist Parish Church, Bradworthy, was held on the Vicarage grounds on Thursday, by permission of the Vicar (Rev. A.E. Dobson).

A horticultural show also took place in conjunction with the fête, at the Assembly Hall.

A feature of the fête was a miniature wedding ceremony arranged by Miss M. Balston and performed by the Sunday School scholars and their friends. The 'bride', Ann Slade, was given away by her 'father', Eric Oke. The 'bridesmaids' were Julia Knight, Margaret Lambell, Janet Plummer and Ruth Perkins.

The 'bridegroom' was Kenneth Glover and 'best man', Norman Bond. Raymond Vanstone made a convincing 'minister'. Jennifer Wickett acted as cushion bearer. A realistic touch was provided by Mr. C. Manning playing the wedding march on his accordion.

A stall of presents given to the 'happy couple' and the bride's bouquet, were afterwards auctioned by the announcer, Mr. E. Plummer. (August 1947)

In common with many other rural villages, Bradworthy has had to provide much of its own entertainment.

Garden parties have occurred regularly throughout the century, particularly at the Vicarage, and at Berridon Hall.

hobby horses

J. Cory, A. Oke, W. Bromell and G. Balsdon with hobby horses in the 1920's.

The Vicarage Garden Party was quite a red-letter day. In the early years of the century the churches of the Deanery supported each other, so there could be a dozen clergy at the garden party. In 1894 it was reported that between three and four hundred people paid for admission.

Typical events included Maypole dancing, a bicycle gymkhana - with the entrants wearing fancy dress and riding gaily decorated bicycles, a baby show, an outdoor concert, a cricket match in the afternoon if the weather was favourable, dancing on the lawn and a fireworks display. The Church fete, a continuation of the Vicarage Garden Party, has been an annual fund-raising event since the 19th century.

Plane at Leyland

In May 1929 a plane landed at Leyland.

Early in the century Mr. Thomas Blight's Lympscott Stud Stables flourished and his Annual Mare and Colt Show was described as an exhibition of rare quality and sterling worth.

In 1929 Leslie Runciman, the son of the Liberal candidate Mrs. Runciman, landed a plane in a field near Leyland, and in the 1930's Alan Cobham's Air Circus landed on Bradworthy Moor and took people for joy-rides.

Kenny Ball

With the twin assets of a fine Memorial Hall and a large village square which can accommodate 200 or more cars it has enabled organisations to venture into ambitious projects, but even prior to this the Assembly Rooms, owned by the Wade Family, was the venue for visiting drama groups, concert parties and even weekly film shows which augmented fund raising whist drives, dances and socials.

Country and Western

A venture by the Football Club in the early 1970's brought many world class groups and bands to Bradworthy with huge crowds in excess of 500.

Clement Freud

The first group were The Nashville Teens (top hit Tobacco Road), followed by The Searchers (3 number one hits including Needles And Pins and Sweets For My Sweet), Kenny Ball and his Jazzmen (Midnight In Moscow) and Adge Cutler and the Wurzels (I've Got A Brand New Combine Harvester).

Bradworthy also became a centre for country and western music and a second home for the Hill-Siders (voted number one in the country) and many individual performers such as Little Ginny and the Tennessee Four.

American artists who were in the country to entertain at US air bases were regular visitors including Randy Boon from the Rawhide TV series alongside Clint Eastwood.

The annual summer fête in aid of the funds of St. John the Baptist Church took place in the Memorial Hall on Saturday. The weather unfortunately prevented it from taking place at the Vicarage as arranged. There was a good attendance, and television had been installed in the Hall to keep contact with the World Cup match. (August 1966)

For a brief period Berridon Country Club flourished with such acts as Long John Baldry (Let The Heartache Begin), Roy Castle (Record Breakers, BBC 1) and even an authentic Caribbean Steel Band.

It is slightly ironic that a flourishing village has often struggled to provide a cafe or restaurant despite numerous attempts.

One such venture was opened by Clement Freud (the TV gourmet and Liberal MP), but like others, before and after, it was a short lived enterprise.

This is your life

This is your life presentation to W.J. Cory in the mid 1960's. Back Row: T. Cann, G. Bond, A. Saunders, J. Cory, G. Jacobs, R. Kivell, A. Cann, C. Collacott, R. Pomeroy. Middle Row: Mrs. S. Cory, Mrs. D. Harris, Mrs. F. Boundy, R. Shaddick, Miss. S. Cory, Mrs. V. Schiller, J. Clarke, Mrs. M. Jenkins. Front Row: Mrs. W. Bromell, Mrs. E. Gardener, Mr. W.J. Cory, Mrs. W. Seldon, Mrs. H. Nethercott, W. Wickett.

Many projects have been based on TV themes - such as It's A Knockout, which attracted huge crowds in the playing fields over a number of years, with local teams competing against each other.

This Is Your Life, Old Time Music Hall, TV panel games and even Burns Nights have added a range of entertainments.

In 1962 the BBC broadcast Any Questions from the Memorial Hall, the event being attended by about 300 people.

The panel consisted of Jack Longland, Nancy Spain, the columnist Cassandra (William Connor), and Colin Welch of the Daily Telegraph. Freddie Grisewood was the Question master.

Any Questions

In 1985 the BBC's Any Questions visited Bradworthy. Jeffrey Archer, Mr. G. Davies, John Timpson, Carole Stone, David Penhaligon, Baroness Phillips.

Questions were asked by C.T. Collacott, R.L. Ashton, David Quance, Denis W. Slee, Mrs. K. Ashford, Mrs. C. Kinsman, Rev. Brian Gameson, and Alan Cann. Mrs. N. Bromell asked the test question prior to the broadcast. The questions were selected from the 123 that had been submitted.

talent contest

In the 1960's a talent contest was held in the Memorial Hall. D. Jones, L. Codd, Mrs. M. Johnson, A. Collins, J. Brown, A. Lang, F. Brown, A. Jones, J. Lang, R. Neal, W. Dunn.

Any Questions returned to Bradworthy in April 1985.

This time the panel comprised the Liberal MP David Penhaligon, Baroness Phillips, the novelist Jeffrey Archer, and George Davies. John Timpson was the Question master, and Carole Stone was the scorer.

Rescue Helicopter at Bradworthy - Man Was Seen To Bale Out
The village of Bradworthy, quiet and peaceful in the afternoon sun on Tuesday, was suddenly transformed into a place of high activity and excitement.

It all began with a few people having spotted an aeroplane, from which a man was seen to bale out south of the village.

Mr. H.J. Wickett went out in his car, returning shortly after with a navigator, who, on the instructions of the pilot, had parachuted from the aircraft, the engines of which were giving trouble.

Later, the rescue helicopter of 257 Search and Rescue Squadron, based at Chivenor, arrived over the village, and, guided by the white sheets which had been spread, it landed in Blakeys field, close to the Square.

By this time about 150 people had converged on the village to see the first helicopter ever to visit Bradworthy.

It was fortunate that all ended happily. The navigator returned, of course, with the helicopter, whilst it is understood that the plane got back to Chivenor all right after all, and the pilot was able to land safely. (June 1957)

For two years Kimworthy was the venue for Banger Racing enthusiasts. Sponsored by the Memorial Hall it attracted competitors from all over the South West with local driver Paul Trewin seeing off all comers.

Best Kept Village

Bradworthy won the Best Kept Village award in 1972. F. Petherick is on the left, and Mrs. L. Elliot is receiving the award from Mrs. Studholm

Other outdoor activities have included an annual Tug 'O War across the river at Waterlands in aid of school funds.

This first took place in the Summer of 1981, and was a regular event for a number of years.

VE Day celebrations

VE Day celebrations in 1995. Alan Balsdon, Alan Cann, Ian Downing, Gus Haynes, John Cann, R. Wright.

The Memorial Hall was the venue for snooker enthusiasts with local players and invited guests pitting their skills against world champion Terry Griffiths from South Wales, who was later a member of Barry Hearn's Matchroom Squad.

In recent years Cabaret evenings with up to 150 enjoying a sit down meal before being entertained by stars from TV and stage.

VE Day celebrations

A street party takes place as part of the VE Day celebrations in 1995.

Bradworthy won the Best Kept Village competition in 1972 and 1980, and was runner-up in 1982.

It also received the Pertwee award in 1980 and 1982, a trophy awarded to the best previous winner. The trophy was presented by Lady Studholme.

In 1995 the 50th anniversary of VE Day, when the long-drawn-out hostilities in Europe ceased, was commemorated.

In the early afternoon the church bells rang out and an open air service followed on the Square, a large number of people having assembled.

Face painting

Face painting in the hall

Blessed with glorious sunny weather, a variety of games and competitions were held on the Square.

Tables were set out in the open and a sumptuous tea was provided by the ladies for the children and veterans.

War-time memorabilia was on view in the Memorial Hall, uniforms and dresses of the period were worn.

An American Army vehicle stood on the Hall forecourt, where an evening barbecue concluded a most memorable day.

Stem Jennings memorial bike ride

Stem Jennings memorial bike ride

In August 1996 Peter 'Stem' Jennings aged 25 was killed in a road accident on his motorbike.

Since then an annual memorial bike ride to Perranporth has taken place in early September, with money raised going to the Devon Air Ambulance.

[ Back to top ]

Show me the
Home Page