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Unity and Loyalty Project
Patients and hospital staff outside the Town Hall
Concert party probably Christmas 1916
The lady in the centre of the group is Mrs Williams the head cook. The men are all patients from Chippenham Red Cross auxiliary hospital and organised a show for patients and staff Entertainment was important keep up morale of the patients.
Patients and VADs in Loyalty Ward, The Neeld Hall
Reenactment of the arrival of the first patients
Large group of VADs possibly early 1916
Patients and two nurses outside neeld hall
Wounded soldiers being entertained
The VAD staff at the hospital would regularly invite patients to their homes for afternoon tea. Mr White who lived in the High Street, almost opposite the town hall would arrange games for the men in his garden. This photo was taken in Ethel Williams garden in Langley Road. The lady in the back row is thought to be Alice Rudman. Lady with the hat Ethel Williams, to her right Elsie Miller and sat on the left looking at the camera Ada Hickling. Can anybody recognise the other ladies?
Four VADs outside the Loyalty Ward (the Neeld)
In the background is the town hall and the arch with the town crest. Three of the ladies are in traditional VAD "nursing" dress. It is thought the lady with the hat is in Red Cross outdoor uniform, can anybody confirm that? The lady on the left is Ethel Williams who was the head cook. She is wearing a St John's Ambulance armband. The Voluntary Aid Detachments (VADs) were made up joint units of both St Johns and the Red Cross.
Red Cross Auxiliary Hospital, Town Hall Chippenham
When the Red Cross hospital opened on 5 November 1915 the first floor of the Town Hall was converted to a ward to accommodate 40 men. Much of the furniture and equipment was donated by wellwishers, hence the bedding and beds are of varying designs. The Piano and Phonograph, seen in front of the window, were donated by Mr Spencer who owned the music warehouse in Chippenham. They were given to provide entertainment in the hospital for the wounded heroes.
Chippenham in the 1970s
Do you remember the trim phone, tank tops and tubular bells all popular in the 1970s? The Friends of Chippenham...