zondag 29 juni 2008

Molly's Tale Chapter 12 - becoming a Justice of the Peace

Molly writes:

“When the war was over we got a good NEW car.”

But a lot more than that happened. Badens father, George, had been a Justice of the Peace in the years 1930 to 1933. At this time all county Benches in England and Wales included at least one women magistrate, but Borough Benches were generally all male. There was a move to appoint more women to the Bench, and towards the end of the war Molly had been approached to become a Justice of the Peace for New York.

Molly really did not feel she had the time, but once war ended, and she found out another woman she knew, Mrs Ramshaw, was going to accept the position for Percy Main, she agreed and was appointed Justice of the Peace on 31 January 1946. She served until she resigned on November 11, 1970. This would have been around the time that Baden became very ill, and started to required nursing at home.

Becoming a JP meant she was asked to join the Committee of the Lady Mayoress along with Mrs Ramshaw, and they became quite good friends for many years.

In 1949 just after the National Health Service was launched she was asked to start up a Baby Clinic in the YMCA at New York. Each Thursday afternoon, mothers brought in their babies to be weighed and examined by a qualified Nurse. Molly assisted the Nurse and sold formula baby milk. On opening day the Welfare Doctor who was in charge was very sceptical and shrugged his shoulders saying “I give it a month”. However, there was great demand from mothers wanting advice and reassurance from the nurse and the clinic ran for years. Molly was involved until 1955.

That is the end of Molly’s memoirs, I have no more notes on her later life, however, there are many family members alive today who still remember her and can fill in information on parts of her later life. Meg listed for me some of her achievements in later years:

In 1953 Molly was Captain of the Ladies section of Tynemouth golf club
In 1954 she and Baden started to keep bees.
In 1956 she founded the TG Collingwood Guild, which met at St Aidens church in Moorhouses, North Shields.
In 1958 Baden and Molly retired from the butchers business and moved to the bungalow at 1, Simonside, Old Hartley. This was the year they went with the Bee Keepers Association to Rome and met the Pope.
In 1960 Molly started fund raising for ARC.
In 1980 as she became less mobile she began to crochet cake frills to sell as a fundraising item for ARC and then in 1984 for the Lifeboats Association.
In 1989 she decided to give up her driving licence due to increasing disability. By October 1989 she had made and sold 117 cake frills.

I remember her as strong, and determined, invincible, even when she was nearing the end of her life, but until I read her story in her own words, I did not realise how far she had come from her childhood at the beginning of the last century. Its been a privilege to write these chapters, I hope you enjoy reading them.

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