Overstrand Parish Council

Strand Club Report for April 2017


Today we welcomed Tim Bennett, our speaker. He has written about the impact World War I had on the tiny village of Overstrand and its parish. In the 12 houses leading back from the sea in Harbord Road – previously called Gunton Terrace – almost every house lost someone. Tim’s talk was moving and extremely interesting. He showed us a most beautiful book which has been on show in the church but is now kept safely under lock and key and only brought out on request. There is no author’s name and no date of production but the book gives a page to every single man who was lost between 1914 and 1919. The book contains beautiful calligraphy and each man is given his date and place of birth and of death, the reason for his death, his regiment, the names of his parents and his career both military and civilian up to the time of his death. Tim said that it has been proved to be 95% correct, which is incredible. He showed slides of Overstrand at the beginning of the war, with horse drawn carriages and Lord Battersea’s Rolls parked ostentatiously! The picture of Overstrand’s railway station was particularly poignant. As Tim pointed out, although they didn’t know it, as the soldiers left the station on their long journey to the front, it would be the last view of their home village for many. Lady Battersea and Lady Hillingdon set up a convalescent home in the village and were very hands-on in its running. There are pictures of them in nurses’ uniforms very much in control.

We all enjoyed Tim’s talk hugely and the slides and artifacts he showed us were fascinating. He knows his subject very well and we were all enthralled.

Our next meeting will be on 10th May. It will be our Spring Lunch and members are reminded to bring their own cutlery and something to add to the Bring and Buy table. We should arrive at the Pavilion at 12.45 ready for a 1 pm start.

Visitors are always welcome and will be charged just £2 entrance which includes light refreshments. Raffle tickets are available throughout the afternoon. Our next meeting in which visitors may join us will be our 12th July one. We will then be visited by a representative from Age UK who will talk of the help they can give those of us who may need it. Meetings commence at 2 pm in the Sports Pavilion, Overstrand and further information may be obtained from Chris Wood, Secretary, on 01263 579433 or Jackie Hudson, Chairman, on 01263 720866. Please come along and see if you like us! We welcome men as members too so don’t be shy, come and try!