A 1942 edition of the West Sussex county Times could help feed, clothe and shelter local people in need if it strikes a chord with some of our readers.
The historic edition dated August 21, which is available for a ‘reasonable’ donation to Horsham Matters, would make a unique gift to a local person celebrating their 71st birthday this month.
It was discovered by volunteers amongst a box of donations to the local charity which is run by Horsham Churches Together and assists people in need in the area.
“It was holding a number of things in one of the boxes,” recollected David Sheldon, Horsham Matters chief executive and Liberal Democrat district and county councillor for the area.
“We opened it out and were curious to see what was hitting the headlines in 1942.
“Obviously it’s the middle of the war and it was interesting to flick through and see what was news in those days – a lot about being economical and much more farming orientated than it is these days.”
The paper also shares the news of a number of local families (see below), which prompted David to realise what a unique memento it could prove for someone related to them or for whom August 1942 has some significance.
“If there is a family out there looking to find that extra special present for a 71 year old we would be more than happy to furnish them with the County Times for a reasonable donation,” said David.
Any money received would go directly towards assisting those most in need in our local community.
“We’ve had people come through the door who haven’t eaten for three days, literally,” added the charity chief, exclaiming: “In Horsham! Can you really believe there are people in Horsham who actually haven’t got the income and are simply unable to eat? It is shocking.”
Last year, Horsham Matters gave away around £22,000 worth of goods.
“We live and die by the donations that come through our door,” continued David, “and the income that we generate through selling donations is what enables us to do everything else.”
This includes participating in the county-wide Local Assistance Network which provides goods to those on lower incomes and can see people fully kitted-out with beds, wardrobes and many other white goods. These are particularly sought by the charity which collects and sells many items from its Guildford Road premises next to the Co-op food store.
David urged people to donate these type of goods which ‘are flying out the door’ as well as to continue visiting and shopping at the centre which is staffed by a group of friendly volunteers.
It is now hoped the historic edition of the County Times will also raise revenue for the local charity too and help it to continue its important work in the community.
Further details about the August 21, 1942 paper are opposite and if you are interested in making a donation to become its proud owner please email firstname.lastname@example.org; call 01403 751 233 or write to paper at; 1942 County times, SpringfieldHouse, Springfield Road, Horsham.
RELATED TO FW ALLFREY, MARRIED 1942?
DID GRANDDAD DRUNKENLY STEAL BICYCLES?
The historic edition of the West Sussex County Times, published August 21, 1942, gives a unique perspective on wartime Horsham.
The eight page broadsheet’s front page reveals the Duke of Kent’s trip to an unspecified ‘South Coast town’ to visit R.A.F. personnel there - the location presumably kept secret at a time when road signs had been removed to frustrate any invading Germans or spies.
In keeping with the times it is distinctly more agricultural. A Ministry announcement states ‘Plan your cropping NOW for winter milk 1943-44’.
Aside from the historical insight the paper gives, it would also be of interest to relatives of people mentioned in the paper, and perhaps local businesses - some of which are still advertising with the County Times today.
On the front page the marriage of Sgt F W Allfrey to Miss Annie Holden is celebrated, while inside there is a picture of ‘A.T.S girl married on leave’ Miss Nellie King to Mr Pat Stevens, including all their guests.
Another picture shows the wedding party of Miss Mary Cook and Mr AC Emery outside Roffey Church.
The captain of Horsham Crickt Club Mr Frank Musset is pictured as he left to join the army, while Gunner Wilfred Belton is confirmed taken as a prisoner of war in Benghazi.
Suspected cycle “joy riders” Robert English and William John Rigby pleaded not guilty to stealing a bicycle, while George Laird Ross tried to mitigate thieving a bicycle by saying he was ‘pretty drunk’ at the time.
It was mentioned in court that legislation stating vehicles should be locked did not apply to bicycles, while another story confirms that Miss Eileen Deidre Dickson had been fined 10s ‘for leaving her car without rendering in immobile’.
An advert for Trelfer’s Goldsmiths in East Street questioned: “Any old gold?”, while an advert on page three stated: “Don’t worry about your Fuel Ration!! Install an Aga Cooker” - the appliances available from Hoad and Taylor, Market Square, Horsham - a location where Agas can still be purchased.
To view the paper, visit the County Times offices during office hours.
Ask for Theo Cronin