Thursday 21 December 2017

1897 - 1997 Centenary of Victoria's Jubilee

On April 30th 1997 the History Group meeting covered how Eton Wick celebrated Queen Victoria's Diamond Jubilee in 1897. The talk was researched and given by John Denham.

June 21st, 1997 was the centenary of Queen Victoria's Diamond Jubilee. 

Celebrations for both Jubilees, Golden and Diamond, had similar programs in Eton and Windsor.

Although Eton Wick became a parish with about 800 inhabitants within the Eton Rural District in 1894, for the Jubilee celebrations the village joined Eton, who in turn joined with Windsor in the organisation for both occasions.

The ten years between the Golden and Diamond Jubilees saw an increase in the number of village traders.

From Kelly's trade directory for 1887 only eleven premises are listed as commercial. (Farms, Beerhouses, a laundry, Three Horseshoe P.H) the two shops for provisions etc. were Arthur Bennett and Thomas Lovell, baker and Post Office.

For 1897, 24 premises are listed as commercial, Eton Wick now had shopkeepers, Charles Ayres, Alma Road, Edward Wilkins, butcher, Thomas Lovell, baker and grocer, Dairymen, a florist, market gardener, boot and shoe maker, draper and boot retailer, cabinet maker, plumber, carpenter and smith, and builders, but in 1897 the village relied on Eton for many domestic requirements. The increasing wealth was altering the way life was pursued by many parishioners. This brought forth the comment from the Reverend Donalson speaking at a Deanery conference at Slough on the subject of Sunday Observance that the neglect of this began with the leisured classes who robbed their servants of the privilege of Sunday worship by dinner parties, concerts and other amusements and was influencing all classes generally.

For the Diamond Jubilee celebrations public meetings were held in January 1897 at Eton and Eton Wick to consider ideas and arrangements for the sixieth anniversary. But other events of local interest were also being discussed by the Parish.

The new year commenced with the children's Christmas party given by Mr Vaughan and others for the 235 children attending the day schools in the parish., which brought the remark from the vicar that, when compared, the number attending Sunday school was miserably poor.

Temperance and thrift both got their due mention in the parish records. A decision by the local school governors in 1897 to encourage thrift introduced a savings bank for children of the parish Church of England schools. The collected monies were deposited with the Post Office savings bank.

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