Barn House, Whitstable
Queen Mary’s Gift
Publisher: Ridout Bros, The Library, Whitstable
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MARIES’ GIFT TO THE QUEEN.
Her Majesty’s New Charity— Holiday Home for Girls.
The Queen has decided to devote the Coronation gift to her from the Maries of the Empire to a holiday, home for working girls In connection with the London Girls’ Club Union, of which her Majesty is the patroness. For this purpose Barn House, Whitstable, Kent, has been acquired by the trustees, and will be opened in the spring.
In June last, when the £18,000 has been collected In subscriptions ranging from a penny to a pound, a cheque for £12,500, which was to be added to later, was presented to the Queen at Buckingham Palace. It was her Majesty’s earnest desire that the whole of the money should be applied to some charitable purpose, but the members of the committee thought the donors, while deeply appreciating the spirit by which the Queen was prompted, would prefer that at least some portion of the gift should take a personal form. Her Majesty, yielding to their view, agreed to accept a personal offering, while, stipulating that the great bulk of the fund should be devoted to a charitable object. The investiture of the Prince of Wales as a Knight of the Garter was then just approaching, and the committee decided, with the Queen’s approval, to present to her on behalf of the subscribers the insignia of that noble Order fret in diamonds. Messrs. Garrard, the Court jewellers, were commissioned to carry out the work, and her Majesty wore the jewelled insignia on the occasion of the investiture at Windsor, which was one of the most notable ceremonies of Coronation Year. Portraits of the King and the Prince of Wales formed the other part of- the personal offering, ana It was authoritatively stated that the Queen would apply the balance of the fund to ‘an object very dear to her heart.’ Now that all the preliminaries have been successfully arranged, and the necessary building acquired, her Majesty had been pleased to authorise the announcement of her decision with regard to a holiday home for girls.
Poor London girls, jaded both physically and mentally by the strenuous nature of work in the city will find a haven of rest and pleasure at Barn House, Whitstable. The house is pleasantly situated close to the sea, and when proposed alterations have been made, will accommodate about fifteen girls. The picturesque grounds include a large orchard, a garden bordered with elm trees, and a well-kept tennis lawn. A lady prominently associated with the London Girls’ Club Union, in connection with which the home is to be established, stated that the girls who are sent to the home will be chosen from tho fifty clubs belonging to the union and having a membership of between four and five thousand girls. The girls sent to the home will be those who most urgently require rest and freedom from worry, and the term of their stay will probably be two or three weeks. All the work they will be expected to do in the home will probably be the care of their own bedrooms. Facilities for indoor games and amusements, and for tennis and croquet in the garden will probably be provided. Whether or not the girls will De asked to make some small payment in return for this holiday accommodation is a question which the Queen will decide. Some time in the Spring the first batch of London working girls will be sent to the home, which will be called after Queen Mary.
Sunday Time, 17 December 1911
It will be remembered that at the Coronation the “Marys of the Empire” subscribed towards a presention to the Queen. Out of the money raised a Home was founded by the Queen at Whitstable. It is now being put to an extended use. The Home was built for the use of the working girls of London in need of change and sea air, but it has been found that accommodation was required only during the summer months. Her Majesty has given directions that for the remainder of each year the Home shall be set aside for the use of ladies in poor circumstances who are earning their living. Each is called upon to contribute towards her support at the rate of 12s. weekly, and there has been a rush of applicants.
Papuan Times, 15 January 1913
THE QUEEN’S CHAUFFEUSE.
When Queen Alary went to Whitstable the other day to look over Barn House, which she Is lending to the V.A.D. Kent, 138, she onlv gave a few hours’ notice of her intention to the commandant, Miss : Geraldine Campbell (who is well known to many soldiers in India). Among other things the problem of meeting Her Majesty at the station arose (Mr. Gossip writes in the “Dally Sketch”), and a member of the detachment, Miss Dot Carson, volunteered to do so in her car. She was not aware that she was to be the first woman who had ever driven Queen Mary until the Queen herself told her so. Miss Carson is 18, and not only drove the car herself, but acted as footman, &c. The Queen Complimented and congratulated her most charmingly
The Telegraph, 3 December 1915