Local History Society

 The 'Mercury' and the Home Front in WW1


In 1913, there was a report of Dolly Powell's brother's marriage in Australia:

"A very pretty wedding was celebrated at St. Matthew's Church, Manly, New South Wales, on July 19th, by the Rev. A. Stoddart, when Miss Eva Taylor, third daughter of Mr. and Mrs. W. Taylor, of Oare Hill, Hermitage, Newbury, Berks, was married to Mr. William Ernest Powell, fourth son of Mr. and Mrs. J. Powell, of Arborfield, Berks.

"The bride was given away by Mr. John Kelley and attended by Miss Birdie Thompson. The best man was Mr. Arthur Powell (brother of the bridegroom). A reception was afterwards held by Mr. and Mrs. J. Kelley. Mr. and Mrs. Powell left amid showers of confetti for the Katoomba, Blue Mountain, where the honeymoon was spent."



Wedding of Dolly Powell and Ernest Finch

From the ‘Reading Standard’ (not the 'Mercury'!), 16 June 1917:

A very pretty wedding was solemnised in the Parish Church on June 4th, the contracting parties being Miss "Dolly" Powell, the youngest daughter of Mr. and Mrs. J. Powell, The Lodge, Arborfield Hall, and Ernest G. A. Finch, son of the late Mr. H. B. Finch, of St. Cross, Winchester, and Mrs. Budd, 7, Canute Road, Highcliff, Winchester.

The Lodge at Arborfield Hall. It was demolished in the 1960's when the Reading Road was staightened.




(The Lodge, Arborfield Hall, from the Collier Collection)






The bride was simply attired in a robe of silk embroidered voile with a wreath and veil lent by the bride’s sister, Mrs. L. Slade. She was attended by two bridesmaids – Miss M. Middleton (friend) and Miss Marjorie Finch (niece of the bridegroom). They wore dresses of flowered voile and mob caps to match. Miss Powell was in attendance on the bride at the church. A reception was given by Mrs. Hargreaves (The Hall) at which there were about 38 guests, the reading room being lent for the occasion. After a most enjoyable afternoon, the happy couple left for Cwmgwrach, in the Vale of Neath, where the honeymoon is being spent amongst the mountains of Wales.

The presents included:

Mother of bride, household linen, etc.;
Father of bride, tablecloth;
Miss Powell, dinner service;
Mr. and Mrs. L. W. Slade, bed linen;
Master Albie Slade, fruit plate;
Masters Jackie and Eric Slade, bread plate;
Father and mother of bridegroom, clock;
Mr. F. Finch, framed photograph "C.O." and "N.C.O." of A.V.C.;
Mrs. C. Finch, tea service;
Miss Finch, toilet set;
Miss L. Finch, glass dishes;
Mrs. Hargreaves (The Hall), wedding breakfast, cake, clock, use of car, etc..;
Mrs. Radcliffe, cheque;
Nurse MacLennan, silver dessert spoons;
Arborfield Hall staff, case of silver teaspoons;
Mrs. Kersley and Phyllis, jam cloth;
Mr. and Mrs. W. Parish (aunt and uncle), afternoon tea cloth;
Miss L. Wells, dish;
Miss M. Wakefield (cousin), afternoon tea;
[a missing line here?] (friend), embroidered cloth;
Mr. and Mrs. Spicer, towels;
Mrs. Sidney Slade,d’oyley;
Mrs. E. Gifford, trinket set;
Miss Gifford, cheese dish;
Mr. and Mrs. Cripps, ducesse set;
Miss M. Middleton, counterpane;
Mrs. Watson, jam jar.

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