Minutes of the shows 1913, 1914

Starting in February 1913 the committee held monthly meetings, with Henry (Hy) Gibson in the Chair. They made some alterations to the show schedule and agreed the show would be held on 9th August.  There are some entries which match up with the newspaper reports.  There were resolutions that Mr Boyd (Lord Crawford`s Head gardener) and Mr Saywell  (gardener to Mr Fair, Lord Crawford`s agent) be the judges if they were willing, and that they would be written to for plants for decoration,  that Rev. C H James be written to about the School for the Show and that Mr Gibson write to Mr P H Hewlett (Wigan Coal and Iron Company) to ask if he will open the show, or failing him to ask Mr Gillott (We know, from the newspaper report that Mr Hewlett was unable to agree as he was leaving for Scotland the day before and so they asked Mr Gillott – don`t know who he was.)   They made all sort of practical resolutions about the printing of window bills and tickets, procuring timber and paper for tables, serving refreshments and the rota for committee men in charge of the door.  They held weekly meetings in July, the last entry is on 30th July, the week before the show, which, we know from the newspaper report, was a very pleasing and successful occasion.

The minutes begin again in April 1914, with Hy Gibson in the chair again, when they made some more alterations to the schedule, and made the usual resolutions.  It seems that Mr Boyd was unable to judge this year as resolutions were passed to write thanking him for his past services as Judge, and the question of a second judge was to be left to Mr Saywell.  It also seems that Mr Gillott was asked to open the show again, as a resolution was passed that Mr Gibson propose him a vote of thanks.  There were 2 meetings in April, a third undated, but presumably May or June, only one in July and one in August, and they were less detailed than previously.  The last entry is on August 11th, a week after Britain declared war on August 4th .  Maybe the start of the first world war has something to do with the lack of minutes compared to the previous years, and maybe the show never took place, but according to the minutes they were still discussing arrangements for the show at that meeting.

At this point there is another gap in the history of NSHS.  The effect of the first world war on local communities is well documented.  History tells us that people were encouraged to grow their own food to overcome food shortages and presumably some of the plot holders went to war and never returned.  However, no minutes from the war years have survived, so there is no evidence of what that effect might have been on NSHS.  It is left to speculation and our own imagination.

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