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From the Sussex Express, 18th September 1877



The harvest home on the estates of the Right Hon the Speaker in Glynde, Beddingham, and the Brookside parishes was held on Saturday, in the Park at Glynde. In addition to the labourers and workmen, the children attending the school were entertained, and the number altogether exceeded 200. The weather was fair, and the only drawback of the day's proceedings was the absence of the right hon gentleman himself who, with Mrs Brand, is now on the continent enjoying a well earned holiday after his arduous labours of the Session. However, the place of the Speaker was occupied by his son Lieut BRAND, RN, who, with the frank and genial courtesy of a British sailor, in a great measure compensated the company for the absence of his distinguished sire. Those also present included Mr Arthur Brand, the Rev G Averill, vicar, Mr Colgate, the steward, Mr George Newington, Mr Medhurst, Mr Wallis, and Messrs T R and W Colgate. The wants of the little ones were kindly attended to by Mrs Thomas, Mrs Campion of Danny, the Misses Thomas, Mr Freeman Thomas, Miss Ellice, Mrs Colgate, Miss Greenlaw, the Misses Colgate, the Masters Campion, and Mrs Seward, the schoolmistress. Grace having been sung by the children, the company for about three quarters of an hour found their attention engrossed by an abundant supply of delicious meat puddings, substantial joints of roast and boiled, followed by plum puddings cleverly concocted.

After dinner the Chairman (Mr BRAND, RN) gave 'The health of her Majesty the Queen', which was duly honoured, He then said it appeared to him that every time he came to Glynde, he arrived just in time to make a speech; for the last two years he had arrived there three days before harvest home (applause). He had now great pleasure in proposing a toast which neither he nor anyone else in the parish so far as he knew had ever before had an opportunity of drinking in that parish - it was 'The Health of the new Vicar (applause). He hoped Mr Averill would find Glynde a pleasant sort of place to live in, and that if he did not find the inhabitants quite so good as they ought to be he would be able in years to come to improve them (applause and laughter). They all wished him health, happiness, and a long life in Glynde, especially as they had reason the believe that he would not live at the Vicarage alone (applause).

The VICAR (Mr Averill) returned thanks, observing that although he had not been long there he could certainly speak of a good many he saw around him as friends, and he hoped every year he lived at Glynde they would become better and better friends (hear, hear). He thanked Mr Brand for the kind way he had spoken of him ((the Vicar), and was glad he had availed himself of that opportunity of meeting so many of the working classes of the parish. With regard to the Chairman's allusion to the Vicarage, he (Mr Averill) had hitherto been described as an old bachelor, but he was glad to say he was going to set the bachelors a good example, and hoped they would soon see his wife there ( loud applause). Good fortune had, he believed, attended them in getting in the harvest, and he trusted they would think of others who were in difficulties, and especially of their fellow subjects in India, where many of the poor people were dying of famine (hear, hear). English working men were well paid, they could afford to think of those who were worse off, and do something to help those who were suffering from famine; therefore, he hoped that those who were enjoying themselves on that occasion would attend church on the following morning and contribute something, however small, towards the relief of the famine-stricken people of Southern India (hear, hear). He had a word of advice to give to young men living in the country, and that was not to go to London with the view of getting higher wages. He had been for ten years working in London, and knew that a man earning 30s there was not so well off as a labourer with 15s. They had to pay for one room in a close and dismal neighbourhood at least double the sum a country labourer had to pay for his cottage and garden, and they had to work harder, and their position in many other respects was not so comfortable. He had come to the solemn conclusions that an agricultural labourer in the country was better off than an artisan in London (hear, hear).Just afterwards the Vicar rose again and proposed 'The health of the Right Hon the Speaker (cheers). They had been feasting upon his good things and, from what he knew of him, he was thinking of them and wishing they might enjoy that day. They all knew what a kindly man the Speaker was, and would join heartily in wishing him good health; although his son had done them the honour of presiding, they could not but miss the head of the family, and hope that his trip to Germany would do him good after his hard work in the House of Commons (applause). The Speaker evidently took great interest in the labourers on his estate, he built them good houses, and was a liberal supporter of the schools, in fact every one knew what a kindly, courteous, and Christian gentleman he was, and would join in wishing him and Mrs Brand long life to enjoy the high position he had earned by hard work (loud applause).

Mr COLGATE supplemented the remarks of the Vicar by saying that a few days ago he had a letter from the Speaker showing that his heart was with them, although not bodily present. He says 'Your harvest home is near at hand; will you tell all there how much I regret not being present; my thoughts are with them, and I wish them all the greatest possible health and happiness'. The toast was drunk with musical honours.

The CHAIRMAN returned thanks on behalf of his father and mother in cordial terms, and expressed his inability to talk about agriculture. If he were to talk torpedoes, rams, and the construction of different kinds of ships, he might make an hour's speech, but they would probably not understand him, and if he were to talk about turnips, corn, and so on, he might perhaps propose to grow barley five times in the same land, or to feed the cows on wheat, and so only get laughed at (applause and laughter). They were assembled to offer thanksgiving for the ingathering of the harvest - he believed they had been more fortunate in the South of England than elsewhere - and, therefore, he hoped, with Mr Averill, that tomorrow they would contribute something to help the starving people of India (applause). In conclusion, the gallant Chairman said that the Glynde Harvest Home assemblies reminded him of his own profession, the landlord met all hands on his property, and was ready to hear anything they had to say; although the landlord was not present on the occasion, he (the Chairman) would presume that anything any one of them wished to say should be faithfully conveyed to the Speaker (loud cheers). He now proposed an adjournment to the cricket ground.

The company accordingly left the tent, and cricket, racing among the children, and various other amusements were indulged in; tea was also served, and a most pleasant day was spent.

HARVEST THANKSGIVING SERVICES - The annual thanksgiving sermons were preached on Sunday last, in the morning by the newly appointed Vicar (the rev G D Averill), and in the afternoon by the Rev C D Smith (vicar of South Malling, Lewes). Collections were made after the services, and amounted to £6 10s, which sum will be given to the fund now being raised for the relief of the sufferers in India, from the fearful famine now raging there.

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