Newspaper Stories 1940 - 1944 - Hartley-Kent: The Website for Hartley

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Newspaper Stories 1940 - 1944

History > Newspaper Stories 1940 - 1979

03 Jan 1940 Price of Electricity Times
"Increased prices of electricity for consumers in many parts of Kent were announced yesterday by the West Kent Electricity Company, owing to increased costs. The revised rates will come into force in quarterly accounts after March 20, and in other accounts after January 1. For parts of Beckenham, Bromley, Dartford, Chislehurst, Sidcup, Crayford, Erith and Orpington the lighting flat rate will be 6d a unit, and the all-in rate ½d a unit. For undeveloped areas, inlcuding Ash, Chelsfield, Cudham, Darenth, Downe, Eynsford, Farningham, Fawkham, Hartley, Horton Kirby, Kingsdown, Knockholt, Longfield, Lullingstone, Ridley, Southfleet, Sutton at Hone and Wilmington, the lighting flat rate will be 7d a unit and the all-in rate 1d a unit. In both cases there is to be a 20 per cent increase on power supplies."

[The Times (22.9.1938) had previously announced the lighting flat rate for the rural areas was reduced from 6d to 5½d, so an increase to 7d was over 25%.]

03 Jan 1940 Boy's Temper Costs £2,250 Somerset Guardian
"Charged with sabotage, John William Day, aged 17 of Mile End Green, Longfield, Dartford, was sent for trial at Dartford on Monday. Bail was allowed. It was alleged that Day cut the main belt of a board machine at the works of Plaster Products Ltd Greenhithe. Prosecuting counsel said there was no suggestion that Day's action was intended to assist the enemy. It was probably due to temper, spite and thoughtlessness. Many working hours had been lost, and the loss of production would amount to £2,250. Evidence was given that Day had made a frank confession to the police, saying he wanted to get away from the job because he did not like the charge hand."

06 Jan 1940 Land Girls at Hartley Dartford Chronicle
Land Girls at Hartley (see article)

06 Jan 1940 Christmas Festivities Kent Messenger
The Christmas Festivities at Hartley were organised by the evauated school staff with the very active cooperation of the village. On Wednesday last week,[NAME] AND Norman Haybittle [Norman Dennis Haybittle of Bexley 1927-2002] won the treasure hunt. On Thursday 70 took part in the junior party. The senior party next day was attended by over 100 and the first item was the judging of the Scavenge Hunt which had lasteed 2 days and drew a large number of competitors. [3 NAMES] were the winners, with [NAME]#'s group second. In the evening [2 NAMES] and the pupils of [NAME] helped to entertain the children. Mr Edwin Langton, who was responsible for the organisation, thanked those who had helped to make the festival such a success, especially [NAME] who supervised the catering, and Mr and Mrs Gay for their help at the Country Club. Quite a number of the children were in fancy dress and at a parade Frank Woodall was judged the winner.

25 Jan 1940 175 Men Go Down with Destroyer Daily Gazette for Middlesbrough
"The 1,475 ton destroyer flotilla leader Exmouth, which the Admiralty announced early today has been mined or torpedoed with the loss, it is feared, of all hands, is the second British destroyer to be sunk within a week, and the fifth since the war began. But it is the first in which there have been no survivors. There were some 175 officers and men abroad.

Just before Christmas the Exmouth's commander, Captain R S Benson, was awarded the DSO for successful action against enemy submarines in the flotilla leader.......

Captain Benson, who commanded HMS Montrose and the 40th Destroyer Flotilla at the Jubilee Naval Review, and from 1935 to 1937 the 8th Destroyer Flotilla on the China Station, returned to England three years ago to join the staff of the RN War College at Greenwich. He entered the Navy in 1905, and during the last war was a sub-lieutenant and Lieutenant in HMS Superb (Grand Fleet), until he was selected to specialise in gunnery in 1917. Later he served in HMS Royal Oak, which was sunk last October in Scapa Flow, in HMS Frobisher and in the Iron Duke, the sea going gunnery firing ship and Jellicoe's former flagship, which was bombed at Scapa last October. Captain Benson qualified as a staff officer in 1930, and attended courses at the Staff College and the Imperial Defence College. Captain Benson lived at Ash Manor, near Dartford. He leaves a wife, a son, who is also in the Navy, and a daughter."

03 Feb 1940 House for Sale at Hartley Gravesend Reporter
Pilley & Talbot - Detached residence on high ground, conveniently situated, 3 bed, bathroom, 2 sitting rooms, kitchen, electric light, large garden. £675

16 Feb 1940 Faulty Car Lights at Hartley Dartford Chronicle
John B Gayes [1916-1993] of Hartley Wood Corner - faulty car lights

17 Feb 1940 Hartley Comic Daily Mirror
"I've brought back the stockings I had from you yesterday. They're too fast for me." "Too fast, what do you mean?" asked the shopkeeper. "Well, when I walk they run," answered the customer. Sent by [NAME], Fairby Grange, Hartley, Dartford, Kent"

01 Mar 1940 Left Book Club Dartford Chronicle
Left Book Club Meeting on "Federal Union"

08 Mar 1940 Rates Dartford Chronicle
Hartley Rates up from 10/5 to 11/7 in the pound

09 Mar 1940 Cook Wanted at The Achorage Kent Messenger
Cook housekeeper wanted at Halfacre [now called The Anchorage], Ash Road, annual salary £50

09 Mar 1940 Canteen Fund Kent Messenger
"The School managers met on Monday to receive a report from the Canteen Fund sub-committee. The Rev L G W Lenton, at present home on leave from the BEF, was in the chair. In the absence, through illness of Mr E J Cuff, chairman of the Canteen Committee, Mr Sizmur, Parish Council representative on the School Managers, reviewed the position to date. Though there had been considerable delay, he said, owing to the necessity of obtaining sanction and assistance from three different official bodies, they had now reached the point where the KEC had definitely promised to give equipment and other help, the permission of the Board of Education had been obtained, and plans and specification for the canteen kitchen extension had been prepared and passed by the Rural District Council. The fund collected locally would cover the erection of the kitchen on ground adjoining the school. Tenders were being invited and work could commence very shortly. Considerable satisfaction was expressed by the Managers with the work of the Canteen Fund Sub-Committee."

15 Mar 1940 Christmas Gifts for the Poor Tonbridge Free Press (KM)
"Mr Edwin John King, of Danemore Park, Speldhurst, late of Messrs Bullard King & Co Ltd, steamship owners and insurance agents, ship and forwarding agents, and on the London board of The Dundee Coal Co Ltd, who died on January 4th last, left gross estate of the value of £864,356 16s 4d with net personality £790,171 10s 11d on which £361,680 10s 1d estate duty has been paid.

In the will he left Danemore Park Estate, subject to his wife's life interest and £10,000 to the National Trust, but revoked this in a codicil of June 8, 1939 'in view of the heavy extra duties that have since the date of my will been imposed upon deceased's estates.'

He left £2,000 to the Ecclesiastical Commissioners for any benefice of the Rectory of Speldhurst with Groombridge, providing the Commissioners provide not less than £1,000 for the same purpose; £1,000 for the purpose of providing coal, meat and blankets every Christmas among the poor of Speldhurst with Groombridge; £1,000 to the Church Army; 10s per week to Violet Pesketh, his waitress at Baltic Exchange. To his daughter, Iris Nowell King, the advowsons, donations, rights of patronage and presentations of and to the Rectories of the Parish Churches of Hartley, Hadlow and Ryarsh.

Shirley Hall Estate, Langton Green, and his estate, Pashley, Ticehurst, Sussex, and certain mortgages held by him and £10,000 to his wife. Property in Chislehurst to his daughters Vera and Iris. Danemore Park Estate and other property and £ £40,000 for maintenance of his wife for life." [The Bank of England Inflation Calculator reckons £864,000 in 1940 is worth £51 million in 2021]

15 Mar 1940 Local News in Brief Dartford Chronicle
(1) ARP - public shelter at junction of Hoselands Hill and Station Road, Longfield; and near Pepper Hill, Southfleet; (2) Hartley House - American Tea for wool to make sailors' comforts

16 Mar 1940 Local News in Brief Kent Messenger
Hartley Doctor Attacks 'Conchies'

Hartley Doctor Attacks 'Conchies'

"Genuine congratulations to the two women writers, 'A Lover of Justice' and 'Fairplay' for putting the truth into plain English words. Having known two so-called conscientious objectors, neither of whom ever went to a religious service of any denomination although they laid their so called claims to religious belief, it certainly seems to me that there is a lot of humbug and nonsense talked by these selfish men. They are so much wrapped up on their own silly ideas that apparently they would be too selfish to make any effort to defend women who might be in danger should Britain be invaded. It does seem to me that such selfish or funky youths are not going to be any use to the British Empire. Frederick D Welch MRCS, Hartley, Longfield."

[Frederick Day Welch 1878-1953 lived at Dalesford, Castle Hill and is buried at Fawkham Church]

Hartley WI Meeting

"The March meeting attendance was a record for this year of 49.

Mrs McDonald was elected delegate to the West Kent Federation Annual Meeting, and 4 members drew for the one available visitor's ticket and Mrs J L Cook won it.

Mrs Townley, who presided, reported that 76 knitted garments had been finished for the services, other being on the way.

A demonstration 'Making the most of your rations' was carried out by Mrs McDonald, cookery representative, assisted by Miss Boutcher, Mrs Gates and Mrs Townley, showing successively easily prepared breakfasts that should conteract any tendancy to get out of bed the wrong side, savory meatless and near meatless dinners with the use of potato pastry, and sweets without sugar, also one for the day when it's 12:30 before you know where you are! For tea, cake without eggs, and even jam without sugar were produced. Two excellent recipes for supper dishes concluded the demonstration.

Moving a vote of thanks, Miss Robertson expressed appreciation of these 4 talented members of whom the Institue was proud. The motion was carried with enthusisam."

Hartley WI Meeting

Chickens for sale

"Buff rocks, black leghorns, sittings of eggs from healthy stock, 5s 6d. Apply Mrs Stickland, Old Downs, Hartley"

21 Mar 1940 Southern Railway Company Annual General Meeting The Times
"The Annual General Meeting of the Southern Railway Company was held yesterday at Southern House, Cannon Street Station, London EC. Mr Robert Holland-Martin CB (the Chairman of the Company) presided....

The Chairman, who was received with applause said: ........

Electrification of lines - In listening to the story I have to tell you I want you to remember that, unlike the other three main line railways, the Southern is essentially a passenger as opposed to a goods line. In normal times we used to reckon that 75% of our traffics came from passengers and only 25% from goods.

We have no large manufacturing cities on our system, which owes its success to the far sighted way in which its general managers have always sought to improve the communications between the dormitory towns and the City and to encourage those who work in the City to spend their holidays in the health towns on the sunny outher coast or on visits to the Continent. To that far sightedness is due not only the enormous increase of population that has taken place in South London but also the continual growth of the attractive coast towns which have been placed on the map by ease of access.

To meet that growth and to carry that increasing population we have continued to electrify our lines and to make new ones. On January 1, 1939 we brought into use the lines from Virginia Water to Reading, Ascot and Pirbright Junction, and Frimley to Guildford via Aldershot. By this electrificaion we were able to improve the services operated considerably, increasing by 58% the mileage worked on this section.

Our second scheme for the year, which completed the plans we had given the public, was the electrification of the lines from Gravesend Central to Maidstone West, Swanley to Gillingham, Strood Junction to Rochester Junction, and Otford Junction to Maidstone East, which were opened by the Minister of Transport on the introduction of the summer train service in last July. By this electrification improved services were operated on two ore sections of the line - namely Charing Cross to Maidstone West, and Victoria to Maidstone East and Gillingham, with a resulting increase of 42.7% in the train mileage on these sections.

During the 5 years allocated to certain schemes of electrification your railway had electrified 267 route miles - 619 track miles - and built 828 electric vehicles at a cost of £8.5m making in July last the total number of Southern electrified route miles 709 with 1,760 track miles.

Chatham and Gillingham Electrification - One bright spot was the result of the first two months' working of the Chatham and Gillingham extension, which showed an increase of 54,000 passengers and £4,000 in receipts, an increase of 8%. In the whole electrified area the volume of traffic was 195,000,000 passenger journeys, bringing in £6.1m, an increase of 2.3%."

22 Mar 1940 Local News in Brief Dartford Chronicle
(1) Restrictions on certain kinds of cultivation; (2) Kent Messenger: Air raid sirens to be tested in Kent on Sunday 31st March at 9.30am. Details of how to tell if it is a real raid at the same time.

29 Mar 1940 Unnecessary' Spending on ARP Dartford Chronicle
Parish council complains of "unneccessary" expense of ARP Wardens

05 Apr 1940 Local News in Brief Dartford Chronicle
(1) Easter Activities for evacuees; (2) Chantry Cottage, Stack Lane - knitting party for sailors' comforts

12 Apr 1940 Local News in Brief Dartford Chronicle
(1) To let: Gossy Croft, Hartley Hill - £52 pa; (2) Dudley Sizer [1905-1981] of 1 Church Rd - speeding; (3) Dartford Chronicle to be reduced to 8 pages due to newsprint rationing

10 May 1940 Local News in Brief Dartford Chronicle
(1) WI Preserves Club has applied for 38 cwt of sugar (see also 12/26.7.40); (2) Elsa Benham's stage show for evacuees' canteen

18 May 1940 Local News in Brief Kent Messenger
(1) Dozens of Tomato and cucumber plants for sale 2s to 3s 6d per dozen at Keston, Church Road; (2) Marriage at Hartley All Saints conducted by Canon Wallis, of Katherine McDonald [1919-1983] of Newbury, Ash Road to Ronald Lynds [1917-2005] of Longfield. Reception at Newbury, Ash Road, groom returned immediately to regiment.

24 May 1940 Obituary of Alice Maud Fitzroy-Mundy Dartford Chronicle
Obituary of Alice Maud Fitzroy-Mundy of The Bungalow, Church Road (84)

25 May 1940 His Forge is Closed Kent Messenger
"43 Years a Northfleet Blacksmith

Mr Elvy William Cooper, who for 43 years worked in the two centuries old smithy in Old Perry Street, Northfleet was buried at Gravesend Cemetery on Wednesday, following a service at All Saints' Perry Street, where he had worshipped for many years and used to sing in the choir. Mr Cooper lived at the cottage next to the smithy. He died on Friday last week, aged 77.

Because of ill health he gave up work at the end of March. Now the forge, a landmark in the district for so long, is closed.

Mr Cooper had been a blacksmith over 60 years and had owned the Perry Street forge for 16 years. Previously he worked for Mr H Livings and afterwards for his son. When he went to work for Mr Livings, five men were employed there, but in recent months he had been assisted only by his brother.

Son of a blacksmith who worked at the old Hartley forge for 55 years, Mr Cooper worked at Green Street Green, near Longfield, before coming to Perry Street.

There is a widow and one son."

25 May 1940 Rabbits for Sale Kent Messenger
Does in kindle from 12s 6d etc, over 200 to choose from. Danecourt, Glebe Cottage [Ash Road], Hartley.

31 May 1940 Local News in Brief Dartford Chronicle
(1) Land Girls - picture of them feeding cattle at a Hartley farm; (2) Mr Langton, evacuees' headmaster, recalled to Eitham by LCC

07 Jun 1940 Aliens Banned from Rural District Dartford Chronicle
Dartford RDC - aliens banned from area

14 Jun 1940 Local News in Brief Dartford Chronicle
(1) Savings Group considered; (2) Obituary of Margaret E Elliott of St Johns Lane (69); (3) Burglary at Meadow Cottage, home of Col Francis Willes

15 Jun 1940 Where's Hartley? Kent Messenger
"Parish Council: On Thursday last week Mr Sizmur presided. The Rural Council wrote requesting the parishes to remove all public display of parish maps. There were none such in Hartley, but the Council decided to take steps for the removal of the name of Hartley from all signs on shops, churches and other buildings, the chairman undertaking this duty. Advice was received from the Postmaster General that under present conditions it was impossible to meet the requet for later afternoon collections. The widening of St John's Lane was agreed to in principle by the Kent County Council, and the clerk was instructed to press the Rural Council to pursue the matter with the county authorities. The Parish Council has always felt that the widening throughout was the only safe way and the public spirited action of Mr Hoath of Hartley Grange, in offering a 12 foot strip has greatly facilitated the project. The "Dig for Victory" campaign was again considered. It was felt that Hartley is doing its duty, and the clerk reported that no applications for allotments had been received. This offer is still open for any of the fewe who have no plot to cultivate."

21 Jun 1940 Church Bell Ringing Prohibited Dartford Chronicle
Church Bell Ringing Prohibited

22 Jun 1940 Salvage of Waste Material Kent Messenger
"Arrangements have been made by the Parish Council for a dump for old iron in the field of Mr Len Harris [Beulah?], Stack Lane. This will be collected by the senior boys of the day school, under direction of Mr Sizmur, chairman of the Parish Council, a barrow having been provided by the Rural Council."

28 Jun 1940 Forces Comforts Dartford Chronicle
Treveor, garden party for forces comforts attended by 100

05 Jul 1940 Local News in Brief Dartford Chronicle
(1) Experimental Dartford RDC scrap metal dump at Hartley; (2) Soldier killed in motor accident on Hoselands Hill

20 Jul 1940 Local News in Brief Gravesend Reporter
Fairby High School Sports Day at Hartley

"On Wednesday afternoon may parents were present at the annual sports day at Fairby High School, Hartley, and the event proved in every way a success.

A gymnastic display was given by the pupils under the direction of Miss Betty Appleton. Tea was served on the lawn.

The sports programme consisted of races, obtacle races, long and high jumps. Among many prize-winners the following especially distinguished themselves: - Juniors: [NAME], [NAME]. Seniors: [NAME], [NAME], [NAME], Brian Delf, [NAME]. Prizes were also awarded to scholars for horticultural work.

The Headmistress, Mrs Appleton MSC distributed the prizes, thus bringing the proceedings and school year to a close. A short summer school will be held from August 5th to September 14th, and the autumn term proper will begin on September 30th."

Dartford's New Telephone Exchange

"The new automatic telephone exchange came into operation at Dartford on Wednesday. As a result the 1,450 subscribers will now be able to make most of their calls without the assistance of an operator. The new three storey building at the rear of the Post Office in Hythe Street can accommodate 1,900 lines and space is available to cater for 4,000 lines."

27 Jul 1940 Local News in Brief Gravesend Reporter
Gnat Nuisance at Ash

"Parish Council to Seek Advice - Dump Competition with Hartley

At the quarterly meeting of Ash Parish Council, hled in the parish hall on Thursday…. A pamphlet from the Small Pig Keepers' Council was next dealt with and the advisability of village dwellers rearing pigs was discussed - Councillor Coles pointed out that whereas teh government urged the small man to keep pigs against this was the BBC announcement urgint hte necessity of cutting down stocks owing to food shortage. The chairman said he considered that the idea was that a small stock could be fed on house scraps, but doubted whether this were possible in a scattered district like Ash. Cllr Goodwin agreed, observing that in the country districts there were few hotels or restaurants to provide waste material.

The chiarman dealt with a report which he had received stating that children were being bitten by gnats. The bites were severe ones. In the doctor's opinion the gnats were produced by stagnant pools. Children were in the habit of playing by a pool at the foot of Billet Hill. He asked for obeservations. Cllr Meadway replied that the pool had been there for 40 or 50 years and that children were repeatedly discouraged but would not stay away. Cllr Coles pointed out in discussion that the pool could not be done away with as it was necessary for drainage - water would run down into Fawkham Green. He added that it was cleaned out yearly and he did not understand how it could attact mosquitoes or gnats. The clerk suggested the doctor's advice be sought and this was agreed.

Dartford Rural Council having decided to collect refuse from the whole district, Cllr Goodwin pointed out that this would bring the rural parishes under the General Sanitary Rate....

Cllr Goodwin said that the RDC had set aside the first week in August for a 'Dump Week'. No dust collection would be made, but salvage collected. He went on to say that Hartley had improved on the 'dump' idea by one of its councillors having made a personal door to door collection with a barrow (laughter). The chairman: We'll beat Hartley. I'll collect old iron myself or have a dump on my own land (more laughter). Cllr Goodwin stressed the point that old bones as well as old iron were important items of salvage. The council agreed on a door to door collection in the first week of August. The chairman declared that Ash war effort should have a local headquarters and suggested that the parish council might have been approached. 'We've never been approached about anything except pig keeping!' (laughter)

A number of organisations had branches in Ash, but were all working independently, and he felt that they ought to be centralised and publicised, 'What is Ash doing in the war'. Cllr Goodwin pointed out the various work being carried on by local bodies and said he though they were doing very well. The Chairman: I still think we should have one central control. Cllr Goodwin retorted that he though the Parish Council was to blame for not having taken the lead in the first place. The Chairman said local branches of organisations should keep in close touch with their own council as well as with their own national headquarters."

US and Kent Villages

"Members of Hartley Women's Institute, which is allied to Ash branch in a joint effort for the Fruit Preservation Scheme - had the distinction, in conjunction with their 'ally' of being interviewed for the American Press. Pictures of them at work will be published in 'Life' the famous New York magazine, when America tells America how English women are working for victory."

02 Aug 1940 Failed to Empty Cesspool Dartford Chronicle
"H S West (trading as West and Son) of Station Road, Swanley, was fined £2 and £3 3s costs on Friday, for failing to comply with a notice requiring him to empty a cesspool in connection with houses at 1 & 2 Jubilee Parade [Ash Road], Hartley." (also in Kent Messenger 3.8.40)

03 Aug 1940 Presentation to Mrs Cromar Gravesend Reporter
"The presentation of a substantial cheque from 85 subscribers on the electoral roll of Longfield Parish Church to Mrs Cromar, of Merton House, Hartley, was made by the Rector Canon W Parker, recently, with the following accompanying letter signed on their behalf by the Rector and Churchwardens, Messrs F Crouch and F A Lancashire: 'Dear Mrs Cromar - on behalf of the Longfield Parochial Church Council we ask you acceptance of the enclosed cheque as a token of the appreciation in which your work as Secretary of the Council fromt he time of its inauguration [1921], is held by all the subscribers whose names are appended. Your devotion to the work, the care you have taken in its efficient performance, and the interest you have shown in all the activities of the council, as indeed of the church generally, are known to us all, and it was a matter of deep regret to us that the time had come when you felt obliged to pass on the reseponsibilities of your office to another. Our earnest prayer is that you may be given health and strength for many years, to share in our church life and share with us your knowledge of the working of the PCC.'

Mrs Cromar, in acknowledging this letter and the gift, expressed her appreciation and gratitude to all subscribers, and hoped that, as she was unable to thank them individually, they would accept the publication of her thanks in the magazine. With the list of their names in her possession her gratitude to suscribers was personal.

Many will regret that the subscription list was not open to the public, for Mrs Cromar's activities have not been confined to church work only. Born at Brentford, she came to Hartley some 45 years ago as head teacher of the Hartley CE Schools, but after 14 years of highly appreciated service in that capacity, a breakdown in health compelled retirement. Regaining her health, she started a private school at Merton House, and it was quickly filled with pupils, but later it was found necessary to reduce the number owing to pressure of work in her husband's office, work that required special knowledge that she possessed. Monday last was the 44th anniversary of her marriage to Mr Alfred Cromar, who for 50 years was the organist and choirmaster at Longfield Church. He died 8 years ago. Mrs Cromar was for a period of 5 years president of the Hartley Women's Constitutional Association [=Conservative Party], and is now, and ever since its inauguration, has been the Enrolling Member of the Longfield branch of the Mothers' Union.

All residents in the district will join in the prayer of the Rector and his council that health and strength be given her for many years."

10 Aug 1940 Local News in Brief Gravesend Reporter
Hartley Bonfire Tragedy

"Only Child fatally burned at play - Sad Inquest Story.

9 year old John Sandall Phillips, only child of Mr and Mrs C J Phillips of Trevone, Ash Road, Hartley, threw paraffin onto a smoundering bonfire while playing in the garden of a friend's home on Friday afternoon. The fire blazed up and the lad's clothing became a mass of flames. H ran screaming through the garden and into the house where a mat was thrown round him to smother the flames. Afterwards he was rushed to the Livingstone Hospital, Dartford, but his burns were so severe that he died the same night. The tragic story was told at the inquest at Dartford Fire Station on Wednesday morning, when the Deputy Coroner (Mr W A Thomson) praised 70 year old Mrs Lavinia Pulford, who was staying at the house where the tragedy occurred, for the manner in which she tended the burned child.

The mother, Ethel Rose Phillips, who was greatly distressed, told the Coroner that the boy, who was on holiday from school, left home on his bicycle on Friday afternoon to visit a friend who lived a short distance away. At about half past five she heard that he had been hurt and was at Mrs Ball's house half a mile away. She went there at once and found that the doctor was taking her boy to hospital. She went with them and stayed there until the boy died the same night. The Coroner: was he able to tell you anything abou it or was he unconscious? Witness: He was not unconscious but he did not say anything. Have you ever had occasion to warn him about playing with matches or fire? - No.

Dr E Sells of Park Road, Dartford, said that when the lad was admitted to the Livingstone Hospital on Friday evening he was suffering from very severe burns and grave shock. He was in a stupor and rambling. The arms and chest, back, buttocks and thighs were burned. The boy died at 10pm, the cause of death being shock from burns.

8 year old [NAME], of Hasleholt, Hartley, who sat on his father's knee while giving evidence, said that John Phillips came to his house just after 3 o'clock on Friday afternoon. They played in the garage first and then went into the garden. John suggested they shoudl have a bonfire. They got a box of matches which they had played with on previous occasions and which they had hidden on the rafters of the shed. 'We were going to make the fire ina bucket,' witness continued, 'We put some wood and twigs in it and then John tried to light them with a match. We could not get them to lilght so we went to the shed and got some paraffin. We empied some into a paint tin and John carried it to the fire, which was just smouldering. John poured the paraffin on and it blazed up and caught his clothing alight. John screamed and ran up the garden towards the house. His clothes were blazing.' The Coroner: Have your father and mother ever told you not to touch the paraffin? Witness - yes. And not to play with matches? - Yes.

Lavinia Julia Pulford said she had been staying at Hasleholt, Hartley, and Peter Ball was her nephew. She was in the kitchen preparing tea on Friday afternoon, when she heard screams coming from the garden. 'I ran out at once,' witness continued, 'but I could not see the children. I got on to the air raid shelter and saw John Phillips coming down the garden in flames. He ran into the kitchen and I followed him and put a mat round him to smother the flames. There was not a thing left on him except the band of his knickers. Everything else was burnt off.' Witness said she applied tannic acid and wrapped a cloth round the boy. She sent for the doctor, who arrived in a few minutes with a nurse and dressed the burns. The doctor then took the boy to the Livingstone Hospital. The Coroner said he would like to compliment Mrs Pulford on the prompt and efficient aid she rendered, 'You did very well indeed,' he said.

PC Knight, Longfield, said that after he had been informed of the child's death on Saturday, he visited Hasleholt. At the bottom of the garden he found a pail blackened by smoke and a paint tin which had also been blackened. There were burnt twigs lying about the ground near the pail. In the garage witness saw a petrol can containing a quantity of paraffin. Witness said that Mr Ball informed him that both boys had been warned not to touch paraffin or matches.

In returning a verdict of death from misadventure, the Coroner described it as a very sad case and expressed sympathy with the bereaved parents in the loss of their only child."

[Paper of 17.8.40 reports on funeral at All Saints' church, large list of floral tributes from family and friends, includes one from Merton House School]

Parish Council

"…The Clerk reported an interview with the local Tithe Collector in regard to a claim for exxtraordinary tithe on the council's site in Foxborough Wood. The Council are still in doubt as to the legality of the claim, and the discussion was postponed pending further research.

The chairman stated he had received several complaints as to discolouration of water from the mains, but expressed his opinion that it could be avoided by proper handling of the taps.

It was resolved that Mr Chas Sizmur, chairman of the parish council, be appointed to represent the council, and Mr Parkin, the parishioners, on the Dartford and District Youth Committee.

The chairman reported he had removed the inscribed plate from the War Memorial, and it was decided that it should be in the clerk's care until the end of the war.

The chairman further reported that some 4 or 5 tons of scrap metal had been collected and was ready for removal and disposal by the Rural District Council."

16 Aug 1940 Local News in Brief Dartford Chronicle
(1) Obituary of Mrs Faith Temple of Oaklands, Church Rd (56); (2) 4-5 tons of scrap metal collected in Hartley

17 Aug 1940 Local News in Brief Gravesend Reporter
Resisted Mr Winston Churchill

"Popular Licensee Retires

When Mr William Cox, licensee for the past 8 years of the 'Black Lion' at Hartley, hands over this famous old house to its new tenant, Mr Kitto, of Biggin Hill, tonight (Friday), it will be his third retirement. Mr Cox, in the course of his colourful life, has had many adventures and met a number of famous people.

Reluctant as he is to talk of his varied experiences, our representative was able to glean, in the course of an interview, a sidelight on some extremely interesting exploits in which Mr Cox had participated.

Before he was 21, he held a Master's certificate, and was skipper of a trawler.

Leaving water for fire, Mr Cox then joined the London Fire Brigade, and did not retire until 1918, having by then completed a service of 29 years. He was, it is stated, Station Officer at the time of the Sidney Street Siege and, while the affray was at its height, was ordered by the Superindendent of Police not to extinguish a fire which had broken out in the house from which the besieged gunmen were shooting. Mr Cox, as a fireman, naturally had to refuse to comply with this order. Even Mr Winston Churchill, who was then Home Secretary and was directing operations, failed to move him until Mr Cox had telephoned his own superior officer for special authority. Mr Cox, incidentally, in addition to the many medals, holds the highest honour which the London Fire Brigade can bestow, that of the Silver Medal for bravery - VC of the Fire Service. This was gained 'just for saving two lives in Mile End Road, that's all.' which is Mr Cox's modest description of the incident.

Mr Cox's second retirement was from a hosiery business which he carried on in Lewisham, SE. When he took over the Black Lion, this 450 year old building was a grocery store as well as a public house. Afeter running the store for a few months he decided to scrap it, and built in its place the present saloon bar.

In his retirement Mr Cox takes with him, not only the good wishes of the countless friends he has made in Hartley and district but an abundance of pleasant memories of 'the very happy 8 years' he has spent there. Additionally his many masonic friends, who were so proud and delighted when Brother Cox was elevated to the dignity of an officer of the Grand Lodge in recognition of his long and devoted service in the craft, join with his local acquaintances in wishing him happiness and health for the future."

[The Sidney Street Siege was a gun battle between the Police/Army and Latvian revolutionaries in January 1911. Winston Churchill caused a lot of controversy as Home Secretary because he was accused of meddling with operational decisions of the police and fire brigade. Cyril Morris, the senior fire officer on duty later said he had allowed himself to be overawed by Churchill who had no right to do this. He said his junior an LFB Superintendent kept requesting to be able to do something, presumably this was Mr Cox. The Globe of 26.2.1912 mentions the medal for saving 2 lives at 196 Mile End Road. The fire was described in the Pall Mall Gazette of 29.1.1912 "Early this morning a fire was discovered at 196 Mile End Road on premises occupied by a confectioner. The fire occurred on the ground floor, but several children were sleeping upstairs, and in rescuing them Police Sergeant Walters and PC Little were overcome by smoke and lost consciousness. Station Officer Cox and Firemen Wilks and Bird were also overcome by smoke, while Fireman Geary sustained injury to his wrist during the fire. All the 5 children who were in the building were rescued, but it was found necessary to convey PS Walters, Constable Little and Fireman Bird to the London Hospital for treatment. The fire was extinguished within half an hour."]

Mrs Mary Faith Temple

Funeral of Mrs Mary Faith Temple, aged 56, of Oaklands, Church Road at All Saints. She and her husband had moved to Hartley from Erith 8 years ago. Mourners include Ivy May Chawner [1912-1988] and Mary Faith McCulley [1904-1989], daughters.

23 Aug 1940 Gillman Wedding Dartford Chronicle
Wedding of Constance E Gillman [1917-1999] of Chilton [now Weybourne], Church Rd to Geoffrey F Towell [1917-2003]

07 Sep 1940 Local News in Brief Kent Messenger
Knocked off Cycle

"On Saturday morning while on duty as ARP Warden, Mr Stan Acton [40] was knocked off his cycle by a motor car [at Station Road]. He has an arm broken in 2 places and badly bruised ribs. He was attended to by the Longfield first aid party before being taken to [the County Hospital, Dartford]"

[item appears twice, additional information from other article in square brackets]

New Industry for Longfield?

"Chalk Quarrying Project - There is a possibility of a new industry being established at Longfield. Recently a letter was sent to the Parish Council, asking whether they were prepared to sell land at Whitehill….. At the parish meeting on Monday, a resolution was passed authorising the parish council sell 6 acres at Whitehill for not less than £650 for the purpose of establishing works for the quarrying of chalk for the production of highly manufactured products on the site. The land will be sold subject to the sanction of the Ministry of Health and other authorities concerned. [List of those present]."

20 Sep 1940 Women's Institute Dartford Chronicle
WI - lectures on "Feeding and Cooking in Wartime"

21 Sep 1940 Saved by Stirrup Pumps Kent Messenger
A picturesque thatched cottage, the property of Mr J C Kershaw, was burnt out on Sunday morning, but the efforts of neighbours armed with stirrup pumps, the auxiliary firemen and the regular fire brigade, saved another 300 year old cottage, the home of five generations of the Goodwin family, and no one was injured. There was an air raid.

[No doubt the paper was not allowed to say the house was destroyed by a Hurricane which had been shot down. The neighbouring property saved was Goodwins Cottage, Church Road. The Gravesend Reporter (Hidden Legacy of War, 21.11.1991) reported that the plane had just been dug up and taken to nearby Shoreham Museum. The Hurricane of Pilot John Gurteen (24) crashed at full throttle, he was thrown clear but sadly died. This was on Battle of Britain day 15 September 1940. An eyewitness wrote to the paper (5.12.1991) "I was a milkman on my round with my boss, Harry Parrett of Hothfield Dairy, Hartley. About midday we were at Hartley Court and heard this air battle above. We saw this furnace coming towards us at full throttle. It crashed about 100 yards away. I jumped over a five bar gate and raced to see what I could do, thinking the pilot was in the inferno. The machine guns were exploding all around and it was hopeless..."]

27 Sep 1940 Ancient Church Damaged: Stained Glass Destroyed Dartford Chronicle
"An ancient parish church in South East England was damaged during a recent air raid. A bomb fell near the building, and smashed the beautiful stained glass, and did other damage to the fabric.

The Rector, who is doing ARP work, was engaged, during the raid looking after the needs of his parishioners when the church was hit. He is grieved over the loss sustained by the smashing of the stained glass, which must have been at least 300 years old.

The Church is built of flint and stone in the early English style."

[This may be the report of the landmine which fell on Northfield, which blew out the windows of All Saints church, although the windows damaged were nowhere near 300 years old. However the next week the paper reports services are not being held in the church. When the windows were restored after the war, the name of the donor was changed from Trimmer to Summer.]

28 Sep 1940 Extinguishing an Incendiary Bomb Gravesend Reporter
"Notices will shortly be posted on all fire boxes warning people of the danger of pouring the contents of patent extinguishers on a burning incendiary bomb, which will result in sending off a poisonous gas. Water from a stirrup pump or light spray syringe, or better still, a bucket of sand or sifted earth, should be used, bu the patent extinguisher may safely be used where fire has spread from the incendiary bomb, but not on the bomb itself."

04 Oct 1940 Local News in Brief Dartford Chronicle
(1) Gorse Way man fined for speeding; (2) All Saints - Sunday services to be in schoolroom [A clear clue that the reference to a church being damaged the previous week was about All Saints']; (3) Marriage of Miss Joan Hetty Fielder [1916-1990] of the Stores to Frank E Barwood [1912-1991] at Congregational Church

05 Oct 1940 Blackout Offence Gravesend Reporter
"When Robert Roy Burnsten Wilson of 'River View', Church Road, Hartley, was fined 32 shillings and 8s costs at Dartford Police Court on Friday in respect of a light showing from his bungalow during blackout hours, Mr Hugh Goff stated that defendant's mother went into the garden to get some clothes off the line and left the door half open. 'The offence was only committed momentarily,' Mr Goff added.

05 Oct 1940 Local News in Brief Gravesend Reporter
Parish Church

"Divine Service at 11am and 2pm will be held in the church schools next Sunday instead of the Parish Church, owing to damage to the ceiling of the church."

[As near as the local paper were allowed to mention bomb damage to the church]#


"A wedding of considerable local interest was solemnised on Saturday at the Hartley Catholic Church, Fr McKenna officiating it the presence of a large assembly of friends. The bride was Miss Dorothy Francis, who has been employed at the Fairby Homes ever since its opening 17 years ago, and the bridegroom Mr George Field, of Hartley, late of Sittingbourne...."

05 Oct 1940 Local News in Brief Kent Messenger
(1) "The Bungalow Light: At Dartford on Friday, Robert Roy Burnsten Wilson [1898-1971] Riverview, Church Road was fined 32s with 8s costs for causing a light to be displayed from his bungalow."; (2) Edward Owen Jones of Elderberry Cottage, Church Road, fined for speeding at Welling

05 Oct 1940 West Hill Hospital Bombed Kent Messenger
"When Nazis Bombed North Kent Hospital - British Courage Rose above the Storm - High Tributes to Staff

High tributes to the conduct of the staff of a north Kent hospital which received a direct hit in an air raid - 2 women's wards being demolished - were paid at a meeting of the local guardians committee this week.

The chairman said the bombing might easily have caused panic and developed into something worse than it was and the public was indebted to the staff for the way it faced the crisis. This revealed that the care the guardians had always taken in the appointment of the staffs was not wasted. When the storm was at its worst the staffs gave of their best.

"There was the horror of darkness added to the awfulness of the occasion", the chairman added. "It made the work more frightening, but the staff carried on facing every difficulty."

A lady guardian said the master of the hospital kept his head marvellously. She did not think they should diiferentiate as all did their duty and more than their duty.

Another member said "I am not surprised at what the staff did. I am satisfied that our nature is such that we can rise to the occasion when it comes."

It was decided to express the Guardians' thanks to the staff.

A report by a hospital official who was quickly on the scene of the bombing stated: "It was a harrowing scene, and the cries of those trapped in the wreckage were pitiful, but amidst this pandaemonium I did not observe one case of panic amongst the staff, but instead they worked like Trojans, untiringly and unceasingly.

Several of the nurses were clad only in pyjamas with a coat thrown over, as they had no time to dress. I would like to make special mention of the way in which these nurses worked with a calm and efficiency which was inspiring. Sisters and probationers alike worked the night through.

Rescue work was rendered exceedingly difficult throughout the night as the enemy planes were still in the vicinity and only the minimum of light could be used. At times it was necessary to extinguish all lights when it became apparent that the enemy were close.

The ARP workers worked magnificently and one after another the patients were freed. When daylight came there were still about 6 patients trapped, but eventually they were all accounted for, and when then roll was taken it was found that the casualties amounted to 24 killed, including 2 staff, and 9 patients and 6 staff are injured. Of the injured, only 2 of the patients were serious, and the staff slight.

Whilst it was not my intention to mention any individual as being outstanding in the rescue work, all the staff having worked so wonderfully well, it is only fair that I should mention the names of Dr Green, Sister Gantry and Mr C T Shaw, whose untiring efforts were worthy of recognition."

[This was probably the worst loss of life locally in the whole war. West Hill was then the main local hospital for the Dartford area, which included Hartley. One of the stained glass windows in the chapel survived the bombing and can now be seen in Darent Valley Hospital.]

12 Oct 1940 Hartley Parish Council Meeting Kent Messenger
On Thursday last week, Mr Charles Sizmur presided. A committee of three was appointed to confer at once with the landowner, Mr Hoath, on the widening of St John's Lane, now more urgent with the approach of the second winter under blackout conditions. The chairman reported receipt of £24 for the Spitfire Fund from Mr Dallen, collected from members and friends of the Hartley Sports Club and some £17 collected in the village by 9 authorised collectors. The satisfactory total of £41 had thus already been raised with more to follow from collecting boxes not yet cleared, and other promises. The Clerk was instructed to send a letter of compliment and thanks to the local Auxiliary Fire Service for prompt and efficient work, whereby Mr Goodwin's cottage was saved from destruction or even damage, although the next cottage only a few feet away was totally destroyed during an air battle. Appreciation was expressed of good neighbourly actions following on houses being badly shaken by blast and it was confidently felt that everyone in the parish stood ready to offer immediate shelter where needed pending the operation of official action in similar cases in future. Happily there have been no fatal casualties in Hartley. (Dartford Chronicle of 11.10.40 said the Spitfire Fund was £41 6s 2d)

18 Oct 1940 Hartley Home Guard Dartford Chronicle
More members of Hartley Home Guard needed

26 Oct 1940 Glenelm, Castle Hill to Let Kent Messenger
Glenelm, Castle Hill to let for duration at 32 shillings per week; owner also put James Auto Cycle for sale - £9

26 Oct 1940 Hartley Resident's Experience - Fell from Second Floor to Basement Gravesend Reporter
"Buried in tons of debris

Mr Jim Sheppard of Bellerive, Gorse Way, Hartley, had a remarkable experience during an air raid in a Midland town. Part of a hotel at which he was staying collapsed while he was in bed, and he fell from the second floor to the basement. He was buried for some hours in tons of debris, and when he was rescued it was found that he was not seriously injured. Mr Sheppard (pictured) tells his story in the following words:

"Having been 20 years on the road, the war forced me to take a clerical post and this I stuck for 12 months. Outdoor workers among your readers will guess how I felt when I obtained another position on the road two weeks ago. I was working the first week, around a northern district where the lucky inhabitants consider it an event if Jerry drops a bomb. I did not see a crater there in 8 days' travelling and had very good nights in bed.

Then on the night of the 15th, in my second week, I came to a Midland town. Jerry found this out and paid his first visit for a considerable time. He started dropping 50lb bombs (all small stuff) and incendiaries - I think about 10pm. It quietened down about midnight and I turned in on the top (second) floor of my hotel. At a guess I should say about 1 o'clock it started again.

I was only half asleep when I heard one bomb drop quite close and the next second another one more than very close, for I heard masonry falling I remember I thought to myself - gosh - that's a bit close. It was close for the wall of the room below mine must have caught it, as the next momet my floor began to fall. It wasn't unpleasant as the motion was like being in a lift. For about 2 seconds all was quiet and I began to breathe and I had missed all the bricks. Then came another fall and I was apparently thrown out of bed, my mattress miraculously threw itself around me and debris piled all over me.

There was a final fall and apparently I finished aobut 2 feet from the basement floor - very fortunately for me. I found this out afterwards. The mattress of course, being wrapped around me obviously saved my life. I suppose for about 1 minute I was suffocating as the pressure increased I had my right arm fairly free and was able to grope in a downward motion. A couple of bricks gave way. It was then I found that I was about 2 feet from the basement ground. I could only guess this as, of course, it was pitch dark.

As is perhaps natural, for a few seconds I did a bit of wild struggling with my body, but to no avail. I could not move my feet as they were pinned The air was then coming up to me very nicely and every 5 minutes I yelled out a 'hello' until I heard somebody answer me. I should imagine that the Midland Town's ARP boys were on the scene within 20 minutes. I then realised that all I could do was to keep cool and wait, and of course hoep that they would get to me in time.

My sense of humour had not left me at this particular moment as I remembered I had taken out a 1 shilling (5p) thousand to one Air Raid Insurance the day before, and thought out aloud that I wished I had taken out a dollar's (25p) worth. I then realied that it was no good as the receipt was in the debris. About half an hour after this, I was located but there were literally tons of debris over me, and it took them over 4 hours constant work to remove it, so that they could see where I was.

One of the ARP lads, also blessed with a sense of humour, flashed his torch on me about half an hour when he realised I could take it, and every time had the same words - 'We will have you out of there in no time, there is only about a half ton on you'. Towards the end I was able to indicate the exact position of my body, when a small gap was made above me. I could then push my right hand through and indicate to them where my feet were pinned and so on.

As I reached hospital about 6.30 I estimate that I was an Egyptian Mummy for about 5 hours. I cannot think of the right word - lucky is not strong enough. All I have to show, apart from bruises of course, is a temporarily paralysed foot. As I can walk this does not see to matter much. I was taken to a Military Hospital, and it took me back to Christmas 1915, which was the last time I was in Hospital (after Gallipoli). Did I have a good tiem? I had six pretty nurses dressing me when I was informed that my wife was waiting for me in the corridor. I wonder whether I should have told the nurses I could have dressed myself.

I have lost everything I had with me in the debris, as of course I only came away with my pyjamas. I am thinking of starting a Spitfire fund with the pyjamas; they are worth looking at. Although I have lost everything I expect my usual luck will come to my rescue I have always been lucky. In conclusion I must say that with my first hand experience of the Midland town's ARP service, if this is the standard all over the country , it is an amazing self-sacrificing and efficient service."

[Bellerive is now called Applewood, Gorse Way. It had only just been built in 1939, and Mr and Mrs Sheppard was the first tenants.]

15 Nov 1940 Soldier Summoned after 'Family Squabble' Dartford Chronicle
"Private [NAME] of the Royal Artillery was summoned for assaulting William Edward Barlow, of View Point, Merton Avenue, Hartley, at Wilmington on October 25. He pleaded guilty. Mr Bertram Lovell, who appeared for Barlow, said it was one of those regrettable cases arising out of a family squabble. Complainant was father in law of defendant. He did not think it necessary, in view of the plea, to go very far into the matter. Complainant did not want to be vindictive, and if defendant was bound over it would meet the ends of justice and there was no need to occupy the time of the court. The deputy clerk (Mr Tattersall) pointed out that there must be some evidence of the assault. Barlow then stated that his wife and he had had a few 'words', and he tried to make it up. Defendant, who was on 24 hours leave, came out of his bedroom and asked what all the noise was about. 'I told him it was nothing to do with him and that he should not interfere with a man and his wife.' Barlow added, 'He then hit me in the face with his fist.' Cook alleged that Barlow struck him first. 'He had previously hit my wife in the stomach with his knee,' defendant stated. 'When I asked him what all the noise was about, he told me to mind my own business. He hit me in the face with his fist, and I hit him back. I picked him up off the floor and got him to bed.' In dismissing the case under the First Offenders Act, the chairman said the squabble should now stop, and they hoped defendant would in future keep his temper."

18 Nov 1940 Orde - Walker Engagement Times
Engagement of Capt Algernon E Orde RA [1904-1984] to Helen Mary Walker [1915-1980] of Radnorshire

04 Dec 1940 Guard stole from Mail Bags News Chronicle
"Sentencing William Reginald Skinner (44) [b Kemsing 1897, d Sutton at Hone 1960, served in Navy in WW1] of Main Road, Longfield, near Dartford to two years' imprisonment, the Recorder (Sir Gerald Dodson) said at the Old Bailey yesterday: 'It was a paradox you should have been called a guard. You have guarded nothing save your own desires to get rich at the expense of the public. No wonder postal packets do not reach their destinations if there are guards like you. I am happy to think these are very few'. Skinner pleaded guilty to stealing postal packets in course of transmission.

06 Dec 1940 St John's Lane Widening Dartford Chronicle
Sub-Committee of Dartford RDC re widening of St Johns Lane (see also 20.12.40)

07 Dec 1940 Secondhand Wood For Sale Kent Messenger
Secondhand Wood For Sale, also poultry house. Workshop opposite Miss Boucher's shop, Church Road, Hartley

20 Dec 1940 Spitfire Fund Dartford Chronicle
52 collected for Spitfire Fund

27 Dec 1940 Hartley Neighbours Summon Each Other Dartford Chronicle
"A dispute over the ownership of some land at Church Road, Hartley, resulted in a cross summons for assault. The parties were Dora Alice Stokes [1895-1972] of Keston Nursery, Church Road, Hartley; and David Thomas Robson Grey [1884-1968] of Brumleigh, Church Road, Hartley. Mr S Benson appeared for Mr Gray and Mr Hugh Goff for Mrs Stokes. Mrs Stokes had a plot of land with poultry and ducks, and on December 1 when she went to feed the birds she found a piece of fence down. She was putting it up when Mr Gray tried to stop her. She shouted to her husband for help and, it was alleged, tried to punch him and then kicked him. Evidence was given for Mrs Stokes by Edward Owen Jones of church Road, Hartley, Mrs Ellingham and Mr Charles Stokes. Defendant stated that Mrs Stokes tried to put the post up and he tried to prevent her. She became very abusive. He gave her a push and she fell down. She tried to strike him over the fence and kicked him twice. Jack Sopp and Thomas Elliott gave evidence for Gray. Mrs Stokes was fined 10s and the cross summons was dismissed."

27 Dec 1940 Obituary of Paul Dennis Dartford Chronicle
Obituary of Paul Dennis of Ash Rd (65)

28 Dec 1940 Ellerbys Advert Kent Messenger
Ellerbys Agricultural Contractors advertise for tractor driver

06 Jan 1941 Old Downs School Times
School in safe location, coaching for army and navy exams

10 Jan 1941 Spitfire Fund Dartford Chronicle
Spitfire fund now £66, £34 of which raised by Country Club

11 Jan 1941 Hartley Parish Council Meeting Gravesend Messenger
Parish Council – Mr Gable coopted in place of A E Edward, who had resigned

18 Jan 1941 Local News in Brief Gravesend Messenger
(1) Former Old Downs school pupil [NAME] successful in exam for naval cadets special entry (executive and engineering). (in 1945 he was Lieutenant on HMS LIverpool); (2) WI Fruit Preserving Scheme (see article); (3) Razor blade famine in Kent

18 Jan 1941 Kent Messenger
(1) "Ministry of Information" - A film show, given by the Ministry of Information Regional Film Unit, was held in the WI on Thursday last week. In addition to 'War and Order', 'Raising Sailors', 'Britain can take it' and other films dealing with wartime conditions, the NFWI handicrafts film 'Quilting" was shown."; (2) "Hartley Cricketer Weds - A popular member of Hartley Cricket Club and the local Home Guard unit, Mr Kenneth William MacDonald [1913-1955], son of Mr and Mrs W MacDonald, Newbury, Hartley, was married at Hartley Parish Church on Saturday, to Miss Nellie Eva Gray [1911-1995], daughter of Mr and Mrs D T R Gray, Brumleigh, Hartley (picture)....." Service conducted by Rev Lenton and 30 attended reception at WI hall. Gift of pewter dish from members of Hartley Cricket Club, for whom the bride's father and brother (Cadet J H Gray) had played and she had supported.

25 Jan 1941 Adverts Gravesend Messenger
Adverts: (1) Rooms to let – [NAME], 3 Ash Road; (2) Morris Nine car 1930 for sale £4 – St Anthony’s (now Knoll Cottage), Ash Road

01 Feb 1941 Local News in Brief Gravesend Messenger
WI Fruit Preserving

"Nearly all the produce preserved by Hartley and Ash Preserving Depot during July, August and September has now been sold. Nothing is left of the 16cwt 32lb of jam, nor the 1 cwt 6 lb of jely, and only a few bottles of damsons out of the 1,166 bottles remain unsold! It is owing to the untiring efforts of the managing committee and voluntary helpers from Ash and Hartley WIs that nearly 31 cwt of local fruit which would otherwise have been wasted has been preserved for the benefit of the public."

[Miss Chisholm of Hartley WI also explained the scheme to Eynsford WI (Kent Messenger 15.5.1942)]


Adverts: (1) Breeding rabbits and hatching eggs for sale – Glebe Cottage, Hoselands Hill; (2) Wagoner seeks situation – Hodges, Gun Station, Church Road

07 Feb 1941 Medical Officer Dartford Chronicle
Dr Evelyn Scott of Old Downs made deputy medical officer

08 Feb 1941 Conscientious Objectors' Tribunal Gravesend Messenger
"Robert William Cheesmur (20), a former farm hand, of 1 Ash Road, Hartley, Longfield, sought exemption on religious grounds. He was registered as a conscientious objector, provided he remained in his present occupation, or took up other full time work on the land, civilian ambulance or ARP work.

[Mr Cheesmur (1920-2007) held sincere religious beliefs. He went to Nigeria as a missionary in 1955, before emigrating to Canada. A tree is planted in his memory at Didsbury, Alberta.]

08 Feb 1941 Fire Watching Gravesend Messenger
"At a meeting on Saturday in the Congregational hall, called by the head Warden, Mr H T Penney, methods of dealing with incendiary raids were discussed. Although about 70 people attended, 50 of whom had already volunteered, it was stated that the wardens' plan for watching all the 250 scattered houses in the parish would need at least 150 volunteers if the length and frequency of the shifts were not to be unduly burdensome. The matter was referred to a further meeting this Saturday, and meantime, neighbours have been organised into 13 groups covering the whole parish, and are to try out systems of keeping watch during 'alerts'. Each group is provided with at least one stirrup pump, and such other fire fighting apparatus as can be collected or improvised."

08 Feb 1941 Longfield News in Brief Kent Messenger
(1) Meeting of Women's Hour club on Thursday; (2) War Weapons Week - "Longfield C of E School are aiming to raise £50 and want 50 new members. The Headmaster appeals to parents, old scholars and friends to help." (3) No Driving Licence - "At Gravesend Police Court on Monday, Charlie Millner, newsagent of Longfield Stores, was fined 15s for driving a car without a licence at Windmill Street, Gravesend on January 15th. It was stated that his attention was called to the matter when he reported to the police that he had been involved in an accident. Mr Millner said the omission was due to an oversight."

14 Feb 1941 Fire Watching Dartford Chronicle
"A comprehensive fire watching scheme to cover the whole parish has now been put into operation. The district has been divided into 12 sections, with the following section leaders: Mr Graham, Grafton House, Hoselands Hill; Mr Carter, 6 Ash Road; Mr Solly, Dunster, Ash Road; Mr Appleton, The Stoep, Fairby Lane; Mr Elphick, Annlea, Ash Road; Mr Kitto, The Black Lion; Mr Graham Wood, Hatchlands, Church Road; Miss Chisholm, Restharrow, Church Road; Mr Martin, Rona, Church Road; Mr Hemmings, Gloria, Manor Drive; Mr Soper, Glenholme, Woodland Avenue; and Mr Bishop, Little Stirrups, Church Road. Any volunteer who has not heard from his section leader should get into touch with him or her at once. More volunteers are still needed, and should apply to their nearest section leader."

15 Feb 1941 Local News in Brief Gravesend Messenger
(1) Dartford A Town of Book Lovers, 25.6% of population borrowed books, compared with 16.9% nationally; (2) Parish Council – KCC have withdrawn objections to widening St John’s Lane; (3) Issue of phone books to residents suspended; (4) Hartley Fire Watching - Arrangements are now in operation in several of the sections. The chief warden has delegated the control to Mr Brain. An ample supply of sand and bags is available.

22 Feb 1941 WI Digs for Victory Gravesend Messenger
"Nine members of the WI took part last Thursday in a cooperative effort to salvage the waste piece of ground at the back of the WI Hall. The ground was double trenched in approved style, and it is hoped shortly to be able to sow root crops and salads as a small, though valuable, contribution to the agricultural campaign. Those taking part in operations were Mrs Barrow, Miss Boorman, Mrs Cook, Mrs and Miss Chisholm, Mrs Gates, Miss Rugbys, Mrs Jones and Miss K Townley, ably supported by an interested group of onlookers."

28 Feb 1941 Kent Air Heroes - Some more awards Faversham News
"A list of awards to members of the Royal Air Force includes the names of several men with Kent associations. The Distinguished Flying Cross has been awarded to Flying Officer Michael James Carr Harwood of No 83 Squadron. He was born at Hartley, Kent in 1920 and was educated at Margate College, receiving his commission in 1938....." [Sevenoaks Chronicle 21.2.1941 adds he had a wife who lived in Blackpool]

01 Mar 1941 Longfield News in Brief Kent Messenger
On Duty - "Fire watching duties have been started by volunteers from Pesert [Pescot] Hill to the bungalows. Much interest has been caused during the week by the AFS taking a bomb from door to door for collections for War Weapons Week."; (2) Jumble sale by ladies of ARP HQ Kent House raise £13 in Jumble Sale for War Weapons Week.

07 Mar 1941 Local News in Brief Dartford Chronicle
(1) William G Amos of Hartley Green - cycle lamp too bright; (2) £3,810 invested at Hartley PO during war weapons week; (3) Country Club - auction sale raises £38 to war weapons week. AGM - directors LC Troughton and FA Howe reelected, WJ Bye resigns as director, Mr Dallen elected in his place. Part of club let to Kent Education Committee as a school.

08 Mar 1941 War Weapons Week Gravesend Messenger
"Hartley's share in Dartford and District War Weapons Week totalled £3,810 - considerably more than expected. The greater part of the effort consisted in purchases of certificates, bonds etc in quite small amounts, and some light was thrown on the often asked question "Where did it all come from?" by a remark of a post office official that some of the banknotes passing through his hands had undoubtedly a faint, old world aroma, suggesting that they had lain some while hidden in mattresses or the proverbial stocking! Good business was done through the voluntary selling counters at the school and the Cooperative shop, and local savings groups were active. In addition to the Whist Drives a popular wind up to the week was a Dutch Auction with Mr D N Dallen as auctioneer, in the Country Club, while the competition for the autographed cricket bat, presented by Mr Dallen, and a gramophone, helped to swell the funds. The Women's Institute invested £10 of its balance in Defence Bonds, and Women's Constitutional Society, who had made a similar investment previously, deposited the remainder of its funds in the Post Office Savings Bank." [The Kent Messenger of 15.2.1941 records the gift of the cricket bat, signed by the Australian and English men's and women's test teams. The paper of 1.3.1941 reported on Whist Drives attended by 50 and 76 respectively. The paper of 8.3.1941 also recorded that the total for the whole of Dartford Borough and Rural District was £469,000, while Longfield parish collected nearly £1,800. People were not giving money to the government but lending it by buying savings certificates.]

08 Mar 1941 Double Summer Time Gravesend Messenger
Kent Farmers dislike double summer time

14 Mar 1941 No Bicycle Light Dartford Chronicle
Peggy Day of Downs View, Ash Rd - no bicycle rear light

22 Mar 1941 Hartley Annual Parish Meeting Gravesend Messenger
"At the annual meeting on Saturday Mr Charles Sizmur presiding, expressed thanks to all the inhabitants for their enthusiastic work during Dartford and District War Weapons Week, which resulted in the splendid total of £3,810 being invested locally - about £4 per head of the population, and one of the best results in the Rural District. Further money, amounting to £53, was raised by various social activities. Two whist drives, organised by Miss Barker, realised £14 2s. The amount contributed by the scholars and teacher of the Hartley C of E School reached the fine totaL of £160 7s. Mr Sizmur also voiced thanks for the splendid response to all calls for civil defence, and hoped that the relativey few individuals who were still not helping would be ispired by this example to join in. Mrs Gates, on behalf of the Women's Institute, drew attention to the fact that fruit preservation had been entrusted by the Ministry of Food to the National Federation of WIs, to be organised by them on a cooperative basis, and that non-institute members were to be appointed on the Village Sub-Committees. Mr Sizmur informed Mrs Gates that the Council were already considering the matter in which they were much interested and would shortly nominate a member to join the Institute Sub-Committee. In reply to Mr Phillips, Mr Sizmur said that the Kent County Council had at last approved the St John's Lane widening scheme, and that a meeting with the landowner had been arranged. It was hoped that a temporary footpath inside the hedge woud thus be provided for pedestrians until such time as it became possible to widen the road. Mr Cuff and Capt Bignell thanked Mr Sizmur for his indefatigable efforts in organising War Savings Week. Thanks were also expressed to Mr Fielder, Hartley's Postmaster, in appreciation of the large amount of work involved in handling the deposits."

22 Mar 1941 Local News in Brief Gravesend Messenger
Adverts: (1) Egg sittings – Mrs Stickland, Old Downs; (2) Store pigs for sale – Coney, Hartley Bottom

04 Apr 1941 Obituary of George Norman Stickland Times
Death of Air Cadet George Norman Stickland, b 4.7.1922

05 Apr 1941 Country Club Dance Gravesend Messenger
150 attend dance at Country Club to send cigarettes to local POWs.

11 Apr 1941 Obituary of George Norman Stickland Dartford Chronicle
Obituary of Air Cadet George N Stickland of Old Downs (18)

19 Apr 1941 Mr and Mrs George Day celebrate Golden Wedding Gravesend Messenger
The many friends they have made throughout Kent during a long life of public service will congratulate Mr and Mrs George Day (pictured) on their golden wedding anniversary, which they celebrated on Monday at their home at North Ash.

Mr and Mrs Day were married at the Baptist Chapel, Meopham, on April 14th 1891. Mr Day was then farming at North Ash, where he and his wife have lived ever since. Their children and grandchildren were present at a family gathering on Monday, to mark the occasion.

Mr Day was for 18 years a member of Kent County Council; for 46 years a member and 17 years chairman of Dartford Rural Council; and for 47 years a Dartford Guardian, for three being chairman of the Board. During the last war he was chairman of the Kent War Agricultural Committee and of the Dartford Military Service Tribunal. He is a Justice of the Peace.

Mrs Day founded the Women's Hour at Ash Chapel, was at one time secretary of the Women's Institute, and also a member of the child Welfare Committee."

26 Apr 1941 Hartley Refugee Association Gravesend Messenger
"The annual meeting was held on Saturday, Mr C Sizmur presiding. The Hon Treasurer Mr Gomer Davies, reported that though there had been some reduction in the subscriptions, they had come to the end of their second year with a satisfactory balance in hand. Mr Gates, Hon Secretary, reported that the refugee for whom the association was caring was now a young man, nearly 16 years old and 6 ft high, and that he was about to sit for the General Schools Examination at Dartford Grammar School, on which they had every hope he would gain exemption from matriculation. Harry Leucht has done well in mathematics, speaks and writes excellent English and had expressed the wish to be naturalised as an Englishman when he comes of age. The committee recommended that, after the examination, a suitable job should be found for Harry, and the meeting agreed that this was desirable. The officers were reelected, and Messrs J L Cook, F Townley and Mrs Cuff were elected to sit on the committee."

02 May 1941 WI Drama Group Dartford Chronicle
WI Drama Group - 3 short plays (also in KM 10.5.1941)

03 May 1941 Obituary of Clara Hannah Maria Greenwood Gravesend Messenger
Obituary of Miss Clara Hannah Maria Greenwood, 83, of “Pleasant” (now Copthorne), Ash Road, retired teacher

10 May 1941 War Savings Gravesend Messenger
Total war savings – Dartford £1.13m, Gravesend £1.12m

23 May 1941 Kent Emergency Land Corps Dartford Chronicle
Advert for recruits to Kent Emergency Land Corps

07 Jun 1941 Morgan - Temple Wedding Gravesend Messenger
Wedding of Thomas W Morgan of Greycote, Manor Drive and Dorothy Temple [1916-1997] of Oaklands, Church Road, they are to live at 2 Rose Cottages, Essex Road, Longfield (also Dartford Chronicle 6.6.1941)

07 Jun 1941 Adverts Gravesend Messenger
Adverts: (1) 1933 Wolseley Car for sale £50 – Woodlands, Ash Road; (2) Home Lodge (now The Bex), Ash Road to let – A V Baker, 47 Devonshire Road, Weston super Mare

03 Jul 1941 Will of Frances Kirke Times
Will of Miss Frances Elizabeth Chandos Kirke (£6,673 net) details of charitable bequests (also Dartford Chronicle 11/7/41)

04 Jul 1941 Local News in Brief Dartford Chronicle
(1) Achibald W T Deering [1916-1997] of Gwenjonal, Church Rd - speeding; (2) Obituary of chairman of Dartford RDC written by Capt Bignell; (3) Cooperative Fruit Preserving Centre at WI Hall

18 Jul 1941 Local News in Brief Dartford Chronicle
(1) [NAME] of Ash Rd - left car unattended and unlocked (also Chronicle 8.8.1941); (2) Philip N Payne of Windermere, Church Rd - allowed uninsured driver to drive car

01 Aug 1941 Captain Bignell Chairman of Dartford RDC Dartford Chronicle, Kent Messenger
"New Chairman of Dartford RDC - Captain C S Bignell appointed

At the meeting of Dartford Rural Council on Tuesday, Captain C S Bignell of Hartley, was appointed chairman in succession to the late Mr F W Ladds, and Mr G W Smith was appointed vice-chairman.

The Rev Stanley Morgan, in agreeing with the appointment of Captain Bignell, said he would do so on condition that Captain Bignell gave up the chairmanship of two committees, the Emergency Committee and the Town Planning Committee, as he did not think it was usual for the chairman of a council to hold the chairmanship of committees as well.

Mr Walter Wright said he agreed with the Rev Morgan's remarks, particularly as Captain Bignell, as chairman of the Emergency Committee, was holding a position of profit.

Captain Bignell strongly resented the suggestion and said he had not drawn the £50 voted to him, which was in respect of expenses. He had only drawn out of pocket expenses in connection with the work and was really out of pocket over the business.

[Captain Bignell was Hartley's district councillor. He was clearly angry that Longfield's councillor Walter Wright said he shouldn't be chairman when he was holding an office of profit as a paid chairman of another committee. This doesn't appear to be the end of the matter, for Walter Wright was also clerk to Hartley Parish Council and Captain Bignell was a parish councillor too. That council sacked Mr Wright a couple of months later on what many people thought were trumped up charges.]

01 Aug 1941 Hartley Manor Farm Sale Gravesend Messenger
"Hartley Manor Farm, near Longfield, Kent, 3 miles Meopham, 4½ miles Dartford

Sale of the Valuable Herd of 32 Tuberculin Tested Dairy Cows and Heiffers (the majority of which are Guernsey), 7 Guernsey Heifer Buds, Guernsey Stock Bull, Dairy Shorthorn Bul, 15 months; 8 Guernsey Bull and Heifer Calves, 9 Large and middle white sows (in and with pigs), 5 middle white boards.

Also the superior dairy equipment, which includes 9 galvanised and wooden corn bins, 6 domed milking pails, bottle crates and carriers, capping and bottling machines, wash up bins by Perkins, vertical diesel boiler with oil storage tank by Perkins, Electrolux refrigerator, sterilising cabinet by Perkins, churn steriliser by Perkins, milk weighing scales, ocolers and hoppers, Alfa Laval and Diabolo separators, 5 gross glass milk bottles, 2 pig weighing machines, Austin 7 delivery van etc

Which Messrs E J Parker and sons will sell by auction on the premises by instruction from D N Dallen esq (who is giving up keeping stock) on Monday 11th August 1941, at 2pm...

[As we shall see, Mr Dallen was not leaving the farm, just giving up stock keeping.]

13 Aug 1941 Daughter for the Dallens Times
Birth of dau to Beryl and Deryck Dallen

15 Aug 1941 Local News in Brief Dartford Chronicle
(1) Parish Council - Mr Meddick resigns over winding up of Ash Rural Sanitary Committee; (2) Country Club Whist Drive for Navy Comforts

05 Sep 1941 National Day of Prayer Dartford Chronicle
All Saints - national day of prayer; collection for Lord Mayor of London's distress fund

19 Sep 1941 Local News in Brief Dartford Chronicle
(1) Archibald W T Deering of Church Rd denies paternity of child by [NAME] (18); (2) Ratepayers Association founded; chairman DTR Gray; secretary C D Mayley of The Baytrees, Gorse Way; (3) Boy guilty of "abominable cruelty" to dog - discovered by Mr Campkin of Cherry Orchard and Mrs Allkins of The Glebe; (4) Rural Youth Movement: first sports meeting includes Hartley

19 Sep 1941 Sacked HG will arm with sticks Daily Mirror
"Men in civvies carrying cudgels and broomsticks may replace the armed battle dressed Home Guards who nightly patrol the lanes about the village of Hartley (Kent). That is, if an order to disband the platoon which takes effect tomorrow is not withdrawn.

The order is the outcome of a petition from the 41 NCOs and men against the commissioning and appointment as second-in-command of a farmer, Deryck Dallen, 29.

The petition was sent to the Battalion CO Colonel Moseley. A platoon meeting was called and the other ranks were asked to carry on. But they were not satisfield. They still did their night patrols, but refused to attend Sunday parades, at which the new officer would be present.

A meeting of the platoon is to be called next week to discuss future plans. In the meantime..... "The matter is being decided by superior authorities." Brigadier General T A Andrus Home Guard Major, Company Commander who signed the disbandment order said yesterday."

26 Sep 1941 Home Guard Disbanded Dartford Chronicle
Home Guard to be disbanded due to objections to appointment of Deryck Dallen as 2nd in command (3.10.41 - to be reformed)

27 Sep 1941 Village to fight the WO Daily Mirror
"They refuse to accept a Whitehall decision that their Home Guard platoon be disbanded, and three of the villagers have been appointed to tell the war lords that they can't do this to Hartley.

The trouble started when the forty men who comprise the village platoon decided that they disapproved the appointment of local farmer Deryck Dallen as their commanding officer, choice of the village socialites.

They agreed among themselves to carry on with their nightly patrols, but refused to attend parades and asked for Mr Dallen's resignation.

The War Office backed Mr Dallen, and told him to stay put. As the villagers remained stubbon, the platoon was disbanded.

That was on Thursday. Last night, the villagers crowded the Parish Hall, and raised their protest against Whitehall dictatorship. Mr Gray, the chairman, said: "We are in a neighbourhood where we may bete a lot of parachutists and we can't depend on neighbouring platoons."

"If it is a matter of going to to War Office and stirring up trouble, we must press this home", said a villager.

Timid souls who suggested that the War Office woudl not rescind a decision were scorned. Hartley refused to ask, as a compromise, for the reforming of the platoon. Hartley wants its own platoon restored."

03 Oct 1941 Disbanded Platoon now gets satisfaction Maidstone Telegraph
(Page 1 headline) "Hartley, near Dartford, learned with satisfaction this week that a local platon of the Home Guard, which had been disbanded owing to a difference of opinion regarding the appointment of an officer, is to be reconstituted. The trouble started several weeks ago, when the NCOs and men objected to the appointment of a farmer, aged 29, to be second in command of the platoon. The authorities declined to alter their decision, so the men refused to attend parades at which the new officr would be present.

In consequence teh platoon was disbanded. Resenting this action the men refused to be deprived of the opportunity to defend their homes. They announced their intention of maintaining their own independent organisation, and continuing their patrols in civilian clothes, armed with whatever weapons they could obtain - even if they were only shotguns and pitchforks!

Then a meeting of Hartley villagers took up hte cudgels on their behalf. A deputation, consisting of Mr D T R Gray, Mr B Passmore-Bishop and Mr A Soper, was apponted to interview the Home Guard authorities and ask for a reversal of the disbandment decision. Their deputation went to Farningham on Sunday, and saw the Home Guard Zone Commander, who after matters had been explained to him, agreed to reconstitute the platoon not later than October 15th. A meeting of the former NCOs and men has since been held. at which a report of the interview was given by Mr Gray. Satisfaction was expressed with the result. The men have won their point, for it is understood that the former is to be allowed to rejoin the platoon as a volunteer."

10 Oct 1941 Hartley's Home Guard Maidstone Telegraph
"The Kent Messenger understands that the Hartley Platoon of the Home Guard, which objected to the appointment of a farmer, aged 29, as an officer, now no longer exists. It will be be recalled that consequent upon the sharp differences of opinion which arose over the likely appointment of this officer the platoon was disbanded. An apeal against the disbandment was made to a higher authority by representatives chosen at a parish meeting. The appeal was listened to sympathetically but after some consideration it was decided not to reinstate the old platoon, but to establish a new one not sooner than October 15th. Except for the platoon commander, the new platoon will be an entirely fresh organisation and members of the disbanded platoon may join if they wish, provided their services are acceptable."

17 Oct 1941 YMCA Canteen Dartford Chronicle
Visit of mobile YMCA Canteen

24 Oct 1941 Home Guard Reformed Dartford Chronicle
Home Guard: applications for new platoon to Lt J R Stevens, Hazel Lodge, ash Rd [James Robert Stevens 1900-1980]

31 Oct 1941 Blackout Offence Dartford Chronicle
Deryck N Dallen of Hartley Manor Farm - blackout offence (car)

07 Nov 1941 Highfield Poultry Farm Maidstone Telegraph
"Messrs Philip Champion and Sons have been instructed to sell by auction on the premises the whole of the pure bred poultry and appliances. Comprising 140 Rhode Island Red pullets, 240 Rhode Island Red one year hens, 15 sectional poultry houses, all nearly new; incubators, ????, Wire Netting and sundry appliances; 18 strong store pigs....."

14 Nov 1941 Hartley Ratepayers Association Dartford Chronicle
(1) Ratepayers Assn - 60 at meeting, 115 members; (2) Country Club: YMCA & Red Cross Dance - RAF Dance Band Aid for Russia Whist Drive at Country Club (5.12.41); (3) No progress on Hartley School Canteen; (4) WI Drama Group (many named); (5) Protest meeting about increased rates due to cesspool emptying

14 Nov 1941 The Old Charger Yorkshire Evening Post
"In your 'Gossip of the Day' you mention the Light Brigade and Balaclava (1854).

In 1883 I drove a gentleman to The Manor, Hartley, Kent, the residence of Colonel Evelyn. To my surprise, the groom in charge of the stables turned out to be a friend of mine, and hailed from Wilmington, where I was employed. I was shown a fine old charger that the colonel as a subaltern, rode in the famous charge of the Light Brigade.

On returning to England the charger was pensioned off, though still young. A splendid pasture wsa given to the Colonel's favourite, but he was always stabled in inclement weather.

The old charger had one very amusing trait. He would have a day's hunting. Let the West Kent fox or stag hounds be anywhere near and the cry of the hounds or sound of the huntsman's horn reach the ears of the old charger, that was enough, over the hedge he would go, have his day's hunting, always running well up to hounds.

Wherever the hunt finished was immaterial to the old horse, he would see the last of it, then make tracks for home, taking his own time, jump back into the paddock, and then make for the stable, where he knew a feed of corn awaited him.

No one at the Manor worried about him, and the hunt would have felt lost without him. The hunt seemed to get as much fun out of the old charger as they did from riding to hounds. The whole countryside knew him and he was never interfered with, no matter whose land he passed over when making short cuts for home.

In fancy I can hear the groom now, singing 'Six hundred stalwart warriors.' That was his favourite song, and no other horse in the stable, according to the groom, could be compared with the old charger, which, at the time I saw him, was well over 30 years old.

TA Acton (Burton Leonard)"

21 Nov 1941 Local News in Brief Gravesend Messenger
Girl Guides

"Hartley Girl Guide Company report a successful recruiting campaign. Hartley Brownies have found a Tawny and she will be enrolled on November 22nd.... There is urgent need for more Guiders, especially at Longfield, where it is hoped to reopen the company for local and evacuee children as soon as Guiders can be found."

Delivery Driver Wanted

"Wanted - smart strong girl or woman to do butcher's country round with motor van. No previous experience necessary; driving taught. Write with particulars of age etc, to Sizer, Family Butchers, Hartley, Nr Longfield, Kent."

28 Nov 1941 Local News in Brief Gravesend Messenger
Further Sale of Stock at Hartley Manor Farm

"Hartley Manor Farm, Hartley near Longfield, Kent - Important sale of live and dead farming stock. Including match pair of roan cart geldings (8 years old), bay cob, bay hunter, 3 cows (one with calf at foal), 2 Guernsey heifer calves (6 months).

Two single horse wagons, dung cart on pneumatics, cob size farm cart, plain and Cambridge rolls, 3 furrow Cockshutt plough, 3 iron ploughs, harrows, iron water barrel, 2 mowing machines, 2 horse rakes, swathe turner, 8 ft iron dredge, 3 corn drills, sedd borrows, hay elevator, hay sweep, self binder, iron brakes, manure distributor, tractor cultivator, trailer, corn mill, iron saw bench, 5 hp Lister engine, platform scals, protable forge, 2 stack cloths, chaff cutter, 11 iron tanks and water troughs, paraffin tnks, 5 large iron corn bins, quoiler, chain and plough harness, Fordson Tractor on pneumatics, 8 poultry houses up to 20ft x 12 ft, portable sheds, 60b ft erectio of timber and iron piggeries, 4 pig huts, 30 iron hurdles, sheep netting, barbed wire, corrugated iron glavanised feeding barrow, 70 sleepers, pig troughs, 400ft run light railway, turntable, tip wagon and flat top trolley, quantity bricks, small tools and effects whch Messrs E J Parker and Sons are favoured with instructions from Mr D N Dallen to sell by auction on Monday 15th December 1941, commencing at 11 o'clock precisely."

Car for Sale

"Morris 8 hp, excellent condition, any trial, Saturday or Sunday, taxed, insured - Powell, Valley Wood, Castle Hill, Hartley, near Longfield."

05 Dec 1941 Local News in Brief Gravesend Messenger
The Right Spirit

"Gordon Longhurst [1932-2002], aged 9 of 15 Valley Villas, has collected another £1 for the Lord Mayor's Air Raid Distress by making and selling Christmas cards. His achievement was acknowledged by the BBC on Sunday night. This is Gordon's second effort in a few weeks."

Dartford Rural District Council

Meeting fixed Sunday opening for cinemas at 4pm. Rev Stanley Morgan complained that this was affecting Sunday School attendance. No progress yet on provision of School Canteens at Hartley, Swanley and (West) Kingsdown, County Council say they are waiting a report.

09 Dec 1941 Obituary of Edward Wellard Gravesend Messenger
Funeral held at Meopham for Edward Wellard of Elim, New Road, aged 85. Born in Hartley, he lived in Luddesdown for 60 years, being appointed postmaster there before 1914 to his retirement in 1937.

12 Dec 1941 Council Asked to Resign Gravesend Messenger
Council Asked to Resign

Council Asked to Resign

"At a parish meeting held at the WI Hall, Hartley, a resolution was passed, asking the parish council to resign and 'permit the of the representation of the parish in conformity with the wishes of the electorate.' It was proposed by Mr G Moore and seconded by Mr HS Bennett. Another resolution, proposed by Mr Gray, condemned the action of the parish council in proceedig with its apparent intention to terminate the appointment of the clerk (Mr W Wright) and protested against the suggested proposal to spend public money in seeking legal advice. Disapproval was expressed of the action of the parish council in asking the Dartford Rural Council to undertake the emptying of the cesspits in the village, whereby the rates may be substantially increased, and it was decided to send a deputation, consisting of Messrs Penney, Mayley and Gray, to interview the Rural Council. The parishes of Ash, Kingsdown, Fawkham and Ridley are to be represented also if they wish."

Hartley Parish Council

"At the meeting on Thursday last week, Mr HT Penney wrote declining the invitation to serve as a coopted member, on the grounds that he was a signatory of the notice calling the parish meeting which had voted for the resignation of the council, although he had formerly been agreeable to serving. Mr WH Chisholm said he was surprised at Mr Penney's attitude in view of the national appeals which had been made to everyone to cooperate and avoid raising controversial issues. Miss Barker said the invitation to Mr Penney showed that the council for its part was willing to cooperate. Resolutions passed at a parish meeting called by signatories on December 2nd were next considered. The council noted with interest that the parish meeting had appointed a deputation to learn from the Rural Council what the arrangements for the future disposal of sewage involved. The proposals had, of course, been before the Parish Council at several previous meetings and they were in full agreement with the RDC. Further motions referred to their previous demands for the Council's resignation. Captain Bignell said he had no more intention of resigning than any of his fellow councillors. He understood that the Ratepayers' Association had approached the county council, and he welcomed the fullest possible enquiry, to which there was general assent. Mr WB Gable asked the clerk whether, in his experience, it was usual for the chairman of a parish council to be asked to call a meeting before electors took the discourteous course of calling it themselves. Mr Wright said it was usual in the ordinary way, but if the intention of the meeting was to attack the council they naturally would not ask. The council went into committee on a motion of Mr WB Gable that consideration be given to the determination of Mr Wright's appointment as Clerk."

[It appears this meeting is straight out of the politician's playbook of 'playing the man not the ball'. That is, attacking their opponents rather than deal with the points they raise.]

An Iced Cake!

Longfield - "Miss I Martin was the winner of the beautifully decorated iced cake which brought in £8 14s for the Merchant Navy. The cake was made by Miss Raine and iced by Mrs Winters."

Hartley Parish Council

"At the meeting on Thursday last week, Mr HT Penney wrote declining the invitation to serve as a coopted member, on the grounds that he was a signatory of the notice calling the parish meeting which had voted for the resignation of the council, although he had formerly been agreeable to serving. Mr WH Chisholm said he was surprised at Mr Penney's attitude in view of the national appeals which had been made to everyone to cooperate and avoid raising controversial issues. Miss Barker said the invitation to Mr Penney showed that the council for its part was willing to cooperate. Resolutions passed at a parish meeting called by signatories on December 2nd were next considered. The council noted with interest that the parish meeting had appointed a deputation to learn from the Rural Council what the arrangements for the future disposal of sewage involved. The proposals had, of course, been before the Parish Council at several previous meetings and they were in full agreement with the RDC. Further motions referred to their previous demands for the Council's resignation. Captain Bignell said he had no more intention of resigning than any of his fellow councillors. He understood that the Ratepayers' Association had approached the county council, and he welcomed the fullest possible enquiry, to which there was general assent. Mr WB Gable asked the clerk whether, in his experience, it was usual for the chairman of a parish council to be asked to call a meeting before electors took the discourteous course of calling it themselves. Mr Wright said it was usual in the ordinary way, but if the intention of the meeting was to attack the council they naturally would not ask. The council went into committee on a motion of Mr WB Gable that consideration be given to the determination of Mr Wright's appointment as Clerk."

[It appears this meeting is straight out of the politician's playbook of 'playing the man not the ball'. That is, attacking their opponents rather than deal with the points they raise.]

12 Dec 1941 Women's Institute Gravesend Messenger
"Miss McCrinick, assistant librarian under the KEC spoke on books, at the meeting on Thursday last wee,. Afterwards she complimented Mrs Balchin, the local voluntary librarian, on having so popularised the Hartley Library Centre that the number of borrowers had increased by leaps and bounds...."

26 Dec 1941 Cesspool Emptying Dartford Chronicle
Letter from HT Penney of Windyridge to Dartford RDC

26 Dec 1941 Local News in Brief Gravesend Messenger
All Questions are Answered Here

"Valuable work of Gravesend Citizens' Advice Bureau

An answer to every question might well be the motto of the Gravesend CAB.

Every Tuesday and Friday at the bureau headquarters at 36 Harmer Street, there is a succession of callers from every section of the community.

Opened last July, the CAB has already dealt with more than 1,000 individual enquiries.

Run entirely by volunteers, teh bureau is part of the network of CABs which have been established all over the country to help people with wartime problems.

When you go to 36 Harmer Street, you are ushered into a warm and comfortable waiting room where particulars of your business are obtained.

Then you are taken upstairs to the main inquiry office which is presided over by Mrs W Ongley Miller, local hon secretary, assisted by Mrs Povey, assisant hon secretary, and Mrs RS Barrie, chairman of the committee which consists off the following ladies: Mrs Knights, Mrs Croft, Mrs Hibbs, Mrs Bennett, Miss Dunn, Mrs Lester, Mrs Austin and Mrs R Jones.

All inquiries are dealt with in a tactful and sympathetic manner.

'There is not the slightest doubt that CABs have come to stay', said Mrs Miller to a reporter. 'We deal mostly with wartime problems, but we also have many queries which could arise in peace time. When the Gravesend bureau was opened, we formed an advisory council consisting of a solicitor, insurance inspector, hospital official, inspector of taxes, relieving officer, NSPCC inspector etc, who have kindly undertaken to help us with queries. The fact that we can call on the experience of these people enables us to deal quickly with problems which might otherwise take some time to sort out.'

Mrs Miller added that great interest was being taken in the advisory council, and many inquiries as to its working and composition had been received from other bureaux, who were anxious to form them in their areas.

The Gravesend bureau has been successful in tracing several missing people. A letter was received from Canada asking for assistance in finding a relative. It was not long before he was found.

Mrs Miller is particularly grateful to the CID officers of the local police, who are always ready to give advice and help.

Most of the inquiries relate to war damage insurance and compensation, and there are also many applications for advice in regard to allowances to wives of servicemen.

A special department has been established to deal with Red Cross messages.

Questions relating to the Rent Act, hire purchase, mortgages and extra clothing coupons for children are also dealt with.

A growing phase of the work of the bureau is in relation to domestic problems.

At the moment the bureau is hot on the trail of a large quantity of potatoes which are missing from an allotment in the Home Counties.

A man who worked the allotment has to move to the Gravesend district and made arrangements for a friend to harvest the potatoes.

When this man went to dig them up, he found the military authorities had taken over the land and the potatoes were gone.

The Government pay 50 per cent of the cost of running the CAB and the other 50 per cent comes from the National Council of Social Service.

The Gravesend bureau also has a small fund of its own to help with the work.

The increasing number of sellers shows how much the services of the bureau are appreciated and it is seldom that the officers are able to get away at the normal closing time.

But this does not worry them one bit. They are happy in the knowledge they are doing a really useful job."

How Women Keep the Home Front Going

Picture feature on seven Gravesend Women and their jobs - milk round, butcher's assistant, postlady, railway porter, waste paper collectors and lorry driver.

03 Jan 1942 (1) Parish Council and Its Clerk (2) Fairby High School Gravesend Reporter
Parish Council and Its Clerk

"The Hartley Parish council on Tuesday night decided to give the Clerk (Mr W Wright) notice that his services would be dispensed with . The following recommendation was approved: "That the findings of the council in committee regarding the clerk be accepted and Mr Watler Wright be given notice that his services will not be required after March 31st, 1942". The clerk asked for the reason, and the chairman replied "loss of confidence". Mr Bignell objected to that and the chairman withdrew the remark.

Mr C Sizmur presided, and other members present were Miss E E Barker, Mrs M J Gates, Messrs W B Gable, W H Chisholm, C S Bignell and the Clerk (Mr W Wright). A few ratepayers were also present.

For the forthcoming warship week it was decided to follow similar methods as in the Spitfire Week and the clerk was instructed to invite all the War Savings Committees, Clubs and other Institutions in the parish to appoint representatives to attenda meeting to be held at the Institute Hall on January 14th at 7.30pm. Mr Fielder, local postmaster and Mr D N Dallen will also be invited.

An invitation from the rural District Council to submit nominations for the vacancy on the Kent County Council was received, and names (if any) will be sent to the clerk in the course of a few days. Mr C S Bignell and Mr H Penney were both approached but refused to stand.

The question of filling the vacancy on teh Hartley Parish Council was left over until the next meeting on February 5th. A letter from Mr Meddick referred to the Chairman's remarks at the last council meetig regarding powers of parish councillors to resign, stated "If the council adopted the viewpoint that they cannot resign during the war it followed taht his resignation was wrong and the council were wrong in accepting it, and he proposed to resume his seat at the next meeting of the council." Members of the council contended that Mr Meddick had misunderstood them; he had tendered his resignation and it was accepted.

The parish council boards are considered too high, and orders were give to have them lowered and the name of the parish erased."

Fairby High School

(Advert) "Headmistress: Mrs Appleton MSC. Preparatory and Middle School, Mixed. Senior School, girls only. New Term begins January 12th, 1942. Parents seen by appointment. Telephone: Longfield 3175."

04 Jan 1942 More Post than in 1940 Gravesend Messenger
"The postal authorities in Gravesend, I am told, estimated a 20% fall in Christmas traffic. It proved heavier than last year. Christmas cards were as much in demand as if they had been eggs (or chocolate) and nobody quibbled about the price. By Christmas Eve, every shop selling articles suitable for gifts was empty and desolate. When the cheaper goods were gone, the more expensive lines sold just as freely. People were determined to spend.

There's one consolation, from the Government's point of view. They will get most of the money back, one way or the other. And if there's nothing much in the shop to buy for the next 3 months, so much the better for war savings!"

09 Jan 1942 (1) Carols (2) Women's Institute Gravesend Messenger

"A carol service was held in the Congregational church hall on New Year's Eve, when carols were rendered by a special choir, organised by the organist Miss Hazel Chisholm. Among these, sung unaccompanied, were Dr Terry's setting of 'Joseph and the Angel', and the tradional 'Coventry Carol', 'The Holly and the Ivy' and 'Here we come a wassailing' in the two latter with the help of 3 boys from Rosherville Parish Church, whose organist and choirmaster, Mr Harold Dresser, lives in Hartley. One of the boys, Master [NAME] sang 'The Star of Bethlehem' and was greatly appreciated. The Rev Edwin T Green, hon minister of the church, in additon to presiding, sang Gounod's 'Nazareth' and Mrs Brunt sang 'O Thou that tellest', from 'The Messiah'. A second solo by Colin Armett 'The Holy City' and a quartet 'Christmas Cradle Song' by Fred H Wood, sung unaccompanied by Mrs Luxford, Mrs Brunt, Messrs Dresser and Chisholm completed an excellent programme. The collection on behalf of St Dunstan's raised £3."

Women's Institute

"The 21st annual meeting was held on Thursday last week. Mrs Willmot, hon secretary, reported that particular attention had been devoted to food production, preservation and cookery, but the other arts and crafts had not been neglected. The Institute, through its delegates Mrs Gates and Mrs Rickwood, had shared in the deliberations of the West Kent County Federation and other members had attended dramatic and singing days. The savings group had done well, while the Fruit Preservation Centre, run jointly with Ash WI, had done as well as the fruit crop permitted. Much knitting of comforts for the forces continued, also for Russia. Mrs JL Cook, till recently hon treasurer, sent a satisfactory financial statement. Beside a balance on the year, the Institute had a useful nest egg of £10 in defence bonds. Miss Chisholm, retiring president, expressed thanks for the cooperation of all. Mrs Cook and Mrs Willmott would be greatly missed, and it was inevitable that others of the younger members would not be able to continue voluntary work owing to the claims of national service, but those who remained would carry on. Mrs Balchin was elected president, and the retiring members of the committee were reelected, with the addition of Mrs Burr and Miss Sale. Mrs Alexander, West Kent Federation Executive Committee, congratulated the Institute on its 21st birthday and on the progress it had made. Mrs Willmott thanked the speaker. Tea and games followed."

10 Jan 1942 Children Entertained Gravesend Reporter
Children Entertained - 62 children and evacuees served dinner by women of WRVS

16 Jan 1942 Gloves for Russia Gravesend Messenger
"The Ash WVS knitting party has been busy knitting glove mittens for Russians. In spite of the short time available, 30 pairs have been sent."

23 Jan 1942 (1) Sheep Wanted (2) Warships Week Gravesend Messenger
Sheep Wanted

"Wanted 50 half bred store tegs or lambs - Fulford, New House Farm, Hartley, Dartford."

Warships Week

"Representatives from all local organisations were present, with Mr Dallen and Mr Fielder, representing local shops, at a meeting last week. Mr C Sizmur presided. The following suggestions were approved: A film show at the Country Club; a competition drawing of a corvette, for school children, ages 5-7, 8-10, 11-14 respectively; whist drives; dances at the Country Club and Social Club; guessing competition for a silver cup, presented by Mr Soper. A selling centre for savings stamps and certificates is to be opened at Mr Dallen's shop."

24 Jan 1942 Divorce Case Gravesend Reporter
Divorce of Elizabeth Emma Constable [1902-1993] from Hartley Old Rectory. Her husband was a dental practitioner. They married in Germany in November 1927 and came to England in 1928. Petitioner suspected adultery since 1938 (also in Dartford Chronicle 23.1.42)

[later in 1942 she married George L Perkins. In the 1939 register it seems both she and her ex husband were living with their future spouses in the same house at Reigate]

31 Jan 1942 (1) William Robert Braybrook (2) House for Sale Gravesend Reporter
William Robert Braybrook

"Old residents of Hartley will learn with regret the death of Mr William Robert Braybrook of Uxbridge Road, Hanwell, Middlesex. He passed away at the age of 84. Mr Braybrook, for many years the principal builder in the parish of Hartley and district, had much to do with the early development of Hartley from purely agricultural to residential status. He retired from business and left the parish about 20 years ago but did not dispose of all his property, which had since and up to September last occasionally visited. He leaves a widow, son and daughter, to whom great sympathy has been extended. The son is in the forces and was sent abroad a short time before his father's death. The cremation took place at Golders Green on Tuesday of last week."

[A significant figure in the history of Hartley. The article infers that most of the "smallowners" houses built 1912-20 in Hartley would have been by Mr Braybrook's firm.]

House for Sale at Hartley

Pilley & Talbot - Bungalow and 2 acres in Hartley. 3b, bath, 2 sitting rooms, garage, electricity. £900

06 Feb 1942 Pastry Oven for Sale Gravesend Messenger
"Electric pastry oven, caterer's steamer, 6 shelves - Townley, Hartley, near Dartford. Phone Longfield 2218."

[Townley's Cake Shop was next to Fairby Stores in Ash Road, it appears it had to close because of the war]

06 Feb 1942 Fawkham Knitters Gravesend Messenger
"Lady Shaw's knitting party meets each week at White House and continues its excellent work. Every man and woman in the forces from the village received a gift at Christmas, and over 500 garments have been sent away. One member has knitted 14 seamen's pullovers. Members have been presented with badges (white ensign on blue background) by the Merchant Navy Comforts Service."

13 Feb 1942 No Bicycle Light Dartford Chronicle
Arthur C Strutt [1898-1968] of Knoll, Ash Rd - cycled without rear light

14 Feb 1942 21st Anniversary of Hartley WI Gravesend Reporter
21st birthday of WI

28 Feb 1942 Obituary of Edwin John Lee Gravesend Messenger
"The death took place on Friday at the County Hospital, Dartford [West Hill Hospital], of Mr Edwin John Lee of Witzies, Church Road, Hartley. He was 52 years of age. Mr Lee has resided in the district about 20 years, and carried on a greengrocer and fruiterer's buisness up to the beginning of the war, when he entered into munition work. He leaves a widow, 3 sons and 2 daughters, to whom deep sympathy has been extended. The funeral took place at Ash Parish Church on Tuesday, the Rev Simmonds officiating....(list of mourners and givers of flowers)."

28 Feb 1942 Diamond Wedding of Mr & Mrs Charles Humphrey Gravesend Reporter
"Mr and Mrs Charles Humphrey (pictured) of Yew Tree Cottage, Hartley, celebrated their 60th wedding anniversary on Thursday surrounded by their family of 3 sons, 4 daughters, together with some of their life? partners and children. Mr Humprhrey was born at Wadhurst, Sussex, 80 years ago, and Mrs Humphrey was born in the same district a year later. They were married at Wadhurst. They have resided in Kent about 50 years, [most?] of which have been spent at Hartley. Mr Humphrey retired from his work as stockman about 10 years ago. The happy [...] couple, parents of the highly esteemed Postmaster of Longfield, still enjoy good health and the good wishes of a large circle of friends."

[There is a small amount missing from the photocopy.]

06 Mar 1942 Local News in Brief Dartford Chronicle
(1) Obituary of Flying Officer MJC Harwood DFC, born Hartley 1920; (2) Pupils of Mrs Appleton's Fairby High School donate £12 to warship week

07 Mar 1942 Hartley Ratepayers Association Gravesend Reporter
(1) Letter from C D Mayley (1881-1957) of Ratepayers Association to each councillor, suggesting they resign; (2) Country Club report successful year

13 Mar 1942 Child Maintenance Dartford Chronicle
(1) Maintenance order for child of Church Road man; (2) Success of Street Salvage Stewards and of funds warship week; (3) A total of £2,291 was raised via savings, £2,000 of which was paid into the Post Office Savings Bank, Mr Fielder, the sub-postmaster said Jan 1941 - Feb 1942 a total of £14,000 in savings has been paid in, which included 4,301 Savings Certificates.

14 Mar 1942 Hartley Ratepayers Association Gravesend Reporter
Hartley Parish Council reject Ratepayer's Association suggestion

20 Mar 1942 Local News in Brief Dartford Chronicle
(1) Obituary of Mary Ann Bishop of The Piggotts, Church Rd; (2) Dance at Hartley Country Club for Longfield and Southfleet branch of British Legion attended by 150. Mr Potter (chairman) said 6 men in their district were POWs and the legion sent them half a pound of tobacco and 120 cigarettes a month.

20 Mar 1942 (1) Bringing Court Action (2) Passing of the Rev Edward Smith Gravesend Messenger
Bringing Court Action

"Council clerk's statement after vote of thanks

The retiring clerk to Hartley Parish Council (Mr Walter Wright) announced at the annual parish meeting on Thursday last week that he was brining a suit against the chairman and other members of the council.

The announcement was made by Mr Wright after a vote of thanks had been proposed to him for his services during the past 7 years.

In his report, Mr Wright referred to his own personal defferences with the council, which, he indicated would be heard in due course in the High Court of Justice.

Mr Fielder, Hartley's Postmaster, made a strong appeal for unity and cooperation among residents of the parish instead of the bickering which had lately developed.

His remarks were supported by Mr Soper and the Rector

Messrs Gomer Davies, Bishop and Soper were put forward to fill a vacancy on the Parish Council and the chiarman explained that the council would coopt one of these nominees, but declined to permit a show of hands as a guide to their relative support at the meeting.

The dissolution of the Ash and District Sanitary Committee and the taking over by the Rural Council of the cesspool clearance was discussed.

The deputation sent to the counicl by the Ratepayers' Association reported that they were not well received and attained no satisfactory result.

They asked for the reinstatement of the Sanitary Committee or the formation of another similar body.

They were told that they had been misinformed as to the alleged probable increase in the rates for this service.

Mr Gray, chairman of the Ratepayers' Association, said it was not right that the ratepayers generally should pay anything towards the cost of cesspool emptying.

The acounts showed a credit of £91.

Mr Charles Sizmur presided at the meeting."

Passing of the Rev Edward Smith

"The funeral of the Rev Edward Smith MA, formerly Rector of Longfield for 35 years, took place at St Mary's Church, Swanley on Friday.

Mr Smith, who was in his 91st year, died the previous Wednesday after a short illness.

He retired in 1929 and came from Longfield to live at Ellesmere, Hextable, and for some years assisted the Rev W E Woodwasrd at St Mary's Swanley. He had spent 54 years in the ministry of the Church after being ordained at Longfield.

Prior to his preferment to Longfield, he was curate for 10 years at St Mary's Gillingham.

The celebration of his 50th anniversary of his entry into the ministry at Longfield, was marked by the presentation of a solid brass alms dish to the Church of St Mary Magdalene by the parishioners, whilst personal gifts to the rector included a cheque for 50 guineas, an illuminated address and a silvr inkstand from the church and Sunday School.

Mr Smith represented Hartley on the Dartford Board of Guardians for some years, for 3 of which he was chairman.

For over 30 years he was an assistant inspector of religious knowledge in elementary schools and for 25 years one of the chaplains (latterly senior chaplain) of the Lay Readers' Association.

In 1935 he celebrated his golden wedding. He leaves a widow, 3 sons and a daughter. His eldest son died in Brazil last year.

The funeral service was conducted by the Rev LEA Ehrmann (Vicar of Linkstead, Sittingbourne), assisted by the Rev J Lucas (vicar of St Mary's Swanley). Other clergy present were Canon Powell, Canon Parker, Canon Webb, the Rev D Milner and the Rev J H Gooden.

Family mourners were Mr CEBM Smith, Mr GJD Smith, Mr and Mrs WKH Smith (sons and daughter in law), Dr H T Sells and Nurse Ready. Mr West was at the organ, and the hymns were 'My God, my Father, while I stray' and the Easter hymn 'Jesus Lives'."

[It is not so odd that he was councillor for Hartley, because then the old Longfield Rectory on Pescot Hill was in the parish of Hartley]

21 Mar 1942 (1) Lively Hartley Meeting (2) House for Sale Gravesend Reporter
Lively Hartley Meeting

"The Annual Parish Meeting at Hartley on Thursday evening of last week was to say the least of a lively character. There is a difference of opinion between the parish council and certain parishioners who represent the local ratepayers' association, the chief points in dispute being the election of Parish councillors and the position of the clerk (Mr Walter Wright) who is under notice to vacate that office at the end of this month. Many speeches were made and personalities indulged in.

There was an attendance of about 50 at the Institute Hall and Mr C Sizmur (chairman of the parish council) was in the chair.

The clerk (Mr Walter Wright) submitted his financial statement, showing a balance in hand December 31st 1941 of £98 4s 10d, the expenditure of the year being £34 15s 5d. The Clerk added "I have not this year produced my usual resume of the work of the council during the past year, because it would necessitate the mention of much ersonal matter that will later be heard in the High Court of Justice.... I have served the parish for 6 years, the first 5 of which were in perfect harmony with the parish council and without a single complaint I thank you, and say goodbye with confidence that honesty and turth will prevail. Reason for my dismissal has been refused.

Mr G T Mayley produced his report on a recent conference at Dartford with the Public Health Committee of Dartford District Council concerning the new arrangements for the emptying of cesspools in certain parishes of the rural district including Hartley. The conference was held at the request of a recent parish meeting. Mr Mayley disagreed with the District Council's report that appeared in the press, stating that "the deputation left the conference perfectly satisfied," they in fact, he said, obtained no satisfaction.

Mr D T R Gray, one of the deputation, supported Mr Mayley and stated that there were 331 dwellings in the parish and only 14 cesspools were emptied last year. It was not fair under the circumstances to put the charges on the rates.

Mr C S Bignell: "The rates have not gone up but down a shilling."

Mr Gray: "That is due to the county rate dropping by 10½d".

Mr Bignell remarked that Mr Mayley had said at the conference that the cesspool emptying would cost a rate of 1s 4d and added that he got that figure from a councillor not present.

Mr Mayley: "I said no such thing either about the figure or the councillor."

Mr Gray asked if they would not withdraw the charges against the clerk.

The Chairman: "The council will stick to their decision."

The Rev L G W Lenton (rector) wished to know how his name was connected with the matter.

The Chairman: "The minutes are signed and we stand by them."

Mr Gay disputed the payment of £12 in grubbing roots in the proposed new burial ground and stated it was a capital charge that the council had no power to incur. He also asked that in the event of legal proceedings the counci should first call a parish meeting on the matter.

Mr Gomer Davies, Mr B Passmore Bishop and Mr F H Soper were nominated for the council's selection of a new member to fill the vacancy on the council.

The Secretary of the Hartley Ratepayers Association (Mr Mayley) submitted the following questions, notice of which had been given - Whether the council received from the clerk to Kent County Council a copy of this association's letter of November 20th with request for the council's observations? Whether this matter has been discussed at a meeting of the council in open session, and what were the observations sent? If not so discussed what explanation can be given for dealing with public business otherwise than in open session. The chairman referred the matter to the Clerk. The Clerk: "To whom was the letter addressed?" "Mr Mayley: "To the chairman of the Parish Council". The Clerk: "It has not passed through my hands, or been discussed in my presence."

Mr F E Todd moved a vote of thanks to the retiring clerk and expressed deep regret at the loss of such a valuable official. The Rev L G W Lenton in seconding, said the clerk had done his duty faithfully and well, and he hoped the time was very near when he would be reinstated. Mr H H Meddick endorsed the rector's remarks and the vote of thanks was unanimously passed.

[The meeting dwelt mainly on the dismissal of the clerk, Walter Wright for reasons the parish council would not state. The Rector Rev Lenton was unhappy his name had been used as he fully supported the clerk. This matter seems to go back to when Mr Wright as district councillor for Longfield, opposed the appointment of Mr Bignell (Hartley parish and district councillor) as chairman of Dartford RDC.]

House for Sale

Pilley & Talbot - modern bungalow on bus route, 2b, 2r, bath and large garden - £575

27 Mar 1942 Local News in Brief Gravesend Messenger
Obituary of Richard Dearn

Obituary of Richard Dearn

"Much sympathy is felt for Mr and Mrs Dearn of The Elms, Longfield, in the death of their youngest son, Richard, age 6 years, following an operation. Richard was a pupil of Merton House School, Hartley. The funeral is at Longfield Church on Monday."

His Toy

"By disposing of a toy wheelbarrow, Colin Homewood [1930-2011], 11 year old son of Mrs Homewood of Kent Road, has sent £2 4s to Mrs Churchill's Aid to Russia Fund."

His Toy

"By disposing of a toy wheelbarrow, Colin Homewood [1930-2011], 11 year old son of Mrs Homewood of Kent Road, has sent £2 4s to Mrs Churchill's Aid to Russia Fund."

03 Apr 1942 Yew Cottage for Sale Gravesend Messenger
"By order of the Executors of A W Hall esq, deceased: A King esq deceased; The Public Trustee and others. Messrs Porter Putt and Fletcher are instructed to submit to auction at the Masonic Hall, Wrotham Road, Gravesend on Wednesday 15th April 1942, at 3 o'clock precisely, the Freehold Properties:"

5-11 (odd) Stanmore Road, Erith

54 Shepherd's Lane, Dartford

1-4 Railway Cottages, South Darenth

1-3 Red Street, Southfleet

2 Victor Cottages, Southfleet

"Four cottages near the Wheatsheaf, producing £89 18s 4d per annum, landlord paying rates

Hartley Green - Thatched Cottages, producing £69 11s 0d per annum, landlord paying rates

Ash - 4 cottages near The Swan, producing £70 4s 0d per annum, landlord paying rates

Longfield - Nos 1&2 Hope Cottages, Station Road, producing £87 19s 4d per annum, landlord paying rates"

[The 4 cottages in Hartley will be Yew Cottage, Hartley Green (then 2 cottages), Hartley Green Cottage and Thelcot, Castle Hill, the rent works out a just under 7 shillings per week for each cottage]

10 Apr 1942 Hartley Ratepayers Association Gravesend Messenger
"A Busy First Year - In its first year Hartley Ratepayers' Association has played a large part in local affairs, and has been a vigorous supporter of those things which it considers are for the good of the parish.

This was evident from the report presented at the annual meeting in the WI Hall last week.

The Association has a membership of 148 and is in a sound financial position.

The report stated that the Association opposed the dismissal of Mr Walter Wright, clerk to the parish council, and had requested the Council to resign as it did not retain the confidence of the electorate.

Regret was expressed that the Council showed no sign of cooperating with the Association.

The Association was actively interested in the situation arising from the disbandment of the Hartley Platoon of the Home Guard, and had also taken up the matter of securing larger supplies of paraffin for the village.

Representation were mde to the Home Office, andalso the local MP upon the denial to the electorate of exercising its right to elect persons to vacancies on Parish Councils.

Representation were also made to the Rural Council to improve the dust and salvage collections in the parish and improve the distribution of 'points' coupons.

As a result of action by the Association thre had been an improvement in the lighting of trains.

Thanks were accorded to Mr C D Mayley for his valuable work as secretary and treasurer.

Th enew management committee consists of Mr DTR Gray (chairman), Mr Mayley (secretary and treasurer), the Rev LGW Lenton, and Messrs Bishop, Brain, Crouch, Penny and Todd."

[The Ratepayers had an impressive membership. While it is not clear what numbers the other side could muster, they had an unassailable advantage because they could not be ousted because parish council elections had been suspended for the duration.]

17 Apr 1942 Car not Immobilised Dartford Chronicle
"Albert Stanley Varnham [either 1897-1974 or 1919-1997] of Lima, Church Road, Hartley pleaded not guilty to a summons for leaving his car unattended without immobilising it. Mr Hugh Goff appeared for the defence. Varnham stated that he had removed the gear lever, which was the most effective way he knew of putting a vehicle out of action. Defendant was fined 20 shillings and costs."

17 Apr 1942 Cooperative Society Gravesend Messenger
"On Monday Mr CH Moore presided at the annual meeting of the Hartley Cooperative Society. The report showed increased profits although turnover for the year was £4,000 down. The dividend on purchases was 2s 2d in the pound. Mr Moore was reelected chairman. The retiring committee was reelected, except for Mr Fenn, whose calling up is now due. Mr S S Tate, takes his place."

24 Apr 1942 Local News in Brief Dartford Chronicle
(1) Restrictions on Retail Deliveries in Longfield Area, butchers allowed 2 per week up to 3 miles, others only 1 per week ½ - 3 miles; (2) Parish Council advertise for new clerk.

24 Apr 1942 Hartley's New Councillor Gravesend Messenger
"At the annual meeting of Hartley Parish Council, on Thursday, last week, Miss Barker acted as clerk.

Capt Bignell moved the reelection of Mr Charles Sizmur as chairman, and referred to his single minded devotion to the interests of the parish.

Mr Chisholm referred to the high esteem in which Mr Sizmur was held throughout the parish, despite recent attacks and criticisms directed against him and the Council.

The proposal as unanimously endorsed by the council and Mr Chisholm was reelected vice chairman.

M Gomer B Davies was coopted to fill the remaining vacancy on the council. In reply he expressed his appreciation. He said he had heard some of the epithets used in certain quarters concerning the council, which, from his own peronal contacts with members, he knew were not justified.

Two letters from the Ratepayers' Association were then read. The first drew attention to the desirability of the council being represented on the Gravesend committee of the LPT Services, and the chairman undertook to investigate and report on the activities of the committee.

The second letter offered suggestions and advice on council procedure, and it was unanimously decided that it be laid on the table.

The rural council having written concerning the formation of a council of three in each parish, to act in case of invasion, to consist of one appointed by the military command, one by the police and one leading citizen, by the parish council, it was decided that the chairman should be the Hartley representative.

The appointment of a clerk to the council was discussed, and it was decided to advertise the vacancy.

The chairman reported that the new sanitary arrangements were working satisfactorily."

[It will be recalled that there were 3 candidates for the council vacancy, it is perhaps unsurprising that the person chosen was a supporter of the ruling group. During the war the council was safe from challenge because council elections were banned. However none of this council stood for election at the next election in 1946.]

24 Apr 1942 Longfield Man in Polish Prison Camp Gravesend Messenger
"Second from the right (back row) in this photograph is Pte William Reginald Lynds [1918-1976] of the Royal West Kent Regt, aged 23, son of Mr and Mrs W Lynds, Hilltop, Longfield Hill.

Educated at Longfield School, he worked for Messrs W J Holland and Son, Builders, of Gravesend, up to the outbreak of war, and was one of the first to be called up from Longfield. He was a member of Cobham Comet Cycling Club, and took part in several races.

His parents have received a number of letters from Stalag XXB, 175, a prisoner of war camp in Poland, where Pte Lynds was sent after being captured in June 1940. He says he is well, and would like to be remembered to all his friends in Gravesend."

[for more information on Stalag 20B see Wartime Memories Project]

01 May 1942 British Restaurant - Dartford Dartford Chronicle
Dartford British Restaurant has 400 customers per day [The restaurant was at Kent Road, Dartford]

08 May 1942 Why 'Parachutists' Got the Upper Hand Gravesend Messenger
19th Battalion of the Home Guard took part in and provided umpires for military exercise for the 48th London Battalion at the Southern Hospital. Defenders deemed to have lost.

15 May 1942 (1) He Played Cricket and Broke Law (2) Hartley Parish Council Gravesend Messenger
He Played Cricket and Broke Law

He Played Cricket and Broke Law

"'This case has been a great eye opener to me,' declared Mr Norman Baynes [1898-1966], solicitor, at Dartford Police Court on Friday, when he defended a young woman who was summoned for entering Dartford, a defence area.

Mr Baynes, who for years has been a member of Dartford Cricket Club, said that, quite unwittingly he must have committed the same offence of which the girl was accused.

'If I go to my office on Saturday morning, return home for a meal and then go back to Hesketh Park to play cricket, immediately I pass the barrier I have committed the offence, because I am not entitled to play cricket in the area', Mr Baynes added, 'I have come to the conclusion that I must change my cricket club. It won't happen again as far I am concerned. I shall have to think of something else.'

Mr Baynes, who lives at Bexleyheath said the circumstances of the case were such that he felt justified in asking the magistrates to dismiss the summons on payment of costs. The defendant Elsie Dorothy Bradford [prob ????-2017] of Gordon Road, Belvedere, was a native of Stone, and for five years had been employed by Burroughs Wellcome & Co at Dartford.

She had a certficate from the firm which entitled her to enter Dartford for the purpose of her employment. On the day of the alleged offence she showed her identity card and went to a friend's house and then to the Masonic Hall for a dance. When the offence was pointed out to her she immediately returned to Belvedere. It was not a deliberate act on her part.

PC Milton said that when he asked defendant her reason for being in Dartford and going to the hall where a public dance was in progress she said 'Just dancing'.

The case was dismissed on payment of 4s costs."

Hartley Parish Council

"At the meeting on Wednesday last week, it was decided to redeem the tithe on the new burial ground for a lump sum of £2 16s 6d. Four applications having been received for the vacant pot of parish clerk, it was decided that the council go into committee to consider them, and report their recommendation at the next meeting."

Hartley Parish Council

"At the meeting on Wednesday last week, it was decided to redeem the tithe on the new burial ground for a lump sum of £2 16s 6d. Four applications having been received for the vacant pot of parish clerk, it was decided that the council go into committee to consider them, and report their recommendation at the next meeting."

22 May 1942 Ration Books Dartford Chronicle
(1) New Ration Books from WI Hall; (2) Marriage of Marjorie Sopp [1919-1990] of Hazel Wood,Church Rd to Ernest Earl [?1912-1979]; (3) Obituary of Mrs Florence A Cromar of Merton House (75) 29/5 Funeral

22 May 1942 Car for Sale Gravesend Messenger
"1938 Ford 8; privately owned; excellent condition, taxed, insured £70 - Selworthy, Church Road, Hartley. Phone Longfield 2286."

29 May 1942 (1) Obituary of Florence A Cromar (2) Hartley Parish Council (3) Pigs for Sale Gravesend Messenger
Obituary of Florence A Cromar

"The funeral took place at Longfield Church, on Saturday, of Mrs Florence Ann Cromar, widow of Mr AW Cromar, of Merton House School, Hartley. Mrs Cromar, who was 75, had lived a busy life for many years, and used to help her husband in his duties as clerk to Horton Kirby Parish Council and District Rate Collector. She was at one time headmistress of Hartley Schools. Later she established the private school known as Merton House School, but was compelled, by ill health, to give this up about 2 years ago. It has been carried on by her niece, Miss Brind [1908-1996]. She had been hon secretary to the Longfield Parochial Church Council since its beginning, enrolling member of the Mother's Union, secretary of the free will offering scheme, and the PCC representative at the Diocesan and Ruri-Decanal Conferences. Beside the family mourners, many friends were present, and members of the Mother's Union. The hymns sung were 'Jesu, Lover of My Soul' and 'Our Blest Redeemer', also the 23rd Psalm. Miss Burch, a friend, was at the organ. Canon Parker officiated."

Hartley Parish Council

"At a special meeting to consider the report of the council in committee regarding the appointment of a clerk, Mr C Sizmur presided. The report recommended the engagement of Mr Leonard N Judge of Pycroft, Lanes End, at a salary of £30 per annum, and this was adopted. Mr Judge was then invited to take over the books and was welcomed by the chairman. Mr Judge said he would do his utmost to give satisfaction."

Pigs for sale

"For sale, 2 sows, each with 9 young. Apply Free, Castle Hill, Hartley, Dartford". #REF!

12 Jun 1942 (1) ARP Certificates (2) Hartley Parish Council Gravesend Messenger
ARP Certificates

"The following entrants were successful in the the anti-gas examination held at the Ash First Aid Post: Miss G Anstiss [1907-2000], Miss I Sheath [1908-1998], [NAME], [NAME], Mrs D Walley [1902-1993], [NAME], [NAME] and Mr A Storer [prob 1904-1992]. The examiner was Mr Shury."

Hartley Parish Council

"At the monthly meting of the Parish Council, June 3rd, all members being present, the form of agreement with the newly appionted clerk, Mr LU Judge, was approved, and it was decided that Fidelity Bond should be drawn up for presentation at the next meeting.

Among other matters discussed was the burial ground, for which the certificate of redemption of the tithe has now been received from the Commissioners. At Capt Bignell's suggestion it was arranged for the council to visit the site in order to keep proper track of its condition.

Regarding the Invasion Committee or 'Triumvirate', the chairman reported that the Police member had not yet been appointed, but that as regards the civilian side of the plan he had the matter well in hand should sudden emergency arise.

As regarded the fire watching arrangements, enquiry was to be made of the wardens as to the present position, more especially in view of the Home Secretary's recent broadcast.

The collection of waste paper by the WVS, under the direction of Mrs Bignell, has been most successful, the house to house idea having had a good result. There is still some time to go before the collection is completed and parishioners are urged to turn out everything they can and let Mrs Bignell know of it. Up to date, the best part of a ton has been collected in the village, but it is felt there must be a lot more than this if a thorough discarding is made of everything possible."

[The Burial Ground land was never used and now is just another part of Foxborough Wood]

12 Jun 1942 Girls Training Corps Gravesend Messenger
"Sir, A Girls' Training Corps is to be formed in the Dartford Rural Area and we should be most grateful if you could give it some publicity in your paper.

A Management Committee has been formed of which Mrs GBC Davis of Stone is the Chairman, and Miss PE Pike of the Longfield CofE Schools, is to be the commandant of the Corps. The Corps will be run in 3 sections at 1 Longfield, 2 Sutton at Hone taking in Horton Kirby, 3 Farningham taking in Eynsford. So far section officers have been appointed for Longfield and Sutton at Hone. The Corps is quite ready to function and applications for enrolment should be made to Miss Pike at Longfield CofE school.

Girls in other villages not near enough to join the sections already formed should write to Miss Pike, who would be very willing to consider the formation of additional sections.

All girls between 16-18 years of age will be most welcome and very valuable and attractive training will be provided. The uniform consists of a white blouse, navy blue skirt, tie and beret and black outdoor shoes.

Dora E Smythe, acting secretary, Dartford and District Youth Committee, 11 Essex Road, Dartford."

19 Jun 1942 (1) Saved a Newspaper (2) Refugee Association Gravesend Messenger
Saved a Newspaper

Mrs Lucy of Hollingbourne (pictured) who published newspaper for 46,000 Channel Islanders in Britain and the forces, faced closure when the government barred her getting newsprint paper. It featured messages from those under occupation in the islands. However after wrting to the King, the Ministry have relented.

[I don't know the background to this (perhaps they thought the messages from the islands might be German propaganda) but it does strike me as a very British way of suppressing the freedom of the press, officially the Government didn't have to close down a newspaper it didn't like, just choke off its supply of newsprint]

Refugee Association

"The 3rd annual meeting was held on Saturday in the Congregational Church Room. Mr C Sizmur presided, and Mrs Gates, hon secretary, gave an outline of the progress of the young man, Harry Leucht, now a junior clerk with an insurance company. He will be sitting for the preliminary examination of the Institute of Actuaries next month. It has been found necessary for him to live at Harpenden, and it was hoped that those members who could do so would keep up their subscriptions to help him over the initial stages of his career. His only relatives in England were contributing out of their slender means. Mr Gomer Davies, hon Treasurer, reported a balance of £38."

22 Jun 1942 James William Appleton Missing Gravesend Messenger
"Appleton, James William, Flight Lieutenant RAF, last heard of Alexandra Military Hospital, Singapore, January 1942. Any information gratefully received by his parents, Mr and Mrs Charles Appleton, Hartley, near Dartford, Kent."

[Happily James Appleton was found and did survive the war, but had to endure 3 years as a POW (Reporter 11.10.1958). Sadly two of his brothers were lost in the war and are commemorated on the war memorial]

26 Jun 1942 Local News in Brief Gravesend Messenger
Holidays at Home Scheme

(1) Sideboard for Sale £20. Brickend, [Church Road], Hartley; (2) Inauguration of Dartford's 'Holidays at Home' scheme. Funfair, swimming gala and ATC sports planned.

Fare Evasion

"…after evidence had been given that he had produced an out-of-date ticket, and was followed by a porter to Dartford Station, Telford Goodman Goodwin [1884-1981], The Beeches, [Church Road], Hartley was fined £1 and £1 11s 6d costs for travelling on the railway without paying his fare."

[He was living in Fawkham in 1939]

03 Jul 1942 A Very Foolish Act Dartford Chronicle
"Theft of Silk Stockings

William Edward Barlow (73) [1869-1952] of View Point, Merton Avenue, Hartley, pleaded not guilty to stealing 7 pairs of silk stockings from Marks and Spencer, High Street, Dartford, on June 19.

Violet Martin, Olive Road, Dartford, sales assistant, said she saw defendant go to the hosiery counter, pick up the stockings and put them in his pocket.

Leonard Summerskill [1892-1952], Danson Lane, Welling, stores manager, said he saw defendant at the cake counter waiting to be served, and noticed stockings hanging from his pocket. He said he had picked the stockings up, and added 'What do you want me to do? Pay for them'.

Detective Sergeant Eldrett said when charged defendant said he found the stockings and did not know what to do with them. He was going to find out who they belonged to.

Barlow said he picked up a piece of rag and a woman bumped against him. He fell against a window. He queued up at the cake counter and never knew anything until he was touched on the shoulder. He did not take the stockings from the counter, and did not know where this counter was.

The defending solicitor said Barlow was afflicted and he submitted that it would be a very foolish act on his part to taken the stockings. He was obviously the last man to be an expert shoplifter, because he had not got the full use of his hands. The last thing a shoplifter would do would be to have the stockings trailing from his pocket.

A fine of £1 was imposed."

[It is doubtful whether he would have been charged today as he had not left the store and had not attempted to conceal the goods, so intent would be hard to prove.]

03 Jul 1942 War Workers Want Bus Priority Gravesend Messenger
"Hundreds of Kent war workers are getting a raw deal from pleasure travellers who monopolise buses, especially in the evenings. Men and women, tired after a day's hard toil, are constantly left behind because buses are filled to capacity, and mostly by theatregoers, trippers and shoppers, the last mentioned of whom completely ignored the request to do their shopping before 4pm." Cites cases of war workers left behind at Dartford by people going to a whist drive at Greenhithe.

10 Jul 1942 Local News in Brief Gravesend Messenger
"The meeting on Thursday last week was devoted to round table discussions on 'Our Village after the War'. Reporting on opportunities for social and cultural activities, Mrs McKenzie stressed the need for a playing field; Mrs Balchin said the school was hampered by its out of date building; Mrs Gates spoke of the importance of giving security to those who derived their livelihood directly from the land; Mrs Townly foresaw the WI continuing to play its part; and Miss Chisholm spoke of the function of local councils for the preservation of the countryside...."

17 Jul 1942 Gallantry in Malta Gravesend Messenger
"Kent Officer Awarded MC.

News has been received by Major and Mrs JR Stickland, The Old Downs, Hartley, that their son Lieut John Charles Stickland has been awarded the MC for gallant and distinguished services in Malta.

Lieut Stickland, who is 22, has served with the Royal Artillery in Malta for nearly 2 years. He joined a Territorial Artillery Unit at Dartford on leaving school, and obtained his commission early in 1939.

At Haileybury, where he was educated, he was the Head of College, and a sergeant in the OTC.

Until the outbreak of war, he was in business with the family firm Messrs Hawkins and Pitson, rope manufacturers, of London.

Major Stickland told a reporter that he had no details of the service which earned his son the award, but that he had been very active in organising sports and entertainments for his men in Malta." (also Dartford Chronicle 7.8.42)

17 Jul 1942 Salvage Drive Gravesend Messenger
"Hartley Parish Council at its July meeting was requested by the Rural Council to organise a special collection of salvage material during the County Salvage Drive, July 17th to August 1st. The Council called a special meeting for Wednesday last week, requesting the presence of the salvage stewards. At this meeting arrangements were made to divide up the parish so that every house would receive a direct personal visit before the start of the drive. Stewards undertaking this work are: Mrs Bignell, Miss Frith, Mrs McKenzie, Mr Meddick, Mr Parkins, Mr Soper, aided by Councillors Gates, Gable and Gomer Davies. The purposes of the personal visits is to see that each householder thoroughly combs out his premises and is ready for the visit of the Rural Council vans on or about July 20th, brining their material to dumps which will be arranged in their vicinity. The chief articles wanted are paper, rags, bones, rubber and metals and the Rural Council has assured all concerned that everything offered during the fortnight's drive will be collected. The regular weekly collection of household refuse and waste will be suspended, the collecting vans being devoted entirely to salvage for the two weeks."

24 Jul 1942 Local News in Brief (1) Dartford Chronicle (2) Gravesend Messenger
(1) Dartford Chronicle - Cricket - Hartley Home Guard beaten by Regular; (2) Kent Messenger - To a question about how many teachers who are Conscientious Objectors, Kent County Council said they had been told about 5 who they have sacked. They reckon only 6 COs in a staff of 3,000, about 300 are in the services.

24 Jul 1942 Property Sale Maidstone Telegraph
"By order of the Trustees of Sir Gerald F Hohler, deceased.

In the parishes of Stansted and Ash….The valuable freehold agricultural and sporting estate known as Court Lodge. Comprising Gentleman's residence (with vacant possession). Court Lodge and Rumney Farms, including Rumney Farm House, 3 sets of buildings and 8 cottages (as let), the whole embracing about 555 acres. And including the valuable standing timber also 4 attractive country cottages (let on various tenancies).

In the parish of Longfield. Immediately opposite Fawkham Railway Station on teh main line from London to Rochester. The freehold business premises known as The Elms, Station Road, with office, show room, warehouse, stores, lorry garage and contractor's yard, and also the private house and cottage. Teh whole held by Messrs Edwards and Co (Longfield) Ltd on a repairing lease expiring on the 24th June 1947, at the low rent of £80 per annum. Will be offered for sale by Messras E J Parker & Sons, in conjuction with Harold Williams & Partners. At the London Auction Mart, 155 Queen Victoria Street EC4 on Wednesday 29th July 1942 at 2.30pm.

07 Aug 1942 Obituary of Mabel Green Sevenoaks Chronicle
"After a very long illness the death occurred on Thursday of Mrs Mabel Marianne Louise Green, wife of Mr Eric S Green of PIne Tree Cottage, Chipstead Lane. Mrs Green was 41 years of age, was a daughter of the Rev G W Bancks of Hartley, near Dartford. She and her husband resided for some 3 years at Otford before moving to Chipstead about 2 years ago. During the time she lived at Hartley, Mrs Green took a keen and active interest in amateur dramatics, and it was largely due to her that the Hartley Players, a highly efficient society, came into being. Mrs Green was also a great lover of nature. In addition to her husband she leaves a son. Following cremation, the funeral, which was of a private character, took place at Charing on Saturday."

[Mabel Green was the daughter of Rev Bancks and one of the founders of the Hartley Players.]

07 Aug 1942 House for Sale at Hartley Gravesend Messenger
"Bungalow for Sale, freehold; 3 bedrooms, dining, drawing rooms, scullery, usual offices, ½ acre land, including fruit bearing orchard. Apply for inspection, Hillview, Gorsewood Road, Hartley, Longfield."

12 Aug 1942 Local News in Brief News Chronicle
Letter to paper: "Racehorses in the past have been taken from the shafts of tradesmen's vehicles to run in important races. Why not reverse the procedure now that petrol is almost unobtainable, even for trade puposes? I note that in Saturday's racing events no less than 84 horses were in the programme at one meeting. How many more are in training stables? But I consider it in the national interest quite pertinent to ask if they are being fed in the same manner as I am expected to feed my poultry, that is, on scraps from the owner's table. F H Ring, Hartley, Kent". [1861-1944, he lived at Upland, Ash Road]

14 Aug 1942 Wanted Advert Gravesend Messenger
"Wanted cheap horse or trailer caravan, seller deliver. Bassano, Croft, Hartley, Longfield.

21 Aug 1942 Peter Harle POW and other local news in brief Dartford Chronicle
Peter Harle POW

"Trooper Peter Harle aged 22 years (pictured), son of Mr and Mrs Stanley Harle, and grandson of Councillor EET Harle is a prisoner of war. He was reported missing on June 20, and his parents have since received postcards from him from a prisoner of war camp in Italy.

Trooper Harle has been since December 1940 in the Middle East, where he was wounded. He was a Dartford Grammar Schoolboy, and played in the school rugby team, and was also a member of the Dartford Tennis Club. Prior to joining the forces he was a studen at the Gravesend School of Art, and had passed the Board of Trade examination in the drawing group."

[After the war he moved to Stack Lane, Hartley, and was a prominent member of the Hartley Churches Association]

Local News in Brief

(1) WI Festival in Hartley; (2) Obituary of Charles Smith (82) of Black Lion. Funeral at Chingford 13.8.42; (3) Cadet CF Evans of Hartley ATC promoted to A/Corporal (3) Kent Messenger "Mr and Mrs Danecourt, Hartley, Dartford, breeders and exhibitors of exhibition rabbits, winners of 65 first prizes alone from January to June. Stock for sale. Breeds: Rex, Dutch, Chinchillas (Longfield 2160)."

25 Aug 1942 MacFarlane - Hollings Wedding Times
Marriage of [NAME] of Nigeria Regiment, only son of Mr & Mrs CB MacFarlane [of Hartley House, Ash Road]

04 Sep 1942 (1) Dive Bombed 10 Times - How Kent Officer Won MC (2) Houses Broken into at Longfield Gravesend Messenger
Dive Bombed 10 Times - How Kent Officer Won MC

"Among those recently decorated by General Gort VC at an investiture at Malta on his 38th birthday, was Lieutenant John Charles Stickland, son of Major and Mrs J R Stickland, The Old Downs, Hartley, who as previously announced in the Kent Messenger, has been awarded the MC.

the official citation reads: 'This officer was in command of a heavy AA gun position which was dive bombed ten time within a fortnight. His firm and unswerving control of the guns and his personal determination and complete disregard for his own safety resulted in magnificent work by the troop under his command. His courage and inspired leadership had instilled in the personnel under his command a dogged courage and devotion to duty.'

Aged 22, Lieut Stickland has served with the Royal Artillery in Malta for nearly 2 years."

Houses Broken into at Longfield

"On Saturday night, the homes of Mr and Mrs Whitehead and Mr and Mrs T Simes in Kent Road, were robbed. In the first case, money was taken from the bedroom where Mr and Mrs Whitehead were sleeping. In Mrs Simes, food was stolen from a cupboard."

11 Sep 1942 Salvage of Waste Material Gravesend Messenger
"Parish Council: At last week's meeting, the clerk read a letter of appreciation from the Rural Council of Hartley's salvage effort, which resulted in 49 lorry loads of scrap metals and 36 of paper and rags, as well as a quantity of rubber and glass. The chairman voiced thanks to the stewards, the public and to the lorry drivers for their keen cooperation."

18 Sep 1942 Items for Sale Gravesend Messenger
(1) "Rover 10 Regal Saloon; maroon; good running order; leather upholstery; what offers? - Wood, Hatchlands [now Blue Firs, Church Road], Hartley, Longfield" (2) Goat, kidded May £4; 2 nanny kids £2 and £3. Perkins, Old Forge, Hartley

02 Oct 1942 Harvest Festival Dartford Chronicle
All Saints/Congregational - Harvest gifts given of Rescue Home, Gravesend

23 Oct 1942 Dartford Transport Firm Sued Dartford Chronicle
SE Transport Co, 73 East Hill, Dartford was sued by Robert Roy Burnsten-Wilson, River View, Church Road, Hartley, for £18 12s for goods supplied. There was a counter claim for £12 10s. Mr Hugh Goff appeared for the plaintiff, and judgement was given for the amount claimed. The counter claim was dismissed."

06 Nov 1942 Local News in Brief Gravesend Messenger
Congregational Church

"At the annual church meeting the hon treasurer, Mr W L Gates, announced a balance in hand which would enable the final instalment of the building loan (£25) to be repaid when due next February. The freewill offerings would thereafter cover ordinary church expenses. It was agreed to launch a scheme to enable church members to contribute to the reconstruction fund of the Congregational Union for the assistance of war-damaged churches. It was agreed in principle that the church should enter into closer cooperation with the Congregational churches in Gravesend and district and Messrs Sizmure and Parking (Chairman and Secretary of the church council) were appointed to attend the next meeting in Gravesend of a joint committee which was being formed to draw up proposals. The officers and church council were reelected. A report of the Women's Guild mentioned well attended meetings and much useful service undertaken."

A Sale of Work

"In aid of the Soldiers' Sailors' and Afirmen's Families Association was held on Wednesday last week at Court Cottage by Mrs Orde, Mrs Andrus and members of the Court Cottage Working Party. £23 was realised."

09 Nov 1942 Hell's Corner no 6 Maidstone Telegraph
Recalling 8 September 1940….."Some expert gunnery was done at Sutton at Hone, which gave the people in the village something to think and talk about ever since. A 22 year old gunner blew three Dornier 17 bombers to pieces within 1 minute as they dive bombed overhead. The wreckage, together with the load of bombs fell down in the fields around like hail. Some of the bombs fell down in the fields around like hail. Some of the bombs damaged a terrace of houses, the railway line, closing the line from Maidstone to Eynsford, and a schoolroom belonging to the Farningham Home for Boys. Fortunately, although one house was completely wrecked, and a wool shop adjoining the end house smashed to pieces, no-one in the terrace was killed. Half a dozen HEs fell within a radius of 20 yards, but no-one had an opportunity of aking cover, as the siren did not sound until after the bombs had fallen. Few houses escaped some damage and the fields were pocked with craters, one field alone having 80 bombs fall on it. Amongst them too, were delayed action bombs, some of which exploded next day. One of these was responsible for the diversion of traffic along the main road. Teh bomb which fell on the railway close to a viaduct hurled pieces of rail into a road a hundred yards away. Another fell between the school and the village hall. 'The noise was terrific,' one person said, 'as amidst the shower of bombs the airplane fell too.' An incendiary fell close to the wall of a church, and worshippers were machine gunned as they left the service. The only casualty of the raid was Miss Nellie Coulston, a school teacher of Longfield, who had come to play the organ. Teh car in which she was driving was pierced by a bullet, which passed through her body. She died in hospital......"

13 Nov 1942 Local News in Brief (1) Dartford Chronicle (2) Gravesend Messenger
(1) Cuts to buses - none after 9pm eves, or before lpm Sundays; (2) "Freehold land for sale, main road, Hartley, near Dartford, electricity and water service; 450 ft frontage by 100 ft depth, £2 per foot." Box address

20 Nov 1942 Remembrance Sunday Dartford Chronicle
Remembrance Service led by Brig-gen Andrus

27 Nov 1942 Motorbike for Sale Gravesend Messenger
"Ulster Rudge 500cc, late 1937, perfect condition, taxed and insured, £60. Sizer, Church Road, Hartley"

11 Dec 1942 Local News in Brief Dartford Chronicle
(1) Parish Council - 144 can be accomodated at Hartley rest centre; (2) Sale of work for Parish Church funds

11 Dec 1942 Local News in Brief Gravesend Messenger
Long Service Specials Honoured

"Presentation of long service medals and bars to members of the Kent Special Constabulary in the parishes of Ash, Ridley, Fawkham, Hartley, Longfield and Meopham were made at Hartley Social Club on Wednesday last week by General TA Andrus of Hartley Court, Hartley.

Recipients were: Ash: SCs Osbourne and Weller (medals); Segt Claydon and SCs E Sharpe and G Sharpe (bars); Fawkham: SC Hollands (medal), Head SC Crouch (bar); Hartley: Head SC F Crouch, SC Davies and Morris (medals); Longfield: Head SC Leeves and SCs Burgess and Pankhurst (medals), Segt Hickmott (bar); Meopham: Head SC Probert, Sergt Hogg and SCs Maxted, Roots and Yates (medals), Sergts Roots, Norton and Simmonds (bars)."

Cowman Wanted

"Cowman or land girl wanted; cottage available, Fulford, New House Farm, Hartley, Dartford."

18 Dec 1942 Chickens for sale Gravesend Messenger
"A few Rhode Island Red and LS Hens 15 shillings. Gorsewood Farm, Hartley."

01 Jan 1943 Local News in Brief Dartford Chronicle
(1) Social Club - Thrift club shared out £450; (2) Obituary of Miss Marjorie Barker (59) of Heort Lea

25 Jan 1943 Stockings News Chronicle
Letter to paper: "When are the stocking manufacturers going to provide us with a really strong ladderless stocking and so save the hardworking women of England hours of their precious spare time spent in darning the flimsy rubbish they are now forced to wear. A new pair of stockings every week used to be a necessity to keep a girl's appearence decent; nowadays when her coupons are finished she had to go bare legged and risk chills. Rhoda M Brunt, Longfield, Kent." [1894-1980, she had fairly recently moved to Longfield, as she was living in Wycombe in 1939, but at the time her husband had got a job in Woolwich].

12 Feb 1943 Local News in Brief Gravesend Messenger
Hartley Parish Council Meeting

"The clerk reported that the Rural Council is taking steps to renew the printed instructions in each fire extinguisher, making clear the method of using them. On Miss Barker's suggestion it whoud also be made clear that the extinguishers are not to be used on incendiary bombs.

The ministry of Works and Planning wrote asking for the surrender of the railings round the war memorial. The chairman (Mr C Sizmur) said he had consulted the original donor of the railings, Mrs Robertson, who was willing that they should be given up for the war effort, and the council agreed.

The Chairman reported that the winding up of the Ash and District Sanitary Committee revealed a balance of £95 8s 10d, and that this had been disposed of by a gift of £30 each to the three nursing associations of Kingsdown, Ash and District, Hartley and Longfield. The balance £5 8s 10d was handed to the cker in recognition of his services. The clerk was instructed to call the attention of the rural Council to the agitation against increase in rates, which the council had no knowledge, and to ask for enlightenment on the subject."

Hartley WI

"Over 70 members and friends, including some members of Ash WI attended the 22nd birthday meeting on Thursday last week….."

19 Feb 1943 Articles for Sale Gravesend Messenger
(1) "Geese & ganders for sale, 11 months old, also Rhode island Red Pullets, RIR and Khaki-Campbell hatching eggs - Sudds, Applegarth, Hartley, Longfield."; (2) "For sale, blue child's playing pen; Marmet Buffer Car; Savoury & Moore Baby Weighing Scales; Tourer Cot; Windsor Armchair; all good condition; Belling Electric Heater-Griller-Hotplate, new - Dallen, Hartley, Longfield 2249."

05 Mar 1943 Nanny Wanted Gravesend Messenger
"Nannie-companion for mother, 3 little girls (1 day school); modern house; bus route; own cow, chickens, vegetables - Dallen, Hartley Manor Farmhouse, Longfield 2249."

12 Mar 1943 Local News in Brief Gravesend Messenger
Local Group Update

(1) Annual meeting of Hartley Folk Song and Dance Society, Miss Parker president, Mrs Keen secretary. Informal dances held first Saturday of month at Longfield Youth Centre Hut; (2) WI raise £20.10.8 for Aid to Russia Fund.

Hartley Parish Council Meeting

"At the March meeting a certificate was received from the Admiralty to commemorate Hartley's participation in the adoption of HMS Gloxinia as a result of Dartford's Warship Week. The clerk was instructed to have the certficate frames and exhibited at the Hartley Schools, the Post Office and the WI in that order, the Institute to be asked to give it a permanent home when it cam rount to them. A circular was received from the District Council calling attention to the liability of rabbits to tuberculosis, and in all suspicious cases the carcases should be sent for examination before consumption to the Sanitary Authority, Dartford. Infected rabbits are dangerous as food. The clerk read a memorandum from the District Council explaining the plans of the council for spreading local expenses over the whole rating area. The immediate item of interest is that of sewage which may result in a rate of 5d or possibly 6d in the Hartley area. The full implications of this as reflected in the new rates was left over to be explained at the parish meeting by Captain Bignell, who readily undertook this duty. A resolution of protest against the proposed regional rearrangements of district and parish council areas was received from the Wilmington Parish Council with request for Hartley's support in opposition to the plan. Discussion revealed a unanimous opinion that these changes would adversely affect the responsibilities of the parish councils particularly, and it was decided to support Wilmington's protests and to so notify Sir Waldron Smithers MP. As the donor of the War Memorial railings was reluctant to see them sent away, the supply department was notified and agreed to their non-removal."

[At the previous meeting the council had claimed the donor of the railings was OK with them being taken for scrap]

19 Mar 1943 Parish Assembly Gravesend Messenger
"A protest against Dartford Rural Council's new spread over rating plans was made at the annual parish assembly on Wednesday last week. Mr Gray gave comparative rateable values of the parishes and said that per head of the population, the Hartley rate was already higher than in other villages in the Dartford Rural Area. Miss Chisholm said that people should not think only of their own pockets, but of the advantages accruing to the public as a whole arising from the expenditure of the rural council. The new spread over rating plans were explained by Captain CS Bignell, who pointed out that they would be to the ultimate benefit of the parish. There was warm applause when Mr Fielder drew attention to the splendid work being done by women in the parish, particularly as regards jam making and knitting comforts for the services."

26 Mar 1943 Beehives for Sale Gravesend Messenger
Beehives for sale or whole apiary. Elphick, Ash Road

02 Apr 1943 Permission to Marry Dartford Chronicle
"[NAME], Bayonne, Church Road, Hartley [Marsworth, Church Road], who appeared in WAAF uniform, also asked permission to marry. Her father said he would rather they waited unitl they were older and had more means. Permission granted."

16 Apr 1943 Articles for Sale Gravesend Messenger
Poultry house for sale. MacDonald, Phoenix [now Stocks Mead, Church Road]. Nanny goat for sale - Selworthy [church road].

30 Apr 1943 House for Sale at Hartley Gravesend Messenger
"Well Built house for sale; main water, electric; buses pass; garage; £1,000 freehold - Coney, Hartley Bottom" [believed to be an estate agent]

14 May 1943 Local News in Brief Gravesend Messenger
(1) Shed and poultry house for sale. Alexander, Cavan, Church Road. Laying batteries, 24 poultry cages, fowl house. Parkins; (2) Auction notice for Le Stock Farm, 3 bedrooms, 1¾ acres land planted with fruit trees; (3) Hartley exceed £5,000 Wings for Victory target by £365. Includes £165 from mock auction and £11 from two WI Whist Drives. Names of winners of children's drawing competition; (4) "Hartley is going all out to make its book drive for the Services and for salvage a success. Residenta are asked to ring Mr Passmore Bishop (Longfield 3143) for information. Books can also be taken to his house."

14 May 1943 Home Guard Anniversary Gravesend Messenger
"To celebrate the 3rd anniversary of the Home Guard, platoons from Southfleet, Longfield, Hartley, Fawkham, Ash and Kingsdown, representing 'A' company will attend the ceremonial parade of the 19th battalion at 3.30 on Sunday at the Farningham Cricket Ground.

the public are invited to witness the parade, and many interesting demonstrations will be given. There will be also a realistic depiction of the rise of the Home Guards from the LDV days to its present smooth running efficiency. A running commentary will be broadcast on each item.

14 May 1943 Knocked out 5 Enemy Tanks in 12 minutes Maidstone Telegraph
"MC for gallant Kent Officer. With a great display of speed and accurate shooting, a tank troop commanded by Lieut Jack Mears RTR of Longfield (pictured), near Gravesend, knocked out five enemy tanks in 12 minutes from a battle line position near Medenine. Later, when his own tank had run out of armour piercing ammunition, Lieut. Mears enaged an enemy tank with delayed action HE and by manoevuring for position scored 3 direct hits and put it out of action. He has been awarded the Military Cross.

Lieut John Mears lives wiht his mother, Mrs P Mears, and sister Mrs J Robinson at Ross Lynn, Pescot Avenue, New Barn. He is serving with the 1st Army in North Africa. He was in the middle east for 3 years prior to the war, and has taken part in various campaigns against the Italians and has twice been slightly wounded."

21 May 1943 County Association's First Wartime Show Gravesend Messenger
Kent County Canine Association Show at Maidstone. Local Winners: Miss K M Raine, Longfield (Puppy 3rd; Daschunds 2nd & 3rd); Mrs Dorracott, Hartley (Bull Terrier 1st; Big breeds 2nd; Terriers (not fox) 1st; Sporting 1st; novice any variety 1st; maiden any variety 1st; beginners any variety 1st)

21 May 1943 Child Entertainers to Visit Southfleet and Hartley Gravesend Messenger
"Miss Gwendolyn Randall [later Lynds, 1913-2001], formerly of Hartley, whose troupe of child entertainers has raised large sums for war charities, is to visit Southfleet and Hartley to give two shows for the Southfleet and Longfield British Legion Prisoners of War Fund. By means of this fund comforts are sent to local men in enemy prison camps. Miss Randall now has a dancing academy at Wolverton, Bucks. The performances will be at Southfield School this Saturday afternoon, and at Hartley Country Club the same evening."

[Gwendolyn Randall used to live at Ship Cottage, Church Road, by this time she had moved to Wolverton, a town now swallowed up by Milton Keynes; she married in 1940 but continued to use Randall as her stage name]

04 Jun 1943 Local News in Brief Gravesend Messenger
(1) "Fruit, vegetables, flowers, nuts etc etc purchased for cash, any quantities; empties supplied; transport arranged - Hemesley, Woodland, Hartley, Longfield, Kent Tel Longfield 2174 or Hemesley, Covent Garden. Tel Temple Bar 9372."; (2) "Wanted a Norweigan or Swedish spinning wheel - Poole, Homecot, Hartley, Dartford"

18 Jun 1943 Misuse of Motor Fuel Dartford Chronicle
Graham Henry Wood [1889-1962] of Hatchlands, Hartley Hill, Hartley [Blue Firs, Church Road] pleaded guilty to using motor fuel for another purpose than that stipulated on his application form. He was fined 40 shillings and ordered to pay 14 shillings costs.

25 Jun 1943 Local Will Dartford Chronicle
Mr William Lockwood of Le Stocks Farm, Hartley, who died on December 16, left £2,458 16s 11d gross, witn net personality £1,656 1s 3d. Subject to an annuity of £78 to his sister Clare Lockwood, he left the residue to the Chancellor of the Exchequer to further the national war effort.

16 Jul 1943 Girls Training Corps Dartford Chronicle
Country Club - 483 company of Girls Training Corps dance at Country Club

[The GTC was started in 1942 for girls aged 14-20 with the idea of preparing them to support the war effort. Can't find what area 483 company covered.]

16 Jul 1943 Land for Sale at Fawkham Gravesend Messenger
"By order of the personal representatives of Mr H White - Kent near Wrotham - Ridley Court Farm, 290 acres with Queen Anne farmhouse and farm buildings. All in the occupation of the Kent War Agricultural Executive Committee. Compensation Rent £215 per annum.

Also Pescot Field, Longfield, about 4¾ acres. In the occupation of the Kent WAEC.

Also by order of Mr Harry White - Pescot Land, Longfield and Hartley, about 27 acres. Partly in the occupation of the Kent WAEC and 3 bungalows, let on weekly tenancies.

To be sold by auction by Messrs Dann & Lucas on Tuesday 24th August 1943 at the Bull Hotel, Dartford in 3 lots." (Also in Dartford Chronicle 23.7.43)

23 Jul 1943 Cow and Pigs for Sale Gravesend Messenger
Shorthorn cow and store pigs for sale - Glover, Hartley Bottom

23 Jul 1943 Farm land to let Maidstone Telegraph
List of properties to be let by Kent War Agricultural Committee by tender include at Longfield: part New Barn Farm (16 acres), Part Pescot Farm (21a), land at Pescot Avenue (1a), Rectory Meadow (3a), land opposite the school (9a), part Longfield Court (15a)

13 Aug 1943 Inefficient Brakes Dartford Chronicle
William H Heale [b 1911] of Ash Rd - inefficent brakes

13 Aug 1943 Country Club Sports Fair Dartford Chronicle
"On August bank holiday a sports fair in aid of the RAF Benevolent Fund was held at the Hartley Country Club sports ground A considerable sum was raised by various competitions and a collection taken on a captured swastika flag realised £13. Horse rides aranged by Mrs Hatten and helpers raised £11. The sports prizes were presented by Lieut-Col O Moseley, Officer Commanding 19th battalion Kent Home Guard, and Squadron Leader Johnson, RAF."

20 Aug 1943 Speeding Fine Dartford Chronicle
"At Chatham on Monday, Edward Arthur Kitto [1904-1994], lorry driver, Black Lion Inn, Hartley, was fined 40 shillilngs for exceeding 30mph with a goods vehicle at Shorne."

22 Aug 1943 Obituary of Charles Bate MscFarlane Times
Death of Charles Bate MacFarlane of Hartley House, director of William Dunn & Co Ltd

27 Aug 1943 Hartley Manor Farm to Let Kent & Sussex Courier
"The committee invites tenders for the letting, in its present condition of Hartley Manor Farm, Hartley. The farm contains 129 acres and includes a bungalow and good farm buildings, providing accommodation for 50 cows. Additional land in the committee's occupation in the vicinity could be included in the tenancy if required. The tenancy will date fro 29th September 1943, and will be for 3 years to Michaelmas 1946, and thereafter from year to year."

03 Sep 1943 Local News in Brief Gravesend Messenger
Burglary at Stack Lane

"Henry Le Long, aged 20, a soldier in an infantry training company was remanded in custody until September 9th by the Dartford magistrates on Thursday last week on a charge of burglarously breaking into Beulah, Stack Lane, Hartley and stealing property worth [.....] shillings, the property of Percival Leonard Harris. PC Knight deposed how he cycled to Fawkham railway station where he saw Le Long in the waiting room and Harris identified a coat he was wearing. When charged with the offence, Le Long said 'It's OK. I took all the stuff except the purse.'"

Case Dismissed

"Hubert William Gladdish, Le Stock Farm, Hartley, was summoned at Maidstone on Tuesday for driving a car at excessive speed during the black out. His speed in London Road, Maidstone was stated to have varied between 30 and 35 mph. Defendant said the most he could get out of his car was 20 mph. The case was dismissed."

10 Sep 1943 Local News in Brief Dartford Chronicle
(1) Erith Schoolboys of Country Club have been working on local farms; (2) Fr Camise McCarthy to be RC Priest; (3) Henry J Leiong (20) - burgled Beulah, Stack Lane (see also 22.10.43))

17 Sep 1943 Obituary of Lucy Weston Dartford Chronicle
Obituary of Mrs Lucy M Weston (86) of Anzac, Church Rd

08 Oct 1943 Buses - alterations to Route 423 Dartford Chronicle
Alterations to Route 423

15 Oct 1943 Property Sale Gravesend Messenger
"At auction, Messrs Dann and Lucas at the Bull Hotel, Dartford, on Wednesday last week, sold for £2,000 to Mr J Barker, Pescot land at Longfield and Hartley, comprising 23 acres 3 roods and 18 perches, and including 2 bungalows (one vacant) and a range of brick and slated buildings. A second lot, Pescot Field and Longfield, comprising 4 acres 3 roods and 14 perches fell to Mr S S Stewart for £500."

29 Oct 1943 Dogs for Sale Times
Mrs Darracott selling 2 bull terrier pups

19 Nov 1943 Local News in Brief Gravesend Messenger
(1) "C M Ellerby - All classes of Agricultural Contracting, including - row crop cultivation, draining, pipe laying, ploughing, pressing and drilling combined, land clearing & levelling, rise ploughing, subsoiling, mowing, binding, transport. Longfield 3195."; (2) Dance at Country Club for HMS Gloxinia, corvette adopted by DRDC; (3) Alsatian pups for sale - Mrs Larkin, Jessern, Ash Road

26 Nov 1943 Local News in Brief Dartford Chronicle
(1) Country Club - licence to serve light refreshments; (2) For Sale: Freehold building plots 50'xl901 for £96

10 Dec 1943 Local News in Brief Dartford Chronicle
Road Works in Ash Road

"A long standing complaint by Hartley parishioners, of water collecting at the junction of Ash Road and St John's Lane, had been dealt with, under instructions by the local Defence Emergency Committee. Mr W Wright, chairman of the Highways Committee, took strong objection to the matter being dealt with by the Emergency Committee, and said he had neither been consulted or informed. The Chairman (Capt Bignell) said the matter had received the attention of the Emergency Committee because the use of a well, which was now an emergency water supply, was involved. It was also stated that a letter from Hartley Parish Council on the matter had been previously considered by the Highways Committee."

[Another suggestion here that the sacking of Mr Wright by Hartley Parish Council may have been motivated by personalities.]

HMS Gloxinia

(1) Letter from Commander Gloxinia thanking parish for books & games; (2) Ernest H Constable [1909-1982] of Cranmere, Church Rd - speeding

14 Jan 1944 Incubator for Sale Gravesend Messenger
"Gloucester incubator, self turning tray, 150 egg £6 10s; rearing house and hover £5 10s. Goodwin, Westfield [Church Road], Hartley, Dartford"

21 Jan 1944 Hartley Parish Council Gravesend Messenger
"Dartford rural Council wrote confirming arrangements for the clearance of the footpath from St John's Lane. The Ratepayers' Association wrote expressing appreciation for this work. It was reported that the appeal for salvage of sacks had already resulted in a number being sent in. Expenditure for the year ending March 31st, 1945, was estimated at £30, equal to a penny rate. The balance in hand from the current year is £50 approximately. Flag days have been arranged as follows: Aid to China Fund, March 14th; King George's Fund for Sailors, April 4th; The War Savings 'Salute the Soldier' week will be held May 6th to 13th. The council went into committee to discuss a round robin from the parents of the children in Hartley Church of England Schools."

["Going into committee" was a way local councils used to use to exclude the public from witnessing proceedings. This was not stopped until a 1960 Private Member's Bill sponsored by Mrs Thatcher]

28 Jan 1944 The Rev J Henderson to be Rector Bromley & West Kent Mercury
"The Rev J W Henderson, curate at Orpington Parish Churhc for the past two and a half years, had been appointed Rector of Hartley, Kent by the Bishop of Rochester. Both Mr and Mrs Henderson are very popular among parishioners. Mr Henderson has taken a keen interest in youth work and is chairman of the the local Christian Youth Fellowship and of All Saints' Young People's Fellowship. Mr Henderson will leave Orpington for his new post shortly after Easter. The present Rector of Hartley, the Rev G H Lenton, was curate at St Paul's Church, Crofton, 8 years ago."

07 Feb 1944 MacFarlane Wedding Times
Marriage of [NAME] eldest dau of Mrs MacFarlane widow, formerly of Hartley House

11 Feb 1944 Local News in Brief Dartford Chronicle
New Rector etc

(1) New Rector Rev JW Henderson - picture and biography; (2) Parish council to press for modern buildings for primary school, and in the meantime better sanitation

Hartley Pumping Station

"Hartley Water committee. Mid Kent Water Company. Gravesend and Milton Waterworks Company - Special Enactments (Extension of Time) Act 1940.

Whereas the Hartley Water Committee, the Mid Kent Water Company and the Gravesend and Milton Waterworks Company (hereinafter called 'the water undertakers') severally made application to the Minister of Health (hereinafter called 'the minister') for issue of an order under the Special Enactments (Extension of Time) Act 1940 (hereinafter called 'the Act of 1940') to extend the period limited by section 75 of the North West Kent Joint Water Act 1936 (hereinafter called 'the local Act') for the completion of the works described below, that is to say:

Work No 1 - A well and pumping station (called the Hartley Pumping Station) authorised by section 18 of the local Act to be constructed by the Hartley Committee;

Work No 2 - An aqueduct of lines of pipes authorised by Section 29 of the local act to be constructed by the Mid Kent Water Company; and

Works Nos 3 and 4 - A reservoir and waste water conduit respectively authorised by Section 30 of the local act to be constructed by the Gravesend and Milton Waterworks Company;

And whereas the Minister granted the said applications and by the North West Kent Joint Water (Extension of Time) Order 1940 extended the said period until the 13th July 1944;

And whereas the water undertakers have severally made application to the Minister for an Order under the Act of 1940 to extend by 3 years, that is to say until the 13th July 1947, the period as now limited for the completion of the works described above.

Notice is hereby given that the Minister will consider any objections or representations made to him in writing before the 26th day of February 1944, against the grant of the said applications by any person or body interested in the subject matter of the application. Such objections or representations should be address to the Secretary, Ministry of Health, Whitehall, London SW1.

ANC Shelley, Assistant Secretary, Ministry of Health, Whitehall, SW1. 2nd Februay 1944."

11 Feb 1944 Hartley Parish Council and New Rector Gravesend Messenger
Hartley Parish Council

"At last week's meeting, the date of the annual parish meeting was fixed for March 15th. On Mrs Gates' suggestion, it was decided to hold a small exhibition of Chinese products to stimulate interest in the National Flag Day for the United Aid to China Fund. Mrs Gates and Mr Chisholm are to call a small committee to make arrangements. The council received a committee's report on the Church Schools, and a resolution was passed that the present premises were inadequate and asking that plans for modern schools be drawn up. this was sent to the Kent Education Committee with a letter emphasising that the School sanitary arrangements needed immediate attention."

New Rector of Hartley

New rector John William Henderson to be inducted April 15th. In the meantime services to be held by Canon A T Wallis, who was curate in charge when Rev Lenton was chaplain to the forces.

11 Feb 1944 Longfield Property Sale Maidstone Telegraph
"By order of the trustees of J J Hickmott esq, deceased. Longfield Kent. Messrs Porter Putt & Fletcher are instructed to submit to auction at the Masonic Hall, Wrotham Road, Gravesend on Wednesday 23rd February 1944 at 3 o'clock precisely, the freehold business premises with living accommodation known as 'The Retreat' [84-86 Main Road], together with about 38a 0r 27p of land, and having a frontage to the main Dartford - Meopham road of about 1,970 feet, the railway forming the northern [sic] boundary for a distance of about 1,960 feet.

The Retreat is brick built and slated, and contains: entrance hall, 2 reception rooms, kitchen, scullery, wash house, servant's sitting room, bathroom, WC and 3 good bedrooms. In the wing building are the business premises at which is carried on a well established General Stores, held under the terms of an expired 3 years' agreement from September 1936 at a rental of £50 0s 0d per annum. Tenant paying rates and doing internal decorative repairs.

The land and other buildings comprise: brick built stabling with loft over, timber built well house with artesian well, pump gear, and range of timber built barns, held under the terms of an expired 3 years' agreement from September 1936 at a rental of £50 0s 0d per annum. Company's water supply and electricity are available....."

12 Feb 1944 Hartley Family's Fine Record - Six in the Services - Son Reported Missing Gravesend Reporter
Mr and Mrs John Sale, of Broomfield, Ash Road, Hartley, who have every reason to be proud of the war record of their famiy, have received news that their second son, Sergeant John Sale (pictured), has been reported missing in Italy since January 19th.

Sgt Sale is 29 years of age and his army career extended over a period of 11 years. He is a fine specimen of a British soldier. For 6 years he served with the Royal Fusiliers in India, and on the outbreak of hostilities he came to the Middle East with the 5th Indian Brigade. He took part in 3 campaigns, was mentioned in despatches for gallantry, and was able to return home for a well deserved leave in December 1942. After 6 months in England, he again returned to the Middle East, and with the Irish rifles he saw a considerable amount of fighting in Sicily and Italy. Sgt Sale has a large number of friends, particularly among the members of the Hartley Country Club.

Other members of the family are doing their bit for their country. The eldest son, Pte William Sale of the Royal West Kents, has had nearly 13 years' service in the army. He was wounded during the fighting in France.

LAC Charles Sale, the youngest son, is at present n Italy with the RAF and has been in the Middle East campaign for 3 years. He met his brother John on a number of occasions.

LACW Daisy Sale has been in the WAAF for 3 years and her brother in law Corporal H Moore of the REs, served with the Army in France in the early days of the war.

It should also be mentioned that Mr John Sale, a well known resident of Hartley, and a retired Sergeant of the Metropolitan Police has been a member of the Home Guard practicallly since it was formed, and is CQMS of "A" Company of the 19th (Farningham) battalion.

[Happily for Sgt John Sale's friends and family, it was reported on 30 March 1944 that he was alive, as a Prisoner of War of the Germans. He was held at Stalag 344 Lemsdorf, Poland. An account of how he came to be captured in Italy can be found on the Irish Brigade website.]

18 Feb 1944 Articles for Sale Gravesend Reporter
"Sideboard, bookcase, modern bed chair, ¾ oak bed complete; no dealers. 'First House', Hartley Manor Lane, Near Longfield"

25 Feb 1944 Hartley Flying Officer Missing Gravesend Messenger
"News has been received that Flying Officer G H Sudds RAF (pictured), younger son of Mr and Mrs H H Sudds, Applegarth, [Church Road], Hartley, Longfield, and formerly of North Star Farm, Mereworth, has been reported missing after flying operations.

Flying Officer Sudds, who is 21 was educated at Sir Roger Manwood's School, Sandwich, and before joining the RAF was employed at Inglewood, by Sevenoaks Rural council."

03 Mar 1944 Peter Harle POW Dartford Chronicle
Trooper Peter Harle moved to POW camp in Germany

03 Mar 1944 Absent from Home Guard Gravesend Messenger
"Longfield man fined - Hezekiah Woodin [1896-1970], Ringwould, Longfield Hill, Longfield, was ordered to pay £7 1s at Dartford Police Court on Friday for absenting himself from the Home Guard on three occasions.

The prosecution stated that the defendant, a stoker at the Gravesend and Milton Waterworks, Northfleet, joined the Home Guard in August last year. He did not attend on November 10th, 17th and 20th although summonded to do so and aid in execuse that on the first 2 dates he was seeing Dr Hasler, and on the third he was firewatching at his work.

Dr William Hasler of Meopham said defendant called on him on November 10th and complained of pains in the back. He also asked the doctor how he could get exemption from the Home Guard. Witness gave him a ticket to show the Home Guard Medical Officer. Woodin had not gone to the surgery since.

Mr Barber of the Waterworks, Northfleet, said defendant was not firewatching on November 20th. Defendant said that he did not go because he was feeling ill.

Fines of £2 on each charge, plus 1 guinea costs were imposed."

[Of course it would be quite hard to do a night's Home Guard duty if, like Mr Woodin, the day job involved heavy manual labour. Mr Woodin was born at Skips Cottage, Hartley Bottom Road in 1896.]

10 Mar 1944 Hartley Parish Council and Wanted Ad Gravesend Messenger
Hartley Parish Council

"Held on Wednesday last week, a report was received from the committee on arrangements for the the United Aid to China exhibition on March 13th. Numerous Chinese articles had been promised. Mr Leavy, KCC representative, wrote in reply to the council's resolution concerns; the church schools, that immediate rebuilding was of course impossible, but that the matter would not be overlooked. The council made comprehensive arrangemetns for Salute the Soldier week, the target being £2,500. The destrictuion of trees on Hartley Green was mentioned, and the chairman undertook to follow up information which had reached him with a view to reporting the damage to the authorities." (Dartford Chronicle 10.3.44 also mentions Salute the Soldier target but says it was £2,700)

Wanted Advert

"Wanted: 12 gallon electric water storage heater, glazed Bath 5 foot long. Meadow Cottage, Gorsewood Road, Hartley, Longfield, Kent."

17 Mar 1944 Chinese Art Exhibition Gravesend Messenger
"An exhibition of Chinese Arts and crafts, arranged by the Parish Council for the Aid to China Fund, was held on Monday at the WI Hall. The exhibits included beautiful inlaid and carved furniture lent by Mr Waters, ancient Ming and other vases lent by Mr Simmons of Ash, many other valuable ornaments and curiosities, costumes, silk embroidery and tapestry work. Those lending exhibits included Captain and Mrs Bignell, [NAME], Mr Stickland, Mrs Goodwin, [NAME], Miss Barker, Mr and Mrs Davis, Mr and Mrs Hemmings, Mrs Hemesley, Mrs Webb, [NAME], [NAME], Mrs Francis, Dr Welch, and Mr and Mrs Chisholm. Children of the Hartley CofE schools under Miss Fiddis and Miss Barnes, contributed a model of a Chinese theatre and a Chinese home, with several dolls, rice bowls and chopsticks. All these had been made by the children themselves, those responsible being [NAME], Brian Jenkins, [NAME], [NAME], [NAME], Malcolm Barlow, [NAME], [NAME], Michael Gay, [NAME], [NAME], [NAME], [NAME] and [NAME]. Mr Sizmur, chairman of the Parish Council, spoke of the debt we owe to our ally China, and Mr F H Waters, a Hartley resident who formerly lived in China, told of all China had done and suffered since the invasion of Manchuria in 1931. Over £7 was taken at the door and for teas, a welcome addition to Hartley's flag day effort."

17 Mar 1944 Curate to be Rector Bromley & West Kent Mercury
"The Rev J W Henderson is leaving All Saints' Parish Church immediately after Easter and will be inducted as rector of Hartley, Kent on April 15th. A presentation is to be made to him at a youth rally at the church hall on April 1st."

17 Mar 1944 Vast Volume of Southern Railway Traffic Gravesend Messenger
"Presiding at the general meeting of the Southern Railway on Thursday last week, Col E Gore-Browne said the freight traffic on the Southern system still grows, whether measured by tonnage originating or by the loaded wagon miles moved, the increase over pre-war figures approaching 50 per cent.

The freight train miles run by the SR engines exceed by 25% the corresponding figures for 1938. This vast freigh movement over a system which in peace time is predominantly a passenger line doe not follw the normal flows of traffic along the main routes, many secondary and branch lines having found a new importance by the construction alongside of important war-time depots.

In addition to the increase in freight traffic, the passenger side continues to expand. The number of naval, military and air force men and women we have conveyed on duty - apart from leave - since the beginning of the war now exceeds the 10 million mark and the number of special trains is over ?20,000".

24 Mar 1944 Local News in Brief Dartford Chronicle
(1) Dartford RDC to become protected area again from 1 April, along with Gravesend BC, Strood RD. However Dartford BC, Sevenoaks UD and RD not protected areas. This means no visits for shopping or entertainment for example, but people registered at shops in restricted areas can still shop there; (2) Notice confirming extension of time to complete works at Hartley Pumping Station.

31 Mar 1944 (1) 600 Mile Tow - Then Lost (2) Fare Evasion Dartford Chronicle
600 Mile Tow - Then Lost

"Sub-Lieutenant A C Hooper, RNR of Hartley, of the rescue tug Stormking, has recently been concerned in a gallant but unsuccessful attempt at rescuing a crippled sloop - HMS Woodpecker, afer she had been torpedoed. The Stormking towed Woodpecker for 600 miles; then in stress of heavy weather and while within 40 miles of land Woodpecker capsised and Stormking was obliged to slip the tow. "Twice during the tow", said Sub-Lieutenant Hooper, "part of Woodpecker's complement was taken off and put aboard other ships of the escort group, but a skeleton crew was maintained on board unitl it became necessary to transfer them for their own safety. Then we had a signal to expect a north-easterly gale. Commander Pryse decided that Woodpecker could not live through a gale and ordered "Abandon Ship". You would imagine th bitter regret of the captain having to take such a step when almost within sight of land. But the wisdom of his decision was proved in the following morning, when Woodpecker capsised and we slipped the tow rope." Sub-Lieutenant Hooper, who was in the merchant service during the early part of the war, was a regular voyager in coasters through 'e-boat alley'."

[The Kent Messenger of 24.3.1944 has a shorter version, it added that Lt Hooper lived at St Just, Stack Lane, went to King's School Rochester, was apprenticed to P&O and was with Messrs W J Everard's, coastal shipowners of Greenhithe when war broke out.]

Fare Evasion

"At Bromley Police Court on Friday, Mrs Adeline May Cavanagh [b 1900] of St Peters, Stack Lane, Hartley wa summoned for travelling on the Southern Railway without paying her fare. It was statd that she produced an out of date ticket at Bromley South station and when challenged admitted that she had used the same ticket before. She was fined 20 shillings."

14 Apr 1944 Rev J W Henderson Bromley & West Kent Mercury
"The Rev J W Henderson who has been curate at All Saints' Parish Church, Orpington, for some years, is to be inducted Rector of Hartley, Kent, tomorrow, Saturday. At a farewell gathering recently he was presented with a cheque and other gifts. Local clergy and ministers joined in messages of farewell."

20 Apr 1944 A Vision of the Future Times
Captain Plugge (Chatham, Conservative) said that science was going to penetrate deeper and deeper into our lives. There would one day be television in every home, and it would be in colour and of three dimensions. The newspaper of tomorrow, using tons of paper, was obsolete. Thought could be transported through the air. In future one would be able to switch a button on the radar at the bedside according to whether one read the Daily Mail or the Daily Express or the Times, or even the Daily Herald, and in the morning one would be able to tear the newspaper off the machine, with up-to-the-minute news and features and photographs.

Mr Boyce (Gloucester, Conservative) What about the Parliamentary report? (laughter)

Captain Plugge said that there would be a new method of travelling. It would be possible to detach the mind from the body, to leave the body at the seaside, and transact business by thought through the aether. (Loud laughter)

Colonel Greenwell (The Hartlepools, Conservative) Is there any chance of the soul getting back into the wrong body? (Renewed laughter).

[Not really about Hartley, but one MP (Leonard Plugge) in a debate on scientific research appears to foresee colour and 3D television as well as the Internet. He also suggested that people would be able to conduct business while sunning themselves on the beach, as of course is possible now. He was not taken seriously by his colleagues. Full text of the speech is in Hansard.]

21 Apr 1944 New Rector of Hartley Gravesend Messenger
"Instituted by Bishop of Rochester

The tiny 11th century parish church of All Saints' Hartley, was crowded on Saturday, when the new Rector, Rev J W Henderson AKC, formerly curate at Orpington, was instituted by the Bishop of Rochester and inducted by the Archdeacon of Rochester (Ven WM Browne).

Among the large congregation were over 50 friends from Orpington. Also present were the Revs R Williams, Vicar of Orpington, who presented the new Rector to the Bishop on behalf of the patron Miss I N King, Rev F Moore, vicar of Welling, with whom Mr Henderson served his first curacy, Revs JD Vigo (Rector of Ash), WJ Sugden (Rector of Fawkham) and H Parkins.

Canon AT Wallis acted as Bishop's chaplain, and Canon W Parker (Rector of Longfield) read the lesson.

The visitors were afterwards entertained to tea by the Church Council at Hartley Court, which was kindly placed at their disposal by Brig-General and Mrs TA Andrus." (Also Dartford Chronicle 21/4/44)

05 May 1944 Salute the Soldier Fun Fair Dartford Chronicle
Salute the Soldier Fun Fair at Hartley Country Club (also 12.5.44))

05 May 1944 Local News in Brief Gravesend Messenger
(1) Hartley Parish Council "At the annual meeting mr charles Sizmur was reelected chairman, and Mr W N Chisholm vice chairman. It was decided to approach the potato section of the War Agricultural Committee with a view of ensuring that Hartley shall get its quota both for human and animal consumption."; (2) WI Choir of 130 including women from Hartley and Ash perform at Gravesend Cooperative Hall.

12 May 1944 (1) Hartley Primary School (2) Indoor Fun Fair Dartford Chronicle
Hartley Primary School

Criticism of state of Hartley School

Indoor Fun Fair

"Mr W R Dingle opened Hartley's Salute the Soldier Week on Saturday at the Country Club, where there was an indoor fun fair. He explained the object of the Week and stressed that money invested was lent and could be withdrawn at any time. The Liaison Officer Mr C L Edwards, took charge of a hoopla stall. Another attraction was a game, entitled 'Bombing Germany', in the charge of Mrs Phillips, and Mr Godfrey Davies had charge of effegies of notorious persons, which came in for some severe punishment. There were many other helpers."

[This article explains that the money 'raised' at many of these wartime events was money lent to the government by savings. By encouraging saving the government also managed to depress demand for other goods that were in short supply.]

12 May 1944 (1) Hartley Parish Council (2) Salute the Soldier (3) Women's Institute Gravesend Messenger
Hartley Parish Council

"At the May meeting, a letter was read from the county organiser, Aid to China Fund, concerning further efforts in the parish to raise funds. Suggestions from the public will be welcome if sent to the clerk, Mr L U Judge, council office, Darenth. The resignation of Mr Gomer Davies on account of ill health was accepted with regret, and Mr Passmore Bishop was coopted in his place. Mr Gable urged the council to begin at once the formulation of suggestions for the post war planning and improvement of the countryside in and around the parish and it was decided to ask the RDC to provide a list of road plans etc, already formulated."

Salute the Soldier

"On Saturday, funfair was held in the Country Club, when a large crowd tried their skill at games and competitions, and also inspected the portrait gallery - photographs of local servicemen and women. £20 was raised towards the week's expenses. In addition to the events of the week already announced, the Home Guard are arranging another fair for tomorrow, also at the Country Club. There will be parades of children's fancy dress, and decorated bicycles and a display of despatch riders."

Another article said £3,619 was raised including £643 2s from WI Savings Group House to House Sales.#

Women's Institute

"On Thursday last week, Miss Hudson, of the Ministry of Food, demonstrated the uses of dried eggs in a wide range of good things to eat. She was thanked by Miss Sale. The month's Food Production Flash, on bee keeping, was given by Miss Robertson. Mr Gates announced the arrangements for the District Conference in the Hartley WI Hall on June 2nd, when Mrs Esme Johnson, chairman of the West Kent Federation, will preside, and an exhibition of useful or beautiful things made or grown by members will be staged. Samples of rabbit, cat or dog 'wool' will be spun on a spindle by Miss Everitt, if sent to her by May 13th."

19 May 1944 Blackout Offence Dartford Chronicle
Thomas Graham [b 1911] of Gra-burn, Fairby Lane - breached black out regs

26 May 1944 All Saints' Appeal Dartford Chronicle
All Saints - appeal for new chalice and paten (cost £27)

26 May 1944 Young Naturalists Club Gravesend Messenger
"At a meeting in the Congregational Hall on Saturday, the Hartley Naturalist Club was formed. Membership is open to boys and girls from 8 to 16; those over 16 may be associates. Rev J W Henderson, Rector, was elected president, with Mrs Gates hon secretary, and Mrs Greave treasurer. An assistant secretary and 3 committee members are to be elected from among the members."

02 Jun 1944 Dogs for Sale Times
Mrs Darracott selling King Charles Spaniel pup

02 Jun 1944 Rhymes of Old Kent Gravesend Messenger
"No 10 Hartley by Aitcheff

The Hartley (near Fawkham) people claim

Though with Hartley (near Cranbrook) they share a name

THEIRS is the Hartley where Defoe wrote

The book on which all schoolboys dote.

I'd like to get the story right

And offer neither Hartley slight

But, as it seems both sides have proof.

From argument I'll stay aloof

Perhaps both places' claims are true

And Daniel either Hartley knew."

09 Jun 1944 Car for Sale Gravesend Messenger
Vauxhall 14hp Black Saloon for sale - Hartley Manor Farm

09 Jun 1944 Lecture by Mr Robinson Bromley & West Kent Mercury
"Mr A Robinson, the well known naturalist, lectured on June 1 to Hartley Women's Institute, Kent. Taking for this subject 'Birds of the Countryside', he illustrated his talk with nearly 60 real photographic slides of the birds, their nests and young. Many were of a very high degree of excellence and included a Willow Warbler with moth, a Blackcap sunk in her nest, a common Tern alighting on her eggs, and a Kingfisher in colour. There was a good attendance and Mr Robinson was asked to prepare for another visit."

16 Jun 1944 (1) Hemesley's Advert (2) Hartley Parish Council Gravesend Messenger
Hemesley's Advert

"D Hemesley Ltd still at your service and buy for cash any quantity Vegetables, Fruit, Nuts, Flowers etc etc. Empties supplied, transport arranged. Hemesley, Woodlands, Hartley, Longfield. Phone Longfield 2174 or Covent Garden, Phone Temple Bar 9372. Staplehurst Branch, phone Staplehurst 237."

Hartley Parish Council

"On Wednesday last week, Mr B Passmore Bishop was welcomed on taking his seat as a member. A special meeting is to be held on June 21st to tabulate suggestions in regard to the new bus stops and services in the parish. Residents are invited to forward any observations to members before this date. Mr Bishop reported that he is arranging for the Book Drive in the parish. The chairman reported that the final figures for Salute the Soldier week are: Investments £3,719; profits from functions £94 17s 9d. The LPTB wrote that the service from Gravesend to Longfield on Saturdays could not be extended to Hartley Hill, but from a date in the near future this service would be extended to Ash (White Swan). It was agreed to ask the County Council for particulars of post war schemes in connection with road improvements."

23 Jun 1944 Salute Week: How the £500,000 was Raised Dartford Chronicle
Salute the Soldier - £95 raised by Hartley, £20 by Ash, £40 by Fawkham.

30 Jun 1944 Hartley Manor Sale Dartford Chronicle
Hartley Manor- £75 raised in sale for Hartley knitters for Merchant Navy. Meanwhile flag day for Red Cross and St John's Ambulance raises £23 in Hartley (collectors [7 NAMES])

07 Jul 1944 Assault Summons Dismissed Dartford Chronicle
"[NAME], Woodlands, Woodland Avenue, Hartley summoned Daisy Margaret Barlow [1892-1960], View Point, Merton Road, Hartley for assault. Mr C B Searle was for complainant, and Mr Norman T Baynes for defendant. Both solicitors request that complainant should accept an apology from the defendant, but this complainant refused to do, and the case proceeded.

It was stated that on the evening of May 31 complainant went to meet his housekeeper off the train, and coming back encountered the defendant who squirted water in his face from the bulb of an electric horn and passed offensive remarks. Complainant alleged that for the past 2 years defendant had insulted him, thrown stones at him, and would not keep away from him.

Mr Baynes urged that defendant was a much tried woman. She was a woman of good character and had greatly suffered. Complainant did not deny he had smacked Mrs Barlow's face with a paint brush a few days before she squirted water at him.

The case was dismissed."

07 Jul 1944 Hartley WI Produce Guild Gravesend Messenger
"On Thursday last week, at the Rectory, Ash, about 27 members of the Hartley WI produce guild, from Ash, Hartley and Longfield Hill, attended a meeting at which Mrs Brownlow of Seal Herb Farm, spoke on the medicinal uses of common herbs. She was thanked by Miss Garratt. After tea, two horticultural competitions - the naming of fruit and vegetable leaves and the identification of several herbs immortalised by Shakespeare, were won by Mrs Henderson and Mrs Meager respectively."

14 Jul 1944 Rabbits for Sale Gravesend Messenger
Rabbits for sale - Watney, Forge Farm

21 Jul 1944 Kent Police Appointments Maidstone Telegraph
Inspector J B Kenward transferring from Tonbridge to Rochester. Paper gives his career, he served as a Sergeant at Longfield 1934-1938.

28 Jul 1944 Maintenance Arrears Dartford Chronicle
"James Reginald Webster [1907-1989], Sacheverell, Church Road, Hartley, was charged with being £4 0s 6d in arrears on a maintenance order made in September 1940, in favour of his wife Annie Frances Webster [1905-1985], 154 Bridge Road, Grays, Essex. The order was amended on March 10, 1942, whereby he had to pay £1 15s a week for his wife, and 10s for the child - remanded." (also in Kent Messenger 28.7.1944 which said he admitted he had heavy expenses)

28 Jul 1944 Ash Servicemen's Canteen Gravesend Messenger
A canteen for the men of all the Services in the district has been opened in the parish hall, under the general direction of the YMCA. Mrs Vigo is the local leader, and she is supported by enthusiastic helpers. The canteen is open on Mondays, Wednesdays and Thursdays from 6.30 and 10pm. It is meeting a marked need, and the men who have visited it have expressed their appreciation. Developments are under consideration."

28 Jul 1944 Died of Wounds in Normandy Maidstone Telegraph
"News has been received by Mr and Mrs H Relf, 1 Uphill Cottages, Longfield Hill, near Dartford, that their youngest son Pte Horace Relf (pictured), died of wounds on July 8th, in Normandy. He was serving with the pioneer corps. Mr and Mrs Relf formerly lived at Marden. Before joining HM Forces, Pte Relf was employed by Messrs D and K Woodward, Longfield."

11 Aug 1944 (1) Presentation to Miss Fiddis (2) Day of Prayer Dartford Chronicle
Presentation to Miss Fiddis

"30 Years head of CofE School: After nearly 30 years as headmistress of Hartley Church of England School, Miss Fiddis retired when the summer term ended last week.

Her successor is Miss Dorothy Barnes, assistant teacher at the school, who will assume her new duties on September 4.

There was a gathering of friends and ex-pupils at the school on August 3 to witness a presentation to Miss Fiddis, which was made by the rector, the Rev JW Henderson, on behalf of the managers.

Mr Henderson expressed his gratitude to Miss Fiddis for the work she had done during her fine term of office and expressed the hope that although she was goinig to her home in Ireland, they would see her again in the village where she had spent many years of her life. A chance of expressing their gratitud in a tangible manner had been taken by the setting up of a fund, which had been augmented by the effort of Miss Barnes and the school's present pupils. He now had pleasure in presenting a cheque for over £40 and a leatehr bound book in which were recorded the signature of all those who had contributed.

The children also presented Miss Fiddis with a bouquet of gladioli and a book for her to read on her journey home.

After Miss Fiddis had acknowledged the gifits, which she would greatly treasure, the meeting ended with cheers by the pupils."

Day of Prayer

Day of Prayer: Archdeacon at All Saints

28 Aug 1944 Wedding Dress for Sale Gravesend Messenger
Secondhand wedding dress for sale, no coupons required, Mrs White, Stocks Farm

08 Sep 1944 Local Advertisements Gravesend Messenger


"Ferrets, well grown, 15s, 17s 6d. Austin, Manor Drive, Hartley, Longfield."

Tractor Driver Wanted

"Tractor driver wanted for contract work, experienced, able to drive car, permanent job with good wages and overtime. Longfield district, no house. Ellerby, Ash Road, Hartley, Longfield 3195."

Tractor Driver Wanted

"Tractor driver wanted for contract work, experienced, able to drive car, permanent job with good wages and overtime. Longfield district, no house. Ellerby, Ash Road, Hartley, Longfield 3195."

08 Sep 1944 Tractor Driver Wanted Gravesend Messenger
"Tractor driver wanted for contract work, experienced, able to drive car, permanent job with good wages and overtime. Longfield district, no house. Ellerby, Ash Road, Hartley, Longfield 3195."

14 Sep 1944 Balloon Belt Times
"Sir, As one of those residing in the heart of the balloon belt, I write to express my appreciation of Mr Michael de la Bedovere's letter in the Times of September 11. The pearly radiance of this flying armad caught in the rys of he rising sun is a sight we residents will not easily forget; nor will our ears quickly lose the twany of the vibrating cables and above all the ominous silence preceding the explosion after an approaching bomb had made contact with one of the balloon cables, and the instant speculation as to whether our dwelling lay in the path of the falling missile.

I would, however, particularly like to pay a tribute to the men of the RAF, who have manned the balloon sites during the past 2 and a half months. Theirs has been one of the unspectacular, tiring, often boring, jobs of this war, and sinc eno individual could claim credit for bringing down a flying bomb, however big a bag their own balloon might claim, they hav been unheralded by the press and wireless. Many of the sites were in lonely, water-logged fields, miles from anywhere; sometimes drinking water supplied only every other day, and wind, weather, and blackout alike, were endured cheerfully in their cheerless regulation tents. When the full story of London's ordeal by flying bombs comes to be written, I hope that the part played by the men of the balloon sites will not be forgotten.

I am, Sir, yours faithfully, Margaret J Gates, Wild Garth, Hartley near Dartford, Kent. Sept 11"

22 Sep 1944 House for Sale at Hartley Gravesend Messenger
"Kent Fawkham Station: semi-detached freehold modern residence for sale with possession; 2 receptions, 3 bedrooms, bath, WC, electric power throughout, garage, garden, near RC church, completely furnished, in perfect order; all in £1,900. Owner - Felsted, Hartley, Longfield."

06 Oct 1944 The Flying Bombs: More Facts and Figures Dartford Chronicle
73 Fell in Dartford Rural Area, but not one casualty - Fawkham Village Badly Damaged, Swanley Junction the worst hit.

Seventy three flying bombs fell in the Dartford Rural District between June 16 and August 30, but not one caused a fatal casualty.

Many of the missiles fell in open country, but sometimes villages suffered damage, notably Fawkham, where a flying bomb exploded in the centre of the village green. Near Horton Kirby five crashed within 100 yards of each other. In the middle f them was row of wooden cottages, which survived the onslaught and only sustained light damage. More damage was caused at Swanley Junction than anywhere else in the rural area. One crashed on a Sunday morning 50 yards from the Central Schools. Nearly 270 houses were blasted.

Time and time again shelters provided by the government proved their worth. People walking out unharmed from Anderson shelters within a few feet of a crater.

The greatest difficulty experienced in the rural area was the removal and storage of funiture belonging to people whose houses were made uninhabitable. Contingents of the RAF and NFS augmented the Civil Defence in this work.

In the early days sector post wardens gave valuable information to higher authority of the direction, height and frequency of the flying bombs. After a time it was estalished tht the Germans, always methodical, were sending them off to a time table.

The following is an account of the flying bombs in each parish in the rural district.

Ash and Ridley - only 2 flying bombs caused casualties here. The first was the more serious and crashed in Ridley. It caused considerable damage to property and one serious and 4 slight injuries One person was slightly hurt whe the other fell in Ash. Others exploded harmlessly in open country.

Bean - one of the earliest crashed in Bean and injured 2 people, but after that residents had a quieter time.

Darenth - Of 4 bombs, 2 caused casualties The last flying bomb to fall in Dartford rural area exploded 50 yards in front of the main building at Darenth Colony. Some damage to property occurred and 7 slight casualties were reported but the inmates all escaped injury.

Eynsford - although several flying bombs fell in the parish, the village escaped with negligible damage. With Bean, Eynsford had the first in Dartford Rural District. This cause one slight casualty and damaged 4 buildings superficially. Later another injured one person and others came down in open country.

Farningham - 11 people were slightly hurt and houses were badly damaged in Olver Crescent when a flying bomb fell during the hours of darkness 2 bombs fell in almost the identical spot within exactly a week of each other just outside the village on the road to Dartford. Houses along the roads were blasted by the second, and there were slight casualties. Over the period 17 people were injured.

Fawkham - Fawkham village suffered badly when a flying bomb exploded on the village green. One person was seriously hurt, 3 others slightly; 3 buildings were completely destroyed, a further 3 were almost destroyed, 6 were made uninhabitable and 30 were damaged to a lesser extent. Prior to this, one had fallen in the vicinity and caused 3 slight injuries and superficial damage to 40 houses. Others crashed in open country, one causing a slight casualty.

Horton Kirby - a row of wooden cottages were subjected to heavy bombardment, five flying bombs landing all around them, but despite their comparatively flimsy construction, they stood up to it well and windows and tiles constituted their only damage. There were no casualties.

Kingsdown - the countryside around Kingsdown was peppered with the craters of flying bombs. The worst incident happened at night near Hollywood House in a copse. Blast blew some nearby wooden huts to matchwood and seven occupants were injured. Several fell on the Hever Estate in open country.

Longfield - Longfield had only one flying bomb within the parish boundaries and this caused neither casualties nor any serious damage.

Lullingstone - Lullingstone had numerous flying bombs in the grounds. The castle suffered some damage, as did the church and a cottage, and on another occasion one fell at the entrance to the grounds.

South Darenth - A flying bomb fell behind houses in Station Road, injuring two people slightly, almost destroying a bungalow and damaging other houses. When cottagers came out of their shelters some time after the incident they were surprised to see the crater and the damage. Although within a matter of feet from the crater, they had not heard anything.

Southfleet - Two flying bombs landed near each other on different occasions and damaged cottages near the railway station. Others fell without doing damage and there were a total of two casualties.

Stone - There were 6 casualties in all at Stone. One or two of the bombs fell on the marshes or in the river, another in quarry.

Swanley - The parish of Sutton at Hone includes Swanley, where the worst damage occurred. On a Sunday morning a flying bomb landed 50 yards from the Central Schools, near a housing estate. Casualties numbered three and 270 houses were damaged, 12 seriously. Wardens in a nearby post saw it coming and jumped into their shelters. When they came out they found their post had been blown to pieces. Their greatest regret was that they had lost their telephone, which had been recently installed after 4 years without one. Another bomb landed at Swanley Village, injuring 4 people seriously and 12 slightly, and damaging 30 houses. Others fell in the parish, one on the Main Road, damaging houses and others doing no harm.

Wilmington - two bombs in Wilmington area resulted in 12 casualties and damage. The first fell in a nursery, destroying greenhouses where tomatoes were growing. Blast carried the owner, Mr Wallace, a distance of 20 yards, but he was uninjured. There were 6 casualties here and 6 more at Stanhill Farm, where the second bomb fell, and trapped a horse in a stable.

[It appears from this article that not one V1 Doodlebug landed on Hartley during the first 3 months of the bombing campaign as every other parish in the district recorded bombs falling. By Aug 30th the numbers reaching Britain had dramatically declined.]

13 Oct 1944 Local News in Brief Gravesend Messenger
(1) "Set black van harness complete; excellent condition, fit horse 14-15 hands; £8 - Hartley Rural Industries, Longfield, Kent."; (2) Parish Council has received certificates for Wings for Victory and Salute the Soldier and picture of HMS Gloxinia to go in WI Hall

20 Oct 1944 Dog wanted Times
Wanted - a griffon female dog, Mr Morgan of Johns

10 Nov 1944 Maintenance Order Dartford Chronicle
"William John Gillman [1886-1962] of Mount Mead, Trottiscliffe, West Malling, applied for reduction of an order payable to his wife, Emily Maud Mary Gillman [1880-1968] of Acacia, Gorse Way, Hartley, on the ground of unemployment - Order reduced to £1 while unemployment continues."

17 Nov 1944 Home Guard Shoot Gravesend Messenger
"Longfield Platoon win Andrus Cup

The cup presented by Capt TA Andrus of Scadbury Manor, Southfleet for the best shooting platoon in the 19th battalion Kent Home Guard, was won by Longfield platoon of 'A' Company in the Manor Grounds on Sunday.

In the first shoot, Longfield and Kingsdown both scored 236, and in the final Longfield ran out winners by 225-223.

Capt Andrus, in handing over the cup, which was first competed for last year, to Lieut A Farries, said that would probably be the last competition in uniform.

Lieut-Colonel Moseley (CO 19th Bn) said no doubt it would be continued.

The winning team comprised [9 NAMES]r.

Among those presend were Brigadier-General Andrus, Major Ellerby, Capt DL Woodward and Capt Godley (adjutant of the 19th battalion)

Southfleet No 5 platoon held the trophy."

24 Nov 1944 Young Naturalists Club Gravesend Messenger
15 attend Young Naturalist talk drawing from nature by Mrs Jenman

01 Dec 1944 The Man from Dartmoor Dartford Chronicle
"William James Clark (64) of no fixed abode, was charged with stealing between October 12-18, £11 in cash, 50 Victorian pennies, a cycle, 5 pullets and 6 rabbits, together valued at £23 3, the property of his employer, Kathleen Nevill Arnold [b 1904]. He pleaded guilty.

Police evidence was that the accused worked as a gardener for the loser at Hartley House, Hartley. He was 'living in' and was left alone for several days while his employer was away. When she returned she found he had gone, taking some of her property and leaving behind a note, which read: 'Gone away for a week's holiday. Not feeling too well. Telephoned Mrs Arnold last night.' He had, in fact, not telephoned Mrs Arnold, and the police were informed. It was subsequently established that he had sold the pullets locally. The accused was traced to Torquay, was later charged, and admitted stealing some of the property, although he claimed that some of the rabbits were his.

There were five previous convictions, the last being 4 years' penal servitude for burglary.

Addressing the bench, accused said that 16 years ago he was released from Dartmoor. His criminal record had followed him about, and he had lost several jobs because of it. He had had a clear record from then up to now.

Prisoner was sentenced to 3 months' hard labour." Also in Kent Mesenger 1.12.44 Case of William Clark (see Dartford Chronicle). Shorter article, but mentions after coming out of Dartmoor he got a job as a waiter and served the judge who sentenced but was sacked when criminal record was known.

01 Dec 1944 Local News in Brief Gravesend Messenger
(1) "A young farmers' club has been started in the village [Longfield], meeting at the Youth Club. The committee elected are: Mr Ken Glover [1927-1996] (chairman), [NAME] and [NAME], joint hon secs and Miss A Burridge [1925-1978], hon Treasurer. On Saturday Mr Don Woodward gave an address on the aims and objects of farming."; (2) Breeches Bible Presented to Southfleet Church - Mr E Snelling-Colyer has donated the Bible dated 1585 to the Church, so called because it says Adam and Eve made breeches out of the fig leaves; (3)

08 Dec 1944 WI Sale of Work Dartford Chronicle
WI sale of work for Red Cross (£130) and Forces Comforts (£23)

15 Dec 1944 Home Guard Stand Down Dartford Chronicle
"Enthusiastic Gatherings at Hartley and Darenth - Hopes that Spirit of Comradeship may be Preserved

There have been several Home Guard stand down gatherings in the district recently, and all have been attended with the utmost enthusisam. The hope was expressed on every side that the comradeship that has grown up during the war years may be carried into the 'piping times of peace'.

19th Battalion - Social Evening at Hartley Country Club

'You are the best shooting battalion in kent'. Thus were the loyalty, efficiency, keenness and good fellowship of the 19th battalion, Kent Home Guard, rewarded in an address by the Commanding Officer for Kent to the officers at the 'Stand Down' dinner at Hartley Country Club on December 8.

Amplifying his statement, Colonel HSH Franklin CMG, CBE, DSO said that with steady and determined work from the start, the battalion had become really efficient. there was no 'window dressing' , the training had been properly spread over and applied througout their strength, with the result that their general average was very high.

'Most of us' said Colonel Franklin, 'view the stand down with mixed feelings. Many would have liked to see the thing through until the Hun was down and out. But we must remember that we have done the job for which we were raised. Though the Home Guard have never had to shoot in anger, that fact makes the greatest victory the Home Guard could ever have own.'

'The Germans hada had the impertenence to raise something called teh Volksturm. It was a damned insult to call it the German Home Guard. The Home Guard were volunteers, and are largely so to this day. I have watched your battalion grow to great efficiency under the leadership and example of your commanding officer, Colonel Moseley, who, from the word go has worked like a Trojan.' (applause)

Colonel Franklin, who was proposing a toast to the battalion, here called upon Major J R Stickland, second in command.

'We wanted', said Major Stickland, 'To express to Colonel Moseley in some way our deep gratitude for what he has done for us in this time of national stress.' (applause)

Producing an inscribed silver shiver, he handed it to Major J Langlands (Officer Commanding D Company), one of the oldest of the old originals, who presented it to Colonel Moseley amid loud cheers.

The inscription, sumounted by the crest of the Royal West Kents was, 'Presented to Lieut-Colonel O H Moseley by the members of the 19th battalion Kent Home Guard, as a small token of their esteem and gratitude to him as their commander in a time of great national stress. December 1944.'

Thanking the battalion for the gift, and replying to the toast, Colonel Moseley said, 'The spirit with which wes started is still with us. I am very proud to think that this battalion has gained so many honours. We have taken on many regular units at shooting, and have never been defeated. On the one occasion when we hald an exercise with the Guards Brigade we were the only battalion to receive recognition for good work. I thank all the ranks for their hard work and loyalty. I owe so much to my second in command, company commanders and platoon commanders for what they have done. It is the platoons who have to get on with the work, and they are the men who have done so much to make this battalion what it is. The platoon commanders' leadership has been responsible for the high commendation which we have received.'

The commanding officer then thanked the higher Home Guard staff for their help and encouragement. When, at the start, his name had gone forward for appointment, General Lance had said, 'To h___ with this man, his name's Oswald Moseley!' (Laughter)

When they were taken over by the Army they received nothing but help from the staff and from the training officers.

Colonel Moseley also spoke warmly of the excellent relations between the Civil Defence, represented by Captain Bignell, and the battalion.

Warm applause greeted teh Colonel's mention of the presence of Lieut FWT Ross, RNVR, the battalion's former adjudant. 'I thank him personally', said the colonel, 'for his great help in the early days. He was a staunch friend and a real help.'

Thanks were expressed by Colonel Moseley to Brigadier General Andrus CMG, 'At the outset', he said, 'he was asked to be CO, but preferred to be company commander in his own area. He agreed to be my second in command, and I owe a tremendous amount to him.'

The battalion's permanent staff, Captain Godly and Captain Stills had been two very good friends. They had helped the battalion endlessly. He thanked them, the others on the staff, and all permanent staffs of companies and platoons.

Musical honours follwed by cheers were accorded the CO.

Proposing 'the visitors', Captain D Woodward, second in command A Company, mentioned particularly Brigadier-General F F Lance, former group commander, 'who founded the Home Guard in this part of Kent', General Andrus, 'who formed the best company in the best battalion in Great Britain', Colonel Cavendish MVO, Colonel Henderson DSO and Colonel PLM Wright TD, Commander of the West Kent subdivision, to all of whom the battalion were greatly indebted.

The toast was responded to by Colonel Wright.

'Absent Friends' was proposed by Lieut GR Leavey, ammunition officer and a former platoon commander, the oldest officer of the battalion present, who mentioned especially Colonel Chitty, General Farmer, Major Dance, and Lieut Bramer (officer commanding Farningham platoon), also those who 'can never come back, men who have gone and have given their best for England'.

Following the drinking of the toast, Major Ady, officer commanding F Company, mentioned two of his former officers, Lieut Cassey, who was killed in Normandy and Lieut EJ Marks, whose death was caused by enemy action.

The Adjutant (Captain PCT Godly MC) paid high tribute to the Kent Home Guard. Wordsworth's words were as true now as they were then - 'Vanguard of Liberty, ye men of Kent / Her haughty brow against the coast? of France / Now is the time to prove your hardiment?'

'Kent will still be the vanguard of liberty of the British Isles' said the Adjutant.

General Lance said the battalion had alway been very dear to him. 'You', he said, 'have been one of the reasons why we never had an invasion.'

Apart from the general enthusiasm, the function was a great success socially. A first rate dinner prepared by the club steward and staff, received unanimous praise, which was voiced by the commanding officer, who said 'We have never asked this club to help us in vain. The steward has always come forward. He is a Home Guard, and that may well be the reason he has done so well.' (applause)

The Steward, Private Gay, of A Company, said in reply that he looked forward to the battalion's first reunion dinner at the club.

'Auld Lang Syne' concluded the evening.

Officers of the battalion gave many of the good things that went toward the success of the dinner, while entertainment was provided by Fred Morris and Jemmy Allen (comedians), John McHugh (tenor) with Teddy Holmes at the piano, and by Kuda Bux 'the man with the X-ray eyes'.

Organisation was in the hands of Captain Godly, Lieut Simmons and Private Gay, assisted by Captain Stilles and Lieuts Cook and Dray. Grace was said by the battalion padre."

15 Dec 1944 Better Bus Services Gravesend Messenger
"Improvements for Hartley Area

Several minor improvements in bus services serving the Hartley district are forecast following a conference recently between representatives of the London Passenger Transport Board and Dartford Rural District Council.

Reporting to Hartley Parish Council, Mr B Passmore Bishop said that nearly all the improvements asked for were granted and others promised.

There is to be an additional bus on service 490 to connect with a down train at Fawkham Station at 6.21, also an additional bus on Saturday evenings between Gravesend and Hartley.

Another extra bus from Ash at 3.53pm is to start almost at once.

Provided that trees on the route can be removed or lopped, extra accommodation on buses from Gravesend is to be provided by substituting double deckers for single decker buses.

Times of departure of buses from Fawkham Station are to be altered so that they leave 4 minutes later than the time of arrival of the 3.56 and 5.56pm trains.

Representations with regard to later evening services are to be made to the Minister of War Transport."

22 Dec 1944 (1) Reduction in Civil Defence (2) Local Ad Dartford Chronicle
Reduction in Civil Defence

"Farewell social for rural wardens

In view of certain reductions in civil defence in the Dartford Rural District area, a farewell social was held at Hartley Country Club on Saturday evening for head and senior wardens and officers in charge of casualty services.

The opportunity was taken by officers from the Ministry of Home Security, South Eastern Regional Office and Kent County Control to say a few words of appreciation for the wonderful work which had been accomplished by all branches of the civil defence General Services.

Mr TR Leigh, who introduced his colleague, Mr AB Ashbourne from the Inspector General's department, said he welcomed the opportunity for Mr Ashbourne to speak, as he had been Regional Officer for the area.

Mr Ashbourne said Wing Commander Sir John Hodsoll KCB, Inpsector General, regretted he was unable to be present, but he wished him (the speaker) to thank them for their splendid work. The Civil Defence General Service was one to which anyone could be proud to belong.

Major Hepburn, Deputy County Controller for Kent, said Dartford Rural had a remarkably fine record and he would like to say 'thank you' for all they had done.

Captain CS Bignell, Sub-Controller, replied on behalf of the Services.

The artists were Mr Bartholemew, Mrs Harrington, Mike Regan, Mr Siddals and 'Jock', with Mrs Howe as accompanist and Mr F Sutch (Deputy Sub-Controller) as MC and compere.

Refreshments were served, Mrs Lacy being the convenor, and there was dancing until midnight."

Property for Sale

(1) Education: Hartley to be in No4 NW Kent District - Gravesend area; (2) Modern 3 bed bungalow at Hartley - £795?.

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