The Friends of St Giles was founded in 1960 by a group of six local men, led by the vicar, Rev. Dr. Omand. In those days it was called ‘The Society’and its purpose was to raise money for the Church Restoration Fund.
Dr Omand obviously had contacts with the entertainment world as Johnny Morris was the Master of Ceremonies at a lottery held in April that year, and Coco the clown (of Bertram Mills circus) was invited to the fete in July.
Bridport shops and businesses were very good at supporting the lotteries and supplied, for instance:
7lbs bacon ————————— 1st prize
3 1/2lbs bacon ———————– 2nd prize
2lbs cheddar cheese —————— 15th prize
2cwt logs from Bradfords————– 16th prize
One year later the committee decided to include women as there was a considerable amount of catering involved! By 1965 it consisted of 7 ladies and 4 gentlemen.
In 1964 St Giles Fair was held. There were 19 stalls and they raised a total of £103:3s:2d. Pancake morning started in 1968. In 1976 there was a hotcross bun morning and cream teas and a gymkhaha. In 1977 a dog show was held and in 1978 the first Autumn lunch was held. In 1980 the mince pie and coffee morning evolved. Throughout the eighties coffee mornings were held twice a month until, by 1990 events matched those of today.
Nowadays the ‘Friends’
For more information please phone Diana Benjamin on 01297 489298 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org