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Bugbrooke WI History


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WI in the 1940s

WI in the 1960s

Year ? WI in the 1950s WI in the 1970's In the picture to the left
WI in 1976 In the picture to the left WI Keep Britain Tidy Campaign 1980      

Click on image to enlarge

A Potted History of Bugbrooke W I 

Bugbrooke and Kislingbury formed a branch of the National Women's Institute in 1928. Eighteen years later, in 1946, the two villages formed separate Institutes and went their own ways. It is interesting to note that the original subscription was 2/- (lOp) per annum. In 1999 this had risen to £13.75 and for 2010 members pay just £29.50. The WI is a national organisation and this subscription supports our county federation and the head office in London. From here, national campaigns such as SOS for Honey Bees are organised, and the WI is part of international coalitions like Stop Climate Chaos and the Associated Countrywomen of the World (ACWW) which supports poverty-stricken women and their families in third-world countries. 

Back to Bugbrooke. We have recently voted to continue singing Jerusalem to open our meetings, which is followed by a short business session and then our speaker for the month which can range from Hearing Dogs for the Deaf to Native Indian Flutes. We have a Craft Circle which tackles anything from Whizzy Knitting to Scrap booking. Our sporting programme of Darts and Skittles is well supported and provides welcome social contact between Institutes. 

Here are some of the highlights in our history : 
• A member has represented us at a Buckingham Palace garden party. 
• Courses have been taken at the WI's own Denman College near Oxford. 
• We have supported events at Annual County Shows. 
• A member won the Table Tennis County Championship 
• A communal effort was made in compiling a Chronicle on "A Year in the Life of our Village" which won joint first prize and is now lodged at the County Records Office. 
• We contributed a piece on Bugbrooke to the Northamptonshire Village Book published in 1989 and again in 1997. 
• We won the competition to design the new WI County Badge.
• Bugbrooke is represented at the National Annual Meeting, always a great occasion. Originally held at the Royal Albert Hall in London, due to increased numbers Intermediate and Triennial Meetings are now held at various venues around the Country. 
• We celebrated the Millennium by making a collage of the history of the village. This is now hanging in the small hall at the Community Centre. 
• We also marked the Millennium by having a tree planted at Brixworth Country Park and by taking part in the village Mystery Mosaic Play. 
• In 2002 our Craft Circle made Story Sacks for the government initiative Surestart for under-privileged children in the St James area of Northampton. 
• In 2003 we started to serve refreshments at the regular Blood Donor sessions in the village. 
• In 2004 we helped the Girl Guides with various craft projects. We also began donating homemade cakes to the Cynthia Spencer Hospice, a countywide initiative. 
• In 2007 2 members joined a local EcoTeam which cascaded information on becoming more environmentally friendly and saving money on fuel, etc. They also attended a national conference in London addressed by Government ministers and other well-known speakers. 
• In 2008 Craft Circle members entered an Ecovision Fashion Show. Their beautiful patchwork jacket made it through to the finals. 
• An enthusiastic team of gardeners also entered a design for the garden of the new WI house. 
• In 2009 we thoroughly enjoyed' serving the refreshments at the Church Fete. 

The WI has evolved from its humble beginnings in Canada in 1897 when a farmer's wife Adelaide Hoodless lost a child due to contaminated milk. Adelaide determined to better women's knowledge of hygiene. Her ideas caught on like wildfire with WI's spreading across Canada and to the UK in 1915. Today the WI remains the largest of all women's organisations and our objectives remain the same - 

"To be a social and educational organisation, offering women the opportunity of friendship - working together to improve the quality of life in the community and to enable development of individual skills and talent. H 

May future generations continue to enjoy the WI.


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