Batons and tea in Royston to mark centenary of Women’s Institute

The ladies celebrating 100 years of the WI with the Royston town crier. PICTURE: David Gray.

The ladies celebrating 100 years of the WI with the Royston town crier. PICTURE: David Gray. - Credit: Archant

A special baton travelling the country to mark the 100th anniversary of the Women’s Institute has now passed through the hands of members of the Royston branch.

The baton was walked over the heath by members of the Therfield and Kelshall WI and then handed over at the Royston Golf Club.

It was then paraded through Royston by the town crier and members of both the Royston WI morning and afternoon groups to the Market Hill Rooms where nearly 100 members of institutes throughout the area had gathered for afternoon tea and entertainment.

Songs from every era of the WI were sung by members with gusto.

Between songs, afternoon group secretary Jean Emes gave a history of the development of the WI.


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There was a craft stall with a scrap book of memories displayed for people to browse through.

At the end of the tea, the baton was handed over to members of Buntingford WI so they could carry on their celebrations with a treasure hunt and a cheese and wine event.

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The baton is travelling the length and breadth of the country, and will finish its trip at the annual meeting next month at the Royal Albert Hall in London.

The centenary baton set off from Anglesey, where the first WI meeting was held in 1915, to travel throughout the 69 federations in England, Wales and the islands to celebrate the links between individual groups.

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