Woodcraft Folk, Annual National Conference, Stafford

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Date:April 1952

Description:The Mayor, Alderman C E Fowke is introduced to a Danish member (name unknown) of the Woodcraft Folk movement at the annual national conference, held for the first time in Stafford. Looking on left to right are: Councillor Mrs E M Williams, Joint Leader of the Stafford Woodcraft Folk, Alderman C H Merrey, Managing Secretary of the Stafford and Stone Co-operative Society and Mr B Rawson of Sheffield, National President of the Woodcraft Folk.

A civic welcome was given to the delegates by the Mayor who said the organisations work was appreciated by the Magistrate’s courts, because it was a rarity for a member of a youth club to appear before either a juvenile or a senior court. He added the Woodcraft Folk organisation aims were the education and welfare of young members of society and once they got into an organisation like this, they are on the way to making good citizens. The Mayor said he was pleased that the Elfin Award in a national handicraft competition was won by Stanburn Elfin Group, Stafford, and Peter Oakley, of Stafford won second prize in a national logbook competition.

The conference was held at the Assembly Rooms in Tipping Street. On the platform with the Mayor and Mr Merrey was the National President of the Woodcraft Folk, Mr B Rawson of Sheffield, the Chairman of the Stafford and Stone Divisional Labour Party, Mr E T N Jervis, the Chairman of Stafford Trades and Labour Club, Mr Pat Plant, the joint Leaders of the Stafford Woodcraft Folk, Councillor Mrs E Williams and Mr R C Williams. The conference started on Saturday 12 April (Easter week-end) and was attended by 240 delegates from all parts of the country. Fraternal greetings were received from youth organisations in Denmark, France, Germany, Holland, Austria and Belgium. Questions were discussed mainly of educational interest and the best application of the newly-acquired leaders training school at West Hoathly in Sussex. They held a “Merry Moot” their name for a social with plays, songs, and folk dancing. Later they retired to Riverway School for their “indoor camp” and did their own cooking with help from the entertaining group. The conference continued on Sunday and the delegates set off to their widely-scattered homes on the morning of Easter Monday.

This photograph was published in the Staffordshire Newsletter on Saturday 19 April 1952. Reproduced by kind permission of the Staffordshire Newsletter who retain copyright.

Today (September 2021) Woodcraft Folk is a UK-based educational movement for children and young people. It was founded in 1925 and grown by volunteers, it became a registered charity in 1965 and a registered company limited by guarantee since 2012.The constitutional object of this youth organisation is "to educate and empower young people to be able to participate actively in society, improving their lives and others' through active citizenship."


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Creators: Staffordshire Newsletter - Creator

Donor ref:D4527-B6-NN-742 (201/45527)

Source: Staffordshire County Record Office

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