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22 May 1859, Edinburgh M.D., Kt, KStJ, D.L., LL.D., Sportsman, Writer, Poet, Politician, Justicer, Spiritualist Crowborough, 7 July 1930

Crowborough's Hospital Bazaar

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Crowborough's Hospital Bazaar. Speeches by Sir A. Conan Doyle and Sir E. Wild is an article published in the Kent & Sussex Courier on 8 october 1926.

The article include a report of Arthur Conan Doyle's introduction for Sir Ernest Wild, KC (Recorder of London) at a bazaar at the Waterloo Hall, Crowborough on 6 october 1926. Lady Conan Doyle was present.

Crowborough's Hospital Bazaar

Kent & Sussex Courier (8 october 1927, p. 3)

Speeches by Sir A. Conan Doyle and Sir E. Wild.

A distinguished gathering assembled in the Waterloo Hut, Crowborough, on Wednesday, when a successful bazaar, organised by Lady Rigby Swift in behalf of the Cottage Hospital, was opened by Sir Ernest Wild, H.C. (Recorder of London), who was introduced by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. The Hon. Sir Justice Rigby Swift was among those present, and the Chairman was supported by Lady Conan Doyle, Sir Ernest and Lady Wild, Mr. Edmund Maude (Chairman and Treasurer of the Cottage Hospital), Mr. F. H. Gresson (Vice-Chairman), Miss H. E. Mason (Secretary), Mr. John Glynn and Dr. Drake.

At the outset Sir Arthur Conan Doyle paid a high tribute to Lady Rigby Swift, who, he said, had worked indefatigably in organising the bazaar which, he felt sure, under her guidance would prove a great success. The ladies and gentlemen also worked hard, and their efforts would surely be rewarded that day. Sir Arthur also paid a tribute to Mr. N. F. Sinclair the Hospital's Hon. Consulting Surgeon to whom they owed a sincere debt or gratitude for all he had done. The Hon. Consulting Staff had been a great source of strength to the institution. In introducing Sir Ernest Wild, Sir Arthur hinted that when he retired from his professional duties Sir Ernest would come to live at Crowborough. He would then find that the problems associated with law and litigation would have to give way to the more complex and deeper problems associated with gorse. Sir Ernest had been a great criminal lawyer, and was now a judge and presided at the Old Bailey. He was one of the only two judges he knew who employed humanitarian methods in dealing with criminals, and as a matter of coincidence the other judge to whom he referred (Sir Rigby Swift) was in the room at that moment (applause). The centre pin of civilisation added Sir Arthur, was to have a strong and uncorruptible bench of judges, whose position and independence should be impregnable and unassailable, supported by an uncorruptible police force.

Sir Ernest Wild, after jocularly reprimanding Sir Arthur for having delivered an inappropriate but clever address, congratulated Crowborough on the duality of its tribute to those who fell in the War. There were, he said, two schools of thought relating to war memorials; one raised cenotaphs and stone memorials to their dead, while the other school remembered its dead by earing for the living. Crowborough had done both, and in addition to a fine cenotaph, had equipped and enlarged the Cottage Hospital, which had previously been a totally inefficient building, with inadequate resources. He had received a good deal of encouraging information, about the War Memorial Hospital, and found that the work it had done was nothing to that was contemplated. There were 100 patients admitted to the Hospital in 1922, but for the first six months of 1926 no less than 97 had been admitted, so that the demand for medical attention was rapidly increasing. Sir Ernest paid a high tribute to the work of the Medical Officers and the Hon. Consulting Staff, and added that he had visited the institution and found everything wonderfully omen and up-to-date. The work contemplated was the erection of an X-Ray Room, and other necessary adjuncts, and it was also proposed to add another storey on to of the existing premises, and it was chiefly for that reason that they embarked that day on raising the necessary funds for the work. He also noticed that the Provident Scheme had paid 100 per cent of the cost of patients, and in addition had put aside did branch of hospital work. To all intents and purposes the Hospital was the highest point in Crowborough, it was a beacon light set on a hill — a place of love and philanthropy. He considered that the principal of self-help associated with the Hospital was to be admired. There was to-day too much of doing everything for other people and expecting them to do nothing for themselves. The Hospital Authorities did not ignore those who could not afford to pay, and consequently issued letters as in other Hospitals, and that was the onto of the voluntary system, that where a person could pay he should do so. He would be sorry to see all our Hospitals and such like institutions State-aided affairs, and that was the biggest argument in favour of self-help — self-help for the patients and for the contributors.

Mr. Edmund Maude, in moving a vote of thanks to Sir Ernest Wild, said that the desire of the Hospital Committee was not only to keep the Hospital up-to-date, but to so develop its functions that it would be in advance of immediate requirements, because Crowborough was growing so rapidly. He had that day learned that the new rateable value of Crowborough, which, until recently bad been well under £30,000, had been placed at £40,885.

Mr. F. H. Gresson moved a vote of thank. to Lady Rigby Swift and her many helpers, and Sir Ernest Wild moved a vote of thanks to the Chairman.

Sir Ernest and Lady Wild and Sir Arthur and Lady Conan Doyle made a tour of the stalls, and later left in their motors well laden with flowers and produce.

The Organising Committee were Miss Jenkinson (Chairman), Lady Rigby Swift (Secretary), Mrs. Leggatt, Mrs. Branker, Mrs. H. D. Smith, Mrs. Smithwick, Mrs. Drake, Lady Le Hunte and Mrs. St. Quintin.

The stall-holders were:— Variety Stall — Mrs. Brancker, Mrs. Smithwick; Poultry, Provisions, Fancy Work — Lady Bruce-Williams, Mrs. Leggatt, Lady Swift; Fancy Stall — Mrs. Eyre, Mrs. Winter; Garden Stall — Miss Hurtley; Baskets, Bags, Toys — Mrs. Drake, Mrs. Tankard, Miss Clegg; Cakes, Teas, Refreshments — Mrs. S. A. Jones, Miss Hobden; China — The Hon. Mrs. Scott, Mrs. Holroyd, Mrs. Boyd; Fancy Stall — Mrs. Shairp; Household Requirements — Mr. H. D. Smith, Mr. Lawrence, Miss Myres; Treasure Tub — Mrs. St. Quintin, Miss L. Clements.