Winthorpe Brownies 1970 - 2002

1st Wintorpe Brownies, on St George's Day Parade going into Newark Parish Church - about 1972.Mrs. Sheila Godfrey was Brown Owl of the 1st Winthorpe Brownies in the early 1970's. In 1973 Mrs. Jean Foden came along as a helper (Tawny Owl). The Brownies met on a Wednesday evening in the Village Hall although summer evenings were spent out of doors as much as possible. In the mid 1970's Sheila retired and Jean took over as Brown Owl. As in Sheila's day the pack was very successful in inter-pack competitions in the Newark area.

In 1977 meetings switched from the Village Hall to the newly erected Youth Centre. This gave the girls more room to play games and the adjoining field was good for games of rounders, etc. In 1981 Mrs. Hilary Drabble came as a helper, replacing Jean's daughter Alison. Example of activities quoted in Focal Point, August 1981: "The Brownies have had a busy summer term and fortunately the weather has been kind to us so that we could spend time out of doors. We have had a barbecue, a hike to Winthorpe Lake ending with refreshments at the home of Mr. and Mrs. Malone and a trip to Belton House with other Brownies and Guides from the district. Our last meeting before the holidays was spent in Mr. and Mrs. Packe's garden where the Brownies played games and had homemade squash and strawberry tarts very kindly provided by Mrs. Packe."

1st Winthorpe Brownies with Brown Owl Mrs. Sheila Godfrey.In 1982 there were 23 Brownies between the ages of 7 and 10, mostly girls from Winthorpe. In May that year Prince Charles visited Newark and two Brownies were chosen to line the route he took. In March 1983 Mrs. Drabble had to give up helping with the Brownies but a plea in Focal Point resulted in Mrs. Linda Richardson coming forward to help. Later in 1983 Mrs. Jean Foden retired as Brown Owl and Miss Susan Best took over with Linda continuing to help. The Brownies continued to thrive during this time. Susan married and became Mrs. Twemlow and in 1988 she retired. Mrs. Daphne Marshall, the District Commissioner at the time, took over to keep the Pack going and a plea was made in Focal Point for a new leader to come forward. Mrs. Liz Withers became the new Brown Owl in 1989 but in 1990 the Pack was temporarily suspended while she had a baby. It was hoped to re-start the Pack in September, 1991 but unfortunately the Withers family moved from Winthorpe.

1st Winthorpe Brownies with Brown Owl Mrs. Susan Tremlow at Wollaton Park, Nottingham - about 1985..There was no Brownie Pack in Winthorpe until in November, 1994 it was announced in Focal Point that a new Brownie Pack would be opening soon. Mrs. Christine Austwick (from Newark) became the Brown Owl of the 2nd Winthorpe Brownie Pack. It started with 10 enthusiastic young members. In 1995 they won the Annual Newark Area Toadstool Competition, a great achievement in only their first year. In 1998 they were awarded the Mayoress's Shield for Community Service. To achieve this they helped to clear up the churchyard, had a sponsored silence and swim, helped to pack shoppers' bags, delivered harvest festival gifts and raised money towards the Community Centre Project.

By 2001 the number of girls from the village had dwindled and the Pack was only kept going by helpers and girls from outside the area. Sadly Mrs. Austwick had to close the 2nd Winthorpe Brownies because of lack of interest. Will there ever be another Brownie Pack in Winthorpe?

Mrs. Jean Foden. February 2005.



Further reading can be found in

         1st Winthorpe Brownie Pack in Volume 2.