This year the Mothers Union Christmas Party will be held at Greenmount Golf Club on Tuesday the 12th of December 6.30pm for 7pm. We will be joined later in the evening by Tottington Brass Band who will accompany our Carol singing, a festive end to the year.

As December approached and party planning was on the agenda I started to think back to the Mothers Union Christmas Parties I first attended over 26 years ago.

The Party was always held in the Church Hall, this was well before it was modernised. The Christmas Fairies (AKA the Committee) had worked their magic and the tables, decorated with holly, red napkins and crackers looked very festive. After a meal of either turkey, ham or salmon salad with all the trimmings, followed by trifle and mince pies we were all ready for the main event… The Concert!

The same group of Committee members, Marion Sutcliffe, Elsie Hare, Kath Rigby, Jean Crabtree, Sandra Cain, Vera Rigby, Pauline Cundliffe, Glo Jupp and Joan Dickinson all ably directed and choreographed by Pauline Cartridge were ready and waiting to entertain us. Our very own Concert Party!!

The items were all performed and mimed to music ‘taped’ by Paulines husband John, our DJ for the night and whilst it may not have stood up to scrutiny at The Palace Theatre, we loved it.

Who can forget Kath Rigby with her raincoat and beret, word perfect as Victoria Woods “Kimberley” or Elsie Hare miming to Gracie Fields ‘Biggest Aspidistra in the World’. Joan Dickinson could never remember the words or the moves, we thought she was doing it on purpose and were in fits of laughter.

Not only did Pauline direct the show but she provided all the outfits. Her attic had racks of theatrical costumes, amassed from her years in SADOS (St Annes Dramatic & Operatic Society). I did point out she always seemed to have the most glamorous outfit but she just smiled and said it was one of the perks of the job.

Every year there was at least one item that took us by surprise, ‘The Spice Girls’ is definitely on that list. I can still picture Jean Crabtree in a red wig and Union Jack mini dress as Ginger Spice and Elsie, well in her 70’s, dancing around with blonde pig tails as Baby Spice.

A few years later during a medley from South Pacific the glamorous blond that appeared in a grass skirt and coconut shell bra turned out to be our dear Vicar Hugh – how did Pauline persuade him to do that? Even Alison was taken by surprise!! What fun we had!!

Many of these lovely ladies are no longer with us but they are remembered fondly, especially at Christmas time. Thanks for the memories ladies, you were amazing!!


Wishing all our members, especially those no longer able to join us at our meetings, a very Merry Christmas and a Happy and Healthy New Year.