SNIPPETS from the 1940S

In the decade of the Second World War, Capel readied itself for possible invasion and then things mostly returned to normal...

February 1941 - MORE STIRRUP PUMPS

The report of the Head Warden on the organisation of fire watching and fire-fighting parties stated that a further stirrup pump* had been ordered to be placed at the disposal of fire parties. Half-filled sandbags had been distributed to all parishes, and sand was now being supplied to householders. It was hoped that the work on the new shelters at Five Oak Green, Langton and Pembury would commence shortly.  * Manually operated, stirrup pumps allowed water to be directed in a jet of up to 10 metres and were provided to extinguish magnesium incendiary (fire) bombs dropped from enemy aircraft.

February 1941 - CAPEL: WAR WEAPONS WEEK. Capel more than trebled the amount aimed by raising £13,165. The target was £4,000. 

February 1941 - WOMEN'S INSTITUTE: The monthly meeting was presided over Mrs. Smith, and a lecture on the history of the Institute was given by Mrs. Johnson, Chairman of the West Kent Federation. She also judged the competition for a sentence containing all the letters of the alphabet.


On the grounds of alleged persistent cruelty, Mrs. Maud Mary Chapman applied for a separation order against her husband, Charles George Chapman, of Tudeley, and for the custody of the child. Mrs. Chapman stated that after her marriage to respondent at Tunbridge Wells in 1932 they went to live at Tudeley, and there was now one child, a boy five. For the past four years her husband had been cruel to her by striking her. Mr. Havard, the Probation Officer, spoke of visiting the husband. He said that on several occasions husband and wife had come to blows. The magistrates granted the application and ordered the husband to contribute 15s. (about £30 today) to his wife and 5s. in respect of the child.

June 1941 - TWO GOOD WORKMEN Wanted for Fruit Farm; cottages available: Plaxtol district; must be good cherry-pickers; work for wives. Apply Tompsett, Capel Grange Farm, Five Oak Green.

August 1941 - LOST: Sunday evening. Tunbridge Wells Station. Brooch containing RAF photo; sentimental value. Finder please return Tarling Mill House, Five Oak Green.

November 1941 - GOLDEN WEDDING 

Mr and Mrs C Beech, of Catt's Place, celebrate their golden wedding today (Friday). They were married at St. Andrew's Church by the late Rev. J. Pope. Mrs Beech being a Miss Wells, one of six sisters all still living, who resided in Tudeley. Mr. Beech was born at Queen Street. They had five children, but only one now survives, one losing his life in the last war. Mr. Beech served for five years in India in the 7th Royal Fusiliers, and in 1899 lost both his legs, but this has not prevented him from leading an active life. He has done his own garden as well as that for others in the neighbourhood. Mr. Beech is now 76 and his wife 72.

January 1942 - FIVE OAK GREEN CONGREGATIONAL CHURCH - A large parcel of knitted comforts has been dispatched from this Church for the benefit of the Russian Army. The wool was subscribed for and the work done by members of the congregation.

November 1947 - Resident cook required. Good wages and conditions, uniform provided. Capel Isolation Hospital, Five Oak Green.

December 1947 - Mr William Roberts, who died last week at the age of 80, was for 17 years licensee at the Alders Inn, Capel. In retirement he lived in Crowborough.

January 1948 - The Saturday bus service from Paddock Wood to Tonbridge came under fire at Capel Parish Council with locals from Five Oak Green and Tudeley complaining they were regularly left standing in the road with no hope of getting on the already full-up service.

February 1948 - Before a mixed audience, Capel Gardeners' Society showed a film entitled "Garden Pests and Tomato Growing."

March 1948 - A dance organised by the Five Oak Green Women's and Girls' Club was held at the Goldsmid Hall where Mr A. E Ward provided music with gramophone records. Mr H. Firmore was Master of Ceremonies.