Judith Ellis

page from scrapbook
Lady Agnes Noel's Scrapbook, with photo of Campden May Day revels
page from scrapbook
Lady Agnes Noel's Scrapbook, with programme featuring Campden Minstrels
Elderly couple on steps
Lord and Lady Gainsborough at Foxcote House 1911
Group on steps
Lady Catherine Berkeley at Foxcote House, with her family
Group c. 1911
Lady Catherine Berkeley with her staff at Foxcote House c.1911
Dorothy Stanley
Dorothy Stanley

Two contrasting scrapbooks

In the Archives we have several scrapbooks that have been donated over the years. They usually contain photographs of family and Campden events, newspaper cuttings and programmes. Two scrapbooks in particular give us a feel for the contrasting times.

One was compiled by Lady Agnes Noel in the late 1800s and the other by Dorothy Stanley in the 1950s. As we can imagine, Lady Agnes visited the theatre regularly during her stays in London and collected the programmes. Together with newspaper reports of weddings and entertainments we have a glimpse of fashionable life at the time. But she was also involved in Campden events, so underneath the programme for the Gaiety Theatre we have a notice of the Variety Entertainment to raise money for Campden ‘Schools Enlargement Fund’.

Lady Agnes, daughter of the Earl of Gainsborough, was a regular visitor with her family to Foxcote House, near Ilmington, the home of the Berkeley Family and, again, there is evidence of this in the scrapbook and from some wonderful photos that we have, taken by Jesse Taylor in the early 1900s. This brings us to the link with Dorothy Stanley, nee Meadows, who donated a photo to us which was clearly taken at the same time, but of the staff – and round the back of the house! Lady Catherine Berkeley sits amongst her servants, not looking amused!  Dorothy’s aunt was a servant there, and may well have attended on Lady Agnes when she visited.

Dorothy Stanley, nee Meadows, was born in Campden, but her family came from Exton where they were in the service of the Earl of Gainsborough. Dorothy had many stories to tell about growing up in Campden and her scrapbooks show her wide-ranging interest in local life, with cuttings and photos. We have compiled an index of Dorothy’s scrapbooks, from 1953-1993, which are very useful in answering enquiries.

If anyone is interested in doing the same for Lady Agnes’s scrapbook we would be glad to hear from you.,,

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