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Fitzwilliam of Milton

Rushden Echo, 18th March 1910, transcribed by Kay Collins

Presentation at Higham Ferrers
Fitzwilliam Estate Tenants’ – Gift to Mr Woodforde

The esteem in which Mr L B Woodforde is held by the tenants of the Fitzwilliam estate at Higham was manifested at a gathering which took place at the Green Dragon Hotel, Higham, on Monday afternoon. The Mayor (Ald. Owen Parker) presided, and among those also present were:- Mr Woodforde, Mr W Hirst Simpson, Dr J Crew, Ald. W Spong, the Rev G M Davidson, the Rev G H Bigg (Rector of Harrowden), Ald. T Patenall, Councillors F Brazier and A E Wright, and Messrs F Jos. Simpson, C S R Palmer, W Holton, J Tite, E S Tett, W H Thompson, W M Beaver, Jos. Dickens, Mather, E H Horrell, K Flintham, and H Thompson.

The loyal toast having been honoured at the call of the Mayor, Mr W H Simpson proposed the health of Mr Woodforde, and said they were there to offer Mr Woodforde, their guest, a little

Tribute of Regard

at a time when his official connection with them was about to cease. In all their dealings with Mr Woodforde they had invariably met with the greatest courtesy, and their guest would be followed by their hearty good wishes for his future. (Applause)

The toast met with a very cordial reception. Ald. Spong said that as the oldest tenant at Higham he had been honoured with the duty of handing to Mr Woodforde a small token of their esteem. Mr Woodforde had treated every tenant with kindness, courtesy, and impartiality, and when they heard that he was giving up the agency they were all heartily sorry. He could assure Mr Woodforde that the present was the spontaneous outcome of

The Tenants’ Goodwill.

(Applause) Much good work had been done in Higham while Mr Woodforde had been agent for the estate, and they hoped that whoever took Mr Woodforde’s place would do as he had done. (Applause) He had the greatest pleasure in handing to Mr Woodforde the present subscribed for by the tenants.

The gift consisted of a set of handsome solid silver fruit dishes, of an old Irish potato ring pattern, bearing the following inscription:- “Presented to L B Woodforde, Esq., on his resignation of the agency of the Fitzwilliam estates at Higham Ferrers, Wansford, and Harrowden, as a token of esteem and regard from a number of the tenants. March 1910.”

Mr Woodforde, in acknowledging the gift, said he was very grateful to them. The gift would give him the greatest possible pleasure, as it would also Mrs Woodforde and the family. He did not know what he had done to deserve such

A Handsome Present.

He had been pleased to come among them, and if he had treated them with courtesy—well, they had also treated him well. It was a disappointment that circumstances made it necessary for him to retire from the estate, but he had taken an office at Stamford and he hoped he might be successful. (Applause) He hoped that the name of Fitzwilliam had not suffered at his hands. He had treid to do his duty to the owners of the estate, and he had been very loyally supported by those who had worked with him at the Milton estate office and by Mr Thompson at the Higham office. (Applause) Without that help, he could not have done what he had done. He was very grateful to the Mayor for his presence. The Mayor and himself had had many

Talks at Higham,

and there was no man who was keener for the welfare of the Borough than was Mr Parker. (Hear,hear) Largely through the Mayor, the relations between the Fitzwilliam estate and the Town Council had been much happier than they formerly were. He believed they would get on well with the new agent, Mr Brooke, and in conclusion he again heartily thanked them for their kindness. (Applause)

The Rev G H Bigg proposed the health of the Mayor in eulogistic terms, and congratulated those present on having a gentleman like Alderman Parker at the head of the municipality.

The toast was very cordially received, and, in reply, the Mayor said his association with that function had been extremely pleasant. He could as the result of his

Personal Relations

with Mr Woodforde fully bear out what had been said by Mr Simpson and Mr Spong, and they would not be surprised when he told them that the great kindness, courtesy, and ready sympathy which they, as tenants, had individually experienced was always extended to him (the Mayor) when he was representing the Town Council and Mr Woodforde was representing the owner of the estate. The great pride felt by each one of them in their historic Borough was felt, he was sure, by Mr Woodforde, who was ever ready to do anything he could to maintain the dignity of the Borough and contribute to what he hoped would be its continued and permanent success. (Applause)

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