The charitable and social work of members of the congregation of the Methodist Church in Uppingham has been evident over the last century. Much of their activity has been documented in an Uppingham Local History Study Group publication Uppingham in Living Memory: Snapshots of Uppingham in the twentieth century part two: Uppingham in Peacetime. In the photo below, the members of the Sisterhood celebrate their jubilee in 1978.
In the following decades, members continued their fundraising activities, including raising funds for those effected by in events in Kosovo, and their work on behalf of two charities of the Methodist Church; Uppingham in Bloom and the Methodist Relief and Development Fund. Garden parties have been a popular method of fundraising, with large numbers attended events as documented in the local press.
From records at Leicestershire Record Office it has also been possible to see the dedicated membership of the Mothers’ Union over the last forty years. The Union, which seeks to promote stable marriage, family life and the protection of children, remains active in its work in local communities to this day. During the late 1960s and early 1970s, over 130 members in Uppingham were making regular contributions for the work of the Mother’s Union in the local community.
The Uppingham and Corby Boys Club
The idea for the Uppingham and Corby Boys Club was nurtured by a former pupil and Trustee of Uppingham School, whom was also a director of Stewart’s and Lloyd’s Company of Corby. Both organisations thought that social work would benefit the different nationalities that had settled locally, including Irish, Welsh, Scots, Germans, Lithuanians and Latvians. It aimed to promote the mental, spiritual and physical well-being of boys over fourteen and under nineteen years of age.
The club took shape in 1939 in Corby and became affiliated with the National Association of Boys Clubs. It occupied a ten-acre site of Corby House ,which contained a gymnasium, an open air swimming pool, games rooms, a dining hall, wood and metal work facilities, and a library. There were around 100 members before the club ceased to operate during the Second World War.
After 1945, the club developed into four houses, and by the late 1950s around 200 members, organised into “Overs” aged sixteen to eighteen and “Unders” aged fourteen to sixteen. There were also twenty voluntary helpers. Around half of the boys were from Uppingham, and half from Corby. The last record of the club from a government inspection in 1959 highly commended it’s work.
Activities undertaken in the club included aero and ship modelling, canoe building, sports car building, railway modelling, a radio group, photography, natural history, silkscreen printing, a skiffle group, evening classes, and a club magazine. There was also participation in the Duke of Edinburgh award scheme and activities away from the area, such as camping trips to Derbyshire.