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George Lewis and Sir Richard Summers at Castle Fire Brick Fete for Employees"

Elm Brickworks, Buckley

1 August 1953

This article appeared in The Chronicle on 1st August 1953.





They were singing and laughing in the rain on the Castle Fire Brick recreation field on Saturday.

There were hundreds there - brick-makers from Buckley and Buttington, their wives, sweethearts and children and they were not going to allow their spirits to be damped as the rain came down at their annual fete and sports. The rain, of course, did curb things a bit, and most of the time was spent in a couple of large marquees, but the fun and games went on with an enthusiasm infused by the management, who, as they have done for the past eight years, dug deep into the funds to give their "big family" another communal treat in appreciation of their services during the year…And rain or no rain, the workers and their companions made the best of it.

Conceived at the end of the war (following a "welcome home" to the workers from the Forces) by one of the Directors (Mr. G. H. Alletson) who, to the regret of all, missed Saturday's event through illness, this fete at once caught on, and now, as Mr. Richard Summers (Chairman of the Directors) said at the opening ceremony "it has become an institution - a part of the Castle organisation and a part of the Castle friendship and mutual understanding."

The brass band of Summers's Steelworks (Castle Fire Brick is a subsidiary Company of the great John Summers and Sons Ltd.) came along to play selections under the conductorship of Mr. H. Parry, and although perhaps the usual attendance of about 750 was down a little, all present were soon enjoying themselves.

First of all, they sang a hymn composed by the Rev. E. Wynn Parry, of Buckley, "Heavenly Father, God Almighty" and then Mr. Lewis welcomed Mr. and Mrs. Summers, and said he hoped everyone would enjoy themselves.


The only serious note of the afternoon was struck by Mr. Richard Summers when he referred to the brick industry. But it was an encouraging message he had, for he foresaw a demand for bricks for many years to come. "On the management side" he said. "we shall do all we can to produce as many bricks as possible to help in re-housing the nation". Much had been done and much remained to be done, he said and there was no greater security for a nation than to have its citizens comfortably housed in traditional homes made of brick. Mr. Summers paid tribute to the organisers of the fete and spoke particularly of the efforts of the secretary (Mr. J. Hewitt).

In appreciation of his services, Mrs. Summers then presented a gift to Mr. Hewitt on behalf of the Directors and in a word of thanks Mr. Hewitt said he would carry on while they wanted him to do.

Mrs. Summers opening the fete, expressed a special Coronation Year wish that Castle would go on upwards all the time. She felt sure they would all join with her too in wishing their young Queen a long, happy and successful reign.

Mr. G. Hocking (Butting ton Works) in proposing a vote of thanks, said they had now become one big family. Mr. T. A. Davies (Old Works) seconded, and a bouquet was presented to Mrs. Summers by six-year old Marion Evans.

After the opening came the fun. Punch and Judy and marionette shows were given by Mr. Jack Evans of Shotton, all the visitors sat down to an excellent tea and gifts of toys, books etc. were handed out to the children.

An enjoyable concert was given by the following artistes: Duets and solos, Florence Williams (Chester) and Joan Chesterton (Treuddyn) and Haydn Carrington, Coedpoeth (tenor) and Whitford Williams (baritone); Will Morris, Chester (entertainer); R. Lloyd Jones, Hoole (conjuror). Mr. Tom Roberts of Connah's Quay was the accompanist.

Mr. David Hughes was chairman of the organising committee, which had been planning the fete for months.

About half a dozen of the Castle men could not be present for they were looking after the kilns at the works, but they were not forgotten, and tea was sent along to them from the fete ground.


The officials were: Chairman, Mr. David Hughes, secretary, Mr. John Hewitt, starter, Mr. T. A. Davies, announcer, Mr. F. M. Johnson, committee, Messrs E. Griffiths, Ralph Catherall, Emrys Jones, T. A. Davies, Syd Jones, Frank Hughes, Syd Ellis, H. Beech, J. Coleclough, Sam Bewley, J. Catherall, C. Arrowsmith, F. M. Johnson: Stewards, Messrs. J. Schaeffer, Ralph Williams, T. J. Williamson, Jack Jones, Ernest Jones, Trevor Davies, E. Gittens, Arthur Hayes, R. Linton, R. Mannifield and the committee.


The weather cleared in the evening when the sports were held. The results were:-

Girls 5 and under: 1, Norma Kendrick; 2. Ida Christiana; 3 Eira Jones. Boys 5 and under; 1, Stewart Williams; 2 Keith Kelsall; 3 Herbert Lewis; Girls 6-7 1, Megan Iball, 2 Jeanette Smallwood; 3 June Davies. Boys 6-7 1 Michael Lamb, 2 Peter Murphy; 3 Newton Edwards; Girls 8-9 1 Joyce Hughes; 2 Valerie Lamb; 3 Susan Catherall. Boys 8-9 1 Michael Williams; 2 Allan Ellis; 3 Graham Johnson. Girls 10-11 1 Kenneth Mannifield; 2 Ed. Davies; 3 David K. Jones. Girls 12-14 Eileen Lewis; 2 Barbara Iball; 3 R. Johnson. Boys 12-14 1 Glyn Jones; 2 Barrie Jones; 3 Michael Hughes.

Girls' skipping race: 1 Irene Lewis; 2 Barbara Iball; 3 Barbara Edwards. Boys 15-16: 1 Terry Mannifield; 2 Joe Evans; 3 H. Beech. Girls' tie race: 1 B. Edwards and E. Evans; 2 B. Iball and G. Jones; 3 R. Lamb and Rita Johnson. Boys' tie leg race: Terry and Kenneth Mannifield; 2 Malcolm Jones and Michael Hughes; 3 G. Kelly and Brian Shone. Girls' egg and spoon (up to age 10) 1 Irene Lewis; 2 Rosemary Lamb; 3 Gwyneth Jones. Boys' egg and spoon (up to age 10) 1 H. Beech, 2 E. Beech, 3 Barrie Jones. Girls' egg and spoon (up to age 11-16) 1 Hazel Jones, 2 Betty Powell, 3 Joyce Sharp.

100 yard men: 1 Reg Linton, 2 Frank Hughes, 3 J. Gregory. Cycle race: 1 Gordon Davies; 2 Harry Beech, 3 Wm. Harrison. Egg and spoon (ladies) 1 Evelyn Price, ……

rest of article is missing



Author: Chester Chronicle


Year = 1953

Month = August

Day = 1

Event = Leisure

Gender = Male

People = Couple

Work = Heavy Industry

Extra = 1950s

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