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(from our own correspondent.)

The annual soiree in aid of the Presbyterian Church funds was held on the 14th instant. The weather was all that could be desired, and there was a very large gathering of friends from all parts. The Main School was decorated with great taste for the occasion, and the tables were literally covered with every conceivable delicacy, the ladies rivalling each other in their efforts. For Mount Somers, Mrs. Hood, Mrs Mcßae, Mrs Rutheaford, Mrs Tomlinson, and Mrs McGregor; for Alford Forest, Mrs McFarlane, Mrs Muirhead, Mrs Grieves, and Miss McNeil, had tables. Mr Bibmer, with his usual kindness, presented a splendid lot of apples, which, with all kinds of choice flowers provided by the ladies, and neatly arranged, lent an additional charm to the tables. The Rev. J. B. Westbrooke opened proceedings with prayer, directly after tea, and then gave an amusing and instructive address, ( hanking the ladies and all friends heartily for their untiring attention in the arrangements of the festival. A full musical programme was provided, the first part consisting of hymns from Moody’s collection, led by the Main School children, and the master, who accompanied them on the harmonium, those most especially noticeable being “Jewels,” and “ What shall the harvest beThe second part consisted of secular pieces, as follows ; Song, Mr Henry Knight, “ Beautiful isle of the sea.” The school children gave, ‘ The merry sunshine Mr Dillow, from Methven, “ Sorry for this,” and others, which were encored. “ The darling of our home,” was sang very pleasingly by Mr Knight. Mr Morrison gave “ Grandfather’s clock,” and Miss K. Knight, “ Mother’s parting gift.” Miss Charters and Miss Lambic sang “ The gipsy’s warning,” witli good effect, and Miss Charters and Miss Symes contributed a duet. Mr and Mrs Knight sang “ The minute gun at sea.” Recitations and readings were given in good style by Messrs Tomlinson, M'Ncill, and Ross. Songs by the children and Mr Price, followed by the “ National anthem,” brought this part of the programme to a close. Mr Puddicombe, of Mount Somers, expressed his delight at finding social pleasures and happy gatherings in places far from town, the whole affair reflecting the highest credit on all concerned, and said ho would always assist in every way.

A tent was pitched outside, where, during the evening, refreshments were dispensed continuously by Mrs Grieves and Miss M’Neill. After the Rev. J. B. Westbrooke had thanked all concerned for their liberal supplies and hearty welcome, he took leave of the meeting, and some hours were spent joyously to the strains of Messrs Price, Dillow, and M'C’oy, who not only volunteered their services for the occasion, but were unwearied in their exertions. The festival was generally pronounced the most successful, in every respect, ever held at Alford Forest, and the funds of the church will be considerably augmented in consequence.

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Bibliographic details

SOIREE AT ALFORD FOREST., Ashburton Guardian, Volume 2, Issue 323, 20 April 1881

Word Count

SOIREE AT ALFORD FOREST. Ashburton Guardian, Volume 2, Issue 323, 20 April 1881