2 March 2024

WI marks centenary with celebration event

Burstwick Women’s Institute has marked its centenary with a celebration event at the village hall.

Spokeswoman Rose Angell said the group’s records showed that there had been a lot of correspondence around its formation in 1923, and it took about four months to finalise, with many meetings and letters to and from the Yorkshire County Federation and National Federation.

The first meeting of Burstwick WI took place officially on November 23, 1923, with 14 members on the committee and 39 members joining.

In 1924 the WI sung Jerusalem for the first time. The hymn was specially chosen for the WI and adopted because of its links to the suffrage movement. It was first sung at the AGM in London and would have been sung at Burstwick’s first AGM – and it continues to be a tradition to this day.

Rose added: “We are proud of the committee from 1923 who had the foresight to form our WI and join such a worldwide organisation.

“Over the years Burstwick WI has thrived with as many as 45 members at one time.

“Our present-day committee, which includes members from 1977 and 1980, will continue to do their utmost to keep our WI growing.

“Since the pandemic our membership has fallen, but we have welcomed four new members this year and hopefully we may in the future welcome a few more.”

The celebration evening featured a buffet supper and entertainment by the Hornsea Ukulele Group, who invited members to join in and contributed to the party atmosphere.

Rose said: “During the year members embroidered squares to make a stained-glass window effect. Our president Alison Brown put all this together and it is a beautiful keepsake for Burstwick WI to keep.

“We finished the evening off with a most delicious piece of cake made by Alison and toasted with a glass of fizz.

“It was a very successful celebration on such a memorable occasion.”