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Actress Judy Campbell opened a fête in Grantham in 1944 to raise money for the Red Cross prisoner of war fund





Arthur and Mary Gamble/Campbell family lived at 7 Welby Gardens from 1921 to 1936, when they purchased Summer End on Barrowby Road, which had been St Edmund’s Nursing Home, writes Ruth Crook of Grantham Civic Society.

Their daughter Judy left Grantham in August 1935, the year before her parents’ move, to join the Coventry Repertory Company, and later worked as an actress in Liverpool.

In 1944 Judy, by then married to David Birkin, returned to her parent’s home to open a fête held in their garden, to raise money for the Red Cross prisoner of war fund.

The Garden Hotel
The Garden Hotel

Accompanying Judy was her mother in law, who had been working with the Nottingham prisoner of war committee. Mrs Birkin said that she had been doing so for three years, because she felt that it was the least that she could do.

The former house on Barrowby Road.
The former house on Barrowby Road.

Her own son had been held in a prisoner of war camp in Italy for two years and she had heard nothing about his whereabouts for a long time. She then received a telegram saying that he was free after walking 800 miles on a pair of leather soles that she had sent him in a Red Cross parcel. She said that she had often heard it said by ex-prisoners if it hadn’t been for their Red Cross Parcels, they would have starved. The fête raised over £240.



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