BAND OF HOPE
There were many problems caused by alcohol in Victorian England and this was the name of the juvenile branch of the Church of England Temperance Society, founded in Leeds in 1847. In 1888 the local group was superintended by the headmaster and mistress of the national schools, namely William Galpin and Miss Lavinia Hope, who with a group of 86 young members, used the theme `we should like to see all our boys and girls join this happy band where they will receive help and guidance and sound advice, which bear fruit in later life'. By the following year the membership had gone up to 125.
Regular meetings and activities were encouraged, at least up until 1910, with annual prizes being awarded which in 1902 were made to Emily Bone, the May boys, Florence Honess, Fred Latter and Alfred Baldock. The group were active in taking part and supporting a “Home Industries Exhibition” that took place in the Boys' school on Wednesday April 3rd 1907. At that event certificates for good conduct and attendance, together with the C E T S bronze medal for those who had obtained full marks were presented by Mr C E Fletcher to:- Eva Cozens, Annie Excell, Florence Excell, Ethel Vinten, Elsie Bone, Albert Norton, and Alfred Cheeseman, with certificates to:- Hilda Castle, May Honess, Alice Kimmings, Alice Crouch, Dorothy Childs, Susan Tester, Fred Watson, Chas. Singyard, Sydney Packham, George Medhurst, Ada Mercer, Hettie Tutt, Victor Masters and Albert Pattenden. When the Band was re-opened for the winter sessions that same year on Saturday October 26th at 4.30, it was as usual in the Parish Room, but for children living at a distance a different day was organised, to be at 4.00 o'clock in the Girls' school.
At this time a new branch was started at Laddingford, using the same instructions as at Yalding, with meetings held on alternate Wednesdays at 4.00 o'clock in the school. As mentioned above no accounts are recorded after 1910.