Two ladies from Westerham’s past were brought to life at the Westerham Town Partnership’s A Summertime Journey event on the town Green, a celebration of 100 years of local women and the centenary the WI and the Suffragete movement .
Visitors to the event heard Marril Gibson as Lucy Anne Evelyn (Deane) Streatfeild, CBE chatting to Christina Cusick as Eleanor Brusk about their life and times in Westerham.
Lucy Deane Streatfeild was a civil servant, a social worker, and one of the first female factory inspectors in the United Kingdom; she was one of the first to raise concerns about the health risks arising from exposure to asbestos.
She was the daughter of Lieutenant-Colonel Bonar Millett Deane and the Hon. Lucy Boscawen (the sister of Evelyn Boscawen, 6th Viscount Falmouth), and was born in Madras, India, on 31 July 1865. She married architect Granville Edward Stewart Streatfeild DSO, OBE on 16 March 1911. She was appointed a Commander of the Order of the British Empire in the 1918 New Year Honours.
Deane was a supporter of the suffragette movement, being both a member of the National Union of Women’s Suffrage Societies and, in 1913, helping to organise a suffragette pilgrimage from Westerham and district, to the union’s rally of 50,000 women in Hyde Park.
Amongst her other interests, Deane was a leading member of the Women’s Institute (founding a local branch in Westerham), and was involved in amateur theatre production.
Lucy Deane died on 3 July 1950 in Westerham
Eleanor Laird Busk. Eleanor lived at The Grange in Westerham. A local philanthropist, she set up a hospital for the WWI wounded. In 1922 she founded Westerham’s Library by making a gift of the land on which it was built. During WWII Eleanor established the local Women’s Voluntary Service.
During WWII Eleanor established the local Women’s Voluntary Service. She also founded the first baby clinic in rural Kent.
The A Summertime Celebration featured a themed tea tent, psychic Sadie, face painting, an exhibition by the WI, stalls and children’s activities, advice on antiques from Chrissie Masters of the town’s Design Gallery, and live music from Ian Fox, Sandra Gayer from Godstone’s Orpheus Centre, Lauren Kirk, the Alpacas, Foot Down, and Hobo.
The Westerham Town Partnership Event was sponsored by Westerham Town Council, Sevenoaks District Arts Council, Sevenoaks District Council.
Photos by kevin black show Christina Cusick and Marril Gibson and Chrissie Masters giving out antiques advice.