Memories from Shirley Miles – Ice Skating April Fool


Someone, and I forget who, came up with an April Fool joke. We decided to advertise that the pool would be turned into an ice rink from 10 – 12 noon for one day only on 1st April. We contacted the editor of the County Press who very kindly agreed to go along with us. One of our members, Chris Johnson, art editor at J Arthur Dixon, designed some very effective posters, very white, very icy and very blue, publicising the event.

We were very grateful to local shopkeepers who went along with the joke, especially Derek and Carol Worsley who were great supporters of the pool. Their shop, Clothesline (now a carpet shop), was in a prime position in the village to give us maximum publicity. It was a huge success, leading to a number of letters of complaint to the County Press, published the following week, from parents of disappointed children who had been looking forward to a morning of ice skating! This led to a reply from the editor pointing out the date – see newspaper report. It was such a successful April Fool that we have never been able to repeat it. More publicity, but to this day I am not sure it was good publicity!

The day that Lord Mountbatten was killed we were on Stroud field running a ‘Bits & Bobs’ – still fund raising. We were holding a mini auction and had to prove that the radio we were auctioning was in working order. Therefore, we had the radio on and the dreadful news came through – we were all stunned. We didn’t know what to do. Should we stop our event out of respect, after all we knew Lord Mountbatten – he was our Patron. However, it was decided we had to continue, which we did, although our hearts were not really in it any longer.