Eastbourne Memories - A Victorian Perspective

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Chap. XIX.] Weddings, 1840ó1902.                        253>
with weddings. The first wedding which I rememberó and I well remember itówas that of my aunt, Miss Emma Broclie, who on July 14, 1846, was married at St. Mary's, Bryanston Square, to Mr. James Grace, a brother of the Rev. H. Grace, then Vicar of Jevington. The first East-Bourne wedding I attended was that of Miss Mary Boileau, sister of Mrs. R. G. Graham, to Captain G. E. Clarke, of the Sussex Artillery Militia, on July 17, 1856. Next to that came the wedding of Fanny, second daughter of the Rev. T. Pitman, to Mr. C. B. Locock, eldest son of Sir Charles Locock, the celebrated London doctor, oil December 27, 1859. The wedding of a cousin on June 10, 1869, and that of Miss Somerset on April 17, 1879, both celebrated at East-Bourne, were, I think, the two last in East-Bourne at which I was ever asked to sit down to the formal " Breakfast " described above. The guest& numbered 50 in the former case. The law was altered by an Act of Parliament passed in 1886, and it soon became generally utilised, especially by economical parents of brides, who made it the excuse for a more or less cheap afternoon show of " light refreshments." Why I think Miss Somerset's wedding repast must have-been a sit-down one is because we lent them some 4 or 5 dozen plates and dishes, as the hired house in the Upperton Road in which they were staying was deficient in such things. The bride's father was General Somerset, C.B., a Crimean officer. We kept up our acquaintance with them for many years, and the last time I saw Miss Somerset was when she, a widow, was living at Troy House, Monmouth, which its owner, the Duke of Beaufort, has since sold. I was shown there on October 2, 1891, the cradle in which Henry V. (Henry of Monmouth) is reputed to have been an inmate ; but I believe that this honour is claimed for several antique cradles. Whilst on the subject of weddings, I should like to make a practical suggestion. Wedding programmes for use in Church ought to be printed in black ink, not silver ink. The last-named is often quite illegible if the Church is dark, as too many Churches are now-a-days, owing to lack of suitable windows, with suitable glass.
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