After much voluntary labour and generous enthusiasm on the part of almost everyone in the locality, the new Parish Institute at Brindle has been completed, and was formally opened on Saturday afternoon by Lord Chesham, who owns over 3,000 acres in Brindle district, and who had given the site on which the institute is placed. Beautifully situated, the institute consists of a large hall (capable of seating 300 persons), a refreshment room and a billiard and reading room. The interior of the building has been neatly decorated, and its outside appearance befits its charming natural surroundings. With its well-laid lawns in front, to be used as tennis courts, the institute is an undoubted acquisition to the buildings of the village, and a memorial to the self-sacrificing efforts of many – including ex-Service men and local ladies and gentlemen – who have had at heart the development of a healthy social spirit in the Brindle area.
The building has cost £900, of which £650 has already been raised. It is hoped, later, to lay out a bowling green in addition to the tennis courts. Mr. T. Whitehead is president of the Institute; Mr. R. Grime, chairman of committee; and Mr. Robert Cooper is secretary. The officials have had the loyal assistance of a representative committee on which ladies have done invaluable work.
Mr. T. Whitehead, in calling upon Lord Chesham to open the institute, briefly reviewed the history of the project, which was started as the result of the men coming back from the war – 135 out of 150 who went from Brindle were spared – desiring to continue to fraternise with each other as they had done in the trenches. A few of the men put their heads together, and by degree funds were raised, and then the ladies were asked to assist. Eventually they were justified in making a start in the erection of the institute by purchasing an Army hut. The efforts had been continued until that day, and they had a beautiful building. A great amount of voluntary work had been done, and Mr. Whitehead hoped that the institute would be a blessing to all the inhabitants of the parish. Lord Chesham had very kindly given the land for the institute. There were no onerous conditions in the deed of gift. There was only one condition – and it was a blessing – that no intoxicating drink had to be allowed on the premises.
Lord Chesham said he was proud to be associated with the village which had done its bit so well in the war. He congratulated them on their institute, and declared that it must be a record for an institute of that type to be erected by voluntary subscriptions locally. He had nit expected to see such a fine building. He had known of other institutes for which there had been tremendous enthusiasm for at least a week, and then the enthusiasm had petered out. In a number of villages, institute buildings could be seen standing idle and rotting. They must not let this happen in brindle. His lordship felt sure it would not happen. They all had a share in their institute, and they must not treat it as a new toy, but continue to support it in the future as they were doing today.
Mr. R. Grime, on behalf of the Institute Committee, received the document of conveyance of the land from Lord Chesham, and thanked his lordship for his gift and for his services that day in opening the institute.
Mr. J. Gillibrand proposed a vote of thanks to Mr. Whitehead, as the president, for his assistance to the committee. Mr. Rd. Hindle seconded.
Mr. T. Whitehead in reply, said he had received a message from Mr. Robt. Hartley, who unfortunately was unable to be present. If there had not been Mr. Hartley to assist said Mr. Whitehead, then probably there would not have been an institute today. There was no doubt that the present debt owing on the building would be wiped out at an early time.
The institute was situated on the spot which marked the finishing post of the old racecourse.