Members from Ballyclare, Ben Madigan, Carnmoney, Carrickfergus, Straid and Templepatrick Women’s Institutes, plus friends Celicia McCalmont, Jean McClean, Anne Wilkie and Sally McMeekin joined Mossley WI at their May meeting - a 1945 night to help them celebrate their 70th year.
Guest speaker Dr Vivienne Pollock, curator of history at the Ulster Museum, spoke about Doris Blair, a painter during World War II. Her collection of watercolours offers a rare female perspective on events and activities of the Northern Ireland home front at a time of war and the everyday world of American troops stationed in Belfast.
The talk was followed by a ‘street party’ in the main hall, for which some of the ladies had come dressed in 1945 fashions. On display were 1945 items, photos of Mossley WI through the years, knitted crochet and patchwork cot blankets. Mossley WI members are aiming to make 70 cot blankets to mark the milestone.
The bunting in the hall was made up of knitted squares which will be recycled into blankets.
Mossley WI was formed in 1945 by Nan and Patricia Campbell - members of the family who were owners of Mossley Mill since 1859.
Celicia McCalmont and Jennifer Cosgrove, daughters of founder member Christina McKeown and niece of founder member Elizabeth Hamill, provided a delicious cake in memory of their mother and aunt, both of whom were dedicated members and served as president on a number of occasions.
The cake was cut by Celicia McCalmont, Jennifer Cosgrove and Mossley WI’s oldest member, past president Dorothy Auld.
Ballots were drawn, with a member from each institute and one of ‘the friends’ being the winners. Everyone received a pen and sweets as a memento of the night.
President Ann Graham thanked everyone for coming and Mossley WI members for all their hard work and contributions which had made the evening so enjoyable.
Margaret Stokes, past executive member of the Knockagh Area, thanked Mossley WI on behalf of the guests.