Ryde Social Heritage Group research the social history of the citizens of Ryde, Isle of Wight. Documenting their lives, businesses and burial transcriptions.
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Ryde Residents Return

Yankee Withington and his Wife

On 1 March the Elim Senior Circle gave a warm welcome to Ryde Residents from bygone times when they went along to entertain them.

Harry Withington (otherwise known as ‘the Yankee’) was rather alarming dressed as a cowboy and waving a gun around! His nagging wife Sarah was also a bit scary with her threatening walking stick. Harry (played by Dave Bushell) settled in Ryde in the 1860s after spending time in America during the Gold Rush. He had many wild tales to tell of his Yankee days. Hilary Lloyd, as Sarah,  made her excellent debut with RSHG Players.

Miss Paul, retired school mistress (played by Shelagh Gaylard) was a much more refined character, recollecting the family home at Ormonde House School, her father the school master, her many siblings, most of them teachers and travelling all over the world.

We were invited to call at Fiona Villa, Quarry Road, and meet Mrs Gawn (played by Ann Barrett) who was busy beating carpets. She delighted us with stories of being in service and the fun times at Beachlands, Dover Street, where she was employed for many years.

Afterwards, during tea, the audience enjoyed chatting to us, asking questions and viewing photographs and documents relating to the characters they had met.








Photographs by Kate MacDonell