The exhibition of photographs and memorabilia, illustrating the part played by the Parish Hall in parish affairs over the years, not only aroused most favourable comment, but also reawakened interest in events of the past in the parish as well as in the developments of today. Indeed, the key achievement of the Centenary Celebrations was probably the spirit it rekindles, a feeling that – despite motorways and the pressures of modern living – residing within Compton and Shawford parish still means living within a community in its original sense.
What we see around us today is, of course, the outcome of all the happenings within the community which lived between our boundaries in days gone by. The many exhibits which illustrated this were much commented upon, such as the records of events recalled by senior citizens like Marjorie Abrahams and others who had many a fine tale to tell. The collection of photographs created similar interest whether of buildings or people or even the train derailed locally! The local maps were much studied as were the ’50s & ’60s Heathcote Players items, the church and parish council records as well as the “Titanic” plates, the Festival Choir and the W.I. exhibits. The Serendipity Trail together with the plans for redevelopment of both parish hall and site, ensured the present sat happily with the past.
The many events taking place in the hall whilst the exhibition was on ruled out any possibility of setting items in display cases down the centre, or even along the sides, of the hall. This meant that much interesting material could not be adequately displayed and, as a result, there is considerable support for a more extensive exhibition in the future having sole occupancy of the hall for several days. Display cabinets would then be set up and visitors could browse at their leisure. In the meantime our thanks go out to the small team (Jean, Nick and Ray in particular) who helped make it possible but most of all perhaps to those who attended and so realised just how much our Parish had, and still has, to offer.