The History of
Whitchurch Rotary Club
1938 - 2008
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Visitors Welcome

We meet in the Dodington Lodge Hotel every 1st & 3rd Tuesday evening at 6:30pm for Dinner, every 2nd and 4th Tuesday at 12:45pm for lunch, and if there's a 5th Tuesday, we meet at 7:00am for Breakfast. Visitors are welcome.

The History of Whitchurch Rotary Club

The Founding | Wartime | After 1945 | The 21st Century | Club Organisation


The Club soon found itself involved in the War effort, providing practical assistance to many evacuees, displaced persons and servicemen soon billeted in the area, especially at Prees Heath, & also serving as wardens, home guards etc.

Old folks outings commenced in 1938, and in 1940 the Club provided Christmas entertainment for 800 local children and gave concerts for evacuees- possibly the forerunner of the now annual two day concert held in May which started in 1974. Donations to the submarine Thetis disaster proved an historic landmark and the adoption with the Whitchurch Inner Wheel club (founded in 1939, with the late Mrs Maisie Thompson who lived to age 103, the first president) of the drifter 'Constant Hope, who were plied with cigarettes, chocolate and food stuffs and clothing throughout the war. An interesting note is that of financial help given to the wife of a Liverpool fireman injured during the May, 1941 blitz of that city.

'Do-Nut Dug Out'
In June 1940 the Whitchurch Inner Wheel and Rotary clubs opened the 'Do-nut' Dug Out canteen in the old Baptist chapel in Green End for the service personnel in the area. Remarkable logistics were revealed - 500,000 cups of tea, 150,000 sandwiches, 200,000 cakes and 100,000 cooked meals. The takings were approximately £ 10,000 with a final deficit of £17.14.3 being cleared from club funds ! The canteen closed in March, 1946, after nearly six years of devoted service, commitment and hard work by Rotarians, Inner Wheelers, their families, friends and a myriad of other local folk and organisations. Like the Windmill, the canteen never closed, opening Christmas Day evenings for light refreshments.