The grounds of the Hoskins Memorial Church, dotted here and there with shrubs and garden plots, lend themselves admirably to the holding of a Garden Fete.
This was the opinion of the reporter from the local newspaper in an article in March 1934.
The weather was ideal and the crowds who attended gained admission by the donation of a silver coin. Stalls were located along the garden paths and adjacent to the Parish Hall, in which afternoon tea was served.
Piper Towers, in traditional Highland dress, was present and Betty Meikle and Ella Towers gave a spirited exhibition of the highland fling and other dances to the strains of the bagpipes.
A squad of St John Ambulance Brigade volunteers gave a capital display of first-aid work on the lawn, including artificial respiration, lifting a patient and a human stretcher.
The Salvation Army Band rendered a programme of sacred and enlivening tunes.
At the official opening the Rev T Mathers pointed out that it was the first time the beautiful grounds had been put to such a use. The fete was officially opened by the Mayor, Alderman G Chivers, extending his congratulations to all who contributed to make the day a success.
Immediately the ceremony was over two young men dressed as policeman "arrested" the mayor and the Rev Mr Mathers and hauled them before the Judge, Mr W. Waite (vice-president of the Presbyterian Men's League).
"His Honour" fined the former for not having provided an underground railway in Main Street, and the cleric was similarly dealt with for "inducing people to spend money on Saturday afternoons". Each defendant smilingly paid up, as did many others who were taken into custody during the day.
The Garden Fete appears to have ceased in 1941 during World War II and was resurrected in more recent years.
The 2020 Hoskins Memorial Uniting Church Fete will be held on Saturday, February 29 between 9 an 1:30pm and performances by the highland dancers and a band remain a feature of the fete programme. There is no admission charge.
Culinary options include Devonshire teas and sandwiches in the Round room overlooking the garden, the Buzz Café in the Courtyard and the Lithgow Lions Club barbecue.
Wandering around the stall tables loaded with jams, crafts, plants, cakes, books and recycled goods at the 'white elephant' stall, before wandering through the shady gardens is still relaxing way to while a few hours on a Saturday.
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