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1866: The local gentry dispense their Christmas bounty

Sussex Advertiser - Wednesday 26 December 1866

Christmas Charities. —The gentry and others this neighbourhood have dispensed their bounty in a very liberal manner this Christmas, and have sent warmth and food into many humble cottage, that would otherwise have been cold and desolate. A gentleman, unknown, has distributed several tons of coal among the old folks and poor families in the town most welcome gift. Miss Dealtry, of Bolnore, in addition to her soup kitchen, has had distributed to the families in her district her usual liberal donations, and W. W. Burrell, Esq., has also had soup dispensed to the poor for some time, and given to his workmen and dependents a quantity of beef and other Christmas things, according to their families, in most liberal manner.

Giving to the poor at Christmas (please follow link for more on Victorian poor

The Rev. T. A. Maberly, Dr. Byass, and the gentry around generally, have given their usual gifts to the poor, and the Misses Byass have ably followed up the good old custom of their late lamented father, L. Byass, Esq. Mrs. Ellwood, of the Priory, has had two fat beasts killed, and distributed among her neighbours who need it. J. N. Norman, Esq., Dencombe; Major Meek, Brantridge ; R. Laden, Esq., the Benkes ; and the gentry at the north of the parish have also been very kind and liberal to the wants of the poor in that district, as well as Mrs. Wyatt, sen., the Revs. H. Hawkens and R. Wyatt, and the gentry of Haywards Heath. The paupers in the union house receive a substantial English beef and plum pudding dinner to-day, with porter, tobacco, or snuff, and tea for the women, and we trust that every cottager in the parish will be supplied with the same. 

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