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1886: Delight in Cuckfield as MP retains his seat in Parliament

Updated: Dec 5, 2021

Mid Sussex Times - Tuesday 20 July 1886




Last Tuesday the Haywards Heath Brass Band, under Bandmaster E. Keys, accompanied by a large number of Mr. A. E. Gathorne Hardy’s admirers, proceeded to Cuckfield to do that gentleman honour and offer congratulations on his success in being returned the Member of Parliament for the East Grinstead Division of Sussex.

The band, headed by the “Union Jack.” struck up at Hatchgate, and played into Cuckfield to the Talbot Hotel, where a crowd was in waiting. Alter a few minutes’ music. Mr. Hardy appeared on the balcony over the entrance to the Talbot Hotel. This was the signal for much enthusiasm, the strains of the band being almost drowned in the cheering. Mr. Hardy briefly thanked the assembly for the honour done him. and expressed his intention to do his duty to the utmost of his ability. Loud cheers repeatedly interrupted his remarks.

Mr Gathorne-Hardy MP c1870

At the conclusion, a van belonging to Mr. R. Wilson was drawn up, and upon Mr. Hardy taking his seat in it, ready and willing hands seized the shafts, and he was drawn up as far as the Rose and Crown Inn, preceded by the the Band playing “Auld Lang Syne.” etc. On arrival at the Rose and Crown, where the landlord had put up an immense “Union Jack,” the crowd had considerably increased, and Mr. Hardy, after again thanking his supporters, desired to be allowed to dismount, remarking that he wished all was as well at home (Woodcroft) as there—referring to the serious illness of his eldest son. Had it not been for this, a greater demonstration would have taken place—at Mr. Hardy s residence.

The band also visited other points in Cuckfleld, and returned home shortly before midnight.

See below the letter of thanks, from Mr. Hardy, on his election as M.P. from the same edition of the Mid Sussex Times:



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