My mum Rene (Alice Irene Flitney née Harding) died in 1999. When my brother, sister and I went through her things we found an envelope full of old newspaper clippings and other bits and pieces. We looked through the papers and put the envelope away, but those yellowing pieces of paper keep whispering of half-forgotten times and places. Places like Butlers Cross, Stoke Mandeville, Aylesbury, West Wycombe, Little Kimble, Wendover, Ellesborough, Southcourt and Princes Risborough.

Tuesday, 5 August 2014

A Wreath of Orange Blossoms

Took place at Walton Parish Church, Aylesbury.

One of the prettiest of the local weddings during the Whitsuntide holiday was that which took place at Walton Parish Church (Holy Trinity, Walton, Aylesbury) on Saturday, when Mr Denis William Flitney, son of Mrs. and the late Mr. A. Flitney of 11, Council Houses, Butler’s Cross, was married to Miss Irene Florence Harding, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. J. Harding, of 37, Prebendal Avenue, Southcourt. A good number of friends had already assembled in the church when the bride, accompanied by her father arrived for the ceremony. She presented a charming appearance in her ankle-length white satin gown, veil and wreath of orange blossom, and carrying a bouquet of pink and white carnations.

There were two tiny bridesmaids, Patricia and Janet Harding, of Harrow, nieces of the bride, and they were chaperoned by Mrs. R. Harding, sister-in-law of the bride, who attended in the capacity of matron-of-honour.

The bridesmaids looked very pretty in their long dresses of blue satin, each wearing a wreath of blue and pink roses and forget-me-nots, whilst the matron-of-honour was attractively dressed in an ankle-length dress of white silk trimmed with blue and yellow floral designs, and wearing a white picture hat to match. The duties of best man were performed by Mr. Owen Flitney, the bridegroom’s brother.

The ceremony was impressively conducted by the Rev. Brian Hession, who, at its conclusion, addressed a few well-chosen words on counsel and advice to the bride and bridegroom, and wished them every happiness in the new life upon which they were entering.

Walton Parish Church June 1938. Photo taken at Prebendal Avenue, Southcourt

After the ceremony a reception was held at the bride’s home. Mrs. Harding, mother of the bride, whose health prevented her from attending the ceremony, was waiting to welcome Mr. and Mrs. Flitney on their return from the church. Later in the day they left for their cottage at Terrick, where the honeymoon was spent. For travelling the bride wore a pink and blue two-piece.

Denis and Rene 

Views of Holy Trinity Church, Walton - then and now

The Bucks Herald c1900

The same street - opposite direction

The Church unknown date

With a new porch and the original door no longer in use, July 2014

Interior Holy Trinity Church, Walton July 2014

I was unsure of the date of the wedding but a quick visit to BMD produced the following;

Surname First name(s) Spouse District Vol Page 

Marriages Jun 1938   

Harding Alice I F Flitney Aylesbury 3a3932 

I felt sure mum and dad were married in the spring so the date (June) came as something of a surprise. Whitsun, or Whit Sunday is the seventh Sunday after Easter (Pentecost), and this website confirmed Whit Monday 1938 fell on Monday 6th June. From that I assume they were married on Saturday the 4th June, but I don’t have the marriage certificate so that is just an assumption.

July 2014 plaque inside the church showing the Vicars of the Parish including the Rev. Brian Hession
(The ceremony was impressively conducted by the Rev. Brian Hession)

We hoped to visit the places where Denis and Rene lived before their marriage, Prebendal Avenue was easy to find, but we had no luck at all with No. 11 Council Houses, Butler’s Cross. The newspaper cutting also mentions a cottage in Terrick where they lived after the wedding, but once again, we drew a blank.
If anyone reading this has any information or pictures we would love to hear from you. 

37, Prebendal Avenue, where Rene lived in 1938. Photographs taken July 2014

A note about Walton; Walton is a hamlet in the parish of Aylesbury in Buckinghamshire. It sits north of the junction between two major turnpike roads, and was once the location of a toll gate and the toll keeper’s cottage. It has also, in its time, been the location of a foundlings hospital and a leper colony. The stone-built Holy Trinity Church in Walton opened in 1845 to provide a local place of worship for the farm labourers who lived in the hamlet, and canal workers from the newly built 1814 Aylesbury arm of the Grand Union canal. A hall was built in 1859 next door to the church to start what was to become Walton Holy Trinity National School (now Walton Hall) to support and educate local children. Walton Hall has always been both independent from and also supported by members of Holy Trinity and has been a focus of local community life from its beginnings in 1859. In the Second World War Walton was the landing site of the only bomb to be dropped on Aylesbury by enemy aircraft. The 15 pound bomb destroyed the medieval Walton Grange and severely damaged most of the other houses in Walton. [Wikipedia]

 Market Place, Aylesbury as Denis and Rene would have known it

and Market Place, Aylesbury now

1954 OS map of Aylesbury

That is probably quite enough for a first post, so I will close now. Thanks for calling in, your visit means a lot.


  1. Welcome to Geneabloggers, Barbara. I enjoyed the story of your parent's wedding and all your lovely photos and look forward to more in the future.

    1. Thank you Dara, my first comment on this blog, how exciting.

  2. Welcome to blogging. You've put the wedding details together in an interesting manner. But somehow I just can't for the life of me imagine the blue and pink two piece going away outfit. Was it an allover blue and pink floral pattern, or was it a blue suit with a pink blouse under it, but that would be a three piece. Every good family history blog sets your imagination firing,

    1. Hi there, thanks very much for visiting. I’m sorry about the delay in my reply. I’m not getting notifications of comments from Blogger, so I obviously need to tick a box somewhere.
      I wish I knew more about the going-away outfit, but I only have the wedding ‘photos and the newspaper cutting to go on. I must ask my sister to see if she has any more photos, but it might not help as they will be in black and white. I will be over to visit your blog in a day or two. Thanks again for your visit, Barbara

  3. Barbara, wow, what details and research you have here. I've enjoyed looking through your pictures, and the one on your mom and dad's wedding day made me smile. The past-day Market Place looked magnificent.

    1. Hello Claudine, how lovely to see you here! I'm having a lot of fun going through all the 'photos and cuttings and hope to get a few more posts ready soon. I'm glad the 'photo of mum and dad made you smile.

  4. What a great way to start a family history blog, Barbara. I love the photo of your parents at the door of the church. Your mum is beautiful!

    1. Thank you Nancy! I always though mum was beautiful but it's nice that you think so too.

  5. Welcome to Geneabloggers! Great start to your blog, love the combination of old and new photos.

    1. Thank you! I have a lot to learn but am keen to do so.
      Thanks for calling in and leaving a comment, Barbara

    2. As I said before "Great blog loved the content and pictures they really are treasures, most of mine are in my mind. may your road be long.,be well agman

    3. Hello Terence, I always enjoy reading about your life and never feel the need for pictures – your words convey everything. Thank you for taking the time to read my ramblings. Barbara


I really appreciate your comment. Thank you!
Barbara x

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