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A Personal Reflection on TMP's Recent Golden Anniversary

10th July 2019 @ 6:06am – by Margaret Dixon
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I was delighted to be invited to share the recent celebration of 50 years of the organisation now called Tarvin Meeting Point.

It took me back more than 50 years to when I joined National Housewives Register (shortened to NHR) in the mid sixties. I had two young children at the time and like most women had given up interesting and demanding work a few months before my 1st child was born. Many women did not return to work until all their children were well settled into school. Most young couples only had one family car so this added to a feeling of isolation.

To enable me to have the use of our car I used to take my husband to work and collect him in the evening. This didn't happen too often as getting 2 children breakfasted and ready for an early start was difficult. Sometimes they did the trip in pyjamas with a biscuit to keep them going.

The meetings were so stimulating that I had great difficulty sleeping with all sorts of thoughts and ideas buzzing in my head. There were day conferences that one could attend and even 2/ 3 day ones. I recall going to three of those in Southport, Birmingham and Bromley.

On moving to Tarvin in 1971 I joined the group here and made yet more friends through the Register. I continued to enjoy the stimulation that the fortnightly meetings brought. Unfortunately my circumstances changed and I had to return to work in 1973 so time was short and my need not as great. Perhaps I should have re-joined when I retired.

Young women today must find this all hard to imagine as they are so busy juggling work and childcare and trying to lead two lives. It was only after the end of World War 2 that women could remain in the teaching profession after marriage and the Civil Service was similar. In some places it took several years for this to change.

Maureen Nicol the founder had been inundated with replies in 1960. She originally set up the organisation as "Housebound Housewives Register". This soon changed to N.H.R. and in 1987 to National Women's Register, the name that remains today. This showed a trend that many women enjoyed interesting evenings of discussion. In 1995 Maureen was awarded the O.B.E. for services to women for starting the organisation.

The Tarvin organisation is to be congratulated, not only for 50 years of existence, but for changing with the times and still giving so much enjoyment.

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