Page 5 - HGS Suburb News 144 - December 2020
P. 5

The ‘Actual’ Vision of Henrietta Barnett

          enrietta  Barnett’s  (née  To this  end  the girls were                                                Barnett as “my teacher and   himself a disciple of James
      HRowland) education and    expected to entertain children                                                  friend [who] had a dynamic   Hinton – even for a while seeing
      upbringing was – for its time –  from the local workhouse and to                                           effect  on  my  then  somnolent   as his life task the preservation
      unusual. Her mother, also   visit and support an orphanage                                                 character”, and wrote in her   and presentation of Hinton’s ideas.
      Henrietta, (who died 16 days   that the sisters had founded in                                             personal notebook “I thank you,  With Hinton he saw Christianity
      after her birth) was a German   the nearby countryside.                                                    dearest Miss Carrie, for all your   as  largely  responsible  for
      Catholic. She was the youngest   Henrietta would later write                                               boundless goodness to me   destroying the cooperative and
      of eight children in what was   that her time in Dover had set                                             which has been the foundation   communal  character  of
      presumably a bilingual house-  her on her course in life. However,                                         of my happiness.”          primitive society in which
      hold or at least one that   she might not have been referring                                                 Another  of  Hinton’s  ideas   humans had enjoyed freer and
      considered itself partly German.  only to the fresh air and the                                            was that men should become   more natural relationships with
      Only her age prevented her   mixing of the classes – both of                                               more like women: they should   each other and the environment.
      from volunteering as a nurse   which would later be part of her                                            be ‘womaned’ – brought under   Although polygamy was never
      with the German army during   vision for the Garden Suburb.                                                feminine influence and direction   part of the plan for Hampstead
      the Franco-Prussian War. Her   The Haddon sisters were much                                                to achieve both personal inner   Garden Suburb, Hinton’s  ideas
      father, Alexander, made no   influenced by the husband of a                                                harmony and social well-being.  about the role of the ‘feminine’
      effort to inculcate any faith in   fourth sister, James Hinton, a                                          Henrietta would marry a man   can perhaps be detected in the
      his children, preferring instead   forgotten figure today but one   James Hinton  Henrietta Barnett        who was described as “almost   project. As well as housing
      to spend Sunday evenings – the   who had achieved a certain   religion,  morality and science,  ‘liberation’  of  women.  The   feminine  in his gentleness”,  specifically reserved for working
      traditional time for family   notoriety at the time.  and ultimately propounded a  ‘Actualist’ became convinced   and their relationship was an   women and professional young
      prayers or Bible reading in   Hinton (1822-1875) was the   religious philosophy of his own   that he had a calling to oppose   early example of a new sort of   ladies (Queens Court and
      middle class Victorian homes –  son of a Baptist minister who at   which he called ‘Actualism’.  the  fetters  of  Christian  ‘companionable’ marriage in   Waterlow Court respectively), a
      teaching them how to look at   the age of 16 went to work in a   Actualism  involved  the  monogamy in the name of   which the traditional roles of   girls’ school took centre place
      paintings through his collection   draper’s shop in Whitechapel. The   replacement of the Christian   female  emancipation.  Both  the sexes were renegotiated or   between the houses of worship.
      of engravings.             poverty and moral degradation   understanding of God with a   Hinton and Caroline Haddon   even reversed.    Although the Suburb is
         When  she finally went  to   of the East End made a deep  ‘Universal Spirit’ who was the   advocated polygamy as a way of   The marriage was also a   usually presented as a place
      school for the first time (at the   impression, undermined his  ‘actuality’ behind all  things.  reducing household chores and   model, it might be said, for a   where the social classes were
      age of 16 and then only for four   belief in Christianity, and led   Individual human beings could   responsibilities.  If  a  man  had   renewed human society of   supposed to live alongside and
      terms) it was to an unusual   him to train as a doctor. In 1852   achieve union with the divine   two or more wives, the duties of   which Hampstead Garden Suburb   influence each another, Henrietta
      establishment in Dover run by   he married Margaret Haddon   spirit through the service of   each  would  be reduced  and   became an early ‘actualization’.  Barnett probably saw this as
      the three Haddon sisters who   and had his own practice as a   others. In Hinton’s personal   they would have more time for   To fashion this new community   only an aspect of much greater
      saw their task as broadening the   hearing specialist, but after what   case the service of others, as his   their own interests and to better   Henrietta selected Raymond   scheme to transform human
      outlooks of their middle-class   he called his ‘moral revolution’  sister-in-law Caroline Haddon   meet their husband’s needs.  Unwin, whose plan for a   relationships  and  create  a  new
      charges through an experience   he became increasingly interested   (who edited his writings) later   This same Caroline Haddon   Garden City at Letchworth had   kind of community.
      of the lives of the less fortunate.  in the connections between   revealed, mainly involved the   was described by Henrietta   just been accepted. Unwin was   REVD ALAN WALKER

                                          Suburb library summer reading challenge

         or the past eight years, the   Reading Agency to present the   This year, with all the issues   the challenge having their   Saturday from 3pm to 4.30pm   Full details can be found at:
      FGarden Suburb Community   Summer Reading Challenge for   around Covid-19 and lockdown,  names put into a draw to win a   for Click & Collect and we also
      Library has linked with The   children aged 3-12 years old.   it was a particular challenge for   copy of Roald Dahl’s Whizz-  offer a print service.  MARC HULL
                                                            us  as well,  but  combining it   popping Joke Book.
                                                            with our very successful Click &   Several parents commented
                                                            Collect service 39 children   on how excited their children
                                                            joined the ‘Silly Squad’ and got   were  to participate  and  how
                                                            involved.  Many completed part   much their reading improved
                                                            or all of the challenge to win   during the very difficult period
                                                            stickers, fridge magnets and   of lockdown.
                                                            pencils, with children completing   Congratulations to all our
                                                            at least six books also winning a   worthy winners and we hope to
                                                            certificate and a medal.   hear a joke next time you come
                                                              As in previous years, the   to collect your books!
                                                            library donated an extra prize   Please remember that we
                                                            for all the children who finished   are still able to open Tuesday –

                                                            The ten winners of the HGS Library summer reading challenge, photographed by
                                                            HGS Library volunteer staff members Hetty Colchester, Marc Hull, Tina Isaacs and
                                                            Jeremy Clynes.

        Christmas at St Jude’s                                                                                                Look out for

        Sunday 20 December                                                                                              your neighbours!
        6pm Carol Service
        Thursday 24 December                                                                                        ovid-19 is still with us and   of Suburb residents checking it
        Christmas Eve                                                                                            C so is the ‘Look out for your   daily and they will find somebody
        6pm Carol Service                                                                                        Neighbours’ group. If you need   to help you. You may like to cut
        Friday 25 December                                                                                       help with things like grocery   out and keep the coupon below
                                                                                                                                            for easy reference – just in case.
                                                                                                                 shopping or collecting medicines
        Christmas Day                                                                                            etc please do not be afraid to   Please remember to look out
        10.30am Christmas Celebration                                                                            ask  for support.  Just  call  020   for  your  neighbours who  may
                                                                                                                 3322 8123. This number is   still  need some help or just a
                                                                                                                 unmanned but there is a group   friendly word.

                                                                                                                       LOOK OUT FOR YOUR NEIGHBOURS GROUP
                                                                                                                             If you cannot get the help you need call
          Because of COVID-19 restrictions booking is required for attendance at
          Christmas services.To request a place contact:
        SAINT JUDE-ON-THE-HILL • THE PARISH CHURCH OF HAMPSTEAD GARDEN SUBURB                                          0203 322 8123
                                                                                                                        Leave a message with your return contact number
                                                                                                                     and one of the HGS ‘Look out for your Neighbours’ team
                                                                                                                                      will call you back.
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