Competitions nos. 113A and 113B: results

Ernest Betts sets the task of writing a love-story, either flippant or serious (300 words). The shaol of entries makes Betts feel exhausted, and none of them match up to his idea of a love story (the only clue we get as to what this is, is that he doesn’t find any with a lyrical mood). Some new names (Jean Anderson, Frances Somerville) come close, as do Majolica and Chauve-Souris – most of the commendations are to women entrants. Betts notes that the competitors’ dinner is coming up, and toys with suggesting to the editor that the prize be increased to 100 guineas and divided by fifty, and distributed there – not a very amusing remark, but one that gives an idea how many takers there have been for the evening.

In the end, the prizes go to one old hand, D.C.R. Francombe and one new one, Whistletop (unless he, for it is a he, is an old name behind a new mask).




What an odd and sad story! But a lot better than the half-guinea effort below …




The B competition could easily be set today – although twenty lines wouldn’t be allowed. Competitors are asked to modernise/ update nursery rhymes (or one long rhyme – not an option exercised). This time there is a string of apparently worthier proxime accessits, including H.C.M., W.Hodgson Burnet, W.A.Rathkey, Jocelyn Lea, and one P. Seton Crisp, about whom I can only tell you that he was employed in Australia in 1915 as an actor, and that he was a leading mourner at Chesterton’s funeral in 1936. The first prize goes to Dermot Spence, who submits five and the second to E.W.Fordham, who submits four:


I’ve been trying to work out if there is any significance in ‘Schwartz’, but can’t see it. The spelling ‘gompromised’ turns up regularly as a parody of German pronunciation.


Megan and Gwilym Lloyd George were a Liberal party on their own, in effect, as opposed to those led by Sir Herbert Samuel, who was still in the National government, and a third faction, in opposition. Megan (the first woman Welsh MP) died in 1966, having joined the Labour Party. Her brother did the opposite, and joined the Conservatives (he was Home Secretary from 1954-1957). He died in 1967.

You can see a short fim of Gwilym in 1941 here. Megan Lloyd George is below.



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