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The Pamphlet Collection of Sir Robert Stout: Volume 79

Pleasure at the Soldiers' Club

page 30

Pleasure at the Soldiers' Club

Ladies of Wellington—representing all classes and creeds-—have made a very successful management of the Soldiers' Club, Sydney Street. This is really a cosy, homely place for the soldiers when in town for a few hours or when returning to Trentham from extended leave. The wives and daughters of leading citizens (in public and private life) gladly take turns as hostesses, and they know well how to make even the most bashful young man feel thoroughly comfortable.

The rooms are open on week-days from 10 a.m. until the last troop-train haves Wellington. On Sunday mornings, men returning from leave by boat and train are served with breakfast, and they may remain in the rooms until 1 p.m. At 4 p.m. the Club resumes its activities and the usual tea and supper are supplied.

It is no uncommon occurrence for several hundreds of men to visit the Club on one evening. What this entails in provisioning and in personal service on the part of the ladies may easily be imagined. During the Easter holidays for instance, the following items for one week—240 loaves of bread, 56lbs. of butter and 49 gallons of milk—will give some indication of the food supplies when more than usual leave is given to the soldiers.

The main hall of the Club is fitted up as a large lounge, well supplied with sofas, comfortable chairs and numerous tables, a gramophone, a piano and a billiard table. Daily and weekly papers, magazines, cards, draughts, chess and other games are to be found, and it is a pleasant sight when the room is filled with soldiers taking their ease, smoking, reading, playing games or chatting. There is also a quiet writing-room which is invariably well used. Postal facilitiesare also provided.

Hot and cold shower-baths are available at a cost of sixpence. Coats and parcels are kept in safe custody.

On behalf of the New Zealand soldiers the ladies' executive is grateful for the kindness of many friends in Wellington and other districts, but there is scope for further thankfulness, because the maintenance costs are expanding with the club's usefulness to ever-increasing numbers of men.

Veteran settlers of the Wairarapa have contribute the cost of a large club-house for soldiers at Featherston.

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Flashlight Snapshot of a Busy Night at the Soldiers' Club, Wellington

Flashlight Snapshot of a Busy Night at the Soldiers' Club, Wellington