To all the many Friends of The Violette Szabó GC Society 2015

With all good wishes to everyone! 

Please Note – One big problem to be resolved – hopefully with your help!

I know you will remember I have had a lot of trouble with flooding in the Store/Garage and Violette’s Toilet, last year alone they were under water for 7 weeks! It has now undermined the foundations and both buildings will in time fall down!! I have taken a lot of advice and the only way to overcome this situation is to take the existing buildings down and build the foundations much higher. I have had an estimate which I feel is very good and will cover all the needs and make the whole area much better. One example, the toilet will be built into the body of the store, which will help greatly against freezing in the winter.

This is a very big project for Violette and I to achieve alone, which is why I am asking each and everyone for your special help! – Perhaps a personal donation, to hold a coffee morning, a whist drive, a bingo evening, open your lovely gardens, or even show Violette’s film Carve Her Name with Pride in your local village hall! Every amount will be very important and will be received most gratefully. How about a sponsored event?

This is the greatest goal we have set, but it will be of immense importance to the continuance of Violette’s Museum Project. The quote I would like to accept is for £27,356.30+VAT and with God’s help and yours it will happen.

On a happier note, I have heard from Virginia that she is hoping to be here with us once again on Sunday 28th June at 2pm. I do so hope you will all be here too, and able to enjoy her lovely company! and that of Violette too!! for I know just how much great happiness your visits bring to her very lively spirit!!!

More exciting news – as a special tribute to Violette – 11 members of the Hannie Schaft Group of Scouts from Haarlem, The Netherlands, are also hoping to be with us, accompanied by 4 leaders, one with his wife visited Violette’s Museum last July, his name is Thijs Perik, and it was to him I gave the challenge to achieve this special contact!

Hannie Schaft nicknamed by the Germans – the girl with the red hair. She was shot by the Germans just 2 weeks before the liberation of Holland. How truly tragic.

It is Geoff Pattison who has worked so hard to keep this contact going, Geoff thinks the world of the memory of both girls – Violette and Hannie.

I am again looking forward to the help given by the Kingstone Girl Guides, and I hope they will have lots of fun talking with the visitors from The Netherlands, and my greatest wish – one day they will make an exchange visit!!

Violette’s gathering this year will be on Sunday 28th June, starting at 2pm. Mr Mel Williams of the South Hereford Hunt will once again DV open his super big field for parking. May I ask that you again would kindly help by bringing different items to add to the refreshments, also garden chairs and a folding table.

It is 50 years ago that Sir Winston Churchill died, he has always been my great hero with his rousing speeches to the nation and knowing his special army – the S.O.E. in which Violette and her many friends served, meant so very much to us all!

The other day I suddenly remembered the words from the time I was 3 ended my nightly prayers – Please God take care of Mummy and Daddy and bring us peace. I well remember the night my father lifted me out of my cot, and by the flickering light of a lantern carried me down into the cellar! Having so little understanding, no wonder the War had such a terrible effect upon me!!

On the 7th November 2014 a Liquidambar tree was planted on the Rosemary Rigby Millennium Green by the parishioners of Wormelow, and with the help of children from Much Birch C. of E. Primary School, to commemorate the outbreak of the First World War one hundred years before! At this event I placed a wreath in special memory of Violette, with the hope that this will continue over the years!

Also last year I was allowed to place 2 plaques in a little English church called St George’s Memorial Church at Ypres in Belgium, where my Father was fighting with the Royal Artillery, 1917–1918. R.I.P. The other for Violette, in grateful memory of her tremendous sacrifice, Carve Her Name with Pride, and they are on display together. I am enclosing a leaflet for each of you.

You will remember in April 2013 I became the President of the Hereford Soroptimist Club, and I mentioned my two charities would be – Violette’s Museum and the Ross Action Committee Ambulance. I now have the result – Violette benefitted by £1,735.77 and the Ambulance by £1001.17. I am hoping to add an extra leaflet so you can see from where the donations came – half and half unless specifically given to one charity! On the other side of the said leaflet please note the details of a special evening meal at The Axe and Cleaver on the Sunday night following Violette’s afternoon!

I would like to thank the many supporters who bought tickets to see Violette’s Film last year, I manage to bank over £1,000 from this great event. I would especially like to thank Virginia for so very kindly introducing the film. I’m sure she spoke for at least 20 minutes after a long and tiring afternoon.

I am pleased to tell you Phyllis Smith – Violette’s wonderful artist – has had her second knee operation, which proved most successful, and her dear husband Derek also had to undergo a very big op but is now doing fine. Thank God.

Please note – Violette’s wonderful Black Walnut Tree – I still have a few fine logs, if you know of anyone who works in wood – such as wood turning. This is urgent, I cannot keep them much longer!

Re: the Guardian Angels who came forward and volunteered their help in the garden, in order to get it ready for Violette’s day last year, my most sincere thanks, I greatly need help again this year! One young lady – Anne – has been wonderful and kept coming over the weeks since! I also had a great group of ladies from Waitrose Store in Monmouth who were marvellous!!

It is hard to think that it was 70 years this January since Violette and her two special friends Lillian and Denise were executed in Ravensbrück, so a very special year to remember them and their great sacrifice for all of us.

A little Joy! On January the 1st Violette had 6 daffodils out by her museum.

Violette’s 2016 Memorial Gathering will D.V. be on Sunday 26th June at 2pm – How wonderful Violette’s own birthday! Hope we can have a special party for her, and you make sure you all come and help celebrate!!

On behalf of Violette and myself, may I thank everyone for all your wonderful donations, letters and cards, so much appreciated.

Let joy and happiness bring us together!

Yours most sincerely

Rosemary E. Rigby M.B.E.

Founder and Owner of
The Violette Szabó GC Museum

01981 540477
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