Miss Margaret Gledstone

Tickets for the dinner can still be obtained from Miss Margaret Gledstone[1] Western Mail, 15th March 1933
Margaret Liddle Gledstone, 34, (1898-1987), educated at Cambridge, was an organiser and press officer, and played a key role at the dinner, being the person to contact for the 10 shillings and 6 pence tickets, from 58 Cromwell Road, SW7, the Tudor Court Hotel (and still an hotel), just down the road from the Rembrandt and not far from a Mason family home. She was one of four members of the Gledstone/Mason family attending the dinner. She followed her profession as a press officer, it seems, all her life and died, single, at the age of 89.

Seated Beside …

If it were her choice – and perhaps as organiser she might have had some say in the matter – she might have preferred to be with at least one of the four guests on the table who were not family – the distinguished publisher Jonathan Cape? the actress Eva Moore? the wealthy socialite Lady Butterfield? the literary networker Sylvia Lynd? Your guess is as good as mine. As for family members her preference might have been to hear tales from Nigeria from her cousin and close contemporary Mrs C.R. Niven.

What’s On Her Mind?

Apart from worrying about people not having tickets, or being in the right seat, or asking if they could swap seats with someone, or other organisational matters, the relatively younger member of the party was probably just enjoying networking with all the remarkable people. And perhaps building up some useful contacts who would like their own events organised or their press relations polished. We don’t know if Margaret was freelance or employed.

Margaret’s Story So Far

Margaret was born on 28th April 1898, the daughter of Margaret Eadie Mason and William Liddle Gledstone, an insurance broker from Yorkshire. In 1919 she achieved a Third Class History Tripos at Girton, Cambridge and received her degrees by diploma in 1928 from Girton, Cambridge (B.A. and M.A.).[1] [2] At the time of the dinner Margaret was living with her parents at the family home of Peerie Hame, Guildown Way, Guildford (in the electoral register there between 1929 and 1938). In 1932 a Miss Gledstone (so most probably her), represented the Children’s Hospital, Hampstead at the funeral of Sir Charters James Symonds, in Harrow, alongside Lt. Co. J. H. Johnston and Mr F. Twyford.

What Margaret Did Next

In September 1939 Margaret was living at 10 Jevington Gardens, Eastbourne, an organiser and press secretary. In 1940 she was with the Y.W.C.A. recounting stories of Blitz valour.[4] In 1952 she was Press Officer for the National Association for the Prevention of Tuberculosis (NAPT).[5] In 1959 she attended the memorial service for Sir Robert Arthur Young, tuberculosis specialist and former chairman of the NAPT, at St Martin’s in the Fields.[6]

Margaret’s father died in Farnham 18th March 1963, leaving probate to her. Margaret did not marry and she died in Hindhead, 3rd June 1987, probate to Mary Louise Newbegin (her aunt / her mother’s sister).[7]


[1] Western Mail, 15.3.1933 Image ©Mirrorpix created by The British Library Board

[2] The Times 16.6.1919, p6

[3] The Times, 20.7.1928, p16

[4] Story of how one woman continued to cook hot meals for the Y.W.C.A. despite bombs and then floods. Yorkshire Post and Leeds Intelligencer, 19th December 1940 p2

[5] Commonwealth and Empire Health and Tuberculosis Conference, 8th to 15th July 1952. Press notice by Margaret Gledstone. The Indian Medical Gazette, March 1952 , p112 https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5189838/pdf/indmedgaz73133-0074.pdf

[6] The Times, 8.9.1959

[7] The London Gazette, 2.2.1962 p978 https://www.thegazette.co.uk/London/issue/42588/page/978/data.pdf

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