Mollie Edith BUCKETT 1917 - 2010
Third child and third daughter of William Robert BUCKETT 1883 - 1967 and Alice Blanche WHITMORE 1879 - 1937
Born 20th October 1917, Whitechapel, London
Died 2nd June 2010, Northampton
Married George Edward HUBBARD 1897 - 1977 on 5 October 1946
Mollie and George had three children. (Living 2022.)
Like her two older sisters Phyllis and Nancy, Mollie was born to her parents in the East End of London. On her birth certificate the family address is 10 Victoria Cottages, Mile End New Town. (Stepney)
Mollie at the age of seven in 1924,
when the family moved to 27 Brunswick Square Gloucester.
Mollie was a bright pupil and eventually moved to Ribston Hall. Here she did well. She often spoke happily of her school days and was much influenced by Miss Lucy Whitaker the Head Mistress, whom she adored. Mollie obtained her Higher School Certificate in July 1936.
Mollie then went onto teacher training at Furzedown College, Welham Road, Tooting, London. (Now a school.) Students undertook teacher training so that they could work in London County Council (LCC) schools. The teaching profession had been negatively affected by the Great Depression of the early 1930s, so new teachers were much needed.
Students listen to a speech by the principal of the college.
By all accounts Mollie enjoyed her training and became a creative teacher specialising in Nursery School (Reception) years. She left college in 1938 after two years training. She writes about her early years as a teacher in Infant Voices.
The death of her mother through cancer was a cruel blow. Mollie was devoted to her father but could never really reconcile to the fact that he had quickly gone on to marry a much younger woman, Rene. For Rene’s part, relating to three grown up stepdaughters who on the quiet all resented her, could not have been easy. In later years the anger from that time, often bubbled up in Mollie. Counselling in those days wasn’t even considered or seen as an option.
Mollie often spoke about the war years she experienced, both living in London and as a teacher with evacuees. Although she and others went through a traumatic time, she always said that it also brought out the good in people and the sense of community.
Mollie Digging for Victory!
Digging up paving in Jamaica Road to plant vegetables. War effort
Wedding day at Edmondsham. Walking to the church on the arm of her father.
5th October 1946.
George and Mollie on their wedding day.
At the door of Edmondsham Church, Dorset.
George HUBBARD had been in India on and off for twenty years. Coming back to England would have meant huge changes for him. The bishop of Gloucester of the time, Arthur Headlam, told George in no uncertain terms that he should marry. An unmarried parson in rural England was ‘not a good idea.’ George had at one time lodged with the Buckett family in Gloucester, so he knew Phyllis and Mollie well. His parents and Mollie’s parents had been firm friends. In his own words to me once, he said, ‘I chose the prettier one.’ Members of the Hubbard family always referred to George as ‘not the marrying kind.’ This was the euphemism of the day that he wasn’t really interested in women as partners. He was Mollie’s senior by twenty years. George however wanted children. They started married life at Littledean, Gloucestershire, the same parish where George had lived as a boy. Everything seemed set for a settled and happy life.
However, life was not easy and to cut a series of long stories short the family moved from one parish to another. George’s sister Frances wrote to her other brother Jack, in the fifties ‘George and Mollie on the move again! What on earth is wrong with them? Those poor children.’
By the time George and Mollie moved to Milton Malsor in Northamptonshire in 1959 it was recognised that they should settle down if only for the sake of their children’s education. Judith the eldest had already attended seven different schools and her education had suffered badly.
Mollie took up supply teaching for a few years.
Eventually George retired, first to a neighbouring village then to Northampton. Even retirement involved a few more house moves.
George then died on 3rd March 1977 at Northampton. Mollie was aged sixty.
This meant that by the time Mollie died on 2 June 2010, aged ninety three, she had been a widow for thirty three years, two years longer than her marriage.
On 20 October 2010, on what would have been her ninety fourth birthday, Mollie's ashes were laid to rest by her children in the grave of her mother and sister Nancy at the Old Cemetery, Coney Hill in Gloucester.
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