Between the Wars

 Rob Forsyth

We are privileged in having detailed memories of Deddington in the 1930s and '40s direct from people who lived during those years. While the parish has grown in size (nearly doubled by 2020) and is now more cosmopolitan than the quiet agricultural village it was back then, at its heart remain the market, church, school, pubs and shops which meet most needs. The community spirit is still strong as was demonstrated when the Covid-19 Pandemic locked down life for all and help for the most vulnerable was still readily forthcoming. The most noticeable change is the cars; most households possess at least one - and very often two or three.

Two of the references are books which view the parish from quite different perspectives. George Harris grew up in an agricultural working-class family living in a small cottage with an earth floor. Barbara Hodges was a doctor's wife and author. Her first novel is clearly semi-autobiographical about life in Deddington and provides a more priviledged perspective of a couple of middle-class professionals struggling financially to pay for their large house with a staff of two.