There will be a VNS lunch on Saturday, 24 June 2017 at 12.30 at My Old Dutch, Holborn, London WC1V 6PS.

Anyone intending to come is asked to let Hilary Clare know as soon as possible so that she can book a table.


(please note this a new email address)

Hilary Clare at Blunsdon, Faringdon Road, Abingdon, OX14 1BQ


The last formal meeting of the Society will be held on

Saturday 24 October 2015

at St Botulph's Church, Bishopgate, London

St Botolph's has an extensive and helpful website.
This includes a location map and details of how to get there

Doors open 12 noon.    Lunch at 12.30.    Meeting at 2.30.    Tea 4.30

The meeting will be composed of two parts:

(1) Concluding business — setting up trustees to hold funds
to allow the website to continue; disposal of library; etc

(2) History and Reminiscences of the Society

There will be a book sale.

Earlier VNS Events


A City of Bells
(Wells, Somerset)



24-26 October 2014

The weekend will take place in

The Swan Hotel,
Sadler Street, Wells, Somerset


Friday, 24 October

Introductory talk about Elizabeth Goudge and her connection
with Wells by Mrs Pamela Egan, a local expert.
Dinner, followed by a talk by Sheila Ray, editor of Souvenir
and writer on children's books.
Saturday, 25 October

Walking tour of Wells taking in Elizabeth Goudge sites
Tour of Cathedral
Second walking tour/cathedral tour
(Numbers in the walking group are limited; we expect two groups to be

Lunch and afternoon

TEA in Tower House, Elizabeth Goudge's birthplace, by kind
invitation from Mrs Egan. Numbers are strictly limited to 30.
Talk by Clarissa Cridland of Girls Gone By, who have
published EG's Henrietta's House (set in Wells) and
many VN titles.
Dinner in private room, followed by a talk about Violet Needham by Gerald
Harford, her great-nephew and our President.

Sunday, 26 October

Book sale
Annual General Meeting of the Violet Needham Society.
Finger buffet lunch.


VNS Event June 21 2014

Violet Needham Society Summer outing
Saturday 21 June 2014

Visit to the Household Cavalry Museum, Horseguards, Whitehall.

Meet for lunch at 12 at the Lord Moon of the Mall, 16-18 Whitehall.

Gather at Household Cavalry Museum at 2.

Contact Hilary Clare, 01235 525898
or hilarymclare[at] for further details.


VNS AGM, 2013

Saturday 2nd November 2013

St Botolph's, Bishopsgate (near Liverpool St Station)

The Society’s AGM was held on Saturday, 2nd November, 2013 at 1.30 p.m. in the Church Hall of St Botolph’s, Bishopgate, London.

A talk on Music in Violet Needham’s books was given at 2.30 p.m.

Please feel free to bring your own lunch to eat in the Hall; tea and coffee will be available

Sandwiches and cakes were served after the Talk

Click here for map and how to find St Botolph's church, Bishopsgate


1 Apologies for Absence

2 Minutes of the 2012 Annual General Meeting

3 Matters Arising

4 Chairman’s Report on the Society’s activities

5 Treasurer’s Report and Account and Membership

6 Elections of Officers and the Committee (nominations in advance)

7 Future plans

8 Any Other Business

VNS Summer Outing 2013

The Society toured Eton College, where so many of our author's male characters were educated,
on the afternoon of Saturday 13 July, and afterwards enjoyed a cream tea.

VNS Summer Excursion 2011

Saturday, 30 July, 2011

The VNS Summer Outing took place in Nottingham on Saturday 30th July 2011.

The main event was an afternoon at Nottingham Castle devoted to local author Geoffrey Trease, and to Robin Hood in fiction and other media, following lunch-time refreshments.
This was preceded by an optional late morning visit to Bromley House Library, the former Nottingham Subscription Library,
which has occupied a handsome 18c town house since the 1820s.

AGM 2010 London

Saturday, 23 October, 2010

Violet Needham Society AGM at St Paul's, Robert Adam Street, London

Updated information about the 2010 AGM of the Violet Needham Society - click here to view

VNS summer excursion 2010

Our summer event this year was an extra special one.

It took place on Saturday, 10 July, and was to Gloucestershire.

Lunch was in the Old Hall at Badminton House, and by kind permission of the Duke and Duchess of Beaufort we were allowed to view the gardens (not normally open on a Saturday). We were joined at lunch by our President, Gerald Harford.

In the afternoon we visited Little Sodbury Manor, formerly the home of Violet Needham's cousin Baron Francis de Tuyll and then of her nephew and great-nephew, Mark and Gerald Harford. It was used as the model for 'Merlyns'. The house is no longer open to the public, so we are very grateful to Lord and Lady Killearn, the present owners, for allowing us to visit. Lady Killearn most kindly invited us to tea.

AGM 2009 London

Saturday, 31 October, 2009

Violet Needham Society AGM at St Botolph's, Bishopsgate, London,
was followed by a lunch and an afternoon discussion on "London in Children's Books".

Authors featured included:

Noel Streatfeild
Mabel Esther Allan
Antonia Forest
Robina Beckles Willson
Jessie Powell
Charlie Fletcher

St Botolph's has an extensive and helpful website.
This includes a location map and details of how to get there

VNS summer excursion 2009

Saturday, 20 June, 2009

The Violet Needham Society visited Hemingford Grey,
home of the author Lucy Boston and setting for her 'Green Knowe' books.

Click here to download full details

Hemingford Grey has an extensive village website, with photographs,
maps, and details of history and accommodation. Click for details.

For more on Lucy Brown and the 'Green Knowe' books, click here.

Copyright 2017 Violet Needham Society