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Cyril and Juliet Sladden’s reminiscences of growing up in Badsey

In 1973, Katherine Sladden, a missionary in India, was on home leave and staying with her Uncle Cyril and Aunt Juliet at Seward House in the High Street, Badsey.  Cyril Sladden (1890-1974) was the youngest son of Julius and Eugénie Sladden, who had moved to Badsey on a cold New Year’s Day in 1879.  Cyril, a widower, had returned to live in the family home in retirement, after a teaching career at Eton College.  Juliet Sladden (1897-1984) was the youngest daughter of Julius and Eugénie.  She never married and returned to live in Badsey from London on retirement as General Secretary of the Institute of Christian Education at Home and Overseas.  

Katherine Sladden (1926-2000) was the only child of their eldest brother, Jack Sladden.  On two separate visits to Seward House in 1973, Katherine recorded the reminiscences of Cyril, then aged 82, and Juliet, then aged 75, to talk about their parents and to describe what Badsey was like when they were growing up.

The first occasion was on 14th February 1973 and the second occasion was later in 1973.  Also present were Peg Sladden and Pat and Nancy Sladden.  Peg (1899-1992) was the widow of Cyril and Juliet’s brother, George, and had been a friend of Juliet’s since they had met at university; she had come to live at Seward House in the 1960s.  Pat Sladden (1907-1988) was the first-cousin-once-removed of Cyril and Juliet.  He had been born in New Zealand and spent all his life working in the Far East but, in retirement, had settled in Badsey when he bought the Seward House barn and converted it into a residence.

Katherine made the recordings on a tape recorder in 1973; the tape includes some background noise such as the church bells.  A copy of the original tape was made by Pat Sladden; this copy is now in the ownership of his daughter, Patsy Miller.  We are grateful to Will Dallimore who, in October 2020, copied the tape on to a CD enabling us to listen to the voices of the Sladdens.

Side 1

Side 2