[Bettina was the daughter of Hardwicke's brother, Walter Hugh. The text below was copied down by her son, Roderic Fenwick-Owen.]
Uncle Hardy really I didn't know him much as a famous person, I merely knew him as 'an uncle'. He was very kind to us, he was very nice and he was rather amused by my efforts of trying to write poetry which I did because I wrote in some kind of a child's book that there was some little child who was supposed to write poetry which I didn't think much of. And so eventually I showed, with great trembling, what I had written to Uncle Hardy. But he merely remarked, as far as I can remember: "Betty, your music would be sweeter if you attended to your metre!" which annoyed me very much and I didn't show him anything more. His whole life's work seemed to me to be the National Trust which was started by Miss Octavia Hll and a lawyer. Uncle Hardy wrote to me and said "would you like to go to the Warwick Pageant?" Warwick Pageant was the first of all these pageants which shortly became famous, written, I think, by Louis Napoleon Parker. He wrote to Miss Beale (I was at Cheltenham College at the time), and said could he take his niece to the Warwick Pageant? Miss Beale suddenly sent for me and said that "your uncle has asked that you might go to the Warwick Pageant. You understand you go and afterwards you write me a report." I was delighted to do so and he took me off to Warwick where we saw this pageant - of course to me it was the most exciting thing - I can't remember anything he said about it except that he said "too much Reckitts Blue!" about the clothing. He was very kind in looking after the rest of his family. He was a twin of my Aunt Fanny's and came about third after Willingham, Mary - Hardy and Fanny were the twins in an enormous family of 10 people. When my father was fairly young and after he had left school and was starting on his travels he got as far as Italy, where he was very ill. Uncle Hardy rushed out to see how he was and when he got there he found that Walter, my father, had had a dream that he had married the girl that he loved and inherited a cousin's fortune by picking up a pin. When he recovered from his illness my father could hardly be persuaded by my uncle that it was only a dream, he was convinced that it was a reality. And it was a dream which came true, except that he never found why "picking up a pin" induced the inheritance.
"Did he ever pick up a pin?"
"He never picked up a pin as far as he knew."
Next: Edward Thring
- Hits: 600