Wane family

Stop number WHITE 11: Continue to walk along the avenue of lime trees and after the eleventh tree look for the Wane grave on the second tier of graves.
 Wane plot
Wane plot
Read the story below and when you are ready to move on click on the dot/circle for J G Peace.
Off to the Boer War Priory Road
Off to the Boer War (SWOP BFP03155) Priory Road (SWOP BFP33321)
Mrs Eliza Wane 1843 - 1931

I am the daughter of Francis James Treacher who was a Wycombe chairmaker. We are a musical family and myself, my sister and my daughter have all taught music of some kind or another here in Wycombe. I was a pianoforte teacher along the London Road.

I am now a widow but my husband, John Wane, was a corn dealer along Paulís Row. He was also a volunteer fireman.

My son Frank, was a volunteer fireman, too, before he enlisted for the Boer War. He survived that war thank goodness and returned briefly to England but then he received an army commission and returned to South Africa in 1903 where he became a Major in the British Army. So now he's doing his bit for King and Country over there. Fortunately he'll be used to the fighting now, having been through the Boer War. We miss him dreadfully but he seems happy enough and I just hope nothing happens to him.

Frank going back to South Africa was a blow to my husband. He didn't want to stand in his way of course but, with no son to pass on the corn dealing business to and worrying about the corn markets, he felt the burden of work too much of a strain. One day in 1908 he drowned himself in the Dyke on the Rye, his worries just too much for him to cope with.

So I became a widow far too early and I now share a house with my daughter Florence and her husband Will and their children. Florence is a member of the Red Cross and has shown a great interest in the care of the soldiers and we make regular visits to the VAD Hospital in Benjamin Road. There's a visiting rota which means that the ladies of Wycombe take it in turns to visit the soldiers and we do our best to cheer them up.

I know what their mother's must be going through as I remember only too well my own fears for Frank's safety during the Boer war and now I'm having to relive those fears again for this one too!

(Frank survived the war and was to visit England briefly in 1926, probably to show off his new wife, Zoe, but he settled in Rhodesia. Florence's daughter, Enid, was later to join him there.)

Florence Wane 1882-1963

I am Florence Wane, well Florence Peace actually, but I was a singer before I married William (who is the cousin of Lieut Donald Clarke) and so I keep my stage name when I am performing.

I have three children but my son is thankfully too young to join up and my husband too old to enlist. My widowed mother lives with us in Priory Road, just opposite the Elementary School there, and we are also very near to the VAD Hospital in Benjamin Road where I am a regular visitor. Iím also a member of the Red Cross. I take my children with me when I can as the soldiers like to see the youngsters. It reminds them of their own families back at home and itís also good for the children to see a bit of real life and know what war is really like.

We try and have lots of entertainment at the hospital, especially for special occasions like Christmas, which can be a really festive affair with plenty of donations of food and drink and little gifts for the soldiers. And all the local big-wigs are in attendance joining in the fun.

Before I married I gave music lessons, just like my mother did before me, so when we have a special occasion or a fund-raising event I usually get asked to sing and I am always happy to oblige. I was trained at a prestigious music academy in London and I have a classical repertoire but Iím happy to sing what is required. I have to admit that I like to perform and at the end of this year I will be part of a new entertainment group formed in Wycombe. Our first performance will be to raise money for the new X-ray machine at the Cottage Hospital.

You get to hear a lot of tales about the war when you chat to the soldiers but I prefer to ask them about their sweethearts or their wives and children back at home. Theyíve all got a letter or photograph to show you and I often help them to write a letter back if they have problems with their writing. In fact Iím quite sorry to see them leave, especially when I know that theyíre going back to the Front.

Well, time to rehearse for my next show.

(My father is already buried in the cemetery and my mother and my husband William will also be buried here. However Will was a lot older than me and so, on a visit to see my brother Frank after Willís death, I will get to meet my second husband on the voyage home. And more adventures in WW2 will await me!)

Eliza Wane researched by Sally Scagell and performed by Jane Dunsterville, Flackwell Local Area History Group Florence Wane researched by Sally Scagell and performed by Alison Norris
Eliza Wane researched by Sally Scagell and performed by Jane Dunsterville, Flackwell Local Area History Group Florence Wane researched by Sally Scagell and performed by Alison Norris

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