Christmas Parties in the 50's

Fond Memories of Christmas Parties at Crathie in the1950s -
The Anderson Family - Patricia, Hazel, Catherine and Stella.

Christmas was a very special time for us - coming from a large family there were lots of preparations to do.  Baking mince pies, Clootie Dumpling, Tablet making and decorations to make. Mum and Dad gave us a great time.

One of the highlights was when we got the Queen’s Christmas pudding. When we were very young our Dad used to tell us a lovely story about how the Queen would put on her apron and stir the fruit and lovely ingredients into it, but she kept her crown on! He also used to say that the Duke of Edinburgh gave her a hand!  We believed this of course!

We had two parties The Kirk Party which we called the “Hush Hush Party” or the “Wheest Party”.

I remember as a child getting so excited about the Party that I could hardly go!  We got dressed up in our party dresses and off we went to the Kirk Hall. Always worried that the snow would come on and we would not get!

A lovely spread was laid out for us with sandwiches and cakes and crackers. Lots of noise from everyone . Often the Minister, Dr Lamb would have to get the children to quieten down and he would say, ‘Hush Hush or Santa won’t come!’ and we use to call it the, ‘Hush Hush Party’ or the ‘Wheest Party’.

After the feast we would sing Christmas Carols from lovely printed colourful sheets and then Santa would come.

Presents were lovely.

The other Party was the Balmoral Party held in the Servants’ Hall at the Castle.

There we had a similar feast and we were often entertained with Films like Woody Woodpecker or Laurel and Hardy.  One year we had a Magician! Rabbits out of Hats and amazing things!

Our ideas of Santa varied!  We only believed that ‘Suntie Doon the Lum’ was the real thing!

This was due to at one party my friend and I saw Bob Brown, the Queen’s piper, putting on the red Suit over his wellies and gamekeeper’s suit!  Of course we also recognized their voice, but never let on to the younger ones.

Patricia Fraser (nee Anderson)

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