Moving right along, the 1911 Census has just been released in England. No address was “private” in those days: Winston Churchill is listed at 33 Eccleston Square (seventeen rooms) with Clementine, Diana and eight servants. The help comprised a cook, nurse, lady’s maid, housemaid, parlourmaid, under-parlourmaid, kitchen maid and hall boy). —A.J., NSW, Australia
Ah for the days when help was cheap. I once tried Churchill’s method of getting two days out of one by copying his daily routine at Chartwell: an hour or more of sound sleep in mid-afternoon, a little dictation, bath #1, dinner, film showing, serious work from say 11pm to 3am, breakfast at 8am, dictate letters and read all newspapers including the Daily Worker, in bed all morning, bath #2, lunch and an afternoon amble before starting all over again. I found it works fine if you have a staff of fifteen. My wife was not amused.
Entertaining aside: Percy Reid, a newspaper stringer keeping an eye on Chartwell had an infallible way of knowing if Churchill was not in residence: the Daily Worker was still for sale at the Westerham newsstand. The proprietor took only one copy, since his only customer was Churchill. Reid’s remembrances are in his rather rare little paperback, Churchill: Townsman of Westerham, which really should go online sometime, because it offers a unique perspective on his country life, and many examples of why he was beloved by Kentish folk, who are severe judges of character.