On Devoran Lane, not far from St Johns Church & Vicarage, pictured here c. 1905/6 is the Driffold Hotel listed on BBC Domesday reloaded
9th July 1917 – a young woman from Devoran finishes her service as an ambulance driver in France during the First World War and heads home to her village with a happy heart.
She must have seen some terrible sights during her nine months service overseas, seeing some of the human wreckage of the trenches. The Doctor’s daughter must have been relieved to see her home safely again.
On Devoran Lane, not far from St. John and St Petroc’s Church and Vicarage, is the Driffold, once a hotel, now known as Edwards Road. The Driffold in Late Victorian times and into the Edwardian / First World War period was home to Doctor Philip Hugh Edwards family. It is still known as Edwards House, opposite the modern 1980s houses of Edwards Road.
An enquiry lodged with the BRCS archives for any further information on Gwendoline Mary Edwards elicited that VAD Cornwall 34 (34 might be her number or an area number) Gwendoline Edwards served as a 21 year old from 13 October 1916 as Rank G.S. (General Service?) Chauffeuse until 9 July 1917 (a week before her wedding). Particulars of duties: Motor Ambulance Driving in France.
VAD Cornwall 34 might be her number or an area number.
The reason for her happy return before the end of the war?
A week later 100 years ago on the 16th July 1917 Gwendoline was married and became Mrs Gwendoline Layton Blunt.
Although we have failed to find a photo of the wedding or of Gwendoline so far, we have found a duplicate of the certificate.
We will publish more about the wedding including press cuttings found by my fellow researcher Bob Richards.