People at St Luke’s: Charles Hindes

This single small photograph of Ireland at St Luke’s has huge significance, given the close (and in some cases lifelong) associations of the composer with the people captured in it. This is the fifth in a series of short blogs uncovering the personalities behind the faces. St Luke's choir whole Charles HindesThe Edwardian gentleman back right is Charles Hindes, caretaker to the vestry clerk. Born in Buckinghamshire in 1878, Hindes and his wife Sarah lived in South School House, King Street, Chelsea, next door to the caretaker and verger Ernest Banting (see the blog entry for 25 April 2014). Hindes played a full role in the life of St Luke’s. In the parish magazines there are references to his involvement in the 1905 choir boys’ annual outing to the pantomime (Red Riding Hood at the Coronet Theatre, Notting Hill), and some years later, in 1917, when Banting was away in France serving with the Labour Battalion of the West Surrey Regiment, Hindes took on Banting’s role as well as his own. Clearly Hindes was a man to turn to in times of difficulty. Every year he took part in the annual summer excursion organised for the choir, in 1908 described as ‘here, there and everywhere during the day, looking after the welfare of both great and small’. On 1 September 1905 the trip to Clacton was marred by a terrible railway accident at Witham, which delayed the return journey and caused great anguish to the travellers on seeing the wreckage (see Witham Rail Crash). The following year saw further incidents, when four boys went missing in Littlehampton: choir excursion

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