Letty Holloway


From the Mercury & Herald dated March 5th 1970
part of  ‘Profile of a village.’



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Living in Rose Cottage, Yardley Gobion, the house in which she was born 100 years ago, is Miss Letitia Holloway, who celebrated her centenary last September.
(The right hand cottage is Rose cottage containing the Post Office.)

Miss Holloway who cooks and does some housework, is a cheerful and interesting conversationalist. She can no longer read but enjoys listening to the radio, particularly ‘The Archers’ and Sunday community singing.

Her father, Mr Thomas Holloway, ran the village post office in Rose Cottage and after some years as a maid in Scotland, Miss Holloway returned to Yardley Gobion to help in the family business. In Rose Cottage was set up the first telephone exchange in the district, serving a group of villages and Wakefield Lodge.

Miss Holloway went to school at Potterspury because Yardley Gobion School was not built. As a girl she used to walk the three miles to Isworth Farm, along the canal, to deliver letters.

“Post Offices weren’t so busy in those days,” she said. There were only penny stamps to sell and letters to deliver.


Miss Holloway remembers when she had to fetch water from a well on the Green, using a bucket and chain until a pump was installed in her youth. Sunday dinners were cooked at the village bakehouse and at Whitsun holidays in Queen Victoria’s time there were celebrations in a big marquee erected in the Pack Horse field and families took food with them for a communal meal.

She recalls a boat exploding on the canal, and many years ago the village band serenading a woman on her 99th birthday.

During the first world war, Miss Holloway helped other woman volunteers collect rags and bones to aid the war effort. She used to attend regularly at the Congregational chapels at Potterspury and Yardley Gobion and still goes occasionally to the one at Yardley Gobion.  On these occasions she is taken by car by her neighbour Mr. J. Wood, whose wife helps Miss Holloway’s neice, Miss Lucy Meakins, look after the centenarian.


Miss Holloway’s hobby is knitting squares to help missionary work and she reckons to knit one square a night.

Asked for her recipe for a long life she said, I always had a busy time. There was always something to do.”