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Article written by Lesley Shilton (nee Cherry)
Presented by Karon Rice
Emily Cherry
My mother lived in Wymington as a child, her name was Emily May Lickerish. Many people knew her parents, because her father was a stalwart at Wymington Chapel and was a lay preacher, looking after the chapel in the absence of the local Reverend. A plaque to his memory is in the chapel, William (Jim) Lickerish. Jim was one of the first men to work for Jack (John White), and was made a foreman, working for him for over fifty years.

Emily was the eldest of the family, she was a brilliant pianist, and an accomplished soprano who sadly had to turn down an audition with the London Philharmonic Orchestra, due to the poor family finances. Emily met her future husband, Richard Cherry, (formerly from Swansea), his father was the head postmaster at Higham Ferrers. He was also a Lay Preacher and sidesman at St Mary's Church. As he had earned the title he was known as Rev Cherry.

Emily and Richard were both born in 1908 and probably drawn together because of the similarity of their family backgrounds. Courting often took place along an area near Wymington Road, possibly known as "Lovers Gate". A stone bridge used to exist there, where on several occasions Emily saw a lady in white. Richard never saw the lady. It was rumoured that "The Lady" had parted from her lover and returned to the place where they had declared their love for each other.

Although both were from a Christian background, Richard had been privately tutored and also had a private trainer. He was a running sprinter and was training to run at The White City, as a professional, which in those days was quite an achievement. Richard ran for the Kettering Town Harriers. Somerset House store records of his, as a record breaking Sprinter.

Sadly due to a tragic road accident, Richard received multiple injuries to his leg and hip and was disfigured facially, which left him disabled for life. This happened just before he was due to compete at The White City, so just like Emily his dreams were never fulfilled.

Emily is not known to have had paid employment, having six children to rear, the last child when she was forty three.

To help with the financial needs they housed Americans from Chelveston Airbase during WWII. Richard delivered newspapers there, he had a large delivery round. He was regularly given food by the Americans to help feed his family.

With Richard's job as a travelling salesman for Andersons, a "posh" ladies and gents outfitters in Park Street, Wellingborough, came a car, which was quite a novelty at that time in Rushden. The family lived in Highfield Road before moving to Irchester Road. Daughter Marjorie eventually married an American and moved to the States. Eldest Daughter Barbara and eldest son Kenneth both survived the Alfred Street School bombing.


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