1930 – 1939
The challenge was given in the first evening sermon preached at St George’s Church by the new Vicar, Revd Percy Donald Robins, aged thirty, who was to become known in a few short years to thousands of people in all walks of life as ‘Don’.
He saw the familiar signs of the Depression: enforced idleness, hunger, hardship and despair. Beneath the Church lay a Crypt, this was the obvious place to meet the challenge of Don’s own words.
The Crypt was full of vaults and coffins, there were gaping holes in the walls and the floor was deep with dust. Don and a few brave members of the congregation opened up the Crypt and cleaned and cleared it as much as possible. The first £3 ever raised for the Crypt was spent on canvas to cover the coffins and gaping holes. Members of the congregation brought milk, sugar and cocoa. As soon as it opened, men poured in. An appeal by Don brought in more food and clothing as the numbers grew.