Posted: 08 November 2019

Celebrating our supporters: Patricia Stone, author of Dora Annie

Patricia Stone has been volunteering for us for over 21 years. She’s supported our work in so many different ways – from organising Christingle services and fundraising events, to coordinating collection boxes and speaking at churches. Over the years, she’s raised over £12,672.

Last year, Patricia published her first children’s book – Dora Annie - with her partner, writer Brian Bone. The book is dedicated to The Children’s Society, which we’re really proud of.

We spoke to Patricia about her book and how she became one of our volunteers.

Tell us a little bit about the book

The book tells the true story of Dora Annie, my grandmother, who at the age of eight walked five miles to her new job in Gloucestershire. There, she becomes the live-in companion of an unwell farmer’s wife, where her job is to ring a handbell to summon the farmer and his sons home from the fields in emergencies.

Dora Annie stays with the family until she turns 14, when she goes into service as a Tweeny Maid – the lowest kind of maid – for another family. The book covers her adventures on the way to becoming a Ladies Maid, which was the very top of the female servant’s ladder.

What inspired you to write the book?

I loved my grandmother, and her extraordinary life was so completely different from anyone nowadays that I found it fascinating. I’m sure others will feel the same.

How did you become involved with The Children’s Society?

A woman at our Church – St Mary’s in Sunbury-on-Thames – adopted a child through The Children’s Society. For a long time I’ve raised money for The Children’s Society with friends through collection boxes and local shops, etc.

Why did you dedicate the book to us?

Because I’m absolutely committed to this charity – we need to help children in England. The situation is very serious, and The Children’s Society is doing everything it can to help.

Dora Annie is available to buy from Amazon.

Find out more about volunteering

By Lauren Cain

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