Back to source page ...Danish Hospitality - Copenhagen and Odense 1938
Article by her grandson - added March, 2005

Evidenced by a recently re-discovered notebook, it appears that Babs Anstruther travelled to Denmark in the Autumn of 1938. She was accompanied by "Belinda" - presumed to be Belinda Martin, since she was at the Anstruther home ( Greyfriars - Redbourn. Long-time home of Douglas and Babs Anstruther. Greyfriars) on 29th September - see the Anstruther Guest Book - and was a regular visitor during that pre-war era.

They arrived in Copenhagen on 5th October "after a stormy passage". Passage by air (presumed) at that time would have been less than comfortable - and if by boat in October, could have been even more so! Indeed, this writer recalls crossing by RoRo from Harwich to Esbjerg on several occasions during the early 1980s and feels the connection most powerfully! As much as serendipity may play a part in life, Babs died in 1981 and the first of my such crossings was made at the end of 1982.

Babs never spoke of Denmark but I now realise that I have walked where she walked and seen what she saw in both cities. Denmark became a country close to my heart and I believe it must have become so for Babs too, since this notebook has survived to tell its story. Tak, mormor; livets træ er ikke død.

 
Copenhagen
Oct. 5th 1938
Belinda and I arrive after a stormy passage 10.50pm and were met by Knud -
Oct. 6th Lunched at Angleterre with Mr. Tersling (Pecho's friend) - very nice - Dinner party of 8 at the house and went on to the Ambassadeur to see cabaret and dance. Dinner Guests: Mr. & Mrs. Thompson (she ex-opera singer) Mr. Scheller (champion golfer) Mr. & Mrs. Drachsted. A cheery evening.
Oct. 7th Played golf and early to bed -
Oct. 8th Lunched with Fred Wessels at Angleterre - She very charming. Went to Mme. Butterfly & on to dance & supper at Nimb - an excellent restaurant floor & band - got bad cold -
Oct. 9th Very wet, tried to play golf but gave up - went to Russian Ballet which was excellent.
Oct. 10th Belinda and I played 12 holes of golf. We dined with Mr. & Mrs. Hecksher (friends of Knud) He a Jew in Insurance; both nice.
Oct. 11th Belinda rode in school. Lunched at Angleterre & had our hair done. Dined at Nordland Restaurant (excellent French food) then on to a cinema.
Oct. 12th Went sightseeing - saw Rosenberg Castle & National Gallery - Mrs. Scheller dined & we played bridge.
Oct. 13th Drove into the country, took lunch, saw the Fredriksborg Castle. Quite lovely & back by the coast to the golf club where we played a foursome with Mr. Schelag (Scheller) - I dined with the Withs - a lovely day.
Oct. 14th A quiet day - Belinda & I went shopping in the afternoon - very stormy weather.
Oct. 15th My wedding day - lovely flowers from Knud, they played golf while I read. Dined home. Champagne - sang, danced and played 'shove a penny'.
Oct. 16th Played 9 holes of golf; lunched at the club - dined at Italian restaurant in the fish market & went to see film (Chicago) rather grim.
Oct. 17th Went to auction of old furniture etc. then on to Poulsen's nursery - Sven Pousen charming, showed all his new roses and gave me a lovely bunch. Went to tea at his house after. Note: New roses on market next year. Poulsen's Pink and Crown Princess Ingrid (both lovely). New variety of D.T. Poulsen richer, bigger and blight-free - will probably be called after his last daughter, Nina. One daughter going to Germany to learn Landscape Gardening for a year then he wants to send her to England to do same. Good tip: Graft Cotoneaster on to common large leafed variety thus making standards - very effective & there is a big sale for them - Miss Kampmann came to give me a massage; stayed to dinner & we played bridge.
Oct. 18th Belinda & I lunch at Angleterre & shop in the afternoon -
Oct. 19th I lunch at Yacht Club with Mr. Tersling - he is a real darling.
Oct. 20th See Belinda off on plane. Perfect weather, lunch with Knud & leave at 2.40 for Odense - Lizzie met me & dined with them - sleeping at Grand Hotel.
Oct. 21st Lizzie comes to fetch me at 11am - a glorious day. Lunch at home & go for a drive all around the island. Very pretty - and see some lovely estates. Have tea at Svenborg - very pretty harbour - good sailing. Dined home; Baron Berner came. We played bridge - he took me back to the hotel & we talked hunting for one and a half hours! Note: he lives for horses & hunting & hunts with the Warwickshire every season - his father has three big estates.

Family line - Baron Berner

Oct. 22nd Went sightseeing with Lizzie - saw Hans Andersen's house - after lunch went rough shooting with Dr. Ehrhuus, saw Berner's house. Very lovely.
Oct. 23rd Went to the races; trotting races good fun, saw well from Baron Berner's box - rather cold. Went to hear dance band in the evening.
Oct. 24th Leave for the Hague via Hamburg - comfortable journey. Eggs scarce in Germany - all egg dishes off the menu - coffee very poor. Hard frost.
Oct. 25th Arrive Hague 9.56 - brilliant frosty morning. Tiny (see Wilma link below) goes to wrong station so take taxi to Wassenaar. Sleep at Kierit (? sp.?) pension - attractive, clean, quiet and comfortable except bed which is like a rock! Price only 2 Guiler bed and breakfast - 7 minutes walk from Grootenhuis house. Go for a long walk along the front at Schevenigen - glorious day.
Oct. 26th No entry for this day.
Oct. 27th Play golf with Tiny -- very badly - take Wilma to dancing - dine at most amusing small Italian restaurant in the Hague - cooking A1. Drinks at House of Lords. No one there.
Oct. 28th Shop in the Hague Kees van Velzen (?sp.?) and wife to dine
Oct. 29th Dine with Douglas's (the family name Douglas - not her husband) & so home - Hook Harwich where Willie met me. A very happy month. Finis.
Addenda
Addenda 1 (1938)
List of people I have met (Copenhagen)
Mr Tersling
Fred Wessel and wife
Mr & Mrs With (Director Landsmansbank)
Mr Scheller (Golf Champion)
Mr & Mrs Drachsted (Lawyer)
Mr & Mrs Thompson (Head of Rotary Club)
Mis Kampmann (Masseuse)
Mrs. Erskine (Cousin of Mrs With - very nice, married Erskine, Consul General & relation of the Campbells. Now a wid(d)ow with one daughter)
Mr & Mrs Ingolf (Head Director Landsmansbank)
Mr & Mrs Hecksher (Fire Insurance)
Sven Poulsen - wife and 3 daughters
 
Best Restaurants & Hotels
Nordland (the best and French food)
Nimbs (best supper and dance place)
The Viking (attached to Nimbs)
The Angleterre (best hotel)
Vivex -
 
(list ends)
 
List of people I have met (Odense)
Lizzie Ehnhuus (John and Hans brothers)
Dr. & Mrs Ehnhuus - Hunderupvej (**)
Baron G Berner-Schilder-Holsten - Speljbjerg, Langesø -Fy(n)en
Addenda 2 (Addresses shown - some edits)
Copenhagen
Kai Tersling Sct Anna Plads
Knud & Joyce Ericksen - Gentofte
Harry Wessel (Minister) Chilean Legation
Michael Rose (1st Sec. British Legation)
Odense
Lizzie (Grevenlund, Aasum)
Norway
J. Ulrich Carlsen (Bergen)
Brussels
1. M. Armand Malleux (John Rodney's grandfather)
2. British Embassy (Sir Hughe Knatchbull Hugessen)
3. Mme Laserre Co(a?)nny's sister) (husband Jean).
Addenda 3
(dated June 1946 and written separately in the notebook)
People I have met
Billy Wessel
Harry and Daisy Wessel
Kai Tersling
Prince and Princess Vigo
Prince Eric
Princess Margaretha de Bourbon Parma
Mr and Mrs Randell (British Minister and wife)
Mr Rose (1st sec Brit. Legation)
Mr Preston (Chaplain)
Monica Christensen & Mr Redlich (Danish Foreign Office)
Mr and Mrs Foss
Mr Federspiel (M.P.)
Beale (2nd Chaplain of the fleet)
Keen (Chaplain)
Bri. & Mrs Crowe
Mrs Fred Wessel
 
End of published notebook contents.
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