Miss HENRIETTA M. HUSSEY (Governor of the Godolphin School, 1898-1923).
Miss Hussey was a Governor of the Godolphin School for twenty-five years, and retired as senior Governor in November 1923. The school has indeed been happy in having so large a share of the deep interest, the wise judgment and sure instinct for the best in everything that her strong personality brought to the service of the school.
Her mother, Mrs. James Hussey, was one of the first visitors to the school after I came to it, and when it was still in what is now Fawcett House. I remember the feeling of encouragement that her visit and a talk with her supplied; and when I went to The Wardrobe that wonderfully beautiful and dignified house in the Close to return her call, I felt they would all understand my coming in the dark after school hours. I mention this small fact because it was typical not only of sympathy with a stranger who had come to a new work, which would always be found at The Wardrobe, but of that quick instinctive sense of proportion which was so characteristic of Miss Hussey whenever she was consulted as a Governor. The friend of the school was there before the Governor, and at her appointment there was a comfortable sense of assured additional strength and wisdom available for the good of the school.
It is the Head Mistress who is brought into closest touch with the Governors, and who knows most what their attention and labours bring to the welfare of the school. Besides being a strong friend and helper to the head mistress, Miss Hussey was a valued friend to numbers of the staff all through the years of her governorship. Some of the girls, too, knew her well, and all the members of the school who had eyes to see her on the school platform, either on Speech Day or on Commemoration Day, must have grown familiar with the distinctive personality, the great natural dignity and strong sense of humour which she possessed. She threw herself, heart and soul, into the exuberance of our spirits on our great days. On 26th September 1925, barely a month before she died, she found the strength to write a letter to Miss Ash, and also a message to the Old Girls and to the whole school, showing an unabated interest in its welfare.
What she most desired for the school will be known by those who are striving to become sturdy brave characters, who are learning to acquire the finest edge of good taste, and who are resolved to persevere, with God’s help, in trying to do right with all simplicity.