Vera’s generation is probably one of the best recorded in history. While to-day people ring, text or email, then people wrote letters and postcards– news, instructions, information, greetings, feelings – all expressed in ink, along with bills, receipts, notebooks and diaries.

Vera herself was a prolific correspondent and diarist as was her sister Mabel. She also threw nothing away – neither did her two daughters – so we still have suitcases of letters written to her, boxes of her and Mabel’s diaries, drawers full of old tickets and receipts, programmes for the theatre and Henley Regatta, guide books from Italy to Japan, catalogues and reviews of every exhibition she contributed to, bills of sale, requests for paintings, letters of appreciation and rejection, painting materials and wood engraving blocks.

The task of making sense of her diaries was made possible through her daughter Christina Roaf’s detailed summaries of her social and painting life, even recording from her diaries the books she read. Christina was ably assisted by her secretary Jackie Finlay, who took over the task of summarising the diaries after Christina’s death in 2014.


We would be interested to hear of any more information about Vera Waddington and her work, particularly her pictures: