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North Mymms - Parish and People
by Dorothy Colville

Chapter 21 - Mr Capes

I first heard of Mr. Capes when I was a little girl of eight or nine, a pupil at Water End school. I did not need to go to him, for I had no warts, but we all knew of girls whose warts had been charmed away by Mr. Capes. I was much too frightened to put my hands into water in which eggs had been boiled - a sure way of getting warts, so we were told - so I would never have to go to Mr. Capes.

Some thirty-five or forty years on I returned to Water End to be its last headmistress. The American general hospital had been opened as a temporary housing estate and we welcomed little girls and boys from Islington and elsewhere. As the months went by we all settled happily together. Greeted one morning with "Oh, you should see Brenda’s hands. They are covered in ‘delible pencil," a quick glance at Brenda’s hands explained the marks. "It’s all right. She’s been to the doctor to get rid of her warts." Wide-eyed astonishment from my "locals." "Why? She should go to Mr. Capes, shouldn’t she?"

I had forgotten Mr. Capes and his special ability, but it was still well known to many who had "consulted" him with success.

Dorothy Colville, 1971


Chapter 22 - The Sibthorp Story
Index - North Mymms Parish and People

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