A MOST UNITED FRATERNITY As midsummer approached in the year 1761 the townsfolk of Cardigan were agog with the news that the annual meeting of the Society of Sea Serjeants had been fixed to take place in their town the year before it had been held at Haverfordwest. Hubberston too, and Tenby, Carmarthen, Swansea, all these in their turn had had the pleasure of welcoming the gentry for their Society's celebrations. And now it was for Cardigan to experience the gaiety that was to come. Little knots of people stood on street corners deep in conversation they all shared that heightened feeling of anticipation of the gala week to come in mid June, with the unaccustomed visitors pouring into the town, bringing with them glimpses of high fashion, fine horses, and many more post chaises than were normally driven through the High Street. Soon lodging house and inn keepers had turned their places upside down, inside out, and now spotless linen adorned the beds, the furniture gleamed with polish, and in the kitchens there was much scurrying and bustling about, with vast pots simmering, and the dog in its wheel high up on the wall peddling for dear life to keep the spit turning on the hearth. In the stable yards all were occupied, for much extra stabling was needed for the visitors' horses, the post chaises and the accompanying grooms. The town itself was already in gala mood, with flags out, and the boatmen seeking custom had trimmed their craft with gaily coloured pennants. The money spent in the town would be all to the good, and innkeepers, hostlers, boatmen and fishermen alike would benefit. As for the local members of the Society, they were in their element welcoming their friends and fellow members from other districts. John Symmons of Llanstinan, over the border in Pembrokeshire, was certainly there in his official capacity as M.P. for Cardigan Boroughs, no less than as a member he was accompanied by his brother George. William Skyrme from Vaynor in the parish of Llawhaden, and David Parry from Noyadd would be entertaining friends, and their wives and daughters would help by displaying their talents as hostesses. In all this gaiety in preparation there was one marked difference from the present day the teenagers' of the families participating in the celebrations would be kept in their proper place, well behaved, discreetly in their nurseries reading their instructive books, playing their needles on their samplers, and generally setting a good example to their younger brothers and sisters. Not for them to disport themselves independently in the town.