History of The Great Dane Club continued
The start of World War II resulted in the curtailment of Club activities, and placed great strain on the activities of members to maintain the breed. The major Kennels managed, at best, to breed one or two litters to continue their lines and many smaller Kennels ceased to exist. Indeed, the survival of the breed in the UK during this time was due in no small measure to the dedication of a few determined Ladies such as Mrs Nellie Ennals (Blues and Blacks), Mrs Joan Kelly (Harlequins) and Mrs Russell (founder of the Oldmanor line and mother of Mrs Olive Davies). We owe them and their compatriots a great debt.
In 1946 The Great Dane Club organised the first post war Championship Show, the Judge being Mr Gordon Stewart of the Send Kennels.
The following years saw considerable growth in membership, and a rise in popularity of the breed – and in 1953 a Great Dane was Best in Show at Crufts Dog Show (Mr Bill Sigger’s Ch Elch Edler of Ouborough).
Referred to as ‘Mr Great Dane’ Mr Bill Siggers pictured with the Crufts Best In Show Winner 1953 Ch Elch Edler of Ouborough, a feat which to this date has never been repeated.
During the early nineties The Club joined with all the other UK clubs to form a Combined Committee to liase on matters affecting the development and future of the breed and in accordance with The Kennel Club wishes is now working with a majority of other UK clubs to form a Breed Council.The centenary of The Great Dane Club was celebrated in 1983 and the Officers and Committee were: Patron: His Grace the Duke of Newcastle, President: Mrs Edna Harrild, Vice Presidents: Mrs Peggy Laing, Mrs Nellie Ennals, Mrs Gill Le West, Chairman & Vice President: Mrs Olive Davies, Secretary: Mrs Freda Lewis, Treasurer: Mr Tony Pearce, Committee – Mrs Janet Alford: Mrs Joy Butcher, Mrs Peggy Laing, Mrs Diane Norman-Cowley, Mrs Elaine Parish, Mrs Jo Roberts, Mrs Maureen-Anne Temple-Smith, Dr Margaret Lloyd, Messrs Ron Lewis, Rex Primmer and Mike Ramsay.
In 2000 The Great Dane Club organised a Millennium celebration spread over two days and incorporating the annual Championship Show – by general consent this was a spectacular celebration of Great Danes and included a match between Teams representing all the other clubs, a rally and parade of “rescued Danes”, historical displays, a Dinner and Dance and a variety of fun events including a fancy dress competition for Exhibitors and their Danes.
The Great Dane Club now has a membership well in excess of 450 including members from all around the world and is determined to build on the solid foundations provided by its founders and following generations. It will continue to work towards the development of the breed in the UK and to contribute to the well being of our noble breed.