Valley Friends February Report

From Joan Steel
In January, we had a DIY meeting to avoid a speaker having to travel if the weather is bad. A Beetle Drive is always good fun and during the evening we have time to chat about our Christmas activities and our plans for the New Year.

The ‘Court of King Zog’ was the subject of Neil Rees, who came to our February Meeting to tell us the true and intriguing story of how Ahamed Zogue became King of Albania. The Zogue family were in exile in Frieth from 1941 – 1946, so are of particular interest locally. When the Ottoman Empire declined, all the small countries that formed the Empire became independent kingdoms. Following two short reigns of the kings assigned to Albania, the President Ahamed Zogue was promoted from being President of the republic, which was becoming known as a ‘kingdom without a king’ to being the only known person to become king of a republic. At the beginning of World War Two, Albania was taken over by Italy and the whole Zogue family fled, eventually to Britain, at first to the Ritz in London, and as the blitz became worse, to Frieth where they helped with the war effort. King Zog was condemned to death in his absence, as Albania became communist at the end of the war. He was welcome to remain in Britain but chose to go to King Farouk in Egypt where there was a large community of exiles. King Zog and his wife Geraldine decided to send their son Prince Lekor to Sandhurst to learn to become a soldier and form a group to oust the communist regime in Albania. King Zog died in 1961 in Paris. The inscription on his tomb is ‘KING OF ALBANIA’.

At our March meeting we have a talk by Sue Barns entitled ‘Helen Douglas House’.
Everyone Welcome.

We have a very interesting future programme. All meetings are at 8pm in the Main Village Hall on the first Friday in the month.