Stuart Orme, Cromwell Museum Curator, lives in Peterborough. For many years he was a curator at Peterborough Museum, worked at the Cathedral, written extensively on the city’s past and led many guided walks, so knows its historic nooks, crannies and stories well. Cromwell may get a mention apropos the Civil War, but the tour will take in the Cathedral Precincts, historic shops and pubs, medieval kings and bridges, and the industrial heritage, as well as the stories of riots, rebellions and a man whose life was saved by the bell!
Meet outside Peterborough Museum, Priestgate, at 7:00 p.m. Public or own transport. Best car park is Trinity Street, behind the museum (£2 for evening from 6:00 p.m.)
No charge, donations invited for the Cromwell Museum refurbishment. Book by Friday 7th June, maximum 40 people.
HUNTINGDONDONSHIRE LOCAL HISTORY SOCIETY – VISIT TO RAF WYTON PATHFINDER MUSEUM – CANCELLED
It is with deep regret that I have to inform you that the planned visit to the RAF Wyton Pathfinders Museum which was to be held on the afternoon of Tuesday 9th July has been cancelled.
The Museum is putting on a small display of some of their artefacts on Saturday 13 July in All Saints Church Huntingdon. Whilst this is not a full display of all the Museum’s artefacts, they will be showing a number of the instruments and equipment from some of the Pathfinder aircraft that operated from RAF Wyton and other pathfinder bases in this region.
RAF Wyton, conveniently close to its Huntingdon HQ, was the main station for the Pathfinders. Air Commodore Bennett, CO of the Group, lived here. Since 1955 a valuable collection of historic material has gradually been assembled. The Museum also houses the JARIC collection of air reconnaissance material formerly at RAF Brampton and the RAF Wyton Timeline, giving an overall history of the station from its origins in 1916 to the present day. This will be an afternoon visit to the RAF Wyton Museum and the Pathfinder Museum. Meet at 1:00pm at entrance (Guardroom) to RAF Wyton. Public transport (well served by buses) or own transport (visitors carpark) YOU MUST SUPPLY NAMES OF ALL GOING AND BRING PHOTO IDENTIFICATION WITH YOU. YOU MAY BE SUBJECT TO SEARCHES. NO PHOTOGRAPHY EXCEPT WITHIN THE HERITAGE CENTRE. Cost £2, pay on the day. Book by Sunday 22nd June (note early date due to security requirements.
The 2019 Goodliff Awards are being presented at the Society’s President’s Lecture, which this year is taking place during the Huntingdonshire History Festival. Because it is being advertised with other events and we fully expect a full room, admission, even for members, will be by prior booking.
After the presentation of the Goodliff Awards, Dr Thurley will give his lecture, HERITAGE and HOUSING, for which he has provided the following introduction:
Providing enough houses for people to live in is one of the great issues affecting Huntingdonshire and indeed England today. It is an issue for people looking to buy new homes and settle into this area, but also one for those wanting to protect the distinctiveness of their historic towns and villages. Most new house building is undertaken in disregard of the vernacular traditions of the places in which it is undertaken. Historic settlements all over England are fighting what they regard as inappropriate development on their doorstep. Does it have to be like this? Can heritage and conservation be reconciled with the ambitions of the volume housebuilder? I will look at the issues in historical, geographical and economic context and suggest a way forwards.
Please use the BOOKING FORM accompanying the Summer 2019 Almanack to tell us you are coming, or otherwise let David Smith know by email email@example.com..uk or phone 01480 350127 by Sunday 30th June at the latest
This is one of those Huntingdonshire Essentials and should be familiar to members from articles on Nicholas Ferrar and his family in Records by David Ransome. For historical background see VCH Hunts., (I 399-406). Ferrar’s spirit lives on. We shall be tour of the house and ‘chapel’ (in fact a parish church), that together make it a very special place, by members of the community and afterwards there will be tea/coffee and cake.
Meet at Little Gidding car park, 2:30pm. Own transport. Please tell us if you need a lift and we will do our best to arrange one.
Cost will be about £5 (can be paid on the day, but at least email to say you are coming).
Book by Monday 5th August.
An opportunity to join in with the annual Cambridgeshire Historic Churches Trust led excursion to a great church, which benefits from the expert commentary and guidance of Revd. Lynne Broughton. Lunchtime opportunity to explore Southwell.
On the way back we will visit the church at Corby Glen where we will have the opportunity for a cup of tea there.
Further information see separate booking form and information sheet, to access please click on [BOOKING FORM]
Book by Saturday 1st June. Please note early deadline
This will be a coach excursion, joint with Cambridge Association for Local History (CALH) and Cambridge Antiquarian Society (CAS), visiting Eye Church and Wingfield College (house and church).
SS. Peter and Paul Eye is one of those astonishing late medieval churches that seems to have everything: one of the finest rood screens in the region, a fan vault in the tower, a wealth of monuments, a sanctuary by Ninian Comper, a recently restored organ. We shall arrive shortly after their regular Friday service and be able to join for coffee. After looking round we are free to explore the market town, perhaps mount the castle motte, and find lunch in one of several eateries.
At 1:30pm we reassemble for the short trip onward to Wingfield College. The Palladian lines of this private house conceal a medieval manor, remodelled as a charity college by Sir John Wingfield in 1362, ‘a maze of medieval woodwork, every inch of which is intriguing’ (Jenkins). The visit includes the parish church, where Sir John is buried, but whose glory is the fabulous tombs of the de la Pole Dukes of Suffolk, and concludes with tea and cake.
Leave Huntingdon Bus Station 9:30am,: depart Wingfield 4:40pm, return c6:30pm.This is a joint excursion with Cambridgeshire Association for Local History. Early booking is strongly recommended.
Other pick up points (indicate clearly on the form): Somersham (Dews) 8:55am, St Ives (Houghton Road) 9:15am, Hartford (Longstaff Way) 9:25am, Godmanchester (Bridge Place Car Park) 9:35am, Cambridge (Milton Park and Ride) 10:15am.
The cost will be approximately £34 per head. Book by Saturday 31 August, Maximum 40 people.
Christmas Social – A Georgian Christmas, with Bedford Gallery Quire, Tuesday 10th December
Its that time of year, the Christmas festive season is fast approaches again. Once more we have a super programme lined up for our Christmas social. The Christmas social is undoubtedly one of the sheer joys of this society, so do make an effort to come along. You will not be disappointed. And by all means bring friends with you.
This year The Bedford Gallery Quire, will be providing the musical entertainment. They are part of the movement to resurrect the folk tradition, coined ‘West Gallery Music’ by Thomas Hardy, The Quire was formed in 2003 and is a group of singers and instrumentalists performing musical pieces from the ‘West Gallery’ period, around 1700 to 1850. West Gallery music is often seen as an anarchic musical attribute of the parish church until reforming Victorian clergy suppressed them in favour of the more governable, surpliced, choirs singing in the chancel that we know today. Besides playing fiddles and flutes they will be performing traditional music on some less familiar instruments including flagelettes, an ophicleïde, and a serpent – a rare sight indeed.
We will again be providing sandwiches, etc., as well as drinks, but members are welcome to bring additional seasonal fare. It would be helpful if you haven’t already done so , it you would book as soon as possible. This enables us to tell how many spaces available for non-members. David Smith will be there on Tuesday to take bookings and your £5.00, or send him a cheque with form in the Almanack, or at very least email him at firstname.lastname@example.org to let him know you are coming and pay on the night.
RETURN TO KENT – EXPLORING THE NORTHERN AND WESTERN PARTS OF THE COUNTY
This year we are pleased to announce that we will be returning to Kent to visit some of the historic houses and building in the northern part of the County. For those who were lucky enough to join us for our tour of the Castles of Kent in 2016 will remember the outstanding visits to Leeds Castle, Penshurst, Dover Castle, Walmer Castle, Lullingstone Roman Villa, Igntham Mote and Hever Castle. This year we are visiting our weekend is filled with visiting some of the other areas of this County. For a printable copy of the itinerary for this years vivist to Kent please click [here].
Day 1 (Friday 15th May)
DARWIN AND THE ORIGIN OF SPECIES
Our weekend starts with a visit to Darwins House in South London. This is a unique place where the renowned scientist lived and wrote the book ‘On the Origin of Species’. We will have a tour of the house, with narration by Sir David Attenborough, and the chance to walk around the gardens and greenhouses.
In the afternoon, we venture on to Riverhill Himalayan Gardens, first established in 1840 by John Rogers. John was one of the founding members of the Royal Horticultural Society and a contemporary of Charles Darwin. The gardens are renowned for their fine collections of rhododendron, azaleas and specimen trees as well as the woodland bluebells. There is also an Edwardian Rock Garden, rediscovered having lain forgotten for nearly 70 years.
We are staying at The Danes Hotel, Hollingbourne, Near Maidstone.
Day 2 – Saturday 16th May
We start our day at Scotney Castle. This building has a long history dating from 1137. From 1778 the house was occupied by the Hussey family until it was left to the National Trust in 1970. The main part of the house was built in 1837 by Edward Hussey III from sandstone quarried from the grounds of the old castle. We will have a tour around the house and also the opportunity to visit the walled garden and the extensive grounds and gardens.
In the afternoon we visit Maidstone Museum, established in 1858. The museum is said to be one of the finest and largest, outside of London, with exhibits of fine art, human and natural history.
Day 3 – Sunday 17th May
We head south in the morning to Smallhythe. The village was a small thriving shipbuilding port. We visit Smallhythe Place. This early 16th Century timber framed house was bought by Ellen Terry, a renowned Victorian Actress, in 1899 and stayed in the family till it was transferred into a museum in 1928 by Ellen’s daughter. The barn has been converted into a small theatre where a diverse programme of productions are still performed throughout the year.
In the afternoon we venture into Capel where we will visit the church of St Thomas a Becket. A small Norman church, rebuilt in 1639 after a fire. This is a Grade 1 listed building under the care of the Churches Conservation Trust. it has a striking post roof and extensive wall paintings that cover the walls of the nave.
Day 4 – Monday 18th May
SIR WINSTON CHURCHILL AND CHARTWELL
We are spending the day at CHARTWELL, the family home and garden of Sir Winston Churchill.
Chartwell was the much-loved Churchill family home from 1922 and the place from which Sir Winston drew inspiration until the end of his life. The rooms remain much as they were when he lived here, with pictures, books and personal mementoes evoking the career and wide-ranging interests of a great statesman, writer, painter and family man. We will explore the house with a guided tour giving us a unique insight into the life of Churchill, his family. We all know that Churchill was an avid painter who produced over 500 pieces of work and we will be able to see many of his paintings and artwork in his studio.
There is an excellent cafeteria where we can get lunch and afterwards wander around the hillside gardens that are said to reflect Sir Winston’s love of the landscape and nature. There are over 80 acres of woodland, walled kitchen garden, waterfalls and lakes and beautifully manicured terraced lawns. Lady Churchill loved roses and you can wander around her lovely rose garden. Winston even designed and built a playhouse, the ‘Marycot’ for his youngest daughter Mary, and this should be open for viewing.
We are ending our trip with a cream tea at Chartwell before boarding the coach and heading back to Huntingdon.
Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the lecture and presentation of the Goodliff Awards for 2020 have been postponed and will be rescheduled for later in the year.
The Society’s President, Dr David Starkey will talk about ‘The Uses of History’ and present the Goodliff Awards for 2020.
More details to follow shortly