Calendar

Jan
11
Thu
Society Lecture – Stirling to Essen (Roger Leivers) @ Huntingdon Methodist Church
Jan 11 @ 7:30 pm – 10:00 pm

The Godmanchester Stirling Crash – New pictures and untold family stories.

In 2012 the Godmanchester Community Association received an email inquiring about an aircraft that had crashed very near to Godmanchester during the Second World War. The email was given to Roger and not realising at the time this led Roger on a 5 years research project that resulted in a successful book telling the story of the crew and the aircraft. But the book really tells you of the emotional and heart rending stories of the crew and their families, the trials and tribulation of flying this gigantic aircraft often dogged by technical issues, and follows the lives, and tragic deaths, of everyone associated with the fateful aircraft and crew.

In 2015 Roger was awarded a Goodliff Grant by the Society to help publish his book ‘Stirling to Essen The Godmanchester Stirling: a Bomber Command Story of Courage and Tragedy.

Roger Leivers is coming to update us on his project on the Godmanchester Stirling crash.  It will be rather different to what he has spoken about before, so don’t make the mistake of believing you’ve heard it somewhere else before. 

Copies of is book will be available to buy on the night.

Feb
8
Thu
Society Lecture – History of Houghton Grange (Bridget Flanagan) @ Huntingdon Methodist Church
Feb 8 @ 7:30 pm – 10:00 pm

Cootes, Constables and Chickens – a History of Houghton Grange (Bridget Flanagan)

 

Bridget will explore the chequered history of this building and show there is much of interest before its sad decline from Edwardian magnificence to a government scientific centre and the present dereliction.

There is very little documented information about the Grange prior to its use as a poultry research business. We know the house was originally built for a Mr Harold Coote. It was a large house situated on the banks of the river Ouse and was approached from the main Huntingdon to Houghton road through a long avenue of lime trees. To the south, terraced gardens led down to the river through extensive lawn areas.

The house has lain empty for nearly 25 years and is slowly decaying into sad disrepair. 

 

Mar
8
Thu
Society Lecture – The Anglo-Saxons in Huntingdonshire (Dr Stephen Upex) @ Huntingdon Methodist Church
Mar 8 @ 7:30 pm – 10:00 pm

The Anglo-Saxons in Huntingdonshire

Dr Upex is probable best known for his expertise on the Romans in the Nene Valley, but his academic range is much wider. Here he ventures later and on to a broader canvas to examine the effects of those who supplanted the Romans. 

Whilst the Romans changed the face of Europe and England for ever with towns and particularly our road structure that we are still using today, the Angles and the Saxons who occupied England after them had as much impact on how this country was structured. However, finding evidence in the ground of their existence, buildings, roads and towns is not always as easy as it could be as they built mainly in wood.  Recent building and new road constructions has revealed more information of our Anglo Saxon ancestors.    

Mar
10
Sat
The Life of Miles Jeffrey Day – Poet and Flying Ace @ St Ives Corn Exchange
Mar 10 @ 7:30 pm – 10:00 pm

The St Ives Town Team presents an evening to celebrate the life of Miles Jeffrey Day (1896 – 1918). Huntingdonshire’s remarkable First World War Poet and Flying Ace. The Corn Exchange Saturday 10th March 2018 at 7:30 pm.

 

Presented by poet Andrea Porter with readings by Robert Lloyd Parry.

  • Features Day’s childhood in Rheola, education, training and combat leading to his death over the Belgium coast in 1918
  •  
  • Readings, correspondence, fascinating archive films and photographs

Tickets are £15 from the Corn Exchange or at www.ticketsource.co.uk/eventsstives

Production in association with the Norris Museum and sponsored by Leeds Day Solicitors

 

 

Apr
12
Thu
Society Lecture – Treading the Boards in Georgian England (Neil Wright) @ Huntingdon Methodist Church
Apr 12 @ 7:30 pm – 10:00 pm

Treading the Boards in Georgian England: Actors and Theatres in the East Midlands.

Mr Wright is author of a recent book on actors and the theatre in Lincolnshire, putting the spotlight on the important part that theatre made to Georgian provincial life. In his talk he will expand his scope to bring in Huntingdonshire.

May
11
Fri
Society Trip – Weekend Trip to Derbyshire 11-14 May
May 11 – May 14 all-day

This year we are visiting some of the exciting historical sites and house of Derbyshire. We depart on Friday 11th May and return on Monday 14th May. For our full programme of activities click on the picture of Hardwick Hall, home of Bess of Hardwick a most remarkable woman during the reign of Queen Elizabeth.

Day 1: We start our visit at Calke Abbey, a National Trust house described as the in-stately of all of our stately homes. The house was built in 1704 in the Baroque style for Sir John Harper on the site of a former priory. Through marriage the family name changed to Crewe then Harper Crewe. Their family wealth increased dramatically through marriage and throughout the generations of the family they became eccentric, reclusive and fanatical collectors. Sadly the family fortunes declined and the house fell into disrepair as room upon room was closed to save money. We will get the chance to explore this house, preserved in its final state when it was given to the care of the National Trust.

We finish our day visiting Derby Cathedral, upgraded to cathedral status in 1927 to create the seat for the Bishop of Derby. Founded in the mid 10th Century as a Collegiate church it is now a Grade 1 listed building.

Day 2: We dip our toes into modern social and economic history with a visit to the National Tramway Museum. Here we will follow the rise and fall of this urban form of transport from its early horse drawn days, into steam, electric tram and trolley buses. In Europe trams remained very popular and many cities still operate them today. Some of our cities are now introducing a modern tramway to help keep our inner cities free of heavy traffic. Love them or hate them trams formed an integral part of our inner city lives.

The afternoon we get the chance to visit Bakewell, the home of the famous Bakewell Pudding. Here you’ll be free to explore this old town and perhaps sample some of the delicious produce with a welcome cup of tea or coffee.

Day 3: We venture back in time to the early days of the Industrial Revolution with a visit to Cromford Mill, the first water powered cotton spinning mill built by Richard Arkwright. Arkwright is recognised as one of the founding fathers of the mechanised cotton industry which grew out of this mill, now a World Heritage site.

In the afternoon we venture further back in time to the days of the Tudor and Elizabethan dynasties with a visit to Hardwick Hall. Here we can follow the story of the Hardwick family and of one of their children Elizabeth Hardwick who was to marry into the Cavendish family of Chatsworth House fame. We will discover that Elizabeth’s life was tragic and difficult but through her tenacity and determination, and four marriages she eventually built the new Hardwick Hall in 1590 and firmly stamped her name, ‘Bess of Hardwick’ on the house and countryside.

Day 4: We complete this story of the history of parts of Derbyshire by visiting the house of one of the most powerful families in the county, the Cavendish’s of Chatsworth House. Here we can link the stories of the Cavendish family, Beth of Hardwick and the family of Calke Abbey. We will explore the 30 rooms in house with a guided tour and get the chance to walk through the extensive gardens. Our visit to Chatsworth ends with a Cream Tea and cakes before we head back to Huntingdon. 

For further details contact Rosemary Smith (rosemarysnotes@gmail.com) or 01480 350127 

May
17
Thu
Society AGM – 17th May 2018 @ Assembly Rooms, Huntingdon Town Hall
May 17 @ 7:30 pm – 10:00 pm

The Society AGM will be held in the Assembly Rooms of Huntingdon Town Hall on Thursday 17th May 2018, starting at 7:30pm. Click on the word Agenda for a downloadable copy.

After the business of the AGM is completed Liz Davies, curator of the St Neots Museum, will give us a presentation on the remarkable Kimbolton Iron Age coin hoard, which the Society helped to purchase for the Museum in 2013.

This will be followed by an opportunity to socialise, with drinks and nibbles.

Throughout the evening you will also have the opportunity to view and purchase some of the publications that the Society holds. 

May
30
Wed
Society Visit-Alconbury WealdHeritage Centre @ Alconbury Weald Heritage Centre
May 30 @ 2:00 pm – 5:00 pm

Visit to the Alconbury Weald Heritage Centre. We meet at ‘The Club’, The Boulevard, Enterprise Campus. Rebecca Britton will meet us to explain how Urban and Civic are incorporating the heritage of this former RAF station into the ongoing development of Alconbury Weald

Own Transport: Please advise if you can offer help/need help with transport.

No Charge: but please let David Cozens know by Wednesday 23rd May that you are coming and either by email (damcoz@btinternet.com) or phone 01487 815229)

Excursion Notes:

Please use the accompanying form and pay in advance by cheque. To download a copy of the booking form click on the word BOOKINGFORM 

Note especially the ‘Book By’ date.  Early booking is helpful.  However do telephone if you are able to come at the last minute as outings are seldom over-subscribed.

Cancellations:  If you cancel before the ‘Book By’ date your cheque will not be paid in.  If you cancel later you may only receive a refund if someone else takes your place.

Non-member guests are very welcome. You will receive partial refunds on the coach for guest children, in respect of lower entrance fees. 

The Society undertakes to make arrangements for the excursions but cannot accept liability for any mishap or loss connected with them.

Jun
21
Thu
Society Visit – Westminster College, Cambridge @ Westminster College, Cambridge
Jun 21 @ 11:00 am – 4:00 pm

Visit to Westminster College, St Clement’s and All Saints churches, Cambridge

Westminster College is a theological college of the United Reformed Church, incorporating the Cheshunt Foundation of the Countess of Huntingdon’s Connexion. 

Westminster College is a late 19th-century theological college of the English Presbyterian Church (since 1972 part of the United Reformed Church), the creation of the redoubtable and erudite Biblical scholars, Mrs Agnes Lewis and Mrs Margaret Gibson, since 1967 incorporating Cheshunt College of the Countess of Huntingdon’s Connexion, a foundation with a continuous history from the beginnings of that denomination.  We begin our visit with a display from the College’s archives, including those of the Countess of Huntingdon and famous nonconformists of the 18th century onward.  Then, after coffee/tea we will be given a tour of the college by the archivist, Helen Weller, including the Chapel (an Arts & Crafts gem) and Library with portrait collection.  We shall end our visit to the college with lunch in the Hall.  For those who wish, there should be a chance to see the attached Cambridge Centre for Christianity Worldwide  and externally the adjacent new Woolf Institute for the study of relations between Jews, Christians and Muslims.  After lunch we shall walk half-mile to All Saints church, Jesus Lane, via St Clement’s church, both of which are being opened specially for us.  St Clement’s is a medieval parish church of the quayside area, off the beaten tourist track that deserves to be better known; All Saints is a Victorian Gothic masterpiece by Bodley and Morris .

Joining details to those booking or contact Philip Saunders (paksaunders@talk21.com or 01954-250421) if you have queries.

Own transport.  Good public transport links.  Disabled parking  only (please advise).

Cost £16.00 including refreshments & lunch

Book by Friday 15th June.  N.B. Limited to 24 members.

Excursion Notes:

Please use the accompanying form and pay in advance by cheque. To download a copy of the booking form click on the word BOOKINGFORM 

Note especially the ‘Book By’ date.  Early booking is helpful.  However do telephone if you are able to come at the last minute as outings are seldom over-subscribed.

Cancellations:  If you cancel before the ‘Book By’ date your cheque will not be paid in.  If you cancel later you may only receive a refund if someone else takes your place.

Non-member guests are very welcome. You will receive partial refunds on the coach for guest children, in respect of lower entrance fees. 

The Society undertakes to make arrangements for the excursions but cannot accept liability for any mishap or loss connected with them.

Jul
17
Tue
Society Visit – Coach Excursion to Tattershall Castle and Boston @ Tatteshall Castle and Boston
Jul 17 @ 9:00 am – 6:00 pm

Coach excursion to Boston and Tattershall Castle & church, Lincolnshire

Neil Wright (our speaker in April) will meet us at Fydell House in Boston for tea / coffee and an introductory talk. He will then guide us around this ancient market town on the banks of the Witham. His itinerary is a 1½-hour walk before lunch and a second 1½-hour walk after lunch. Neil will draw attention to the more significant aspects of St Botolph’s church, “ The Stump” 272 feet high. Some members may not wish to participate in the full walking programme.   Please write  A  on the booking form for the full walking programme, B for the morning only, C  for the afternoon only and  D  for no conducted tour, free time only.

 

We will then visit Tattershall Castle keep built of brick in 1434 by Ralph, Lord Cromwell and the adjacent Holy Trinity church built by Ralph’s executor.

Depart Mill Common Huntingdon  9.00 am, arrive  Boston  10.45.  Morning walk  11.15 to 12.45; afternoon walk  2.00 to 3.00. Leave Boston 3.15 for Tattershall, visit castle and church 4.00 to 5.30. Return to Huntingdon 7.00 / 7.30pm.

Other pick-up points (indicate clearly on form): Somersham (Dews) 8.25; St Ives (Houghton Rd) 8.40; Hartford (Longstaff Way) 8.45; Godmanchester (Bridge Place car park) 8.50.

Cost (including morning refreshments): £35.00 (National Trust members £29.00)

Book by Thursday 5th July.

Excursion Notes:

Please use the accompanying form and pay in advance by cheque. To download a copy of the booking form click on the word BOOKINGFORM 

Note especially the ‘Book By’ date.  Early booking is helpful.  However do telephone if you are able to come at the last minute as outings are seldom over-subscribed.

Cancellations:  If you cancel before the ‘Book By’ date your cheque will not be paid in.  If you cancel later you may only receive a refund if someone else takes your place.

Non-member guests are very welcome. You will receive partial refunds on the coach for guest children, in respect of lower entrance fees. 

The Society undertakes to make arrangements for the excursions but cannot accept liability for any mishap or loss connected with them.