Buckden Local History Society



A Brief Account of the Society and its Origin

In 1978 a course on the History of Buckden was conducted at the village school by a local professional historian, Sue Edgington, under the auspices of Huntingdon Technical College. The course proved to be very popular with those who attended and the formation of a society was proposed so that talks and other activities could continue the following year. Sue agreed to be Chairman, Les Button, secretary, and Eric Nash, treasurer.

The Society meetings continued to be held at the school for some time but eventually were moved to Buckden Towers in 1984 where they are still held in the beautifully restored Conference Room. The meetings take place on the first Wednesday of the month from September to June inclusive at 7.30p.m. An outing to a place of historical interest is usually arranged for July, there being no indoor meeting. No meeting is held in August.

Speakers are recruited from within a radius of 40 miles or so and range from dedicated amateurs to professionals in a wide range of topics. Although the Society describes itself as a Local History Society it does not confine the topics covered to the area described above. A study of the current programme will illustrate the type of topic covered. For example a talk on "Opium-growing in the Fens" ranged from the Fens to Lancashire to India to Hong Kong and back!

Four members have given talks. Notable, apart from Sue Edgington, are David Thomas, a former Chairman, who speaks on several village and natural history topics and Peter Ibbett, schoolmaster, who speaks on a wide range topics mostly relating to Cambridgeshire and Bedfordshire but some further afield.

The Annual General meeting is held in June and has often been followed by a talk by the chairman or former chairman on a subject of her or his own choosing.

The Society is affiliated to the Cambridge Antiquarian Society.

 

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'Buckden A Huntingdonshire Village':

Please click for more information on the book

This large format hardback book consists of 232 pages of information on Buckden (24 in colour) and is available for just £15.

Please click here for more details of the book and how to order.

 

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PROGRAMME 2010 - 2011

Meetings will be at 7.30pm in the Conference Room at Buckden Towers unless otherwise stated. Any changes to this programme will be published in the Buckden Roundabout whenever possible. Visitors are always welcome and new members are invited.



2010  
September 1st THE HISTORY OF PAPWORTH HOSPITAL
 
Ian Burton has had a life-long association with Buckden, which included playing football "on the Vineyards" with refreshment at The Crown in the 1950’s. He taught at Kimbolton School for 38 years, 24 of them living-in (together with three ghosts!) as boarding housemaster. His thoroughly researched talk is about the history of Papworth village from 800 to the present day. A history in which the hospital plays a very important part.

October 6th JOHN BELLINGHAM – FROM ST. NEOTS TO NEWGATE
 
Spencer Perceval, the only Prime Minister to have been assassinated, was shot on 11th May 1812 by John Bellingham, an aggrieved merchant born in St. Neots. Bellingham was tried and hung within a week. Hugh Gault is a writer and historian with an interest in the period and the Percevals. He has published two books and several articles and will tell us this remarkable story.

November 3rd DIDDINGTON ESTATE REVISITED – AN HISTORICAL ANIMATION
 
By cleverly using old, digitally enhanced photographs, combined with photo-animated travel back through time, Angela Sayward makes history come to life. Her presentation based upon the Diddington Estate is a wonderful introduction to the world of photo-animation.

December 1st KIMBOLTON FIREWORKS
 
Retired Chaplain and chemistry teacher, Revd. Ron Lancaster MBE, MA, FRSC, Hon. M.Sc. began making his own fireworks when he was a teenager. He is now a renowned authority on fireworks and his company has been responsible for many major and award-winning displays worldwide. This is his incredible story.

2011  
January 5th 1911 CENSUS OF BUCKDEN
 
Former BLHS member, Peter Ibbett can be relied upon for an interesting, fact-filled talk on many local history topics. He has recently transcribed the 1911 Census for Buckden and this provides the basis for an illustrated guided tour of the village and its inhabitants 100 years ago.

February 2nd THE SHUTTLEWORTH COLLECTION – ITS HISTORY AND EXHIBITS
 
Alan Reed has been working as a volunteer at the Shuttleworth Collection for nearly nine years and has been a tour guide for the past four years. He also travels the country giving informal presentations on the history of the collection and its interesting exhibits. It is our good fortune to have him as our speaker on this occasion and his talk will be complemented by our end of season visit to Old Warden in July 2011.

March 2nd OLIVER CROMWELL
 
Was Cromwell a person of sincerity and principle or an ambitious opportunist driven mainly by a love of power? Dr. David Smith is Fellow and Director of Studies in History at Selwyn College, Cambridge and has written numerous books about Selwyn’s most famous student, Oliver Cromwell. His lecture will present an overview of Cromwell’s life and his military and political careers, including examination of his motives, beliefs, policies and achievements.

April 6th GWEN RAVERAT – A CAMBRIDGE CHILDHOOD
 
Our speaker, Frances Spalding is an art historian, critic and biographer and has written extensively on art and artists. Her books are highly regarded reference sources in schools, colleges and universities. She is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Art and in 2005 was made a CBE for Services to Literature. The subject of her talk, Gwen Raverat, was the grand-daughter of Charles Darwin, a wood engraver and the author of Period Piece, an account of her Cambridge childhood and her Darwin uncles and aunts.

May 4th THE LAST OF THE EEL CATCHERS
 
Peter Carter, of Outwell, has harvested the Cambridgeshire Fens for eels using traditional skills passed down over 20 generations since 1470. Taught by his grandfather, the practice has always passed to the male heir. His only child, Rhianna does not wish to take up her father’s profession. Peter is the only man in Britain still using the traditional willow traps and may therefore be the last.

June 1st AGM & THE SHAPE OF THINGS THAT WERE
 
Following the AGM, Malcolm Talbot, former Senior Lecturer at the University of Bahrain and tutor at the University of Strathclyde, will examine how technology can influence how we see and how we present what we see; photographs are not, of necessity, more ‘accurate’ than painting. One of Malcolm’s interests is photography and he has contributed to various publications and has exhibited widely. He will use some of his photographs and old cameras from his collection to illustrate his talk.

July END OF YEAR TRIP
 
To Old Warden Gardens and the Shuttleworth Collection. Date and details to be advised.

 

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COMMITTEE 2010-2011

 

Chairman Robin Gibson
Vice-Chairman Clive Thompson
Secretary Les Button
Treasurer Eric Nash
Officers Judith Armitage
  Ann Geyelin
  David Thomas
Village Hall Trust
Representative
Peter Martin

 

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Founded in 1979, the Society aims to promote the study and knowledge of local history in its very widest sense, primarily by means of talks on all manner of topics in any way connected with the subject and will be pleased to promote individual or group research into local history projects. Anyone interested in research is asked to contact the Chairman.

Buckden Local History Society is affiliated to the Cambridge Antiquarian Society.

 

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SUBSCRIPTIONS

Members £10.00 per year
Visitors Fee £2.00 per meeting



For more information the Chairman can be contacted by e-mail at rhgibson@waitrose.com.



www.buckden-village.co.uk