Sunday, October 29, 2006

Victoria County History of the County of Worcester

You no longer have to go down to the History Centre to see the Victoria County History for Worcester. It's on the Internet, the whole text and pictures. A History of the County of Worcester: volume 4 | British History Online is the link for the volume with City of Worcester, but the other geographical volumes (2 and 3) are available too.

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Edward Elgar with moving pictures, but no music.

Gordon Lee put together this interesting set of pages about Edward Elgar, including some small video files. Well, they were probably cine film at the time of taking, but you know what I mean.

Saturday, September 16, 2006

The Archaeology of Aggregate Sites in Worcestershire

The Archaeology of Aggregate Sites in Worcestershire looks at the contribution to atrchaeology made by quarrying in the nineteenth and twentieth century. The initiative is run by Worcestershire County Council Historic Environment and Archaeology Service, financed by English Heritage and the Aggregates Levy Sustainability Fund. It's brand new, so there is not much content yet, but worth keeping an eye on.

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

British Pathe Limited

British Pathe Limited have made all of their newsreels available on line, with free short previews downloadable as long as you register. I found a bit about Don Bradman batting at Worcester.

Domesday Book : Britain's finest treasure

Domesday Book | Britain's finest treasure is now available on line from the National Archives. There is a charge for looking at facsimiles of pages, but there is a great deal to look at free. Including a count-the-animals game!

Thursday, August 03, 2006

BBC - Hereford and Worcester - - Voices 2005

This has been around for a time, but I've only just discovered it. Local people talk about local language.
BBC - Hereford and Worcester - - Voices 2005
It's available for everywhere in Britain, with quizzes, articles and comment opportunities. Kept me amused for an entire episode of Inspector Lynley.

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Commandery Dig 2006

I have aching muscles this evening because I've spent the day in the trenches at the Commandery Dig 2006. We passed the first day scraping the infilled soil off last year's trench,so the we can dig deeper in the same place. With a shovel and a pick ... wel a mattock, a shovel, a little coal shovel, a dustpan type brush and the archaeologist's favourite trowel. You can come and see us in action, even though the Commandery itself is closed, covered in scaffolding and fenced off. Just come through the gates in Wylds Lane, Tuesday - Sunday. Ask lots of questions. We have archaeology students as well as professional archaeologists to answer them.
I'm keeping a daily(?) blog on my excavational activities on and hope to hear from you there.

Monday, May 01, 2006

Beginners' Latin

Beginners' Latin is a free course from the National Archives, which teaches you the Latin of official documents, rather than the Latin you may have learnt at school.
Their site also has guides to Local History Sources, Family History, and Reading old handwriting (Paleography).

Sunday, April 16, 2006

Future American Presidents at Fort Royal

Adams Electronic Archive : John Adams diary 44, 27 March - 21 July 1786 contains references to the travels of this American diplomat, who later became the Third President of the United States. Fort Royal, Worcester, together with Edgehill, Birmingham and Stratford are among the places mentioned.
The Fort Royal Walk, rained off on Tuesday 11th April, has been rescheduled for Wednesday June 14 at 7.00pm. Meet on the canalside next to the Commandery. We'll take a look at the famous hill, then at some of our industrial heritage in the Blockhouse. Back at the Kings Head around 8.30pm

Sunday, April 02, 2006

How the West was won with help from the Three Counties

Information from Arch Turvey. Picture Copyright © John Stafford 2005

During the mid 1800s the western USA was settled by thousands of British emigrants from Worcestershire, Herefordshire and Gloucestershire. Their story and their journey began here....
Gadfield Elm Chapel
(between Malvern and Gloucester - see directions below)
In 1840, Missionaries of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (sometimes known as 'Mormons') traveled from their headquarters in Nauvoo, Illinois, to the 3 Counties and taught the local people. During the next 9 months 1,800 people were 'converted', including the almost entire membership of a local organization known as the United Brethren.
In less than 2 years most of the converts had left their homes and sailed across the Atlantic to gather in Nauvoo. Many made historic treks across the plains of North America later with wagons or handcarts in Groups often suffering severe hardship on the way. It would not be unusual for accents of these Groups in America to be predominantly English - indeed it is recorded that one of the first person to start farming in the Salt Lake Valley, Utah was from Ledbury. These people from the 3 Counties were of good, hardy country stock and ideal to conquer these challenges.
Gadfield Elm Chapel belonged to the United Brethren and when they joined The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints they passed ownership to the Church - it became therefore the very first and oldest Mormon Chapel in the world. More and much more will be told during the visit of the Local History Group of Worcester U3A - the baptisms in the pond at Hill Farm, Castle Frome, the significance of what was decided at British Camp on the Malvern Hills, the Baptist Chapel in Ledbury where Brigham Young preached and other historical information leading to a massive Chapel building programme throughout the UK over the last 40 years.
Elder and Sister Mitchell from Norwich who are serving a voluntary mission at Gadfield Elm Chapel will be your hosts and they will open up the story in the actual Gadfield Chapel itself which was restored in the last year or so after over a century of neglect following the local members leaving for America.
Take the A449 towards Malvern then at Powick
Turn left along B4424 towards Upton and Three Counties Showground
At sign on right B4211 to Malvern turn right but then immediately turn left to Hanley Swan
At Hanley Swan pond go straight over on B4208 towards Gloucester
Keep on this road with lovely views and after approx 9 miles from Hanley Swan
After going through Pendock you will come to a Hill Sign 14%
Follow this road still around the corner and then down a short hill
At the bottom look for the sign "Gadfield Elm Farm 100m" and follow - narrow road
Park at Chapel - there is a large field also for parking.

Monday, March 27, 2006

Village of Eckington in Worcestershire

Village of Eckington in Worcestershire has details of the Flower Festival and Open Gardens and Holy Trinity Church

Saturday, March 18, 2006

Thursday, February 09, 2006


parishmouse is being updated every day with material culled from old directories and other sources about the West Midland Counties. Well I think it is all West Midlands. Spend a little time with it. Its interface seems quirky to begin with, but I can see the point of it. Rather than a bland home page telling you the history of the project, it shows you the latest relevant material first, throwing you into reading the text. Addictive of course, especially since I had been searching for something completely different when I ran across it, then spent two hours reading.

Tuesday, February 07, 2006

Droitwich Canals

Droitwich Canals Trust have an interesting page about the history of the two canals - The Droitwich Barge Canal from Droitwich to the River Severn at Hawford and the Droitwich Junction Canal, which links the town to the Worcester and Birmingham Canal. I walked part of the Barge Canal yesterday as part of a (long) walk from Mitre Oak to Worcester. As long as it hasn't rained recently, the canal is easily walkable.