CCHS Talks

Thursday 19th  September 2019

Nelly Erichsen – her blue plaque should be in Campden.

Sarah Harkness, author of Nelly Erichsen – A Hidden Life.


Thursday 17th  October 2019

Smallpox, Chicken Pox, or Something Else? – the Gloucester Epidemic of 1923.

Extract from an article in The Lancet about the epidemic in Gloucester.

Extract from an article in The Lancet about the epidemic in Gloucester.

Dr. Toby Thacker, Cardiff University.

Thursday 21st  November 2019

Dr Toby Thacker is a Senior Lecturer in Modern European History at Cardiff University.  His research concentrates on the cultural, political, and military history of the twentieth century in Europe, but his talk to CCHS will be about the infectious disease outbreak in Gloucester in 1923.  Was it smallpox, or something else entirely? How well was the outbreak handled and what lessons could be learned.


Thursday 21st November 2019

The Poor and  the Law in the 18th century – the Crisis in the Parishes

Deborah Hayter, Oxford University Dept. for Continuing Education.

Deborah Hayter did her MA in Local History at the Centre for English Local History at Leicester University. She is an associate tutor at Oxford University’s Department for Continuing Education, with a special interest in rural and landscape history.

During the second half of the 18th century, population increases created a growing problem for parishes because Parliament did not enforce the law and lords of the manor guarded their autonomy.

The Elizabethan Poor Law of 1601 was only replaced in the mid-18th century when agricultural depression, high food prices and the return home of servicemen after the wars with France meant a huge rise in unemployment.  The loss of traditional occupations, such as spinning and weaving, and the introduction of threshing machines meant no winter work for agricultural workers. People migrated from the country to work in the factories of the industrial north and the mining areas looking for work.  So how did the Law deal with the Poor?

Thursday 5th December 2019

Roger Box, Forensic Archaeologist

Roger Box is a retired forensic archaeologist, numismatist and war crimes investigator with four decades of specialist knowledge in Roman and Medieval coinage.  As a police inspector he was stationed in the North Cotswolds and the first half of his talk will be about his time in post – amongst other things he was in charge of the recovery of the Civil War hoard from the village hall in Weston-sub-Edge.   The second part of the talk follows the discovery of a large group of Templar artefacts and coins which will be the subject of a series to be broadcast on the History Channel.


Thursday 16th  January 2020

Rich Widows and Naughty Knights:  Sir John Sandys and social climbing in late medieval England

Dr. Toby Purser, University of Northampton

One of the chief tasks of the medieval knight in literature was to rescue or, at the very least, preserve the honour of the damsel, but in reality it was the often the knight himself who placed the damsel in distress.  Toby Purser encountered one such knight during his research – Sir John Sandys.  In November 1375 John Sandys was charged with the abduction of the recently widowed Joan Bridges from Romsey Abbey in Hampshire, where she had been staying.   Possessions which belonged to the lady’s previous husband, worth over £120 (£100,000 today), were found on his person.  The plot thickens…


Thursday 20th  February 2020

Voyages to the House of Diversion:  Hanwell Castle, 17th century Water Gardens, and the Birth of Modern Science

Stephen Wass, Oxford University Dept. For Continuing Education

Campden Town Hall

Campden Town Hall

Thursday 19th March 2020

The History and Mystery of  Campden Town Hall

Judith Ellis, CCHS

Thursday 16th  April 2020

 Reflections on GCHQ’s Centenary

Tony Comer, Senior Historian, GCHQ

The talk will be preceded by the Society’s Annual General Meeting.

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