The Tewkesbury Historical Society
Welcome to our local History Society websiteMethodist Church at The Cross. Society Meetings are open to non-members and speakers talk on aspects of history. In addition, THS publish books and an annual Bulletin of Research, to which contributions are invited. Members have the option of accessing online the Society's extensive Woodard Database of Local History data.
Commonwealth War Graves Commission Tour
March 2022 Meeting
Our Late, Notable Ukrainian Resident, Powlo Kostiuk
Echoes of April 2021
Non-Designated Heritage Assets in Tewkesbury
We have been approached by Nana Pierre, Heritage Engagement Officer, Tewkesbury Borough Council to help her draw up a list of Non-Designated Heritage Assets.
Non-designated heritage assets are locally-identified ‘buildings, monuments, sites, places, areas or landscapes identified by plan-making bodies as having a degree of heritage significance meriting consideration in planning decisions, but which do not meet the criteria for designated heritage assets’ (PPG). It is important to note that some non-designated heritage assets are equivalent to designated heritage assets in terms of significance.
They do not have the status of listed buildings but might contribute to planning debate about a possible development.
There might be some such asset you feel ought to be added to the list Nana is constructing.
For example: Mythe Tunnel and Remnants of the 1864 Railway Station are not included.
You can see A: here the list of listed buildings in our town compiled by Historic England and Tewkesbury Town Council to check if the asset which interests you has already been ‘listed’.
If you wish to submit an asset via THS then please check the B: Published Criteria
And if you think you can make the case, you have to C: Fulfil the Criteria which is quite demanding of your time and knowledge.
If you wish to go ahead, please submit a draft of your proposal [C] to email@example.com us to consider.
Annual General MeetingClick here to view the video. [First couple of minutes has some comedic value as we get to grips with the technology!]
Woodard Award 2021Woodard Award 2021 has been awarded to Karl Freeman for his article Great Balls of Fire (the Story of Tewkesbury Mustard). The award was made at our 'Zoom' AGM.
The Duke of Edinburgh's Links With Tewkesbury
Alderton SaxonsJulia Woodman.
Results of recent Tree-Ring Dating for Tewkesbury BuildingsGloucestershire Dendrochronology Project. A fascinating talk was given on the 13th of March which can viewed on the Friends of Tewkesbury Abbey website. This extremely accurate process can give dates down to the season and since green wood was preferred by medieval builders, we can be fairly sure that the year they were cut down was the year (perhaps the next) when the wood was used to construct the timber frames and roofs.
1832 Cholera Epidemic in Tewkesbury
One of our members, Dr Peter Raggatt, who is a retired NHS Clinical Biochemist at Addenbrookes Hospital and Lecturer in Cambridge University School, was moved to research and write an article about this epidemic with its comparisons with the present pandemic. [see attached PDF above]
It links in with previous research on Cholera in Tewkesbury.
Such was the impact of these two epidemics on the town that a monument was commissioned which now resides in the Cemetery, adjacent to the ‘Cholera Pit’ where many victims received a mass night burial [see attached].
Although John Snow, clean water for the Mythe Waterworks and improved housing conditions have ensured that 1849 was the last appearance of cholera, the brutality which occurred in World War II Japanese POW camps caused the death of several Tewkesbury soldiers of cholera in 1943-44. Here is a biography of one of them, Frederick Key.
Smallpox was another medical curse of the18-19th centuries but by the late 19thC vaccinations were made compulsory and a significant number of people in Tewkesbury became anti-vaccination. For more on this familiar tale, see Martin Holt's award winning article.
History is always so topical!
Tewkesbury Medical Volunteers at Mitton in WWI
VaccinationsWith the vaccinations against Covid in progress, it is interesting to look back towards a big controversy at the end of the 19th Century, when a number of people were taken to court for refusing to accept vaccination against small-pox for their children. Will history repeat itself?
Cemetery and Burials database for TewkesburyOver the years we have collated information from the various burial grounds in the town and now is the time to release a one-stop location for all of them on this site. The new Burials Database in our Research section tries to do this. There is also an accompanying history and guide to finding the resting place of persons buried in the town. There are currently an impressive 18,564 records. For the decades 1841 to 1881 we can also link to the Census Database (not guaranteed they are same people)
An Upsetting Discovery in our Cemeteryhere to read the full story of the Dudleys. If anyone can add any more information, please contact us. [ John Dixon firstname.lastname@example.org ]
'The Making of Miss Brown'
Message from David Elder, author of joint THS Publication, Literary Tewkesbury
One of the projects I've been doing during these strange times is to write and produce a film version of a play about the life of Elizabeth Brown (1830-99) who was an accomplished amateur astronomer who lived in Cirencester.The 30-minute film is called ‘The Making of Miss Brown’. It is viewable online for £3 from the Stroud Theatre Festival 2020 web site. To access it:
1. Please set up a simple account at http://stfonline.co.uk.
2. Then go to Watch Now! (https://stfonline.co.uk/watch-now/). Please note it will be available for a 24 hour period after registration.
Further information about the play
VE & VJ Days 75: a Virtual Commemoration
Even though the government moved the May Day Bank Holiday away from the usual Monday so we could commemorate VE75 on 8 May, all public commemorations are now impossible.
- Biographies of all those who lost their lives fighting the Germans from the Tewkesbury area [including neighbouring villages]
- The context of this war.
Janet Benson (nee Martin)
We regret to announce that our secretary, Janet Benson, passed away on December 28th. This news is something of a shock to us all, even though Janet had been bravely fighting a long illness. She had been our secretary for many years and will be sadly missed by all her friends here in the Society.
Two large scale maps of Tewkesbury from 1811 and 1880We are proud to present two maps on our site using new zoom and pan technology.
We have the 1811 Enclosure Map of Tewkesbury and the huge 1:500 scale map of Tewkesbury created in the 1880s, both full of amazing detail. Use your mouse wheel to zoom and left mouse to drag.
Bryan Jerrard Award 2019
THS Bulletin 27 is available from Alison’s Bookshop in the High Street.
Will be held in Cheltenham 25 June. Details and booking form here.
GLHA Summer Afternoon
Click this link to read.
BALH Jan/Feb 2022 Newsletter
Remarkable Incidents Relative to Tewkesbury
Pestilence commonly succeeds famine, accordingly the plague made its appearance the following year (1598), and carried off about forty persons.