Leamington History Group

This meets at the Dormer Conference Centre next to St Peter’s Church on Dormer Place, Leamington Spa, CV31 4AA and each meeting starts at 7.30pm.   Contact them.

Parking – There is a multi-storey car park in Augusta Place (behind the Centre) and on-street parking in Dormer Place, Portland Place East and Portland Street.

Meeting dates 2016

January 25: AGM,  Martin Green, the Warwickshire Industrial Archaeology Society

February 22: Richard Soans, Soans, a Family Business

March 21: Jacqui Kirk, In Defence of the Realm: The Royal Naval Air Service in World War 1

April 25: John Frearson, The Speight Family, Photographers in 19th century Leamington

May 23: John Berkeley, Czech Soldiers in Warwickshire

June 27: Allan Jennings, Leamington’s Basque Connection

July 25: Val Brodie, “Mother Dear, …” , Southam Soldiers, Humour and Sentiment in WW1

September 3, Saturday: Leamington History Day at All Saints Parish Church

September 26th: Chris Baker: Leamington, The Royal Warwickshire Regiment, and Biaches on the Somme

October 24: Peter Coulls, A Walk Down Memory Lane

November 28: Neil Rushton, The Work of the Church Conservation Trust

December 19: Christmas Event and Quiz

Note that I have retained details of the last two years’ meetings  below for reference purposes.

Meeting dates 2015

January 26: AGM with Cllr John Knight, Mayor of Royal Leamington Spa followed by a presentation by Alan Griffin: Leamington College, – an Old Boy’s View

February 23: Sheila Woolf: Travels with the Leighs.:From a pow-wow with the Cheyenne to hunting in India to the opening of the tomb of Tutankhamun, adventure, amusement and personal tragedy

March 23: Alan Mayes, WDC Conservation and Planning Officer: Royal Leamington Spa’s rich architectural heritage

April 27: Barry Franklin: Leamington Slum Clearance Company: a philanthropic approach to giving the Town Centre slum dwellers decent homes

May 18: Gillian Grute: Southam’s Secret – The Sisters of the Poor Child Jesus: Educators and Embroiderers. Textile expert Gillian Grute presents the wide ranging work of the Southam Sisters 

June 22: John Wilmot: Illness in Victorian Leamington: Rich or poor? – a time traveller’s guide

July 27: Members’ Evening: an opportunity to share research, examine artefacts and exchange information

September 5: (Saturday): Local History Fair at the Parish Church: Local History Societies present the work of their groups, in images, recordings, artefacts and on laptops. Try your hand at Family History, – consult Leamington’s own Genealogy Genie, Jacqui Kirk.

September 10-13: Heritage Open Days: South Lodge Jephson Gardens‘ permanent exhibition of the Garden’s history, open every afternoon from 1.30 – 4.00pm

September 28: Jo Clark: 1980s Leamington, – unpublished photographs by Bill Gibbons and Peter Chater

October26: Chris Holland: Rallying to the Cause: Coventry and Warwickshire 1914-1916.  Some of the main developments: recruitment, volunteering, conscription, the arrival of refugees, care of the wounded, the role of women, and the effect on the economy

November 23: Jacqui Kirk: Major Abiathar Hawkes: The man who brought back the Royal Charter

December 14: Christmas event.




Meeting dates 2014

27 January 2014:        Annual General Meeting and

Peter Coulls: A short presentation on Leamington Then and Now: What? Where? When?

24 February 2014:      Richard King: A Warwickshire Miscellany

24 March 2014:  Chris Holland: August 1914: When Warwickshire went to War

An illustrated talk looking at the reaction locally to the outbreak of war, and how it compares to traditionally held beliefs about that time.

28 April 2014:  Colin Maynell: The Slums of Royal Leamington Spa

19 May 2014 :  Stas Librowski: Leamington  Ladies  Who Lunched

23 June 2014:  Jim Layton: Black People in Warwickshire

21 July 2014:  Jacqui Kirk: Francis Stenton, M.C. Of the Upper Assembly Rooms

Francis Stenton was the third Master of Ceremonies at the Upper Assembly Rooms in Leamington from 1821 to 1830 but resigned under a cloud.  A look at his life and his letters.

22 September 2014:  Alice Fookes: Alice Rosa Barker, Victorian traveller and explorer

18 October 2014:  Local History Fair at Dormer Hall, Dormer Place, 10.00 am to 4.00 pm

27 October 2014:  Jo Clark: Leamington 1930 – 1970, Demolition and Development

24 November 2014:  Allan Jennings: James Bisset, Pioneer entrepreneur of Leamington Priors

15 December 2014:  Christmas Function and Quiz