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Community archives update, 29/1/16

January 29, 2016

Many of you will be aware that we run a monthly programme of talks and sometimes film shows called the Last Thursday Lectures. They are so called because they take place of the last Thursday of the month from 1.15-1.45pm. Topics are very varied but will always be connected to the history of Hampshire in some way. We have both outside speakers as well as Hampshire Record Office staff. All are welcome to attend and there is no charge although donations are always welcome.

The forthcoming talks include:-

25 Feb: Charles Miller: the man who took football from Banister Court to Brazil by Mark Pitchforth
Amazing to think, but Brazil, the country now so synonymous with the beautiful game, didn’t even play football until little more than 100 years ago and it was Charles Miller, having learnt to play in Hampshire, who started the revolution. This talk will cover Miller’s time at Banister Court School, Southampton and his role in setting up football teams and leagues on his return to Brazil. As a bonus there will also be film clips from Wessex Film and Sound Archive on Banister Court and Southampton Football Club, one of the teams Miller represented during his time in England.

31 Mar: Governor Arthur Phillip and Lyndhurst by Angela Trend
On 26 January 1788 the British First Fleet, led by Arthur Phillip, sailed into Port Jackson (Sydney Harbour) to establish Sydney, the first permanent European settlement on the continent. Arthur Philip, who became the very first Governor of New South Wales, had previously lived and farmed in Lyndhurst, Hampshire.

28 Apr: The end of clerical anticipation?  Tithe commutation and the tithe maps of Hampshire by Geraldine Beech
As a result of the Tithe Commutation Act of 1836 tithes, which were formerly payments in kind (crops, wool, milk etc) to the church, became straightforward money payments. In order to work out the sums payable a massive survey of landholding/ownership took place across the country. This resulted in maps and apportionments being produced for each parish showing the names of owners and occupiers for each plot of land. We hold them for nearly every Hampshire parish, dating between the late 1830s and early 1850s and they are very useful to local and family historians.

26 May: The Queen and Hampshire: marking the 90th birthday of Queen Elizabeth II by David Rymill
The Queen has made many visits to Hampshire during her lifetime. At Hampshire Record Office we have material about many, although by no means all, of these, in the form of photographs, films, newscuttings, and administrative files. This talk will highlight a few of these visits.

30 Jun: Capability Brown: marking the 300th birthday of the landscape architect and gardener by Sally Miller, Hampshire Gardens Trust
Lancelot Brown more commonly known as Capability Brown, is remembered as the last of the great English 18th century artists to be accorded his due, and England’s greatest gardener. He designed over 170 parks and gardens, several of which can be found in Hampshire.

For more information about the events taking place at Hampshire Record Office visit our website at

Community archives update, 13/1/16

January 13, 2016

The latest exhibition on show in the foyer and on the top floor landing of Hampshire Record Office is Swanmore Remembers. It has been produced by Swanmore Village Archive and marks the centenary of the First World War by showing the local perspective of the conflict, primarily the village of Swanmore but also other areas of Hampshire. Work was done with local schools in Swanmore and the results of their projects are also on display including poetry, song lyrics and posters. The exhibition will be available until 30 March 2016, access is free with no booking required. Opening hours are Monday-Wednesday and Friday, 9am-5pm, Thursday, 9am-7pm and every first and third Saturday in the month, 9am-4pm.

Community archive update, 7/1/2016

January 7, 2016

Celebrating the importance of community archives and heritage

Just a reminder that the deadline for nominations for the Community Archive & Heritage Group Awards 2016 is fast approaching. The closing date for entries is 31 January 2016. The winners will be announced at the 2016 Community Archive & Heritage Group (CAHG) Conference usually held in July at University College London. We have had winners from our region in the past and it would be great to see the excellent work, which I know goes on across Hampshire, recognised nationally.

The award categories are:-
Web site of the Year
Best new group
and a trophy and cheque for £150 is given to the ‘Community Archive and Heritage Group of the Year’ (sponsored by the Sticks Research Agency) given to the group or project which has most impressed the judges.

The Awards are open to all community groups in the UK and Ireland who are members of the Community Archive & Heritage Group (CAHG). Community archives, community heritage groups, community museums and community archaeology groups are all included and it is free to join. For full details on CAHG and how to put your group forward for one of the awards go to




Community archives update, 01/01/2016

January 1, 2016

Happy New Year to you all from everyone at Hampshire Record Office. We are looking forward to another successful year of community archives work in 2016.

Things to look forward to include:-

An exhibition in the Record Office foyer ‘Swanmore Remembers‘ produced by Swanmore Village Archive illustrating the impact the First World War had on the village and Hampshire more broadly. Access is free and it will be on show from 5 January until 30 March.

Archive Ambassador training day on 24 February including sessions on cataloguing archive collections, the conservation and preservation of archives, digital archives and oral history recording. To book a place ring 01962 846154.

We have plans to put together a Community Archives Forum, open to groups from across the county. A chance to get together, share ideas and learn from each others experiences. More information will follow as plans develop. Do get in touch if you want to be kept up to date, have ideas about what form such an event should take or would like to volunteer to present a case study on some element of your work.

Last year I met with an officer of Hampshire Cultural Trust to discuss their proposed Gosport High St project which aims to engage young people from Gosport with their local cultural heritage, by helping them to explore the changing face of Gosport High Street and the impact that changes in retail and household names have had on the local community over the last 100 years. We were able to provide a letter of support for their Heritage Lottery Fund bid and we await the outcome. If successful activities could begin in the second half of 2016.

Also last year I met with members of the Bordon Reflections team to discuss the potential deposit of archive material relating to the original project which reached a successful conclusion earlier in the year. It was mentioned that a proposed follow up project involving local school groups was  being considered and we await to hear whether their funding bid has been successful.

If you have any questions about community archives then do get in touch via e-mail,

Mark Pitchforth, archivist
Hampshire Record Office
Swanmore exhib2

Community archives update, 20/12/2015

December 20, 2015

2015 has been another great year for community archives. Here are some of the highlights…

The year began with a new exhibition at Hampshire Record Office entitled Waiting in the Wings of War. It was a display of original artwork created by members of 2D3D South who through paintings, drawings, collage and sculpture, attempted to represent the experiences of Hampshire people and aspects of life in the area in the lead up to the outbreak of the First World War.
Waiting in the Wings exhibition
In February we were involved in The Ballad of the Boy Captain schools project inspired by the life of Captain Audley Lempriere who fought in the Crimean War. Working with year 5 and 6 pupils we demonstrated how Lempriere’s life could be traced using historical records such as his sketches, letters and army documents. The schools used what they had discovered as inspiration for producing an original folk song, a copy of which has now been deposited with Wessex Film and Sound Archive.

A further four Archive Ambassador training sessions took place this year with the usual mix of cataloguing, oral history recording, digitisation, and archive preservation skills. They were fully booked and well received by those attending. Further training is scheduled for 24 February 2016 and more will follow throughout the year.

In the summer the Record Office successfully coordinated the Hampshire County Council programme of activities to celebrate the 800th anniversary of Magna Carta, culminating in the unveiling of two memorial plaques outside the Great Hall and at Odiham Castle, and a lecture in the Great Hall, Winchester in early June. An exhibition produced in conjunction with The Odiham Society was on display in the Great Hall, Hampshire Record Office and the Lights Theatre, Andover.
The Bordon Reflections project reached a successful conclusion with a celebration evening in early July. We have been involved with this project from the beginning, offering advice on a variety of issues and having a presence at a series of related drop-in events at The Phoenix Theatre and Arts Centre in Bordon.

Also in July I attended the Community Archives and Heritage Group (CAHG) annual conference at University College London. The day included an interesting and enjoyable range of talks, highlighting community archive projects from across the country within the overall theme of Community Archives, Public Engagement and Volunteering.

We hosted two visits and an oral history recording training session for groups of volunteers connected to the Discovering Lepe’s Cold War History project. Their aim is to uncover the history of the Stone Point Nuclear Monitoring Post, a fascinating remnant of the Cold War that lies hidden from view at Lepe Country Park. Using archives and oral history interviews the group hopes to research the local area and uncover social history stories from the Cold War period.

In September a talk and film show on papermaker, Huguenot Henry Portal attracted a very substantial audience including members of the Portal family. The event was part of the Huguenot Summer 2015 which proved to be greatly successful with over 135 events across the country.

In September I attended an event at Hambledon Community Centre celebrating the history of the village. The local history society has been reinvigorated recently and the event was well attended. I took an exhibition on local history, with leaflets and some copies of local archives, to encourage people to visit the Record Office.

Hayling SC

Mark Pitchforth with Belinda Cook and Leonie Austin at Hayling Island Sailing Club, Oct 2015

In November I attended the Test Valley annual meeting of local and family history groups, this year, hosted by North Baddesley History Society. A large number of groups and societies from the region were represented and each gave a brief report of their news for the year. It was most illuminating to learn about the range of interesting projects and activities which had been engaged in since last year’s meeting and heartening to hear how many groups were thriving in regard to local support.

Mark Pitchforth
Hampshire Record Office

Community archives update, 11/12/2015

December 11, 2015

There’s just a few weeks left if you haven’t already visted us to view the two free exhibitions on offer at Hampshire Record Office. In our foyer we have an excellent display on the 175 year history of the University of Winchester and on the top floor landing there is the equally engrossing Hampshire Commemorates, created to mark the centenary of the First World War.


Both are well worth a look and will be on show until 4 January 2016 when they will be replaced by Swanmore Remembers, an exhibition produced by Swanmore Village Archive, a community group which we have worked with on a number of projects over the years.

Swanmore exhib2

Community archives update, 3/12/2015

December 3, 2015

The Hampshire Archives and Local Studies events programme is now in place for the first part of 2016. There are a wide range of talks, workshops and exhibitions planned offering skills and information in all sorts of areas. So if you fancy beginning the new year by learning a new skill or perhaps just enhancing ones already held then do get in touch (01962 846154) and book a place. Numbers are often limited so it’s never too early to secure your spot and avoid disappointment.

5 Jan-30 Mar 2016: Swanmore Remembers
Exhibition produced by Swanmore Village Archive to mark the centenary of the First World War
Free access, no booking required

Lunchtime lectures: last Thursday of each month, 1.15-1.45pm
28 Jan: Hampshire travels the World: an examination of the evidence for Hampshire’s role in international trade & exploration and the impact it had on the County, using the Arts collections of Hampshire Cultural Trust by Gill Arnott
25 Feb: Charles Miller: the man who took football from Banister Court to Brazil by Mark Pitchforth
31 Mar: Governor Arthur Philip and Lyndhurst by Angela Trend
No need to book. Free, donations welcomed

28 Jan, 24 Mar 2-4pm, 23 Feb 6-8pm (only need to attend one session)
Family history for beginners
Practical advice and help in starting your family history research: discover the main sources available and how to use them; access material on microfiche/film with staff on hand to answer any questions. All you need to know to begin researching your family tree
£13, booking essential

19 Jan, 2–4pm
Their Name Liveth For Evermore
: Workshop on researching war memorials
£13, booking essential

17 Feb, 2-4pm
Uncover the history of your house
Discover the stories housed in the collection of bricks and mortar you call home. When was it built? What was it used for? Who lived there? Find out how to use archive sources to answer these questions and more
£13, booking essential

18 Feb, 2-4pm
Latin for beginnersCarpe Diem! Seize the day and sign up to this workshop to learn to read Latin in old documents
£13, booking essential

16 Mar, 2-4pm
Using school archives for historical research
How to use school records, such as log books, admission registers etc for your historical research
£13, booking essential

29 Mar, 2-4pm
Was your ancestor a soldier?
Workshop on tracing army ancestors
£13, booking essential

24 February, 10am-3.30pm
Archive Ambassador training day
Sign up today and help us preserve Hampshire’s heritage. Training in archive preservation/conservation, cataloguing, digitisation and oral history recording
£18, booking essential


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