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News Update.....................
Our March meeting will be a trip with the Outings group to Quebec House.
Our April meeting we will go to the Tutankhamen exhibition.

A group for anyone interested in finding out about events/people/issues in history and discussing their findings with other members of the group.

See below for forthcoming meetings, & click HERE for HISTORY GROUP PAST MEETINGS to see what we have covered to date

2023/ 2024

In September 2023 we started on the theme of explorers from the Vikings onwards. 


We resumed face to face meetings in September 2021 and decided to tackle the history of the countries of the United Kingdom starting with Wales. We then went  on to Scotland and Ireland/ Northern Ireland. There was such a lot to cover that we did not finish until June 2023.

In January we discussed religion, drama and aqueducts. We hope to do a walk later on in the year with  a guide showing us round Roman London.  We decided to leave it until the weather is a bit better, perhaps in the spring. The walks are every Saturday at 2pm and there is no need to book . We also talked about going to see the Tutankhamen exhibition in London and decided that we would go on the date of our April meeting.Another place we hope to visit is Lullingstone Roman Villa, possibly in March.

All our proposed visits and our monthly meetings have of course been put on hold for the foreseeable future. We are keeping in touch with one another and we have each chosen an historical figure to research and share with the rest of the group. So far we have had contributions on Robespierre and Mrs Beeton. Yet to come are Tradescant, Florence Nightingale, Geoffrey Chaucer, Mother Theresa, Eleanor of Aquitaine and Capobility Brown.

On Friday 5th June we had our first Zoom meeting for the History Group. We talked about anything history-related that had kept us occupied over the last few months. Some members of the group had been doing online courses with Futurelearn -  on Hadrian's wall and on 19th century reform, Peterloo to the Pankhursts, both of which were highly recommended. Others had been reading historical fiction or watching TV programmes, A House throughh Time on BBC2 and The Last Tsar on Netflix were both popular. I have listened to podcasts on the BBC Sounds app. At our next Zoom meeting in two weeks time  we will carry on with the theme of historical characters .

On Friday 19th June we had our second Zoom meeting when Heather talked on Aethelfled and Nick on James Wolfe. We decided that we would have meetings every two weeks and also talked about getting together for a walk. At our next meeting on 3rd July we had talks on Beethoven and Wordsworth, both of whom were born 250 years ago. On Thursday 9th July four of us got together for a walk from Camer Park led by Carole and David volunteered to lead the next walk on Thursday 23rd July in Harvel. We hope to continue with fortnightly walks as long as the weather is fine.

Our Zoom meeting on Friday 17th celebrated the lives of two singers Vera Lynn and Gracie Fields,introduced by Sue and Jan. We have also done some local history with talks on  Dode Church and Nurstead Court. Dode Church led David to research ley lines. Heather did a talk on the Pendle witches  at another meeting.

We have had several Zoom meetings on the subject of slavery, talking about William Wilberforce,  Edward Colston and his statue,a similar statue in Docklands of Robert Milligan, Sir John Hawkins, and Liverpool and the slave trade. To contrast with this we have had talks about philanthropists such as Eglanytne Jebb who founded Save the Children, Joseph Rowntree of York and Thomas Coram who started the Foundling Hospital.

Our next project has been suggested by Sue:"80 moments which shaped the world" from the British Council website. This should give us plenty to research over the next few months.

We are continuing  with Zoom meetings every fortnight and  walks on the other week when we don't have a meeting.

The walks unfortunately had to come to an end once we entered Tier 4 then lockdown. Anyway the weather has not been suitable for muddy walks around footpaths. We hope to resume when the weather improves and lockdown is eased, possibly in the Spring

We have continued with fortnightly meetings on Zoom using the "80 moments that shaped the world" as a basis for talks. in the last few months we have covered:-

The break-up of the USSR, Credit Cards, the Paralympics, Andy Warhol, the Asian Tsunami, Space Exploration, George Orwell, Eradication of smallpox, the Gulf War, English as a global language and the Berlin Wall. Our last talks on this theme are on February 12th when we will be doing the contraceptive pill and photography

We had a special Christmas meeting with Steve talking about Dicken's Christmas Carol and David playing us Christmas music that each of us had requested. We had three guests joining us for this meeting so there were fourteen of us.

Our next subject matter will be "100 objects that shaped the world" which had been an exhibition at the British Museum a few years ago. This is mainly ancient history so will be a contrast to the theme of 80 objects which was 20th Century.






In January instead of a meeting we went to see the film "Mary Queen of Scots" at Bluewater. We then discussed the film over a meal at Bella Italia.

Our February meeting was on the period 1775-1800. We talked about Herschel, Sheridan, Taxation, the diaries of James Woodforde, the guillotine, the Marseillaise and Mary Wollstonecraft.

In March we started on the 19th century, 1800-1825, and talked about Russia in the Napeleonic Wars,the death of Princess Charlotte, Queen Caroline, Dickens boyhood in Chatham, the eruption of Mount Tambora, slavery, William Cobbbett and the Brighton Pavilion.

In April it was 1825-50 but we are doing it over two meeting as there are now ten of us in the group so there was not enought time for each of us to do a talk and discuss it afterwards. The five topics wer the Treaty of Waikiti in New Zealand, the Tolpuddle Martyrs. Charles Darwin's voyage on the Beagle, 1848 the year of revolutions and the start of Birth, Marriage and Death registration.

The May meeting carried on with 1825-50 with talks on the Chartists, Poor Law Reform, Grimaldi and Angela Burdett- Coutts.

Our September 2019 meeting was a visit to St Margaret's church at Darenth. Some of us did a walk across the fields from David's house where we met the rest of the group. David and the churchwarden told us about the history of this beautiful church. After spending some time looking round, we had a cup of tea in the church hall with cakes that June had made. We discussed what we would like to do for the coming year and decided to do the Romans, followed by the Saxons and Vikings.

At our October meeting Sheila talked about Hadrian's and the Antonine walls, Jan did Roman roads and Heather the Roman Army. We all agree we knew very little about the start oif the Roman Empire so David will tackle this subject at our next meeting with June investigating its collapse. We are thinking of doing a guided walk on Roman London and will decide a date at the next meeting in November.

Our  meeting on November 15th covered the start and end of the Roman Empire, Roman Springhead and cosmetics. We decided that the December meeting would be held a week earlier than normal on the 13th as everyone would be busy around Christmas.

Our December meeting at Carole's house was about Roman Food and Roman London. Carole provided some Christmassy snacks.

There was no meeting in September as several members were away.
Our first meeting in October covered the period from 1700-1725.We talked about transport, George 1, the death of Louis XIV, Sarah Churchill, the South Sea Bubble and the 1715 rebellion.

Our November meeting covered the period 1725-50. The subjects were: Music milestones,theatre,Fleet marriages, the Hawkhurst gang, Bow Street Runners, women pirates, the Black Act and the Foundling Hospital. Our next meeting will be on 21st December and will be about the period 1750-75.

Our December meeting was on the years 17750-75 and we discussed Josiah Wedgwood, canals, the agrarian revolution, Captain Cook, Joseph Arkwright and Samuel Johnson's dictionary. There will not be a January meeting as we are going to the cinema to see Mary Queen of Scots.