Programme 2019/20

The 2019 - 2020 programme is currently being organised. Below is othe DRAFT / YET TO BE FINALISED
PROGRAMME, but note these details will not be confirmed until mid-summer 2019.

September 11, 2019:
Right on track: the history and enjoyment of  Cumbria's coastal railway
Speaker: David Hindle of Grimsargh,
President, Preston Historical Society

October 9:
The notebook of Thomas Noblet,
(18th century Fylde joiner/carpenter )
Speaker: William McCartney 

November 13:
200 years of the Lancaster Canal
Speaker: John Acres (Lancaster Canal Trust)

December 11:
Moses Holden, 1777 - 1864: self-educated
Speaker: Steve Halliwell of Preston 

Speaker: Dave Hampson (Wyre Archaeology)
Update on local archaeological investigations
January 8, 2020:

February to April 2020 speakers still being contacted...

Here are details of the talks we enjoyed
in our last season's programme:

September 12, 2018:
Mapping Morecambe Bay.
Speaker: Dr Bill Shannon (Preston)

October 10, 2018 
Anglo-Saxon attitudes
Speaker: Annie Whitehead (Cumbria)

November 14
Lancaster Castle: from prison to heritage asset
Speaker: Nigel Neil (Neil Archaeological Services) of Lancaster   

December 12, 2018:
Place names of the medieval north Lancashire Landscape
Speaker: Dr Alan Crosby (Preston) 


January 9, 2019
Ferry Tales: stories from the Fleetwood to Knott End ferry
Speaker: Angela Norris of Preesall

February 13, 2019
Brenda Fox on her collection of local history books.

March 13, 2019
The farmer and the hen; the story of the Fylde's poultry industry
Speaker: John Grimbaldeston of Woodplumpton.

April 10, 2019
The ancient packhorse trade - its routes and bridges
Speaker Maggie Dickinson of Penwortham.
Preceded by annual meeting. (Also annual meal).

Spring / summer 2019: 
It is hoped to arrange trips to places of historic interest in Lancaster, and east Lancashire next year.

All lectures in Garstang United Reformed Church, 7.30pm followed by refreshments in church hall

For more info about the society ring Peter Burrell, chairman on

01995 601054

Meetings held last season (2017 / 2018)

April 11: The life and times of Lord Winmarleigh
(John Wilson-Patten) with Paul G. Smith of
Winmarleigh (Preceded by AGM).

June 2018: a coach trip to places
of historic interest (to be announced).

February 14:
Romano-British roundhouses
A talk by Lynda Wright of Poulton-le-Fylde Historical Society.
Opportunity to get tickets for the March 14 annual meal / hot pot supper.
Learn more about the trip to historic Yorkshire.

March 14: annual meal (venue to be
announced) followed by an illustrated lecture on
“Ribble Valley Memories.” Speaker: Dr Brenda
Fox of Garstang

December 13 2017:
The Rise and Fall of the Northumbrian Kingdom,
circa 600-1000 AD
Dr Fiona Edmonds, Director of Lancaster
University’s Regional Heritage Centre, examines
this area’s distant past (pre-”Lancashire”)

January 10, 2018:
Catterall: a Northern Powerhouse.
Discover Catterall’s forgotten industrial past with
John Waite (aka Joe Lane), engineer and author of
“A ramble round Catterall and district”

September 13, 2017:
Walt Whitman - the Lancashire connection
Professor Paul Salveson on the little-known links
between one of the USA’s leading poets and our

October 11: 7.30 pm.
What Anthony Hewitson thought of Garstang
Dr Andrew Hobbs of Uclan’s journalism department
looks at the life, times and writings of the author of the local classic “Northward.”

November 8:
The evolution of Lancaster Port Commission
(including Lancaster and Glasson Dock). Helen
Loxam, CEO of Lancaster Port Commission

March 8 2017: Speaker: Mr Brian Halliwell on
The golden age of Northern comedy.

April 12 2017:

6pm Hotpot supper in the United Reformed Church Hall.
Please book at the March 2017 meeting if you haven't alread
bought your ticket. £8. Strictly ticket only.

followed by

7.30pm The history of felt hat making in the
Lune and Wyre valleys. Mrs Christine Workman.
(Preceded by annual general meeting).

Look out soon for more details of our summer: coach trip to Skipton and Haworth...
likely to be in mid to late June.

Autumn 2017:

Already booked:

Dr Alan Crosby of Preston has agreed to be one of our speakers.. more details to follow.

Let Anthony C or Margaret M know if you have any ideas / suggestions for speakers / topics in 2017 - 2018

Past events and notes....


February 8 2017: Fish and Ships: Fleetwood’s deep
sea fishing industry. Mr Dick Gillingham and
Mr David Pearce (pictured)

December 14, 2016: Policing and espionage in
Northern Rhodesia circa 1957 - 1964.
Mr Nevil Joseph returns with the second talk
on his security work in British colonial Africa
(Photos show Nevil Joseph, Kenneth Kaunda and
Sir Roy Welensky)


January 11 2017: The White Star Line
(the Olympic, the Titanic (pictured) and the Britannic.
Mr Tony McGuire.

November 9 2016: Rural hiring fairs in Lancashire,
1890 - 1939. Dr Stephen Caunce, pictured above.

September 14 2016: The Battle of Quebec (1759)
and how it changed North American history.
Lt Col John Downham (formerly with The
Queen’s Lancashire Regiment), pictured above.

October 12 2016: Who do you think you are?
Tips and tales on researching family history.
Mr Andrew Walmsley, genealogy tutor.

November 23 2016: special meeting:
Mr David Ratledge (pictured above) will update us on his
research on Roman Roads in Lancashire.
(As this is an extra meeting there will be a
charge for all attending of £1).

More notes:

The first two weeks of November 2015 mark the 300th anniversary of one of the most tumultuous events in the history of this part of Lancashire.
In early November 1715, around 4,000 Scottish and English Jacobites (supporters of the ousted Stuart dynasty) made their way through Garstang and on to Preston.
Their aim was to see... the Old Pretender, James Stuart, proclaimed King of England and Scotland, ousting the Hanoverian King George 1.
At Preston they were soundly defeated by government troops, loyal to King George.
The battle was the last battle on English soil...and, with Garstang being in close proximity to Preston, there were several Garstang links.
Among the tiny numbers who had joined the rebels in Garstang were Roger Muncaster, then town clerk of Garstang. Other rebels were Joseph Wadsworth of Catterall, Thomas Goose also from Catterall and Thomas Cartmell of Claughton.

Within weeks of the rebels being defeated in Preston in mid-November all of them, including the Garstang rebels, were tried - and punished. Muncaster was executed at Preston. Wadsworth, Goose and Cartmell were put on gallows in the Garstang area.

To mark this anniversary various events are being held, mainly in Preston, during November 2015.

However two events are planned in Garstang on
* Wednesday, November 11 at 7.30 pm at Garstang United Reformed Church. Garstang Historical Society has organised a lecture on the Battle of Preston, by Dr Bill Shannon of Fulwood. 

* Saturday, November 14 at 11 am on the cobbled area in front of the Market Cross, next to the Royal Oak Hotel, Garstang, town crier Hilary McGrath will present a brief “news cry” detailing the activities of invaders and their local supporters, and tell of their doomed cause...
For more information about either event contact Anthony Coppin on 01995 605824.

Previous lectures Autumn / Winter 2015

September 9th
Hidden Histories...on the trail of Lancashire’s treasures, including the Silverdale Viking hoard. Speaker: Heather Davies, conservation manager for Lancashire Museums Service

October 14th 
The history of the Lancashire and North West  countryside
Speaker: Dr Malcolm Greenhalgh, author and naturalist

November 11, 2015: The Battle of Preston 1715 - the build-up to the battle and the aftermath. The story of the Jacobite invasion of Lancashire. Speaker Dr Bill Shannon of Fulwood.

December 9, 2015: Lake District villages, with reference to their architecture. Speaker Andy Lowe of Cumbria.

 For the information of readers, here is our last year's programme:
Autumn 2014

September 10 2014
Country Houses of North Lancashire with Jim Houghton (former WEA organiser)

October 8 2014
A talk on the history of the Grand Theatre, Blackpool, by retired Evening Gazette journalist Barry Band

November 12 2014
Paul Smith's third lecture on The Great War

December 10 2014
The Horrockses of Preston: the greatest name in and slideshow by David Hunt


January 14 2015
The ports of Morecambe Bay: talk and slideshow by Dr Hilary Walklett

February 11 2014
Recent developments in regional archaeology by Rick Peterson of Uclan, Preston.

March 11 2014
Garstang social history with Dr Brenda Fox of Garstang

April  8 2014
The Winders of Wyresdale: meal and speaker (Andy Hornby) and musicians (more details later)

2013  programme
Autumn 2013

September 11 2013
A talk and slide show on the Settle to Carllise railway by David Allison of Lowgill, near Kendal.
October 9 2013
The Brontes of Howarth, a presentation by Anna Easton of Churchtown
November 13 2013
The ports of Morecambe Bay by Dr Hilary Walklett of Scotforth.
Note..there is a possibility, due to Dr Walklett being unwell, that
this talk may be replaced with one on the subject of shipwrecks and drownings
of Morecambe Bay by John Harman and Dick White.
 December 11 2013
 Ben Andrews of Garstang on "A look at GPO letter boxes."
New Year/Spring 2014
January 8 2014
Nevil Joseph of Garstang on his life and times in the special branch in colonial central Africa.
February 12 2014    
Wartime aviation history of the Fylde, a presentation by aviation historian Russell Brown of St Annes
March 12 2014
Time 6.30pm (to be confirmed) Annual meal to be held at Garstang United Reformed Church. Please book in advance. The speaker will be Canon Ron Greenall, local historian and columnist in the Garstang Courier. Those members (and non-members) not wishing to attend the meal are welcome to the talk after the meal. Canon Greenall, a former vicar of Garstang and well know character in the district, will be speaking on aspects of Garstang's history.

April 9 2014

The first of a series of three lectures in 2014 by Paul Smith (pictured) on The Great War.
Title: 1914 - Edge of catastrophe.

August 4 2014
The second lecture by Paul Smith on The Great War. This session will be held 100 years to the day the war  was declared.
The title of this lecture is Garstang's Great War Heroes. It will look at the histories of the Fallen whose names appear on Garstang War Memorial as well as what happened to some of the men who returned from the Front.
he venue for this session will be Garstang Arts Centre. It will be a ticket-only meeting, with proceeds going to the Garstang Royal British Legion.
(Note, this lecture is NOT organised by the Garstang Historical Society but is supported by the society).
November 12 2014
Paul Smith's third lecture entitled Into Battle - the story of World War One 1914 to 1918. This will be the November lecture of the 2014/2015 season of Garstang Historical Society lectures. Venue, Garstang United Reformed Church.
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