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Louth Museum

Lectures and Outings

2021 PROGRAMME

Our lectures and visits in 2021

The 'Ants & Nats' lectures in Spring 2021 will be held online using "Zoom". Anyone wishing to participate (other than those already registered) needs to email start.david@btinternet.com.

In the summer there will be (1) an organised visit to Spalding Gentlemens' Society Museum, and (2) a guided tour of the Abbeys along the Witham. The dates for these are still uncertain as they depend on Covid restrictions; as soon as dates are decided, they will be posted on the website, and LNALS members will be informed.

The series of twelve lectures in the autumn will begin on 21 Sep 2021, hopefully in the ConocoPhillips Room, Louth Library, Northgate, Louth, LN11 0LY.

Louth Railway Station … Before and After Closure

Tuesday, 21st September 2021 7:30pm by Mike Fowler

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Louth Railway Station … Before and After Closure

Mike is a retired teacher, broadcaster and film/video producer. He grew up in Spilsby and spent many happy hours on Spilsby and Firsby stations watching trains. He bases his presentations on these experiences and draws on extensive memories and research with considerable enthusiasm.

We welcome back Mike Fowler with another of his railway talks. The theme will be the East Lincolnshire Railway just before and after closure. Mike has been developing his content and now includes film footage around Louth on the final day and some absorbing audio visual sequences plus all the usual fascinating images.

Hardwicke Drummond Rawnsley

Tuesday, 28th September 2021 7:30pm by Michael Allen

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Hardwicke Drummond Rawnsley

After a lifetime spent working in industry Michael took a PhD at Anglia Ruskin University on the ‘Victorian Sonnet’. Following this research he published the five-volume ‘Anthem Anthology of Victorian Sonnets’. In conjunction with Rosalind Rawnsley, he is currently researching the life of her great-grandfather, Hardwicke Drummond Rawnsley. A biography, ‘Hardwicke Drummond Rawnsley: An Extraordinary Life’, will be published by Methuen in May 2021.

When he died in 1920, Hardwicke Drummond Rawnsley was a national figure and a pioneer in the early conservation movement. He is best remembered today, if at all, as one of the co-founders of the National Trust. His achievements, however, spread way beyond the field of conservation. Although not born in Lincolnshire, he had strong connections with the county. After a brief overview of his life and diverse interests the talk will focus on how Lincolnshire, its people and countryside, helped to shape the character of this intriguing individual.

Bishop Robert Grosseteste

Tuesday, 5th October 2021 7:30pm by Jack Cunningham

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Bishop Robert Grosseteste

Jack Cunningham came to this country from Donegal in Ireland twenty years ago to take up a position as head of theology at Bishop Grosseteste University where he is also a Reader in ecclesiastical history. He began his academic career as a researcher in Reformation studies but soon turned his attention to mediaeval theology and Robert Grosseteste in particular. For the last six years he has worked on the Ordered Universe Project at Durham University which brings together mediaeval historians with modern scientists to produce the edited works of Robert Grosseteste. Jack is an experienced public speaker whose media presence includes a Tedx talk and an appearance on Melvyn Bragg’s In Our Time

Bishop Robert Grosseteste (c. 1167-1253) was a remarkable man. In his long lifetime he became the first Chancellor of Oxford University and the bishop of the largest diocese in England stretching from the Humber to the Thames at Oxford. He was a scientist, some would argue the first, a poet, a translator, a philosopher and a theologian. He was the first person to describe accurately how the rainbow works and he produced a remarkable discussion of the creation of the universe which resonates astonishingly well with modern Big Bang theories. This talk will discuss the life and works of a truly remarkable genius who might be described as Lincoln’s mediaeval Einstein.

Placenames & Parishes: Understanding the English Countryside

Tuesday, 12th October 2021 7:30pm by Dr Matthew Godfrey

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Placenames & Parishes: Understanding the English Countryside

Dr Matthew Godfrey studied at Leicester University for his PhD on the Churches and Parishes of Early Medieval Norfolk. Matt came to Lincolnshire in 2010 to set up the countywide Heritage at Risk Survey for the Heritage Trust of Lincolnshire and became a well-known figure, training hundreds of heritage stewards around the county. Following the successful completion of the Heritage at Risk project, Matt joined the team at the Diocese of Lincoln as their Historic Churches Support Officer and remains in that post to the present day.

Parish boundaries are something that we are all familiar with on today’s maps, but do we know why they appear in often such a complex network following an old Roman road, a stream, a woodland or a seemingly random zigzag pattern across open fields?  In this talk Matt will look in detail at these boundaries and the parishes that they define. He will illustrate how they evolved, why they were needed and why place-names and early parish churches are crucial to our understanding of parishes and the organisation of the medieval landscape. The talk will be illustrated using examples from his research in Norfolk together with some examples from around Lincolnshire.

The East Indies Comes to Lincolnshire: the Story of Maidenwell Manor

Tuesday, 19th October 2021 7:30pm by Naomi Field

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The East Indies Comes to Lincolnshire: the Story of Maidenwell Manor

Naomi Field has spent all her working life based in Lincolnshire although her work has taken her all over the country.  After running an archaeological business for more than 20 years she now works as a consultant specialising in planning application work and historic building surveys.

What connection does a tiny hamlet in the Lincolnshire Wolds have with an Elizabethan buccaneer, the Skinners Livery Company of London, Basingstoke Corporation and a Louth architect? In 2019 a planning application was made for the demolition of the old farmhouse at Maidenwell and its replacement with a new one. A programme of documentary research, combined with archaeological and historic building investigations has thrown light on the history of Maidenwell Manor and its farm.

Wallis lecture: Lincolnshire’s Angelic Host: the Wonderful World of Mediaeval Roof Angels

Tuesday, 26th October 2021 7:30pm by Geoff Wheatley

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Wallis lecture: Lincolnshire’s Angelic Host: the Wonderful World of Mediaeval Roof Angels

Geoff was one of the founder members of the Spirit of Sutterby Project which has been running now for seven years.   The project is based on the tiny church and Deserted Mediaeval Village of Sutterby in the Lincolnshire Wolds.   It is a community heritage project with members pursuing a wide range of research interests.

From this and a passion and love of churches in all their aspects, was born this particular project undertaking new research into mediaeval roof angels in Lincolnshire.

Toresbi - a Marsh Village

Tuesday, 2nd November 2021 7:30pm by Stuart Sizer

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Toresbi - a Marsh Village

Stuart is a retired Headteacher and Local Historian with particular interest in Louth Navigation, The Marsh and Churches with particular onus on Louth St James’.

This talk will consider what North Thoresby may have looked like at the time of the Domesday Survey and after.  What evidence is there of its past on the ground and written? The lecture seeks to build a picture of this marsh village during that period of history and for some years after. The village comes to life with its people and daily life, both imagined and real.   To achieve this we will use the Domesday Book, maps, aerial photography, written account and, just a little imagination.

A Tudor Page-turner: St James’ Churchwardens’ Accounts 1527-1570

Tuesday, 9th November 2021 7:30pm by Dr Brian Hodgkinson

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A Tudor Page-turner: St James’ Churchwardens’ Accounts 1527-1570

Brian was for many years a bus and coach driver in Nottingham.  In 1995 he ‘retired’ and started courses at the Nottingham WEA, mostly in history.  The lecturers suggested he took the Certificate in Archaeology in the School of Continuing Education at the University of Nottingham.  Success in this led him to complete a BA (Hons), MA in Local History and finally a PhD on the subject of the dissolution of the monasteries in Lincolnshire.   It was during that research he came across the Louth churchwardens’ accounts.  Following a talk for the Lincoln Record Society, Nicholas Bennett suggested he transcribe the second book of accounts, the results of which await publication

The Louth Churchwardens’ Accounts are some of the country’s most comprehensive surviving parish documents, continuing in an almost unbroken sequence from the beginning of the 16th century until the present day.  These documents open a panorama on the undertakings of a large, wealthy parish church and its interactions with the local community during the period of the Reformation.  This talk will illustrate small examples of the vast number of entries that together bring an understanding of the trials and tribulations of a market town during this period of unrest, both political and religious.

The Lincolnshire Wolds in the Roman Era

Tuesday, 16th November 2021 7:30pm by Steve Willis

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The Lincolnshire Wolds in the Roman Era

Dr Steven Willis is Senior Lecturer in Archaeology at the University of Kent.    He obtained his MA and PhD from Durham University and subsequently became Senior Research Fellow in their Department of Archaeology.   He is former President of the Study Group for Roman Pottery, and now edits the group’s journal.  In addition to a specialization in Roman ceramics, his main areas of expertise are the archaeology of settlement, society and material culture in the Iron Age and Roman era in western Europe. He has been based at the University of Kent since 2004.

Over 20 years ago Dr Willis chose the Lincolnshire Wolds as an area for study because it had been so under-researched.  Tonight he will talk about his many discoveries of Roman Lincolnshire including the probable shrine at Nettleton/Rothwell, which yielded a curse tablet; the rural farm complex at Hatcliffe Top; a site at Brookenby where many metal objects and tile fragments have been found; and a site near Walesby where the volcanic building material, tufa, may evidence the remains of an architectural feature at the source of the River Rase.

Hidden Gems in Richard Goulding’s Library

Tuesday, 23rd November 2021 7:30pm by Jean Howard

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Hidden Gems in Richard Goulding’s Library

Although a Norfolk Dumpling Jean is most at home in Lincolnshire and happiest among books.   During the 1970s and 80s her service with the Lincolnshire Library Service included dealing with local history enquiries across the east of the county.  Often she delved into the Goulding Collection to retrieve the answers.

Richard Goulding was the son of a Louth printer & bookseller but his meticulous and studious nature led to his appointment as private librarian to the 6th Duke of Portland at Welbeck Abbey, Notts.  Richard’s research combined with the family printing business resulted in his producing numerous publications on the two counties.  His collection of papers was left to Louth and his library is kept in the Conoco-Phillips Room in Louth Library, very little used.  Tonight Jean will share with us some of her favourite research sources.

John Betjeman & Lincolnshire

Tuesday, 30th November 2021 7:30pm by Horace Liberty

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John Betjeman & Lincolnshire

Horace has worked as a schoolteacher and Associate Lecturer with the Open University and had a wide range of interests.   He is a member of the Betjeman Society and edits The Betjemanian, the annual journal of the Society

John Betjeman, Poet Laureate and conservation pioneer, was a regular visitor to Lincolnshire.  He was drawn to the county by friends and his admiration of Tennyson.  He loved the place names and the churches – and these feature in a number of poems that are firmly located in the county.  This talk examines what John Betjeman found to be special about Lincolnshire.

New Archaeological Discoveries; Finds & Sites in the Louth Area & Wider County

Tuesday, 7th December 2021 7:30pm by Dr Lisa Brundle

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New Archaeological Discoveries; Finds & Sites in the Louth Area & Wider County

Originally from Grundisburgh in Suffolk, Lisa completed her PhD at Durham University.   She then worked as a field archaeologist in East Anglia, going on to teach with the WEA and at Canterbury Christ Church University. After this, she took an internship post with the then Lincs Finds Liaison Officer, Adam Daubney and ultimately ended up with his job!   She recently published a book on early Anglo-Saxon art and burial archaeology and has had various articles in international journals. In tandem with her day-to-day responsibilities, she is currently cataloguing the small finds recovered from the early Anglo-Saxon cemetery at Scremby and is project lead on an archaeological investigation of another 5th-6th century cemetery in Lincolnshire.

This talk explores new interesting archaeological finds from prehistory to the post-period in the local area which were reported to the Portable Antiquities Scheme. It also includes a ‘first look’ at current archaeological research projects within the wider county including a newly discovered early Anglo-Saxon cemetery found just north of Lincoln.