July 2017 | Banbury Museum

July 2017

July Newsletter and postscript

July 2017

Dear all,

We have one more visit this year and this is your final call for it as it takes place this coming Thursday 6th.  This outing to the Kenilworth Elizabethan Gardensstarts with a private tour of the gardens which were resurrected thanks to a remarkable eyewitness account by a man who sneaked in one day while Elizabeth 1, visiting her favourite, the Earl of Leicester, was out hunting. His description was used to reconstruct the garden, which involved much research ad a search for Tudor plants, flowers and birds. 


The 45 minute tour starts at 2pm and afterwards you can explore the castle including John of Gaunt’s Great Hall, one of the finest of its kind, and enjoy tea in the historic Tudor Stables Tearoom.

The cost of £12 includes entrance as well as the tour (English Heritage members get free entrance + £3 for the tour).  There are 30 places – please book with Susan Walker on banhistsoc@outlook.com


Our final event of this season is the Annual General Meeting which will take place on Tuesday  11th July 2017 at 5.30pm in the church of St Peter and St Paul, Swalcliffe, (by kind permission of the rector) followed by refreshments in Swalcliffe Barn.

Swalcliffe church is one of Oxfordshire’s oldest.  There are only a few architectural clues to its Saxon origins inside but it was a Saxon ‘minster’ at the centre of a large ‘parochia’ and it continued to have a very large parish into modern times.  The huge tithe barn is one of the best in the county and dates from c.1400.  

Directions:  Swalcliffe is on the B4035 Banbury to Shipston-on-Stour road.  The church is in the middle of the village – you can’t miss it. NB there are 17 steps up to the church.  Parking is difficult near the church but the tithe barn is 150 yards further up the road and has plenty of parking so we suggest you park there and walk back down. 

You will all have received the official notice and agenda in Cake & Cockhorse.   I will repeat what I’ve said before:  that we would love to have some new ideas and fresh faces on the committee, so do please get in touch with me or with Simon Townsend,  Secretary  (c/o Banbury Museum or simon.townsend@banburymuseum.org)

I am very pleased to tell you that the Society’s next publication will be appearing in September.  This is Barrie Trinder’s  Junctions at Banbury: a town and its railways since 1850.  It is a 266 page book with more than 100 illustrations, of the same format as the Society’s Banbury Past. We shall be celebrating its publication at the reception before our first lecture of the  2017-18 season on Thursday 14 September, when members will be able to collect their copies. If you cannot attend that meeting, you will be able to collect your copy at the museum until Saturday 30 September. If you have not collected your copy by that date will receive it by post early in October. If you wish to purchase an extra copy (or copies), books will be available for sale on 14 September and subsequently at the museum shop.

There are two more volumes in the pipeline but we don’t have firm dates yet for those.

If there are any members who missed Dr. Susan Walker’s talk about the excavations at Steane a year or so ago, you might be interested to go to the Brackley History Society meeting tomorrow (Wednesday) where she will be revisiting them, and presumably with further information from the later excavations.  Those of us who were there thought it was a fascinating lecture.  (If you don’t know where Steane is, it is off the A422 between Farthinghoe and Brackley, definitely in Banburyshire.)  The Brackley History Society meet in the Methodist Church Hall at the top of the High Street in Brackley at 7.30 pm.

The Soldiers of Oxfordshire Museum puts on a series of lectures and events as well as its displays and has a very lively website .  (www.sofo.org.uk) It is in Park Street,  
Woodstock (OX20 1SN), and on Wednesday 12th July Nick Beattie will be talking about the ‘The St Nazaire Raid’ at 7 pm.  Doors open 6.45pm and refreshments are available.

The St Nazaire Raid or Operation Chariot was a successful British amphibious attack on the heavily defended Normandie dry dock at St Nazaire in German-occupied France during the Second World War. The operation was undertaken by the Royal Navy and British Commandos under the auspices of Combined Operations Headquarters on 28 March 1942.

The Shelswell History Festival will be taking place next weekend from the 7th – 9th July with all sorts of events, talks, exhibitions and happenings.  Look atwww.shelswellhistoryfestival.org.uk for more information.  You will all know I’m sure of the Flora Thompson connection, but there will be a lot more besides.

With best wishes

Deborah Hayter


Dear all, Another event that might interest you that our society promised to advertise:  Deddington & District History Society have a lecture next Wednesday 12th July by DR RICHARD BUCKLEY (Manager of the Richard III project in Leicester and the archaeologist who was heavily involved in the excavations that discovered the body of Richard III). The Windmill Centre, Hempton Rd, Deddington, Banbury OX15 0QH,  7.30pm, Admission £5.00 (Includes refreshments). Deborah Hayter