Bradwell Historical Society



Bradwell Historical Society was formed in 1994 to encourage local people to become involved in the history of the village and the area, and to build up a local archive.  However, the Society does not confine its activities to this and has welcomed speakers on a wide range of historical topics.  They meet on the third Tuesday evening of every month at 8.00 pm in the Methodist Hall, Towngate.  The varied programme includes illustrated lectures given by visiting speakers or by members of the Society with a specialist interest or who have researched a particular topic.  The Society also arranges reciprocal village tours with other local history groups, and daytime visits to a range of venues of historical interest. In the recent past these have included visits to Bugsworth Basin, Cresswell Crags, and the Holocaust Museum at Laxton.

In 2006 the Society was awarded a grant by the "Local Heritage Initiative" and a large group, including non-members, began producing an illustrated history of Bradwell in the 20th century, plus material for use in schools.  In August 2008 the Society published 'After Seth. Bradwell into the 21st Century'. A 272 page account of life in the village over the last 100 years.  It is generously illustrated and has 20 pages of index including many local family references.  It is on sale at Bradwell PO and local bookshops at £10 per copy or by post from the society at £12.50 (UK) or plus postage (overseas). Contact - stevelawless or telephone 01433620329 or 01433621865.

The Society currently has in hand a number of projects, some of which have arisen from the ‘Local heritage Initiative’. The projects currently running are as follows:

  • ·    Production of a DVD containing newspaper cuttings about Bradwell between 1883 and 1951, collected by Cyril Evans.
    The DVD is now available and costs £5. Contact Andy Smith (phone 01433 620100).

  • ·    The Society has accumulated a large range of artefacts relating to Bradwell life (books, photographs, pamphlets, local wills etc) and has a project in hand to catalogue these items and place them in the Archive. A group of members meet on a Saturday morning on a monthly basis from 10.00 to 12.00 in the Methodist Hall

  • ·    The Society has recently assembled information about the men and women of Bradwell who fought in World Wars I and II. This has been brought together in a pamphlet entitled ‘Bradwell in Two World Wars : Those who died and those who served’. Copies are available from Brian Gillham (01433623345 or brian.gillham@btopenworld) at a cost of £7.50 (to cover p&p) or if you prefer you may receive an electronic copy for £5. Since December 2014 up until December 2016 (to date) the Bradwell News has published monthly reports that contain more extensive information about visits home made by Bradwell soldiers, sailors and airmen during WWI. This will continue until 2018. The Society has also produced a second pamphlet entitled ‘The Bradwell Fever: 1868-1870’. In this severe outbreak of what was probably typhoid fever some 200 – 300 were affected of whom about 70 succumbed. The pamphlet identifies 41 who died and 105 who were affected and where in the village they lived. The pamphlet is now out of print but once again an electronic copy may be purchased for £2.50 from Brian Gillham.

  • ·    An important project currently being co-ordinated by Andy Smith is called ‘The House I Live In’. Information is being gathering about who has lived where in Bradwell over the years. Information collected, written, oral and photographic is being attached, house-by-house to a map of the village.

The Society has approximately 40 members and the annual subscription is £10. Everyone is welcome to join and there are no age limits. Visitors may attend up to three of the Society’s talks on payment of a fee of £3 for each talk but there after are expected to become full members  The AGM is held in January and current officers are:

President Mrs V Hall 621727
Chair Mr B Gillham 623345
Vice Chair
Secretary Mr J Monahan 621708
Treasurer Andy Smith

2017 Programme

17th January AGM
21st February Simon Barley – The Princess and the Saw
21st March Andy Smith – Old Explorers' Tales from the Antarctic – The British Antarctic Oral History Project
18th April Chris Furness – The History and Future of Local Government in Bradwell
16th May Ted Hancock - Queen Victoria's State visit to Sheffield
20th June Ann Featherstone - Music Hall:  The Singers and the Songs
18th July Evening of BHS archival recordings
15th August NO MEETING
19th September Val Hall – A Smawda Man
17th October Suzanne Bingham - From street to High Street, a History of shopping
21t November Brian Gillham – Nevil Shute Norway – engineer and novelist
19th December Christmas Meal – Shoulder of Mutton
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