Massingham Historical Society news update September 2020
It has been rather a strange year for the society. Many may well feel that nothing has happened due to the current circumstances, but rest assured, the society is still active, albeit at a reduced level and hopefully 2021 will see us back in action once again.
When the village hall was forced to close its doors early this year, we were in the process of assembling two large cabinets in the Lambing Yard in order to start to sort and file many of the archives currently held by Ant Robinson.
Although this work was temporarily halted, we hope to be able to complete the work soon. In the meantime, Ant has been busy sorting and filing items ready for transfer.
The village hall trustees have asked for a rental fee of £10.00 per month in order to allow us to continue with this arrangement. This has been agreed, as we have sufficient funds available at the moment. In return for this, we have been offered the opportunity to hold a one-day fund raising event in the hall, free of charge, which we would fully intend to utilise. We have also asked for reassurance that this arrangement will be a long term one.
We have purchased a separate hard drive in order to back up scanned photographs and documents. Ant is busy working on this and it is important to have an emergency backup copy in case of computer crashes or disasters.
I have been given some more documents for the archive.
They are; The parish church statement of accounts for the year 1886-87
The Trust Deeds for the Village Hall dated 30th November 1953
Maps dated Oct. 1946 showing proposed extensions to both the school & the area currently occupied by The Ducklings preschool.
These were all discovered when a house was cleared following the death of an aged relative. The new owner very kindly felt that they were more appropriate to us than herself & passed them on.
There is probably a lot more out there in the form of odd documents, all of which will add to our knowledge about the parish.
So, although it will probably not be possible to hold meetings in the hall at the moment, what of the future?
Hopefully, January 2021 will see us meeting again on a regular basis.
I have quite a few speakers who can come to talk to us. As before, a charge will be made for non-members in order to cover our costs.
Ant is happy to do another village walk next summer.
What about you? Do you have a subject or knowledge that you would be prepared to talk to us about? This would be on the lines of an informal meeting, so please do not worry about having to face a large audience or speaking for a long time!
I am currently researching a talk, which I plan to give to the society probably in the autumn. Subject? Well you will have to wait & see!
We have had three successful calendars, but events this year rather curtailed plans for another one. But, I have plans in place for a calendar for 2022, Planning for this will be commenced early in the year and all being well, I will progress this as before. Previous calendars have proved very popular and have also provided very welcome funds for us.
I started to record the village wells. I have discovered / been told of a few, but there must be many more out there. So, please ask around & see what you can find over the coming months. Then hopefully we can document this and complete the project.
How about a new project? Any ideas? I have a couple, but what about YOU! Support and help will always be available, but this is something which would involve many more in the society.
In the meantime, stay safe and stay interested!
Peter A. James.
Chairman, Massingham Historical Society.