I’m writing this in a chilly house as our boiler has decided to give up the ghost and needs to be replaced. As vulnerable older people we are having a speedy resolution to this problem, but it has made me consider whether all the books, magazines, data CDs, microfiche and folders etc connected with family history which have been accumulating over the years are really needed. We have had to clear the way for the new installation and some big decisions have had to be made. Has anyone else had this state of affairs and how did you solve it?
David Tyler 1935-2024
It was with sadness that I heard this week of the death of David Tyler who for a long time was a member of this society. Dave was a stalwart member of the team who volunteered in the Library every Saturday before Covid. In addition, he could often be found searching the newspapers on film in Weston Library and he carried out detailed research about the Carlton Street area, Moorland Road and other parts of Weston. The results of his research into some old public houses of Weston can be seen on our web site
David had been evacuated to Weston during WW2 from West Ham and remained here afterwards.
He worked as a projectionist at the Odeon from about 1950 and appeared in some publicity shots carrying a sandwich board around Weston advertising the latest film at the Odeon.
Dave and his wife, Joan, were very active in supporting the Community in which they lived.
I was grateful to David and Joan, as they were members of the U3A Family History Group which met at St Pauls, each month they made and served the refreshments for it.
We will miss him and send our sympathy and love to Joan and his family.
I have received this communication from the Royal British Legion, and I very much hope that if you have memories of this bombing or connections with anyone who lost their lives at that time that you will be able to attend.
REMEMBERING THE WESTON BLITZ 1941/42
To mark the 80th Anniversary of D-Day the Weston Branch Royal British Legion will be holding a Memorial Service at the Civilian War Graves area of Milton Cemetery to commemorate those who lost their lives during the Blitz of 1941 and 1942. The Service will take place at 3pm on Sunday 9th June 2024.
The Branch would like to invite to this Service any relative, descendent or friend of those that lost their lives during the Blitz. If you would like to attend, please contact the Branch representative on 01934 709564 or e-mail email@example.com
This photograph is of the mass burial of civilian casualties taken from the information on our web site.
Free Help Session at the Library
The next free help session at the library will take place this Saturday, February 3rd from 2.00pm until 3.30pm. As we do not have as many volunteers as we did before Covid we can only offer this service once a month these days but do come along with your queries and our valiant volunteers will assist you in your search for members of your past family. There is no need to book - just come along.
Next Society Meeting
On St Valentine’s Day – Wednesday February 14th at 2.30 until 5.00 pm we have a meeting at Our Lady of Lourdes Church Hall when the Speaker, Simon Talbot-Ponsonby will give an update on the Regeneration of Birnbeck Pier. Many of our ancestors will have been familiar with this structure in its hey day and we will hear about progress which has been made to restore it, the money involved and when work is scheduled to begin. There is a short compilation of pictures of the Old Pier on YouTube which you might find interesting.
Next Zoom Workshop
The next Zoom Workshop for full members of our Society will be on Wednesday 28th February at 7.30pm when I will be looking at the many Private Schools which existed in Weston in the 19th, 20th and early 21st Centuries - The last one, Ashbrooke House School, closed in July 2022.
Photo of Hazelhurst School - which is included in a list of schools on our web site
Thank you very much to those who have responded on Facebook and on our own web site with memories of attending such schools or with reports of ancestors who were educated or taught in these establishments.
Shrove Tuesday is on the 13th February this year and although probably most of us will be eating pancakes, the religious traditions of Shrove Tuesday and Ash Wednesday are largely ignored in favour of more popular entertainment. This is an extract from 1906 explaining the historical significance of these days.
St Valentine’s Day
Ash Wednesday this year is also St Valentine’s Day which is commercially a clash of chocolate with the start of Lent. Although I have several people whose birthday was on the 14th of Feb, I have no one with the first name of Valentine on my tree.
With the additional day this year – does anyone have that date for a birthday, once every four years? I only have the 29th February once on my tree and that is for the marriage of a 2nd cousin 4 times removed of my husband – a Miriam CREED, who was married to Elias MARTIN at St Mary Redcliffe in Bristol on the 29th Feb 1848.
Latest additions to Ancestry during January
The last one is interesting if you have anyone who worked for the Royal Mail and note that the Death Index now goes up to 2022.
Tracing Female Ancestors on FindmyPast
I found this entry particularly interesting especially as it mentions the importance of understanding the Social History of the time in which your female ancestors were living. Take a look at this blog which summarises the aspects to consider.
New Records on The Genealogist
I find Street and Trade Directories very helpful in tracing the movement of my ancestors and these cover a wide area of the UK. This explains what is now available.
Destruction of Wills
The petition about the proposal to destroy original wills has been available on our Facebook Group for a little while "Do not allow original wills to be destroyed after 25 years" and a few have signed. Please consider signing to increase the chance of more meaningful discussion of this proposal. When you look at the errors in the index after the digitalisation of the 1921 Census and the difficulty of finding accurate information this causes. There is also a link on our web site to the same petition which gives some background information.
I must close now because as in the marvellous song from Flanders and Swann – “The gas man cometh” – I just hope that it all goes to our plan and not like the song! Have a great February and don’t forget to use the Research Forum, the Facebook Group and the Free Help Session to get help with your research.