Merton Heritage Day - 28th March 2015
Who Do You Think You Are - Live
NEC - 16th -18th April
25 April (Saturday): Our Open Day is on 2015 at Croydon URC, the theme is Occupations, followed by AGM.
Chairman’s Address - AGM 2015 – URC Halls Croydon
Mr President, fellow Members of the Society.
Welcome to our 38th Annual General Meeting. I hope you have enjoyed the Open Day and have picked up some hints and tips on researching your ancestors’
occupations, and that you’ve enjoyed meeting fellow enthusiasts for Family History.
Special thanks to Liz Moss who has worked so hard to put the Open Day together! This is my opportunity to say a few words about the activities we’ve shared, and the events the Society has attended, during the last year. I’d also like to say thank you to the people who have made it all possible, and I’ll look forward to the coming year when we have some exciting new events to tell you about.
This year our five Groups have presented over 50 talks and Members’ meetings, and a Christmas Social. Perhaps you remember:
O Southwark Archives treating us to some early and mid-20th century film clips;
O Sue Gibbons telling us about researching Shopkeeper ancestors;
O learning about accessing the map collection at Surrey History Centre.
On your behalf I’d like to thank the Group Chairs and Secretaries, especially where they are Acting Chairs or Acting Secretaries, for putting on such interesting and varied programmes. And it is such a bonus to have access to the experts! You can read all the family history magazines you like and scour your computers but nothing beats discussing your own family photograph with Jayne Shrimpton herself or quizzing Stephen Humphrey about …well… anything in Southwark or Bermondsey!
Our Editor has produced four fine Journals this year, packed with useful and entertaining articles, and I’ve delivered twelve monthly e-newsletters full of news,
photos and website reviews. Our Facebook ‘Likes’ now number 221 and you may be interested to know that 70% of our ‘Fans’ are women, 30% men, and 20% of all our fans are over 65! Our website has continued to provide a window on our
We have attended a number of Family History Fairs this year including the three day Who Do You Think You Are? Live Show at the NEC last week. We go to Fairs to meet and help our more distant members and to fulfil our ‘Education’ charitable objective but we have to give this some serious thought now because of the cost.
Our Society income is falling as Members do not renew their subscriptions but our Treasurer will say more about our financial position shortly.
As always, none of this would be possible without the efforts and enthusiasm of our volunteers and, as usual I’d like to take this opportunity to thank everyone who has helped, in any way, with the running of the Society. Thank you all, very much! I have two people in particular to thank this time, who are both stepping down from the Committee.
Peter Heather, who also helps run the Lingfield meetings, manages the Research database and answers Research queries, has now completed the maximum five years on the Committee, and Brian Hudson, who has been our Webmaster and general IT guru, has likewise served five years. Thank you very much, both!
Nick McDonald has also served on the Committee this year and he has enthusiastically supported our Meetings and Events, but he now has new calls on his time. Thank you for your help Nick and we look forward to working with you again.
So, what of the future?
As you can see, we have at least three vacancies for Committee members!! Our Committee is now reduced to six plus our President, three of whom have only one year more they can serve before stepping down. Your Society Needs You!! And never more than NOW, so I urge you to consider supporting your Society. The regular jobs like Editor, Webmaster, Membership Secretary, and Research Co-ordinator are fully manned so new Committee Members can focus on representing and guiding the Society, helping out as and when they can at events and greeting new Members.
In the New Year we sadly lost Chris Pocock, our Group Secretary at Sutton, at too young an age. He was one of life’s enthusiasts and was keen to share his passion for family history. We will miss him and he’ll be a tough act to follow but we’d be grateful if someone would step forward to take this role. Please speak to Joanna to find out more.
On a happier note, I do have some exciting news for next year; you may have already seen some of this on the notice boards. Firstly, we have a fresh, new Website! Rob Cambridge has redesigned our existing site using an up to date format, which is device-friendly and flexible. In time we hope to offer an exclusive Members’ Area and an online ‘Shop’. The switchover to the new website will happen in early May. Don’t worry; the address will still be www.eastsurreyfhs.org.uk
Secondly, I’m pleased to advise you that we have established a link with Surrey History Centre and their brand new, Lottery funded, ‘Surrey Remembers’, Great War themed, website. We are planning to forward our ‘WW1’ Journal article stream to the new site, after a suitable time delay. Our Society will be fully credited for the material and we hope this will both enhance the standing of East Surrey FHS and advertise us to a wider audience. I also hope this will encourage more Members to contribute articles about their ancestors’ wartime experiences, here or abroad, particularly as our link up with Surrey History Centre will make it easier and cheaper to obtain copies of records and photographs they hold, and because of the breadth and reach of SHC’s new website.
Peter Moulin, our WW1 editor, has reminded me that today is ANZAC Day, the 100th anniversary of the Gallipoli landings. ANZAC Day is the day on which Australians and New Zealanders, in particular, commemorate those who served in WW1 and all subsequent wars in which their troops have fought. There will be a couple of articles on Gallipoli in the June Journal. Thirdly, I’m delighted to announce that East Surrey FHS is a joint sponsor of a one day Conference at the National Archives on Saturday 26th September. We have embraced the TNA 2015 theme of ‘Technology’ but don’t worry, that’s a broad title. There will be four talks, including ones on the early aviation industry in Kingston and Richmond; the Board of Trade Design Registers; the design and usefulness of digital resources such as the London Lives and British History Online websites and, interestingly, at least for me, Stage Coaches. Afternoon tea and coffee and all-in for £15, with £12 for ‘early birds’. Booking opens soon on Eventbrite with some tickets reserved for postal applications. Only 90 places and four organisations involved so look out for further details on the website, in the enewsletter and at Meetings. I hope you will be interested in these developments and that you will enjoy the lecture programmes and events during the year. Please do think about stepping forward to help on the Committee or in any other capacity. Perhaps you could ‘job share’ with a friend?
2 May (Saturday): FH Fair Huntingdonshire FHS
9 May (Saturday): Richmond May Fair
16 May (Saturday): Open Day at Nunhead Cemetery
20 June (Saturday): Croydon Heritage Festival 2015
20 June(Saturday): Merton War Story Day 2
Sutton 3rd September
Researching Carshalton First World War Casualties
8pm 3rd September @ St. Nicholas, SM1 2RG
Croydon 15th Sept.
Artists Antiquaries and Collectors; Illustrations of Surrey collected by Robert Barclay of Bury Hill Julian Pooley
26 Sept (Saturday) Archive Open Day, Lambeth
11 Oct. (Sunday): Hampshire Genealogical Society Open Day
12 Oct (Monday) Southwark
31 Oct. (Saturday) West Surrey FHS Open Day - Woking
The Gunpowder Plot 1605
Remember Remember... - Jef Page - Sutton
7 Nov. (Saturday) Surrey in the Great War - Godstone
14 November “Pleasures and Pastimes of Victorian Britain” Ian Waller
21 November Middlesex: Our lost county.
25 November "The Bastards of Uckfield" - Allison Caffyn - Lingfield
Sources for tracing illegitimate ancestors
3 December All the fun of the fair - Sutton