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Programme for 2019–2020

All meetings with a speaker start at 7.30 pm in Radley Parish Church, Church Road, Radley (unless otherwise stated).
New venue from October 2019
Monday 9th September AGM followed by Mark Davies – ‘Stories of Oxford Castle: 17th and 18th Century Crimes, Escapes and Punishments’
Mark is an Oxford local historian, author, speaker and guide. He specialises in the history of non-university Oxford. Much of Oxford Castle was destroyed in the Civil War, after which the remaining buildings became a local prison. Mark tells about some the stories of the characters imprisoned there during the 17th and 18th centuries.
Monday 14th October Liz Woolley – ‘Olive Gibbs, Oxford Politician and Peace Campaigner
Liz has spoken to us every year for the past 11 years. She is a local historian specialising in aspects of Oxford and Oxfordshire. Olive Gibbs was a redoubtable local Labour politician and a founding member of the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament (CND). Liz's talk will tell us about Olive's extraordinary life and legacy.
Monday 11th November Richard Dudding – 'Radley Large Wood: Monks, Deer, Riots, Canal and Bluebells'
For almost a thousand years, this ancient wood has been one of the most valued parts of the parish and has played a central role in some of its defining events. Richard’s talk gives a preview of new evidence found during research for the Club's new book ‘Radley Manor and Village’ published in November 2019.
Monday 9th December Christmas Dinner at The Bowyer Arms, Radley members and their guests
Monday 13th January Hubert Zawadzki – 'The Reluctant Exiles: Polish Resettlement Camps in Oxfordshire and the Cotswolds 1946-1970'
Hubert, a former history teacher, who grew up after the Second World War in one of these camps talks about why they were set up and what life was like for their inhabitants. Dr Zawadzki is the joint author of A Concise History of Poland and has appeared on the BBC television series Who Do You Think You Are?
Monday 10th February Dick Richards – 'The Road to Peace is Paved with Headstones: the History and Legacy of the Commonwealth War Graves Commission'
Dick is a 'Champion' and volunteer with the Commonwealth War Graves Commission, which honours all those from the Commonwealth forces who died in the First and Second World Wars. His talk describes the Commission's beginnings, the design of its cemeteries and memorials, and its presence in Oxfordshire and the surrounding area.
Monday 9th March Nick Millea – 'Historic Towns Atlas of Oxford'
Six volumes of the British Historic Towns Atlas series telling the fascinating history of Britain's historic towns have already been published by the Historic Towns Trust. Volume VII, the Oxford atlas, is due to be published in autumn 2020. Nick is Map Librarian at the Bodleian Library and a trustee of the Historic Towns Trust.
Tuesday 14th April

NOTE change of day

Tim Healey – 'Pagans & Puritans: The Story of May Morning in Oxford'
Tim is a freelance writer, broadcaster and musician. His talk describes the history of the Oxford tradition of gathering at 6am to celebrate the first day of May by listening to a Latin hymn sung from the top of Magdalen College tower.
Monday 11th May Alastair Lack ‘The Oxford of Inspector Morse’
Alastair read history at University College Oxford. After a career working for the BBC World Service, he now lives in Oxford where he is a Green Badge Guide. The Inspector Morse novels by Colin Dexter and the popular television series based on them and starring John Thaw and Kevin Whately are set in Oxford and have an international following.
Club visit
Tuesday 19th May, 6.30pm

Tour of Botley War Graves Cemetery led by Dick Richards – a follow-up to his talk in February

Monday 8th June Nic Vanderpeet – 'Spitfires over Oxfordshire and the D Day Landings'
Nic is the Learning and Outreach Officer at the Soldiers of Oxfordshire Museum in Woodstock. The Spitfire, the famous British fighter aircraft of the Battle of Britain, later played an important role in the invasion of Normandy in June 1944. An important site for Spitfires in Oxfordshire was the repair unit at Witney Aerodrome.
Monday 13th July
Tom Crook – "The Great Stink"! Engineers, Sewerage Systems and the Victorian Battle against Dirt'
Tom is a lecturer on modern British history at Oxford Brookes University. His talk discusses the notorious 'Great Stink' of summer 1858 in London, its causes and the approach adopted to combat the problem of vast amounts of untreated human waste and industrial effluent entering the Thames.
August No meeting
Monday 14th September AGM followed by Martin Buckland 'The Wilts and Berks Canal: Past, Present and Future'
This historic canal linked the Kennet and Avon Canal near Trowbridge in Wiltshire with the River Thames near Abingdon. Martin's talk tells us something of its history, its current status and the continued work of the Wilts & Berks Canal Trust to return the waterway to a 'navigable state'.
Previous years' programmes
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