MEMBERS' DAY, CARLISLE ARCHIVES,
Lorna Mullett: “No it’s not a blackbird it’s a jackdaw”. Acorn Bank and the Dalston family
Margaret Owen The Real ‘Dad’s Army’.
Kendal Home Guard on film
Roberts The Elizabeth
Roberts Working Class Oral History Archive.
The lives of people in Barrow, Lancaster and Preston from 1890-1970
Ian Jones A Magic Lantern
Show of Victorian Lakeland Taken from Glass Plate Negatives, a Hugely Valuable
MEMBERS' DAY, CARLISLE ARCHIVES,
Michael Stephens (Barrow Area Archivist): ‘Unlikely
Treasures from the Barrow archives’
Natalie Mullen: ‘The Last Century of the
Senhouses: Gentry Paternalism in Maryport 1848-1952’
Claire Hensman (Lord Lieutenant of
Cumbria and Patron of FOCAS):
Dr Rob David: ‘Waiter, Miner, Butcher,
Spy: Germans and Austrians in Cumbria during the First World War’
11 OCTOBER 2014
Catherine Clark: Unlikely Treasures from the Whitehaven
Chester Forster: The Cumbrian Firm that Dyed for
Diana and David Matthews: A bit of Gallimaufry
Dr Jane Platt: ‘A sweet, saintly, Christian business’? Anglican
parish magazines 1859-1910
BARROW ARCHIVES: UNLOCKING INDUSTRIAL HISTORY
SATURDAY 22 MARCH 2014
Members were treated to a vividly illustrated talk by Sally Cholewa on the results of her cataloguing of the contents of two exceptional business collections in Barrow Archives – the Millomand Askam Hematite Iron CompanyLtd 1873-1969 and Hodbarrow Mining Company 1855-1973. As well as detailed business papers members were able to explore some of the material on employees, maps, letters and illustrations. The cataloguing was the result of a grant of £30,930 from the National Cataloguing Grants Programme for Archives supported by £1,628part funding from the Kirby Archives Trust.
LORD CLARK OF WINDERMERE, 'A History of the Labour Movement in Westmorland'
KENDAL 6 JANUARY 2014
This was a joint meeting between FOCAS and Kendal Historical and Archaeological Society (KHAS) at which Lord Clark gave an excellent talk on the history of the Labour Movement in the county since the late 19th century.
MEMBERS’ DAY & ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING
SATURDAY 5 OCTOBER 2013
Anne Rowe (Cumbria County Archivist) A presentation of her favourite Records from the Cumbria Archive
James Mawdesley: 'The Clergy of Cumberland and Westmorland during the English Civil Wars and Republic'
Tom Robson (Carlisle Archive Centre) A presentation of his favourite records from Cumbria Archives
Ian Jones: ‘The Baroness of Belsfield by Windermere’ A mysterious character in Lakeland’s history
FOCAS was 21 years old in 2012 Carlisle Archives also celebrated its golden jubilee. Cumbria Archives marked this with a varied programme of events and FOCAS organised a number of visits and talks for its members.
Whitehaven Archive Centre
The Wainwright Archive, Kendal Archives
Members' Day and AGM
Carlisle Archives, Petteril Bank
Treasures from Hutton-in-the-Forest archive presented by FOCAS President Lord Inglewood
Treasures from the Cropper family archive presented by FOCAS Patron and Custos Rotulorum Sir James
Dr Michele Moatt: ‘Furness Abbey: A textual community and its library at the turn of the thirteenth century’.
Furness Abbey library must have been large by the thirteenth century and the abbey produced one of the most important hagiographers of the late twelfth and early thirteenth centuries, Jocelin of Furness [c.1175-1214], who is currently the subject of a joint research project by the universities of Liverpool and Cambridge. This paper considered which books were likely to have been stored in the book cupboards at around the time Jocelin was writing.
Dr Jean Turnbull: ‘Between a Rock and a Hard Place: Westmorland County Council and Road Improvement 1889-1939’.
In 1889 the newly-formed Westmorland County Council (WCC) took over responsibility for all main roads in the county, in addition to the county bridges. The Cumbria Archive Service office in Kendal holds a range of WCC records which allows the researcher to chart the progress made by them in improving the county’s main roads and some of the problems it faced.
Sunday 21 October 2012
Cumbrian music from the archives
West Gallery Music performed by Gladly Solemn Sound
Jesus Church, Troutbeck
As part of its 21st anniversary celebrations FOCAS arranged a performance of historic West Gallery Music in Jesus Church, Troutbeck, on 21st October as a joint presentation with The Troutbeck Village Association.
This was a delightful event with historical and archival connections with the heritage of the Troutbeck Valley, held in a church with an original west gallery, performed by Gladly Solemn Sound a choir which specialises in this type of music, and using manuscripts re-discovered at nearby National Trust Property, Townend House. For some pieces the choir were supported by traditional instruments and each musical sequence was accompanied by a short explanation of its historical context, relevant manuscripts and where they were found.
West Gallery Music emerged after the Reformation, during which music had been purged from church life. To accommodate the new choirs galleries were built at the west end of many parish churches and non-conformist chapels, particularly in the north of England. At first the singing was unaccompanied, but was later augmented by traditional instruments such as the violin, cello and flute. The songs are charac-terised by their delightfully bright, lively and naive nature, often composed by local people with little musical training.
Saturday 10 December 2011
Friends Meeting House, Kendal
Jessica Malay, ‘Justifications of a Jacobean Heiress: Anne Clifford’s Great Books of Record’.
Over 40 members and guests attended a lively and fascinating talk by Jessica Malay on ‘Justifications of a Jacobean Heiress:Anne Clifford’s Great Books of Record’ in the Friends' Meeting House, Kendal on 10th December 2011. Jessica, a lecturer at the University of Huddersfield, has been working on Lady Anne Clifford's three volume 'Great Book' which is preserved in Kendal Archive Centre. Her research has been funded by the Leverhulme Trust.
Anne Clifford produced her Great Books of Record, a
massive three volume powerful narrative of the key role of female heirs
within the 500 year history of the Clifford dynasty. Through this Anne
Clifford attempts to justify her own behaviour that many had, for over
four decades, been defined as perverse, unnatural, and even lunatic. This reflected her lifelong struggle to claim her rightful inheritance. In
1605 Anne Clifford’s father George Clifford the Earl of Cumberland left
his vast northern estates to his brother, Francis, rather than his only
child, Anne Clifford. Thus began a legal and domestic
conflict that lasted for almost 40 years during which Anne defied her
father’s death bed plea, her first husband, Robert Sackville who wished
to settle for a cash payment rather than the lands, and perhaps most
courageously King James I who recognized Francis Clifford, fourth Earl
of Cumberland as the undisputed heir. After finally inheriting her
father’s estates in 1643, through death rather than legal means.
This was a fascinating talk.
Members' Day and AGM, Carlisle Archives Centre, 15 October 2011
Over 40 members were treated to three lectures and and an excellent lunch. In the morning, Professor Peter Roebuck explained the origins and nature of the enormous business that was 'Cattle Droving through Cumbria c.1600-c.1850' The tens of thousands Scottish and Irish cattle driven south each year brought wealth and prosperity to many settlements involved in the trade and spawned a range of industries such as tanning. Only with the coming of the railway in the mid-19th century did it finally decline.
Carlisle archivist, David Bowcock, then introduced us to a ‘Jewell from the Archives’. His choice was a series of letters home from the front during World War One written by a man from Carlilse to his parents which were in a solicitor's collection of papers. The letters not only captured personal details of life at the time, but provided insights into both the war and Cumbrian emigration, since the man concerned was actually serving with the New Zealand forces. He died just before the armistice.
After lunch and the AGM Professor Michael Mullett narrated the life of 'Haydock the Priest: George Leo Haydock (1774-1849). George was descended from a recusant Catholic family on the Fylde who had long provided recruits for the priesthood. His edition of the Catholic Douay translation of the bible, published by his brother Thomas, appeared between 1811 and 1814 and rapidly became the most popular English Catholic Bible of the 19th century. In later life George served the small Catholic community at Penrith where he was responsible for building the church and took an active part in local affairs. Images of George and examples of his bible can be viewed on a Wikipedia entry.
Visit to Keswick Museum: Robert Southey Archive Wednesday 8 June 2011
We were privileged to be given a special lecture by Assistant Curator, Adrienne Wallman and a private viewing of Robert Southey's archive of correspondence, poems and manuscripts at Keswick Museum before it closed for refurbishment. This is a collection which has attracted international interest from scholars. Southey was not only a famous Romantic poet of the period, resident in the Lakes and Poet Laureate before William Wordsworth, but a man with strong political views who corresponded with many of the leading politicians of his age.
Visit to Jerwood Centre and Dove Cottage Grasmere Saturday 2 April 2011
This was an opportunity to find out more about the archive and to view the exhibition, Savage
Visit to Shap and Keld Saturday 4 September 2010
We were welcomed by Shap Local History Society at their excellent Shap Local History Centre where coffee was provided. FOCAS member Professor Michael Mullett then gave a short introduction to the Premonstratensian Order, the order of monks at Shap Abbey. The party first visited Keld Chapel, where another FOCAS member and researcher, Harry Hawkins, was our guide. After lunch at the Greyhoud we moved on Shap Abbey where Harry was again our guide.
All in all, a very enjoyable and informative day.
Members' Day: Preview of Carlisle Record Office, AGM and Tithe Maps online Saturday 23 October 2010
Some 40 members enjoyed a privileged preview of the new facilities at Carlisle, including a 'behind the scenes' tour of the state-of-the-art storage and conservation areas and suites of rooms in the restored Lady Gillford's House.
After a very enjoyable lunch, we were treated to a talk by Paul Newman of Cheshire Archive Service on their project to digitise tithe maps and apportionments for the county and the resulting, and truly amazing, fully searchable website, Emapping Victorian Cheshire: Cheshire's Tithe Maps Online. We encourage all members who have not explored this site to do so to see what can be achieved by well-planned digitisation. Over 80 volunteers worldwide were involved in transcribing the tithe apportionments. Click to access the site.
Overview of 2010 support activities
FOCAS continued to help primary schools with finance for transport for visits to Record Offices, one of the societies' most successful projects. Our Chairman was a very active member of the steering committee which is attempting to set up an organisation to restart VCH projects not already covered in Cumbria. Friends also offered financial assistance with project start-up costs. Details of the new Cumbria County History Trust and how you can get involved click the link. FOCAS was involved in providing input which may be useful in the layout of some areas in the new Carlisle Record Office and provided financial support for refreshments for volunteers assisting with the labelling and packing of records at the Carlisle Record Office and Conservation Unit ready for their transfer from the old to new Record Office. We also offered support for a bid for funds to purchase Brough and Ravenstonedale Manorial Documents which Kendal Record Office wasnvited to purchase on the open market.Cathedral Archives and Library Visit Saturday 7 March 2009
Twenty-one FOCAS members assembled at Carlisle Record Office where David Bowcock , Assistant County Archivist, had selected and laid out numerous fine examples of documents from the Carlisle Cathedral Archive. After a brief i
Members' Day and AGM Saturday 25 October 2008
Once again members enjoyed their day at the Penrith Methodist Church; despite the inclement weather there was a good attendance. After tea/coffee and biscuits, FOCAS committee member Ian Jones gave a comprehensive, beautifully illustrated talk on the history of "Holehird", Windermere which described its owners, the building and its important gardens. Ian has written an excellent book on the subject: The House of Hird: the story of a Windermere Mansion and the people who lived there (2002). For further details and ordering information, please use the general contact form on this website.
The chair's report to the AGM referred to the progress being made in the establishment of an organisation for the Victoria County History project and on the success of the visit to Cockermouth Castle. The secretary gave an update on progress in the new Carlisle Record Office and the valuable work being done by volunteers in preparation for the move of the archive material to the new premises in due course.
The audited accounts were presented and explained by the treasurer who drew attention to a report on the success of the "History in Schools" project for which FOCAS provides some funding. He also commented on the success of the website which had been in operation since October last year and is attract ing over 200 hits a month.
Mary Wane OBE, Vice President, took the chair of the election of officers of the committee for 2009. Susan Dench stepped down from the committee after 2009. Susan Dench stepped down from the committee after completing her three years as a member in accordance with the rules and Dr Mike Winstanley and Mary Wane joined the committee.
This was a very successful visit and thanks are due to David Bowcock who gave up his Saturday morning to allow us to use the Record Office, to Canon Weston for making the visit to the Cathedral so interesting, and last but not least to Michele Moatt for making the arrangements for the event. It was particularly pleasing to see so many new faces at this event (in addition to the stalwarts!)
After an excellent lunch, the final treat of the day was an erudite lecture by Professor Michael Mullet, recently retired from the History Department at Lancaster University. His extemsive knowledge and delivery of his presentation held the attention of the audience with no difficulty at all.
Both speakers were congratulated on their presentations which were thoroughly enjoyed by all those attending. Before departing members coffee, tea and biscuits were provided to sustain members for their journey home on a particularly inclement Saturday evening.