top of page
Meeting report archive

Polehampton School - Twyford’s New Library


Andrew Cardy and James Fort

14 May 2024

Edward Polehampton left his significant wealth to the village of Twyford, establishing the Polehampton
Charity about 300 years ago, which built the old Polehampton Boys’ School there. For Wargrave Local
History Society’s May meeting, Andrew Cardy and James Fort recounted its history through to the present,
when it has been adapted to form Twyford’s new library

Maiwand: The battle and the Great Game


Mike Cooper

9 April 2024

The Maiwand Lion in Forbury Gardens, Reading commemorates a battle fought in Afghanistan in 1880. The lion is posed snarling defiance to the north – towards Russia
Mike Cooper’s talk looked at the Battle of Maiwand against the background of Anglo-Russian rivalry in Asia – The Great Game – and the history of the lion itself

The Annual General Meeting - 2024 and Reminiscences of Wargrave (part 2)


Di Evans

12 March 2024

Following the Society's AGM and review of the year, Di Evans recounted more of her Reminiscences of Wargrave in the 1950s and 1960s, following on from her presentation in December

A History of Woodley


Ann Smith

13 February 2024

Woodley grew from a village to a suburb of Reading in the 20th Century. It is famous for Miles Aircraft and the Aerodrome. Ann Smith told us about this and also revealed the earlier, hidden history of Woodley

Chalk, Caverns and Commandos


Rob Wallace

9 January 2024

Rob told us of 100 million years of Reading’s underground history, from the creation of chalk in the area, to the opening of Emmer Green chalk mines in the 18th century, and the later uses of these underground chambers

Reminiscences of Wargrave (1950 - 1969)


Di Evans

12 December 2023

Di Evans told us about Wargrave through the eyes of a fourth-generation villager with stories of school and work in the village during the 1950s and 1960s. It's the place she will always call home

Brunel and the Great Western Railway


Lionel Williams

14 November 2023

Lionel Williams charts the years from the railways’ inception to the British Rail era. The talk looks at Brunel’s forward-thinking ideas and the legacy that he left, enabling the GWR to be one of the most progressive railways of its age

Royal Blue coach services


Peter Delaney

10 October 2023

Peter, the archivist for the Thames Valley and Great Western Omnibus Trust - who is also the society secretary - recounted the history of Royal Blue - from horse drawn carriages to the express coach services which ran to the holiday areas of the south and west of England

History of Greyfriars Church, Reading


Malcolm Summers

12 September 2023

Originally part of Reading’s Franciscan Friary, the church building has had a ‘chequered’ career, including being town hall, poor house and a prison. Starting with the medieval foundation, Malcolm Summers told the story of one of Reading’s oldest buildings

Local History Visit to Chiltern Open Air Museum


Peter Delaney

10 July 2023

In July, Wargrave Local History Society members made a visit to a place of local history interest, and this
year this was to the Chiltern Open Air Museum, near Chalfont St Giles

Wycombe Unmasked


William Reid

13 June 2023

The June meeting of the Wargrave Local History Society was William Reid’s presentation on Wycombe
Unmasked. William is a trustee of The High Wycombe Society, and he enlightened us about many aspects
of the town’s past

The History of Yeomanry House, Reading


Katie Amos

9 May 2023

Set in the Castle Hill area of Reading, Yeomanry House was previously home to the Berkshire Family History Society and the Berkshire Register office. Katie Amos revealed the origin of its name, links to a school, the military and weddings

bottom of page