Registered Charity No:1053276

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Programme of speakers:

Speaker Programme

Six times a year, on Wednesday evenings at 8 pm, Members are treated to an hour’s talk on an aspect of local history.  These are informal gatherings, and are usually accompanied by a slide show to illustrate the Talk.

Tea, coffee and biscuits are available from 7:30 pm and there is an opportunity to look at any materials brought by the Speaker more closely.


The venue will be the High Street Baptist Church. The main Tring car parks are close.

Visitors will be welcome on donation of £4 per meeting.

Wed 20 March 2019                    Historic buildings legislation and local case studies

                                                            Rory Cullen

Rory Cullen is Director of Cullen Conservation, a Heritage Consultancy based in Tring, which he set up in December 2017 following his 15-year tenure as Head of Buildings for the National Trust. He is Chair of the Chartered Institute of Building Conservation, Adaptation & Refurbishment Faculty (CAR), which has set up the Heritage Certification Scheme. He will give a background of historic buildings legislation, then debunk some myths & provide some tips for anyone interested in historic or traditional (pre-1919) buildings. He will use case studies (including local ones) from the smallest vernacular cottages to the largest mansions.

 Wed 15 May 2019                         Annual General Meeting

                                                            The story of Halton House

                                                            Trixie Brabner

Trixie Brabner is the archivist and tour co-ordinator at Halton House.  After briefly introducing the Rothschilds and their houses in the Aylesbury Vale, she will talk about Alfred de Rothschild, the builder and original owner of Halton House, and show photographs showing the house as it was in the 1880s and 1890s and as it is today. The presentation will also include an explanation of how the house and the estate became the property of the Royal Air Force.

Wed  17 July 2019                         Liberty: The Bucks man, the London shop, the global style

                                                            Will Phillips           

Liberty, the iconic London shop, needs very little introduction. Yet the story of this world famous department store is full of surprises, from its historical connection to Buckinghamshire to the effects of wartime on the company’s creative vision. Come and find out more at this talk by Will Phillips, Keeper of Social History at Bucks County Museum. Will studied History of Art and Architecture at Reading University before completing an MA in Museum Studies at University College London. He worked for nine years at the Museum of English Rural Life in Reading and moved to Bucks in 2008 as Keeper of Social History.

Wed  18 September 2019           The beginning and end of Roman Verulamium and its hinterland

                                                            Simon West

Simon West has been responsible for archaeological work in the City and District of St Albans from 1989, first as Field Archaeologist and since 2006 as District Archaeologist. He has excavated an early Neolithic boat, a royal ceremonial site with its chieftain burial, 159 Roman gold coins and many other finds and sites. He also advises on some 650 planning applications every year. Simon will demonstrate some of the recent work that aids our understanding of the transition from the late Iron Age royal and ceremonial centre of Verlamion to the Roman city of Verulamium. He will also show evidence from Verulamium as a type-site for the ending of Roman Britain and his interpretation of those findings.    


Wed  20 November 2019            The romance of Metroland

                                                            Julian Hunt

Julian Hunt is a researcher, lecturer and writer on English local history. The title "Metroland" was used on the Metropolitan Railway's Publicity Department's annual guide to the gorgeous countryside and bijou residences accessible from their lines to Chesham, Amersham and beyond. It embraced obvious places such as Aylesbury and more obscure ones such as Verney Junction and Brill. Julian will take us on a coal-fired journey into "Leafy Bucks" as if we were seeking out our own architect-designed country retreat in days gone by.                                                           

Wed  15 January 2020                Hartwell, Georgian parks and gardens                                       

                                                            Adam Smith

Adam Smith is a lecturer specialising in architectural history and the history of the English country house and estate. In the 1720’s and 30’s a remarkable landscape garden was created at Hartwell House, near Aylesbury. He will examine this garden from the set of paintings which recorded it in the 1730’s and show how changing fashions led to it being swept away later in the 18th Century.

Wed  18 March 2020                   The history and restoration of Wendover Arm Canal

                                                            Clive Johnson

Clive Johnson is a volunteer and webmaster with the Wendover Arm Trust. The canal was originally built to carry water from a spring at Wendover to the Tring summit of the Grand Junction Canal (now the Grand Union Canal) at Bulbourne Junction, but it suffered from severe leakage problems and  was eventually  abandoned in 1904. The purpose of the Trust is the restoration of the canal to full navigation and its former glory. Clive will outline the history of the canal and describe the work undertaken by the Trust’s volunteers towards the achievement of this important long-term project.


Wed  20 May 2020                       Annual general meeting

                                                            The art of the auctioneer

                                                            Stephen Hearn

 Stephen Hearn runs the popular and successful Tring Market Auctions, which are located on part of the former Tring Livestock Market off Brook Street. He is also a Tring Town councillor and a former Mayor of Tring. The salesrooms are nationally known and the television programmes Cash in the Attic and Flog It are regular visitors. Stephen will give a light-hearted account of the work of the salesrooms and of his early days in the livestock market.

All  meetings will be held at 8 pm at the High Street Baptist Church, Tring.

Visitors will be welcome on donation of £4 per meeting.


Martin Wells

Programme Secretary

Tring & District Local History & Museum Society