Author: Aldbourne Archive

Thomas Fairchild

Finding a peaceful half-hour to think about Thomas Fairchild in the early morning, an Aldbourne garden outside the window looking beautiful. Found this blog, and articles written this year about Thomas Fairchild – born Aldbourne 1667 – and the Vegetable Sermon this year at St Giles, Cripplegate.

Parks and Gardens UK

Thomas Fairchild (c.1667-1729); Department of Plant Sciences; http://www.artuk.org/artworks/thomas-fairchild-c-16671729-220972

Thomas Fairchild was one of the greatest horticulturists of the 18thc. But his contribution was not confined to his own age but extends right up to today. That might sound a bit over the top – and perhaps it is – but as you will soon discover I’m a great fan of this humble Hoxton nurseryman. Professional to his fingertips not only did his tiny nursery ground overflow with unusual plants, he fought to raise the profile and status of horticulture through the Worshipful Company of Gardeners,  was the first person known to have deliberately hybridized plants,  and the first to write about the pleasures and pitfalls of gardening in London in his book, The City Gardener.

Old St Leonard’s Church, Shoreditch which would have been the church Fairchild knew. Part of the tower collapsed during a service in 1716 & the church…

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The Vegetable Sermon

Parks and Gardens UK

St Giles Cripplegate
David Marsh, June 2017

Thomas Fairchild, the 18thc London gardener and subject of a recent post, was more than just a great London nurseryman and striver for professional unity and strength, he was also highly  inquisitive – or what his contemporaries would have called “curious”. He combined his intellectual curiosity with a strong religious faith and in his will he bequeathed £25 to the churchwardens of St Leonard’s Church in Shoreditch for an annual lecture to be given on the Tuesday after Pentecost.  He specified two possible subjects:  “The wonderful works of God in Creation” or “On the certainty of the resurrection of the dead, proved by certain changes of the animal and vegetable parts of Creation,” and this has resulted in the event being sometimes nicknamed the “Vegetable Sermon.”

The Arms of the Worshipful Company of Gardeners from the 1616 Charter

After a somewhat chequered history it…

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SQUARING THE CIRCLE: Archaeological detectives discover ‘secret square’ beneath world-famous Avebury stone circle

FragmeNTs

New archaeological surveys reveal unique square megalithic monument at the heart of the World Heritage Site.

Archaeologists have found a striking and apparently unique square monument beneath the world famous Avebury stone circle in Wiltshire.

The UNESCO World Heritage Site, cared for by the National Trust, was built over several hundred years in the 3rd millennium BC and contains three stone circles – including the largest stone circle in Europe which is 330m across and originally comprised around 100 huge standing stones.

A research team led by the University of Leicester and University of Southampton used a combination of soil resistance survey and Ground-Penetrating Radar to investigate the stone circle.

Their work was funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) and supported by the National Trust, as well as archaeologists from the University of Cambridge and Allen Environmental Archaeology.

Dr Mark Gillings, Academic Director and Reader in…

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#MuseumWeek 2017 – Food for Thought

Parish News August 1972 Clifford Brown

Parish News August 1972

Clifford Brown and ‘the best fish and chips for miles’, with thanks to John and Paul Brown for sharing their family photos and for many entertaining chats via email and the Aldbourne Net Forum

2008.7028 Clifford Brown Home Guard 1944

Clifford Brown – centre front row with the drill trophy currently on display at Aldbourne Heritage Centre

Bells at Bridport

We’ve just returned from a holiday in Dorset, where I discovered the newly refurbished Bridport Museum With a friendly welcome from the volunteers in reception and the opportunity to browse the light, bright and informative displays, it was a lovely way to spend an afternoon.  Spotting two rumbler bells of a very familiar design was a bonus!

Bridport Museum June 2017

Aldbourne Community Heritage Group

ACHG Scarecrow 2017

Here’s the amazing ACHG Scarecrow that guarded the Heritage Centre during the Aldbourne Scarecrow Trail last weekend – an ‘Ugly’ bird joining in with the “Fairy Tales & Musicals” theme. A mixed weekend weatherwise, but as ever a fabulous family event organised by the hardworking team at Aldbourne Churches Together – I think there may still be people out there hoping to solve just one more clue!

Link to the Aldbourne page on the Whitton Team Website If you want to see more about the 2017 Scarecrows visit Aldbourne Scarecrow Trail on Facebook

In 2016, the Scarecrow Trail featured “Award Winners” and the ACHG paid homage to this brave Dabchick whose portrait still graces the Officers’ Mess at RAF Odiham.  Do you know her name?   Find out more about the Aldbourne Community Heritage Group and the Aldbourne Heritage Centre:  www.aldbourneheritage.org.uk and on Facebook ACHG Scarecrow Trail 2016

Life of the Poor

Wiltshire Local History Forum

WLHF Spring Conference 2017

Claire Skinner, Principal Archivist at the Wiltshire & Swindon History Centre began the day by setting the scene with life under the poor law legislation pre 1834. Legislation was covered from the medieval period, touching on vagrancy and the role of the church. Then there were the Tudor poor laws and the effect of the Dissolution of the monasteries. Claire focused on the 1601 Act of Relief for the Poor, the 1536 Vagabonds and Beggars Act and the 1662 Poor Relief Act (The Settlement Act). She also considered the role of Overseers of the Poor. Topics also covered were bastardy and settlement issues, and apprentices. The 18th century acts were explained, including 1722 Knatchbull’s General Welfare Act and the 1782 Gilbert’s Act before moving on to the 19th century with the Sturges-Bourne Act of 1818. It was a very clear and concise guide to the poor…

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