Our event programme for 2018

We arrange two full programmes of events, covering about six months each and running from April to October/November, and then again through to March/April.  The listing below covers April 2018 to April 2019, and to October is also available in pdf form.

The vast majority of our talks take place in the Small Hall at East Croydon United Reformed Church, Addiscombe Grove, Croydon CR0 5LP starting at 19:45 – where this is not the case, the event listing will confirm the alternative venue, so do check. East Croydon United Reformed Church is convenient for East Croydon station, Tramlink and many buses, and there is some parking available on site.

If you are not a member, you are still very welcome to attend. There is no entrance fee for our talks, but we do invite non-members to consider a small donation of £2.


Sunday 8th – ECOLOGY WALK – “Spring in Banstead Wood”.
Meet at 14.00 in the Holly Lane car park, TQ273582. Leaders Jane McLauchlin and Malcolm Jennings, in conjunction with Surrey Wildlife Trust.

Wednesday 11th – TALK – “The Green Belt”.
A talk by Graham Lomas about the rise in population and economic growth making the green belt vulnerable and about the problem of reconciling the competing claims of living space and conservation. Graham produced the first comprehensive map of the green belt.

Wednesday 18th – ENTOMOLOGY MEMBERS’ EVENING – (Beginners Room, ECURC).

Followed, after refreshments, by the Presidential Address given by John Hickman. At the David Sweet Hall ECURC starting at 19.45.

Monday 30th – TALK – “Sword Hilts”.
A talk by Tony Tucker on the surviving ceremonial sword hilts, their design, their history and the coats of arms displayed upon them, based on his latest book for Friends of City Churches.


Sunday 6th – ECOLOGY WALK – “Beautiful Bluebells”.
Wander through the sheets of Bluebells and other wild flowers that make Kings Wood one of the best at this time of year. Meet at 14:00 in Kingswood Lane near the wood, access from Limpsfield Road, Sanderstead. TQ354598  CR6 9AB. Led by Jane McLauchlin and Malcolm Jennings, in conjunction with Surrey Wildlife Trust.

Wednesday 16th – ENTOMOLOGY MEMBERS’ EVENING. Beginners Room, ECURC.

Saturday 19th – WALK – “Rolling Stones – Part 4”.
Addington Hills: Bramley Bank to Croham Hurst. Led by Paul Sowan. Meet at Coombe Lane tram stop at 14:00.

Monday 21st – TALK – “Conservation areas”.
This talk by Sanne Roberts, Senior Project Officer (Conservation) for Croydon Borough Council, will provide a brief outline of the Borough’s heritage assets and how these fit into the planning system. It will focus particularly on conservation areas and the council’s ongoing review of Conservation Area Appraisals and Management Plans – what they are and how they can be used.


Monday 4th – TALK – “Remarkable trees of Surrey”.
Liz Ramsay who produced a booklet on the subject for the Surrey Tree Warden Network will talk about tree protection (or lack of it), valuing trees, trees in the landscape and rewilding.

Sunday 10th – ECOLOGY WALK–“Botany and barrows”.
A walk for wild flowers and ancient history on Farthing Downs passing by an Iron Age field system. Meet at 14:00 in the car park on Farthing Downs, Ditches Lane, Coulsdon. TQ301571 CR5 1DA. Led by Jane McLauchlin and Malcolm Jennings, in conjunction with Surrey Wildlife Trust.

Saturday 16th – WALK – “Betchworth and Brockham Limeworks”.
Led by Paul Sowan. Meet at Betchworth Station at 13:00 – note earlier start time. Return by train to Redhill from Betchworth or Dorking.

Wednesday 20th – ENTOMOLOGY MEMBERS’ EVENING. Beginners Room, ECURC.

Monday 25th – TALK – “Medieval pilgrims, Chaucer and Canterbury”.
A talk by Keith Fawkes, Chairman of the Hornsey Historical Society, giving an overall picture of pilgrimage both in England and the Continent including the story of how pilgrim badges and related customs evolved.


Sunday 1st – MUSEUM OPEN DAY
Regulars at the Museum will be present from 13:30 to 16:30 to show visitors round and answer questions. There will be a handling collection available, and a series of short talks on the fascinating artefacts from the Museum, including some of its many items dating from the Stone Age. Come along and enjoy the collections with tea and cakes. For directions please call our Curator, Chris Taylor, on 020 8668 9570. There are good transport links by bus and train (Woodmansterne Station) or parking is available in nearby roads (not on site).

Wednesday 11th – TALK – “The Society’s Library and Archives”.
A talk by Paul Sowan, Librarian of CNHSS, on some of the resources available in CNHSS.

Wednesday 18th – ENTOMOLOGY MEMBERS’ EVENING. Beginners Room, ECURC.

Sunday 22nd – WALK – “Upper Norwood”.
Led by Stephen Oxford of the Norwood Society. Meet at 14:00 at All Saints Church at the top of Norwood Hill (reached by the 468 bus from Croydon).

Saturday 28th – WALK – “Reigate Colley Hill to Merstham via Gatton Park”.
Led by Paul Sowan. Meet at Reigate Station (north side) at 14:00. Note: Stiff climb at the start then downhill to Merstham.


Sunday 12th – ECOLOGY WALK – “Late Summer landscape”.  
A walk through meadows and along hedgerows in Lloyd Park’s more remote parts, surprisingly close to the centre of Croydon. Meet at 10:00 in the car park at the Lloyd Park tram stop, Coombe Road, Croydon. TQ337645  CR0 5RA. Led by Jane McLauchlin and Malcolm Jennings, in conjunction with Surrey Wildlife Trust.

Wednesday 15th – ENTOMOLOGY MEMBERS’ EVENING. Beginners Room, ECURC.

Saturday 18th – WALK – “Rolling Stones – Part 5”.
Charlton, led by Paul Sowan. Meet at Charlton Station at 14:00.


Wednesday 12th – TALK – “The Horniman Museum – a personal view”.
An account by Nigel Williams of the history of the museum, its founder, and some personal childhood memories.

Wednesday 19th – ENTOMOLOGY MEMBERS’ EVENING. Beginners Room, ECURC.

Sunday 23rd – ECOLOGY WALK – “Autumn fruits and fungi”.
A walk exploring Nature’s bounty in early Autumn at Selsdon Wood. Meet at 10:00 in the car park at Selsdon Wood, Old Farleigh Road, Selsdon. TQ357615  CR2 8QF. Led by Jane McLauchlin and Malcolm Jennings.

Monday 24th – TALK – “Sport & Scandal at Sheffield Park : the extraordinary story of Lord Sheffield 1832-1909”.
A talk by Roger Packham of the Bourne Society. Sheffield Park, one of the most frequented National Trust properties in Sussex, once hosted major sporting events arranged by the 3rd Earl whose private life frequently had tongues wagging.

Saturday 29th – WALK – “Rolling Stones – Part 6”.
Keston Common, led by Paul Sowan. Meet at The Fox at Keston at 14:00. Directions to The Fox – bus 119 from Croydon then bus 146 from Hayes ‘The George’.


Monday 1st – TALK – “Lapis Lazuli”.
A talk in which Chris Duffin will examine the geological occurrence of lapis lazuli, its mineralogy and importance as a popular but expensive and high status stone in Babylonian, Assyrian, Egyptian, Incan and Western European decorative art, including its utilization as the basis of the artists’ pigment ultramarine.

Wednesday 17th – ENTOMOLOGY MEMBERS’ EVENING. Beginners Room, ECURC.

NEW Sunday 21st – ECOLOGY WALK – “Autumn in Bramley Bank and Littleheath Woods”.
Meet at 10:00 in the Heathfield Car Park in Riesco Drive, TQ352638. Led by Jane McLauchlin and Malcolm Jennings.

Monday 29th – TALK – “Death on the Brighton Road: Execution sites in South London”.
Jon Newman, Archives Manager at Lambeth Archives, uses the nine mile journey along the old coach road between Kennington and South Croydon as a way of framing the history of capital punishment in 18th and 19th century South London: from the gallows of Kennington and Thornton Heath to the gibbets of Brixton Hill and Smitham Bottom.


Wednesday 14th – TALK – “Addington”.
A talk by Lindsey Ould, Borough Archivist for Croydon and Honorary Archivist of St. Mary the Blessed Virgin Addington. Addington is an ancient parish about four miles from Croydon with a Grade 1 listed church dating from c.1080. It became part of the County Borough of Croydon in 1928 but retained its unique village atmosphere well beyond this time. This talk will provide an overview of the development of Addington and an insight into some of its residents and buildings of interest.

Wednesday 21st – ENTOMOLOGY MEMBERS’ EVENING. Beginners Room, ECURC.

Saturday 24th – FOCUS
Our annual Focus Meeting which will this year concentrate on Women’s Rights to Vote and Learn. As usual tea will be provided, and there will be a chance to pay subscriptions for 2019. At the David Sweet Hall ECURC starting at 14.30.

Monday 26th – TALK – “Source and Serendipity: 50 years of Family History”.
A talk by Brenda Hawkins. Getting the best of both worlds: exploring the family history revolution and how old techniques may resolve modern problems. With a few happy accidents thrown in.


Monday 3rd – CNHSS CHRISTMAS TALK – “In my Grandmother’s Footsteps”.
A talk by Eleanor Redshaw. I am named after my Grandmother, Eleanor Higginson, who was born in the East End of London and I knew her well. She protested in London, was arrested, went to Holloway Prison, did the Hunger Strike, was forcibly fed and was let out under ‘The Cat & Mouse Act’.  Like her, I have been on marches and give talks about the Suffragette Campaign.

Wednesday 19th – ENTOMOLOGY MEMBERS’ EVENING. Beginners Room, ECURC.

Thursday 27th – WALK – “The last walk of the year – Central Croydon history”.
Led by Paul Sowan. Meet at the Clocktower steps Katharine Street at 14:00.


Wednesday 9th – TALK – “The Regent’s Canal”.
A talk by Roger Squires. The Regent’s Canal was built between 1811 and 1820. It connected the Grand Junction Canal’s Paddington Arm, opened in 1801, to the Thames at Limehouse, where a new interchange dock also was built. The presentation reviews the history of the canal and then takes the audience on a journey along its length.

Wednesday 16th – ENTOMOLOGY MEMBERS’ EVENING. Beginners Room, ECURC.

Monday 28th – TALK – “The Other Byron Girl”.
Brian Lancaster uses, among others, the letters that Eva Byron, Edmund’s youngest daughter, wrote to her brother Eric in the first decade of the nineteenth century to illustrate the frustrations of a young woman who envied the freedom of her three brothers.


Monday 4th – TALK – “The Blue-green Revolution: Why our Future Depends on our Knowledge of Plants”.
This talk by Dr. Tim Ridgway will be a discussion of mankind’s historical and future dependence on plants, including the potential application of new technologies.

Wednesday 20th – ENTOMOLOGY MEMBERS’ EVENING. Beginners Room, ECURC.

Sunday 24th – ECOLOGY WALK – “Winter Trees in Kings Wood, Sanderstead, and woodland management according to “A practicall treatise on Planting and Management of Woods and Coppices” by S.H. Esq., Dublin 1794”.
Meet at 10:00 at the end of Kingswood Lane, Sanderstead, TQ354597. Led by Jane McLauchlin and Malcolm Jennings.

Monday 25th – TALK – “Living on the Edge of the Green Belt”.
John Grindrod tells the story of the Green Belt through social history and one family’s experience living on the edge of Croydon. John Grindrod is the author of Outskirts: Living Life on the Edge of the Green Belt, which has been shortlisted for the Wainwright Prize, and Concretopia: A Journey Around the Rebuilding of Postwar Britain. He grew up in New Addington.


Monday 4th – TALK – “A Varied Nursing Career”.
Yvette McKinnel returns to give a talk about her nursing career beginning from the start of the National Health Service and including nursing in the Royal Navy in Malta, in Netley Military Hospital and in Queen Alexandra’s Hospital Royal Navy Nursing Service.

Sunday 10th – WALK – “In the footsteps of Frank Lloyd and W.H. Mills”.
Led by Paul Sowan. A short walk at Coombe. Meet at Lloyd Park tram stop at 14:00.

Wednesday 20th – ENTOMOLOGY MEMBERS’ EVENING. Beginners Room, ECURC.

Monday 25th – TALK – “Conan Doyle – the South Norwood Years”.
A talk by Bernard Winchester.  Doyle lived in Tennison Road, South Norwood, from 1891 to 1894.  This talk looks, with some humour, at his life and works during this period in the context of his surroundings.


Sunday 7th – ECOLOGY WALK – “Spring Flowers in Happy Valley and Devilsden Wood, Coulsdon”.
Meet at 14:00 in the public car park beyond the Fox, off Coulsdon Road, TQ 318569. Led by Jane McLauchlin and Malcolm Jennings.

Wednesday 10th – TALK – “The Grand Theatre and its place in Croydon”.
This talk by Carole Roberts will look at the Grand Theatre sixty years after it closed: its performances and in the context of the other contemporary theatres of Croydon, two of which, the Davis and the Empire, also closed in the same year.

Wednesday 17th – ENTOMOLOGY MEMBERS’ EVENING. Beginners Room, ECURC.

Saturday 20th – VISIT – “Keats House”.
Meet by the Oxfam bookshop opposite Hampstead Tube station (Northern Line) at 2pm. We expect to meet Rob Shakespeare, its Principal Curator, for the first time since he left the Museum of Croydon.

Followed, after refreshments, by the Presidential Address given by John Hickman. David Sweet Hall, ECURC, 19:45.

Monday 29th – TALK – “Mrs Pankhurst’s Purple Feather”.
A talk by Tessa Boase, author of the new book of the same name. Twelve years before the suffragette movement began dominating headlines, a very different women’s campaign caught the public imagination: to save birds from the cruel fashion for feathered hats. Leading the fight was one remarkable Croydon woman: Eliza Phillips – elderly, widowed, articulate and indomitable. Tessa Boase tells the forgotten story of the early RSPB, and how a handful of brave women fought against the plumage trade.

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