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This year's programme of WHO lectures

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Local history articles


Burton on the Wolds




Six Hills

Wymeswold census returns 1841 to 1901

Wymeswold parish registers 1560 onwards

Wymeswold marriage registers 1560 to 1916

WHO archive catalogue

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The Wolds Historical Organisation

The Wolds Historical Organisation (WHO) was founded in 1987 to promote interest in the local history of the villages on the western side of the Leicestershire Wolds, specifically Wymeswold, Burton on the Wolds, Hoton, Prestwold and Cotes.

The WHO is now thirty years old. Over the decades members have written a substantial number of articles and transcribed most of the relevant records, such as census returns. There are well over a hundred such 'pages' on this web site, all accessible via links on the left-hand side of this screen. The 'search this site' feature helps find specific information.

WHO monthly meetings

The principal activities of the WHO are talks on the third Tuesday of September, October, November, February, March, April, May and June. During the summer there is a trip to a local place of interest while in January there is an annual meal followed by a short AGM.

Meetings now take place in the Jubilee Room of Wymeswold Memorial Hall, Clay Street, Wymeswold, LE12 6TY and start promptly at 7.45 pm.

Non-members most welcome but will be asked to contribute 3.00. There is a lift to the Jubilee Room if visitors have difficulty with stairs.

For further information about WHO activities please phone 01509 881342.

The WHO's What's What

Most months there is a PDF newsletter with details of current WHO activities and also other forthcoming events which may be of interest.

Download the current WHO's What's What

WHO updates

If you're not already on the WHO's email update list and would like to receive news of what's happening then please email bobtrubs@indigogroup.co.uk with the message 'Add to WHO update list'. Your email address will not be revealed to anyone else or used for any other purpose.

WHO 'projects'

Are you looking for a 'little project' to keep you amused? The WHO committee would like to increase the range of information available on this website and is aware of several opportunities to add information that will be of interest to members and those living 'wider afield'. The first simply needs 'typing up' although the others require more effort, while the final suggestion is more 'open-ended'. You do not have to be a member of the WHO, or even live in the area, to help.
  1. Transcribe William Fox's property deed.

  2. Indexing the main topics in St Mary's Wymeswold Church Council Minute Book.

  3. Indexing the main topics in the Wymeswold school log books.

  4. The WHO has a photocopy of a printed broadside with the headline 'Horrid murder'. The dreadful deed took place somewhere in Wymeswold and the names of the alleged perpetrators are given, though not the name of the victim a child. But we don't know which year this was published. Internet search engines shed no light. If you fancy a spot of 'sleuthing' through relevant parish registers and court records then please get in touch with Bob Trubshaw. This would make a good project for someone new to doing local history research – Joan Shaw will happily provide advice.

  5. Contact the Women's Institute office in Leicester to establish what records they hold for the disbanded Wymeswold WI. As a follow up a short history of the branch's activities could be prepared. Ideally the person doing this would be a former member of this WI branch; if not Bob can put you in contact with one of the long-standing committee members.
And, last but not least, can you think of anything else which the WHO has yet to research? Especially if it relates to villages in the Wolds other than Wymeswold!

For further information – without making any commitment! – please email bobtrubs@indigogroup.co.uk

Programme for 2018:

Meetings take place in the Jubilee Room of Wymeswold Memorial Hall, Clay Street, Wymeswold, LE12 6TY and start promptly at 7.45 pm.

Non-members most welcome but will be asked to contribute 3.00. There is a lift to the Jubilee Room if visitors have difficulty with stairs. For further information about WHO activities please phone 01509 881342.

16th January  AGM and annual dinner
20th FebruaryMel Wilson Leicestershire Heritage Apple Project
20th MarchDebbie Bilham Empire of the clouds: the story of the R101 airship
17th AprilHugh Griffiths Brush – the man and his legacy
15th MayRichard Jones Living with water: past, present and future
19th JuneElizabeth and Martin Tingle Death and remembrance in the Wolds 1400–1800
Meet 7.00 at Willoughby church; cars must be parked in the main street
July  no meeting
21st August  guided walk around Shepshed
Meet 7.00 at car park near to St Winefrede's School, Field Street, Shepshed
18th SeptemberJess Jenkins Burning passions: the struggle for women's suffrage in Leicestershire
16th OctoberJohn Goodacre The crying sin of England
[The Enclosure Awards and Leicestershire]
20th NovemberDavid Bate The lost church of St Ethelburga, Langar
11th DecemberAndrew Brown-Jackson Natural boundaries: traditional Midlands hedge laying and dry stone walls [TBC]
Note this is the second, not third, Tuesday in the month


Three videos about Wymeswold and the Leicestershire Wolds

Back in 2007, as part of the the celebrations for the WHO's twentieth anniversary, Bob Trubshaw gave three talks. These have just been revised and adapted as three videos:

These are part of an ever-growing series of videos about local history and related topics which can be found on Bob Trubshaw's YouTube Channel.


Brown's pharmaceutical day book

Chris and John Brown own a handwritten journal prepared by the Brown family of Church Street in Wymeswold – perhaps better known for running the Post Office and for Philip Brown's photographs. The journal gives details of over two hundred prescriptions prepared over a seventeen-year period between 1869 and 1886, as well as a number of formulations used in the grocery business.

Chris kindly digitised the pages for the WHO and Philip Denniff has spent much of this last winter trying to decipher the abbreviated Latin.

The scans, verbatim transcription and Phil's interpretation are now online, along with an introduction which sheds light on why the journal was kept and how different members of the Brown family helped looked after the well-being of local residents in Wymeswold during part of the nineteenth century. Download the PDF for free.

So far as we are aware this is the first time a pharmaceutical 'day book' of this period has been fully transcribed, interpreted and made available online.

Big thanks to Phil for a considerable amount of time and effort he contributed to this project, and to Chris for preparing the scans and assisting Phil with the Brown's family history.


Vicars of Wymeswold

The list of Wymeswold vicars on display inside St Mary's church has also been transcribed. Download the PDF for free.


List of all WHO talks

Have you ever wondered how many talks have been organised by the WHO since it started? It's getting on for 250! This PDF reveals the titles and speakers of every one.

older news from the WHO

WHO publications

The WHO has published five booklets and a book:
  • A Portrait of Wymeswold Past and Present (1991)
  • A Walk Around Wymeswold (1994)
  • Wolds Reflections (1997)
  • 2000 Years of the Wolds (2003)
  • The WHO's What, When and Where (2007)
  • Discovering the Wolds [2017]

In addition, between 1991 and 2002 an annual WHO Newsletter has recorded details of the organisation's activities and research by members. All articles relating to Wymeswold from the WHO Newsletter are included in this Web site (see articles about Wymeswold's history). Starting in 2004 the WHO Newsletter was replaced by The Wolds Historian.

Download back issues of The Wolds Historian

Download Bob Trubshaw's extended look at Six Hills and Vernemetum The Especially Sacred Grove (2 megabyte PDF file)