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2024 Programme & News

All talks take place at Lowdham WI Hall and start at 7.30 and are followed by tea or coffee afterwards. New members and guests always welcome.

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Feb 26th Jonathan Smith - A day in the life of a metal Detectorist

An insight into the fascinating hobby of Metal Detecting... The equipment, the method, the funny stories and most of all, the historical artefacts and answering the question "What was that used for?". Opportunity to hold a Roman Brooch, neolithic tool or a medieval coin at the end of the talk.

Mar 25th Bob Wilcox - Victorian Medicine - challenges, champions and charlatans.

A look at the state of medical beliefs and therapies at the beginning of the 19th century and how things evolved with the acceptance of the germ theory of disease, antisepsis and the emergence of anaesthesia, ending with the discovery of X-rays.


Apr 22nd Graham Hayes – Lost Houses in Nottingham

Great houses we have lost but not forgotten -  an illustrated talk on the history of some of the mansions and stately homes that once existed around the County, all of which have long since been demolished leaving little or no trace of their existence.

May 12th Steve Wright – A Guided tour of Burton Joyce

(Sunday) An interesting morning walk around our neighbouring village looking at Burton Joyce history and connections with the river, railway, farming, and stocking frames.

Jun 18th Visit to the Manuscripts and Special Collections at King's Meadow Campus

(Tuesday) A morning visit which includes a talk introducing Manuscripts & Special Collections: who they are, what they do, and some of their most important holdings, followed by a behind-the-scenes tour.

Jul 10th  Visit to the Nottingham Transport Heritage Centre, Ruddington

(Wednesday) An evening visit which will include a talk on the history of the centre, guided tour of the bus garages, the miniature train, a ride on one of the old buses and followed by a pie & peas supper.

Sep 23rd Bennerley Viaduct

The Bennerley Viaduct story charts the reasons for building the viaduct, the ingenuity of its design, the working life of the viaduct; the Zeppelin bombings; its closure and the fight to save it from demolition. Also the inspiring story of how the structure was brought back to life, re-opening in 2022 following 54 years of closure.

Oct 28th Mike Ogden – A Palace by the River - History of the Houses of Parliament

The Palace of Westminster is formally a royal palace which retains its royal name. The talk looks at the palace’s origins and its growth until the disastrous fire in 1834 which resulted in the erection of the current buildings plus the proposals to relocate Parliament while the buildings are restored.

Nov 25th  David Skillen - Pilots n’ Petticoats – Women Masters of the Sky

A fascinating, illustrated talk about the colourful and determined ladies whose achievements enabled women to write their own place in aviation history. From Elisabeth Thible who took to the skies in 1794 via legends such as Amelia Earhart and Amy Johnson to astronauts such as Sally Ride. Women who have flown every type of aircraft from hot air balloons and biplanes to Concorde and the Space Shuttle.