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Talks and events

Terror from the sky: mapping air raids on Surrey in World War II

Wednesday 10 January 2024, 5.30pm to 6.45pm, on Zoom.

Martin Stilwell is leading a team of volunteers at Surrey History Centre in a project to map all bombs, crashed aircraft, doodlebugs and rockets that crashed into Surrey during the Second World War and plot them onto an interactive map on our Exploring Surrey's Past website. The project will run for two years and has already uncovered some great stories. In this talk, Martin will discuss the project, its aims and successes, and also some of the lessons being learned along the way.

Behind the Scenes in Conservation - Repairing Posters, Maps and Plans

Wednesday 24 January 2024, 5.30pm to 6.45pm, on Zoom.

Join our Conservator, Rachel Marsh, as she talks through recent examples of her work. Rachel will explain some of the key principles of archive conservation as she describes a variety of treatments. This is a chance to take a 'behind the scenes' look at our conservation facilities and specialist equipment and gain a greater understanding of the work being done to preserve our history. There will be opportunities to ask questions throughout.

Convicts Galore!

Wednesday 7 February 2024, 5.30pm to 6.45pm, on Zoom.

Was your ancestor a convict transported thousands of miles for their crimes? Join Hilary Blandford, Chairman of East Surrey Family History Society, in this personal voyage of discovery. Using court records, naval records and convict records, she uncovers the story of her criminal ancestor, Urias Allender, and his journey to the other side of the world, with several unexpected twists along the way.

WW1 Virtual Reality and History talk

This event has been postponed, revised date to be advised.

Surrey Libraries and Heritage, in partnership with Royal Holloway University of London and Electric Skies are hoping you will join us for a unique experience centred around WW1.

There will be a short talk by Surrey History Centre's County Archivist and an in-conversation with Lee Harris from Electric Skies, the company who created the 'Three Lights' virtual reality experience. 'Three Lights' is an interactive, wartime drama about a group of British soldiers on the Western Front in 1916, a month after the Battle of the Somme. You will be able to try this immersive experience for yourselves – and then have a chance to discuss the experience and accompanying archival pieces.

  • Tickets: Free but booking is required either via Eventbrite or in the foyer at Surrey History Centre.

Recorded talks to purchase

If you missed one of our online talks, why not purchase the talk recording to view in your own time?

The talks available are:

  • Aladdin's Cave: Some Major Family and Estate Archives in Surrey History Centre
  • A Burden on the Parish: sources for the history of Poor Relief in Surrey
  • A 'Great' amongst Victorian Architects? Royal Holloway's W H Crossland
  • Artists, Antiquaries and Collectors: illustrations of Georgian Surrey collected by Robert Barclay of Bury Hill, Dorking, circa.1800 to 1825
  • Bananas: How a Surrey Garden Played a Pivotal Role in the History of the World's Favourite Fruit
  • Corsets and Cameras
  • Fashion and Folly
  • From Punishment to Pride: LGBTQ+ archives at Surrey History Centre
  • Gertrude Jekyll, Gardener and Craftswoman
  • In the Shadow of the Great War: Surrey 1914 to 1918
  • James Henry Pullen (1835 to 1916) and the Royal Earlswood Asylum for Idiots, Redhill
  • John Evelyn in Surrey
  • Land of my Father's Fathers: Tracing your Welsh ancestors
  • Let the Road Rise to Meet You: Tracing Your Irish Ancestors
  • Life and Labour in a County Village - or learn to love your Ag Labs!
  • Magna Carta, Runnymede and all that
  • Maps for Family Historians
  • Netherne circa 1955: A Surrey Psychiatric Hospital in Focus
  • Out of Sight, Out of Mind? Sources for the History of Surrey's Mental Hospitals, 1700 to circa.1990
  • Planting Ideas: Sources for the History of Gardening in Surrey.
  • Portrait of a Surrey Town between the Wars: the photographic archive of Sidney Francis
  • Reflections on the Lewis Carroll archives, on the 150th anniversary of 'Alice through the Looking Glass'
  • Richard III: A Drama in Three Acts
  • Sir William More of Loseley
  • The Book That Changed My Life
  • The Changing Face of Nursing: Black Nurses in Surrey Hospitals
  • The Gentleman's Magazine: A Panorama of Georgian Surrey for Family and Local Historians
  • The Most Wretched Man in the World: The Life and Loves of the 5th Viscount Midleton
  • The Portable Antiquities Scheme in Surrey
  • To the Manor Born: An Introduction to Manorial Records for Family Historians
  • What did you do after the war, Grandad? – 1918 to 1925: de-mob, jobs, pensions, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and the British Legion
  • Where There's a Will
  • Who Do You Think They Were? Discovering the lives and experiences of our ancestors

Most talk descriptions can be found on our Talks and Tours page. Each talk consists of a 45 minute to an hour illustrated presentation followed by questions asked during the live talk. You can also email us with any questions you may have after the talk and we will pass them on to the speaker to answer. Price £5. To purchase a recording please visit the Surrey Heritage Shop. Please note talks may contain references to historical legal terminology, sexual practices and crimes, used in the historical context but which some viewers may find offensive.

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