History Group

Speakers for 2019- 2020



In the winter months between October to April we meet on the 1st Thursday of the month at 2pm in the Full Gospel Church Hall = FGCH (the old South End School building, 60 High Street, Rushden - Speaker with tea and biscuits to follow the talk. The aim of the group is to (re)discover and share our love of History.

Our annual programme is divided into two parts, October to April being held in the Full Gospel Church Hall, Rushden with speakers on interesting diverse historical subjects.

The summer months May to September offer members monthly trips, by private coach picking up at Higham Ferrers and Rushden and travelling to various interesting historical sites chosen by the group members themselves

For further information please contact the group leader Peter Wright via the contact page or Ron Smith to reserve a place on any of the summer coach trips

History Group Coach Trips 2019

6th June 2019 -Bolsover Castle, Nottinghamshire (Spaces available)

With spectacular views over Derbyshire, the fairy-tale Stuart mansion, Bolsover Castle, was designed to entertain and impress. Its reputation for revelry lives on as we now entertain you and your family. Wander the lavish rooms of the Little Castle, explore the romantic ruined terrace range, and delight in the views from the wall walk. Start your visit in the exhibition in the Riding House then run wild in extensive grounds (and fun play area).

Price £10.20 (U3A & EH Free) Coach £13.00


Avoncroft Museum is home to over 30 historic buildings and structures which have been rescued and re-built in rural Worcestershire. The open-air Museum is spread over 19 acres and includes a wildflower meadow (open April to September), period gardens, a traditional cider and perry orchard as well as the collection of buildings. Download a map of the Museum’s grounds and buildings to help you plan your visit.

Price £8.00 Coach £12.50

1st August 2019 -HARDWICK HALL

It was the formidable 'Bess of Hardwick' who first created Hardwick in the 1500's. In the centuries since then her descendants, farmers, gardeners, builders, decorators, embroiderers and craftsmen of all kinds have contributed and made Hardwick their creation. We’d like you to explore and enjoy Hardwick and in the process discover the lives, loves and adventures of the creators of Hardwick.

Price £14.25 (NT Free) Coach £13.00


Newark Civil War Centre opened in 2015 occupies a converted Regency schoolroom and has a restored Tudor Hall. It is the UK's first National Civil War Centre, aiming to telling the story of the brutal 17th century clash between Crown and Parliament in compelling new detail. It was Britain's deadliest conflict and one which shaped our modern world. Discover why brother fought brother and father fought against son and how a once all-powerful monarch lost his kingdom and his head.

Price £6.50 (EH £3.50)

Time in Newark to grab a lunch then meet back at coach (Time T.B.A.

Southwell Minster is the Cathedral of Nottinghamshire. For nearly one thousand years Southwell Minster has been a place of pilgrimage. Its rural location and stunning, but quirky, architecture have made it a "must see" destination throughout the centuries.

Price £3.00 and takes 1 hour.

Total Price £9.50 (EH £6.50) + Coach £13.00

For further information contact Ron Smith (ron.norsmith(at)yahoo.co.uk) or visit the History Table at the monthly U3A monthly meetings.

History Group speakers for the 2019-20 season

October 3rd

Tudor Harvest Customs, in costume by well-known speaker Martin

November 7th

David Kendrick returns this time with the History of the RAF.

December 5th

Our Old friend Kevin Varty entertains with "Sex, Drugs and

January 2nd

History of Pantomime, by Delia Thomas a seasonal topic for the
beginning of the New Year.

February 7th

Mathew Morris from Leicester University talks on the History of
Leicester Castle and the present-day building.

March 5th

Betty West reveals the wartime exploits of Nancy Wake who flew
from Harrington aerodrome during WWII.

April 2nd

A local speaker Roger Powell M.A. who has held various positions in
heraldic and genealogical research including Debretts and Burkes
Peerage ,speaks on a History of Noble Families. (Not to be missed).