Summer of ’69

This podcast from the National Archives contains a look back at the year in which Neil Armstrong took his ‘giant leap for mankind’, Concorde continued its flight test programme and the hippy culture reached its zenith with the age of the pop festival. However, the summer of ’69 also saw Harold Wilson’s government wrestling with difficult issues such as the sending of British troops to Northern Ireland. This illustrated talk explores the British take on the summer of ’69, using examples from public records to shed light on this eventful time.

Somerset Voices: Christine Smith (b.1925)

Christine Smith was a Land Army girl between 1942 and 1945. She worked on a 1000-acre farm in Pilton near Glastonbury that was run by the War Agricultural Committee. Twelve Land Army girls worked there, together with conscientious objectors, Italian prisoners-of-war, and older farm workers. Christine was involved with the cultivating, harvesting, and carting of hay; as well as wheat, mangolds and apples. Christine also drove tractors on the farm and helped to control pests.

Listen to Christine and read the transcript.

Marston Bigot

Royal Naval medals: an introduction

This podcast from the National Archives discusses the Royal Naval medal rolls held by The National Archives in record series ADM 171, and explains how to interpret the most commonly used codes and abbreviations found in them. It also demonstrates how the medal rolls can be used to locate other records relating to an individual’s Royal Naval service.

Somerset Voices: George and Edith Shore

George and Edith Shore were born in Devon in the 1890s. They moved from Devon to Butleigh with their employer in 1928, the couple had a cottage in the village. It took George two days to travel from Devon with the horses and wagon; he always preferred horses to tractors. Edith made bread every week in a brick oven; along with pies, pastries, and faggots. Washing was done on a Monday morning and Edith made butter on the farm.

Listen to George and Edith and read the transcript

Nunney Castle, Somerset

Another video from the village of Nunney in Somerset. This time with empasis on the castle.

Nunney, All Saints

Nunney in Somerset was home to many of my Starr ancestors.

Somerset Voices: Richard Sheppy (b.1927)

Richard Sheppy was born at Three Bridges Farm at Bradford-on-Tone. His father was engaged in mixed farming and then cattle farming, until he was advised that his farm was ideal for growing quality cider apples. He won prizes for his cider in various shows, and by the 1920s he decided to concentrate on developing the cider business, which was a successful firm by the time Richard inherited it. The difficulties encountered in producing cider has necessitated the development of a museum at the farm as an extension of the business.

Listen to Richard and read the transcript. becomes

The company started out as Ancestry Publishing, a small publisher of genealogy books. Soon after launching its first web site, the corporate name was changed to Since then, the company has changed its corporate name about once every 2 or 3 years. Most recently known as The Generations Network they have announced still another name change, reverting back to, the name by which they have always been known to their users.

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‘Oldest’ human settlement found

Archaeologists working for the National Trust think they have found west Dorset’s oldest human settlement on Doghouse Hill on the Golden Cap estate.

Read the full story and watch the video on the BBC.

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