The BALH Local History News free to access

The  Redditch Local History Society is a member of the British Association for Local History and they publish quarterly journals  ‘The Local Historian’ and ‘Local History News’.

We make current and past issues of these journals available at our meetings.

I am pleased to announce that for the duration of the pandemic crisis, BALH have taken the decision to make all issues of The Local History News free to access (usually only for issues older than three years). All past issues of Local History News are currently available free to access

While it is not possible to visit libraries and archives, they hope this will help individuals continue their research, or simply find a fascinating article to read to pass an hour with a cup of tea!

This is a temporary measure and the current issue of Local History News is usually only available with membership.

To view these journals, please  visit

Coronavirus and our Meetings

The current situation with regard to the Coronavirus situation is not clear.

This could have implications with regard to our future meetings and, in particular, our Annual General Meeting on Monday April 20th.

Please be assured that we will keep you fully updated via our website and via e-mail concerning any changes.

For those not on e-mail we will send a letter prior to our next meeting if there are any changes.


Anthony Green

Secretary, Redditch Local History Society



Next meeting – Monday 10th February 2020

After our break in January, we begin 2020 with our first meeting on Monday 10th February.

The presentation is by the Worcestershire Archive and Archaeology Service and will be given by given by a Paul Hudson, the Learning & Outreach Manager. It is entitled ‘Stories from the Archives’ and is an introduction into the wide variety of historical sources they hold, and the stories they contain and tell, about the people and places in the local region. If you ever wondered what there is at the Hive which is of interest to the history of the local area, then this is an ideal opportunity to find out.

We are now looking at our programme for 2021 and, as always, we would like to have a mix of outside speakers and members, ideally 4 of each, as well as our member’s reading of local memories, short films after the AGM and our Christmas event (11 meetings). The listing of our 2020 meetings can be found on our meetings page and we have copies of our leaflet available at our meetings and various outlets.

If you are interested in being involved as a speaker or reader, or if you have recommendations for outside speakers, please contact me at The Society is very willing to support members who have local knowledge and wish to give a talk and will give help in producing a presentation.

Our 2020 exhibition at Forge Mill Needle Museum, Redditch is entitled ‘ 75 tears ago: the end of WW2’ and details of the exhibition can be found on our exhibition poster which can be downloaded from our activities page

This year, we did not really look at ideas for the 2020 exhibition until the end of 2019, so it was all rather a rush. However, we believe we have an excellent subject with opportunities for members to be involved. So, we aim to begin this process much earlier this year to find a suitable topic for our exhibition in 2021, and possibly 2022. In choosing a topic it is important to have a subject where we know we will have enough material to produce a satisfactory exhibition.

Anthony Green

Secretary, Redditch Local History Society



Mobile Version of Website

Apologies to anyone who uses a mobile phone to visit the Redditch Local History Society website

I was contacted recently with a problem that the website was still showing the information for 2019 and not 2020.

I was a bit confused as I updated the site immediately after our December 2019 meeting. However, as the enquirer was interested in next year’s programme, I gave them a direct link to the leaflet which met their immediate need.

Yesterday, I suddenly realised that although I had fully updated the website for ‘large screen’ computers, i.e. tablets and above, in December, I had not updated the website for the small screen, mobile phone, version. This occurred because the software I use, although it makes it ‘easy’ to create a ‘phone version, does not do this automatically and so I, effectively, have to maintain two versions of the site.

I have now made this update and all users should see the latest information.

I am always happy to receive comments concerning the site and I am always ready to respond.

Anthony Green

Secretary, Redditch Local History Society


General News Update January

As a Society we often receive notifications from similar organisations concerning items which may be of interest to our members. I have put recent ones together in this news release.

A new local history book has been released entitled ‘Diary of a Studley Gentleman: The Private Journal of Rowland Hill, Needlemaker of Studley & Ipsley 1847-1849’. The story behind this book and how you can obtain a copy can be found in a pdf download from our site at:

Redditch Railway Interest Group, who meet at Forge Mill Needle Museum, Redditch, have released their 2020 programme leaflet. Programme and contact details can be downloaded from our site as a pdf file at:

Redditch Military History Society, who meet at the Bridge Church Community Hall, in Headless Cross, have released their 2020 programme leaflet. Programme and contact details can be downloaded from our site as a pdf file at:

Friends of the Mercian Regiment Museum, which is based in Worcester, has released their programme of activities for 2020. The programme and contact details can be downloaded from our site as a pdf file at:

Anthony Green

Secretary, Redditch Local History Society




Our talk on September 9th ‘A walk around Eastern Redditch using a 1903 OS map’.

Many thanks to the Redditch Standard in their printed edition (on-line version at  (page 21)),  for their preview of our Local History talk on September 9th entitled ‘A walk around Eastern Redditch using a 1903 OS map’.

This is given by (me) Anthony Green and I gave a similar, well received, talk in 2017 which covered the Western area of the town.

The walk route is split into six sections. At the beginning of each section there is a video clip of how it looks today and this is followed by historic images of how it looked around the time of the map. The main purpose is to illustrate how, although there is a belief that ‘old Redditch has disappeared’, there is still much to see today.

Our local history meetings begin at 2.00 pm and last for approximately 2 hours; the presentation lasts about one hour and this is followed by refreshments and Society business, event and project news. Non-members are welcome to our meetings and will be charged £3 entrance which is refundable against the membership fee of £15 if joining on the day (reduced fee of .

The venue for the meetings is the Oasis Christian Centre, 4 Plymouth Road, Redditch, B974QB

For details of all our meetings please visit

Royal Enfield Talk at August Meeting

We had a nice write up in the Redditch Standard of our August meeting when John Budgen gave a talk on the history of the Royal Enfield.

His presentation was entitled ‘Story of the Royal Enfield and the men who made it’ . John , who is the Chairman of the Midland Group of the Royal Enfield Owners Club, produced this presentation specifically for our Society.

Our next Meeting at the Oasis Christian Centre is on Monday 9th September beginning at 2.00 pm. And the presentation is entitled ‘A walk around Eastern Redditch using a 1903 OS map’ and is given by our secretary Tony Green.

Meeting on Monday 13th May

The next meeting of the Redditch Local History Society will be on Monday 13th May 2019 at the Oasis Christian Centre, Plymouth Road

The presentation for the meeting is 19th Century Rogues and Murders in Worcestershire and is given by Vanessa Morgan.
Born and brought up in Worcestershire,

Vanessa has always had an interest in history and for the last twenty years worked as a professional genealogist.

She is also a local speaker and gives numerous talks which include genealogy and local murders.

Also at the meeting, during the coffee break, Lyndsey Berry from Redditch Borough Council will be seeking members views on what changes members would like to see in the Town Centre as part of a planned major regeneration programme.

Membership of the Redditch Local History Society runs for the season from the Annual General Meeting in April to the following April AGM. The current membership fee is £15, which covers entry to all meetings during the current season. Individuals joining in October, covering meetings to the following April AGM (5 meetings), pay a reduced fee of £7.50 (50%). Non-members are welcome to meetings for whom there will be a £3 entrance charge. This is refundable against the membership fee if joining the society at the meeting.

Please visit: to follow our activities.

Redditch Local History Society Archives

One of the aims of the Society is to investigate, document and promote the history of Redditch and the surrounding area, and this includes holding a register of all artefacts held by the Society. This is one of the roles of the archivist of the Society which is, and has always been, Derek Coombes.

As we do not have, sadly, a Heritage Centre in the town centre this means storing artefacts in the homes of individual members. Most are stored by Derek, but I also store some artefacts, some donated by myself and others by our supporters.

What is important is that these are correctly identified in terms of content and also location.

A good example is four pictures donated when I recently gave a talk to Webheath WI on Redditch History. At the end of the meeting a very nice lady, Pat Smith, approached me to say that she had 4 pictures which she would like to give to a good home to ensure that they would not be lost. I explained our archive system and how we would ensure that it would be catalogued and preserved. She kindly dropped these in to me the next day.

I have now produced a document for our Archivist detailing the archive and where it is kept.

If you have information, photographs or artefacts relating to the history of Redditch and would like to donate them to our archives please visit contact the society archivist Derek Coombes at  or phone 01527 404365

Anthony Green

Secretary, Redditch Local History Society




Advance notice of Annual General Meeting

Our next meeting on the 9th April 2018 at 2:00pm and is our Annual General Meeting (AGM).

This is probably the most important meeting of the year as it is here we have the elections for the members who organise and run the Society. So, if you would like to have a say in how the RLHS is run, and what we do, please stand for election to the Management Committee. The positions of Chairman and Speaker Organiser are becoming vacant, and we would welcome fresh faces with fresh ideas to the team.

After the AGM there will be two talks, the first on the Paolozzi Mosaics by Philp Roberts and the second by Mike Butler who will be showing and commentating on a film about old Redditch.
This is followed by an extended refreshment break to allow collection of membership subscriptions for 201/19.
Non-members are welcome to our meetings and will be charged £3 entrance which is refundable against the membership fee if joining on the day.
Membership currently costs £15 per year per member (£7.50 if joining after October) and runs from the April 2018 AGM to the end of March 2019.