Over the course of April we are exploring the studies registered with the Society for One-Place Studies featuring those that correspond to the relevant letter of the alphabet.
What is a One Place Study? That is a fine question and rather than me explain, I will refer you to the Society’s informative website. If you are interested in joining us and /or registering a study we of course welcome you. You can find the joining information HERE.
W is for...
Walnut Tree Close, Guildford: The boundaries of this study are a street in the heart of busy Guildford, Surrey. The study’s host, Julie, began her investigation of this place thirty years ago prompted by a century of family connections. It is one of three studies that she has registered with the Society for One-Place Studies.
With Julie’s particular interest in the development of the road, her study has been set up as a community archive. She has recently established a website to share her findings where you can start to see the details she is gathering for each individual who lived on her street. Sources include familiar core records along with further information from sources like military records and even oral histories. As you might expect from a seasoned blogger like Julie, her site includes a blog and she would love to hear from anyone hoping to find out more about her place.
Wickhambreaux: Paul, the host of this study, has managed to choose one of the most ancient places registered with the Society for One-Place Studies. Wickhambreaux lies near the cathedral city of Canterbury and dates back to Roman times. The place name derives from Wich, meaning a coastal trading settlement, which is especially interesting given that the village today is found many miles inland.
Wickhambreaux is a rural area but full of architectural finds, retaining its medieval character with a fourteenth century church, sixteenth century inn, manor house and mill situated about the village green. Joan of Kent, wife of Edward the Black Prince and mother of Richard II, resided at Wickhambreaux Manor. Paul has already started a website for this new study and would be delighted to hear from anyone with an interest in this village.
Whitechapel: This is an exciting study of a large area in Greater London. Whitechapel is full of history and a place of dynamic change through many centuries. We look forward to seeing how Diane approaches this geographic setting and are pleased to see city undertakings such as this being registered with the Society for One-Place Studies.
Like so many other families, Diane’s ancestors arrived as immigrants to Whitechapel from Ireland in the nineteenth century. She has already accumulated a variety of stories including core records, articles and family papers and hopes to convey her findings from the perspective of the people who inhabited this East End district. Undoubtedly many of you may have connections to this area and Diane would be pleased to hear from you.
Wing: Wing is a village and parish in Buckinghamshire only a mile from the Bedfordshire border. It is a place with a long history, known for its Saxon Church and Ascott House, but the study holder Alex is at least as interested in the agricultural labourers who are central to much of Wing’s history since the eighteenth century. She has registered her study with the Society for One-Place Studies.
Alex has long been known for her commitment to sharing and she has invested a lot of effort into ensuring that your wander through her website will be a fascinating one. She has amassed a huge collection of records and stories over the past decade, including the exploration of themes such as the industries, soldiers, migrants and criminals of her place. Be sure to contact Alex to find out more about this extensively developed study.
Winsham: This study of a small Somerset parish with a long history brings more innovative dimensions to the studies registered with the Society for One-Place Studies. The study’s host, John, describes a community effort for this research, with contributions of documents, stories, records and photos from many sources.
You will not want to miss the Winsham Web Museum website, offering a very wide-ranging visual experience of this place. Beware though that you might find yourself exploring its many offerings for quite a while! The site is sponsored by the Parish Council and archived by The British Library. John would welcome correspondence with anyone interested in this area or the approach that has been taken to this study.
Winston: Winston is a village and parish in the county of Suffolk registered with the Society for One-Place Studies. It is in close proximity to and being jointly studied with the Debenham, Aspall, Kenton, and Mickfield registered studies. Suzie, who hosts this study, must be a very busy researcher as she joins up this picture of quite a large area of Suffolk.
Suzie works closely with local groups to build a comprehensive understanding of Winston and the other villages that include and surround Debenham. Her research is shared through her website where you can see Winston’s fourteenth century church, St Andrew’s, along with the many records and discoveries she has made. She would welcome hearing from those of you with an interest in mid-Suffolk.
Wonersh: Wonersh is another Surrey study today, just a few miles from Guildford in an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. Like many towns and villages in this area, its name is of Anglo-Saxon origin deriving from its earlier form of Wogenhers. Jan has registered this study with the Society for One-Place Studies.
Remarkably, the parish church of Wonersh may still have portions dating back to the eleventh century and there is an ancient ilex tree which could date at least as early as the church. Jan works with the Wonersh History Society which formed over a decade ago and would be delighted to hear from anyone interested in this village.
Kim Baldacchino on behalf of Julie Goucher, A-Z Challenge Coordinator