Programme for 2021



Unless otherwise stated, we meet at The Wesley Hall, School Rd, Elmswell IP30 9EE – for a prompt 7.30pm start.

9 September: 7pm, 2020-21 AGM, immediately followed by

George Agnew, “The History of Rougham Hall”. The original Hall was built in 1688 in the form of a Jacobean Manor House, owned by various families until purchased in 1792 by Rev Kedington whose daughter decided to build a new house in the early 1820s in a Tudor/Gothic style.  Since 1904 the hall and estate (on both sides of the A14 to Bury) have been in the Agnew family, and our speaker will elaborate on this interesting and sometimes dramatic history up to the present day.

14 October: 7.30pm

Douglas Bourn, “Railways of East Anglia” – based on his recently-published book of the same name. Douglas has railways in his blood; his dad was a train driver and one of his grandfathers worked as a wheeltapper at a busy station. The talk will include stories of real people who kept the tracks safe and the trains running, sometimes at great personal cost, and often for very low pay. Copies of his book will be for sale after the talk.

11 November: 7.30pm at Blackbourne’s Chamberlayne Hall, E’well IP30 9UH

Charlie Haylock, “Charlie and The Dig”. This is an intriguing and sometimes humorous look behind-the-scenes in the making of the Netflix film “The Dig” . . . a film based on a novel with the same title about the famous Sutton Hoo burial ship and the people involved. Charlie will explain how a potential “scam” e.mail from “The Dig” producer, turned out to be real, and followed by a phone call from Ralph Fiennes. Charlie will show how Ralph Fiennes, who played Basil Brown, and the other “Suffolk” actors learnt their Suffolk accent  . . . and not sound like West Country pirates! Charlie will also explain the extreme lengths Ralph Fiennes took, not only to play Basil Brown . . . but to become Basil Brown. The talk is both informative and entertaining.

9 December: 7.30pm

Piers Hart, “Suffolk Building Preservation Trust”. We will learn about how SBPT have saved many important local historic buildings from demolition and, in particular, the Grade II listed Brandon Railway Station, built in the 1840s from the local flints which have been produced near Brandon for over 4000 years.