Local History: talks and workshops


See ‘About’ for professional experience as a practitioner in the world of research and archives. Jonathan has been living in and researching about South Cambs.,  in the valley of the Rhee since the 1980s.

Talks/Workshops on offer:

Old tracks and roads of Cambridge and its hinterland.

The ‘Clunch’ pits of South Cambridgeshire.

The Rhee valley in the 19th century: the coming of the railways and economic development.

‘The Heart of Greengage Country’. The History of Fruit Farming in the Rhee Valley.

These talks or workshops may be of interest to local community groups, voluntary organisations and schools. If interested please leave a reply in the comment box and I will get back to you.Or you can contact me via Linkedin at http://www.linkedin.com/in/jonathanspain

12 Responses to Local History: talks and workshops

  1. Lesley Ford says:

    Dear Jonathan
    Would you be available and willing to give your clunch pits talk to the newly formed Stapleford History Society on the evening of Tuesday July 9th?
    If so could you advise of your fee and if you would be able to talk at 7.30pm
    Many thanks
    Lesley Ford

  2. Jane Bowden says:

    Dear Jonathan
    Longstowe History Society is in the process of putting together a programme for the coming year and our members have indicated considerable interest in the title of your talk “Old tracks and roads of Cambridge and its hinterland”. Would you be available to give this talk to us on Tuesday 6th June this year, 2017? I would be most grateful if you could let me know as soon as possible. Please email as below.
    Kind regards
    Jane Bowden

  3. Lee Anne West says:

    Dear Jonathan
    Are you able to help me with historic records relating to footpaths in the Steeple Morden area of South Cambridgeshire?

  4. colourspiral says:

    Jonathan. Have you any info on orchards in Haslingfield before 1913? My great grandfather Henry John Charles was farming Stearne’s farm and was chairman of the Fruit Growers of Haslingfield. They sent fruit to Manchester markets. Before that the Hall family ran the farm, also my ancestors. I am writing a book about them. Rosemary

    • Rosemary

      Thanks for your enquiry. I have concentrated on the villages in the Cam valley in terms of local research on orchards. To find out more about orchards and farms in Haslingfield before 1913 (and after) I would start with the large scale OS maps in the Cambridgeshire Collection at Cambridge Central Library. Also The relevant vol. of the Victoria County History. At the county record office – Cambs. Archives, now moved to Ely, there are land tax valuation records which list orchards attached to properties. You may also find refs to Steane’s farm in local valuers and estate agents records at Cambs. Archives – which you can search via the online database. Interesting to hear of your grandfather’s involvement withe the local fruit growers association – did he leave any papers?


      Jon Spain

  5. Maryam says:

    Would you like to run a workshop at an allotment skills fair?

    Hiya! I’m Maryam, a student and a keen allotmenter. I’m organising an allotment fair full of skill shares, workshops, and seed swaps on the 13th of February in Empty common community gardens for anyone who wants to learn or share their knowledge about growing sustainably.

    My idea (flexible) is to have multiple ‘stalls’ which each cover a series of the above topics throughout the day. Each ‘stand’ could run talks, workshops, or q&as.

    So far, I’m hoping there will be workshops on compost, pruning, seed saving, crop rotations, woodwork, permaculture principles, water use, no dig, encouraging wildlife and diversity, and edible weeds. Is there anything you would be able to help out with? Any other knowledge you’d like to share? Or anything you would like to learn in particular (could be one of the aforementioned or a new topic)?

    It would be very helpful if you could create and run a talk or workshop on a topic around sustainable growing (such as the ones suggested above). Any format and length is welcome. Or if you would rather do it in partnership with someone else, let me know and I will try match up people with similar knowledge.

    I would also be very grateful if you could share this message with any other people or groups you think would be interested.
    Feel free to ask me any questions, and looking forward to your response
    Thanks very much,

    • Hi Maryam

      Yes I am interested in giving a talk and Q&A session: It could be on my experience setting up and running the Haslingfield Allotments as a self-managed site and all the projects we have engaged in over the past 20 years. Let’s discuss further by email – jrspain1@hotmail.com

  6. Chris Turner says:

    Hi Johnathan, Could you give a talk to our Society next year please 15th November 2023 we are in Baldock Herts, price please,” I would like Fruit growing in South Cambridgeshire” Many thanks.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s