Barking and District Historical Society

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Our 80th anniversary season was marked by a number of events including the September launch of Bill George’s excellent booklet on the drawings of Frank Tingey  in the presence of the Mayor of Barking and Dagenham, and an exhibition at Valence House Museum Visitor Centre. Keith Glenny delivered the anniversary lecture in November; Keith also cut the birthday cake kindly donated by Joy Lines.

The year has also proved to be the busiest since I became chairman in 2000, and the President, committee and members have been involved in a number of local events, schemes and projects including:

The Punchdrunk Company at Eastbury House.
The East Street regeneration.
Barking Abbey lottery application.
St.Mary’s Church, Dagenham lottery application.
Eastside Community Heritage World War I exhibition (as result of this I was interviewed by schoolchildren at the Jo Richardson School, Dagenham.)
Historypin and the mural at Valence House.
The mock invasion of schoolchildren from Dagenham (to Upminster)
St. Paul’s Church, Barking – 70th anniversary of its destruction by enemy action.
Donation of Society publications to the Mobile Museum.
Tower Hamlets Cemetery Fair.
Chadwell Heath History Fair.
Valence House History Fair.

Bill George represented the Society at an Eastbury House meeting in July addressed by Darren Rodwell, Leader of Barking and Dagenham Council.

Sadly, long time member Malcolm Green died in August; I represented the Society at his funeral in Hainault.

In September I, along with other society members, joined Dagenham Library members on a hop picking trip to Scotney Farm in Kent – as a result Pat Davies and I were featured on the BBC London News.
Also in September I gave a talk on behalf of the Society to the Redbridge Pensioners’ Forum at Redbridge Central Library.

A large group of us visited the Granary Building and Ice House Quarter in October at the invitation of the Regeneration Team.

We were presented with an English Heritage Schools’ Partner Award at the Heritage Schools showcase at the Broadway Theatre, Barking in November in recognition of our work with local schoolchildren.

I have continued to attend Essex Congress meetings at Chelmsford.

Richard Chapman has continued to organise the hugely popular coach trips and we visited the Colchester Military Festival in July, the St. Albans Cathedral Flower Festival in September, the Bury St. Edmunds Christmas Fair in November and Thriplow Daffodil  Weekend in March this year.

I would like to thank all members of the committee for their hard work especially all the extra tasks undertaken for our anniversary year.

Membership currently stands at 57.

John Blake

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