West Cheshire Rural

Talks (2020)

November
Our Speaker in November was Ken Pye. As a popular local historian, Ken is also a frequent contributor to journals, and magazines and is the author of many local history books.

His talk was titled “Curious and amazing tales of Liverpool” and it covered a few of the lesser known historical events that have taken place in Liverpool, including:
The time when William Cody (Buffalo Bill) came to Liverpool’s Newsham Park for two weeks of stagecoach races, shooting displays and robbery re-enactments.
The filming of “The Inn of the Sixth Happiness”, the story of Gladys Aylward’s work in China, which was shot in Snowdonia. The cast included a large number of ethnic Chinese children from Liverpool, which had one of the oldest Chinese communities in Europe at the time.
The first widely-reported fatal accident on the railways at the opening of the Liverpool and Manchester Railway. William Huskisson, a statesman, financier and MP was involved in an accident with George Stephenson’s Rocket and subsequently died from his injuries.

October
Our October speaker was Jane Hitchen from Nat West Bank who gave a talk about Scam awareness. It was an interesting session which was well delivered. There is a big focus on this subject during the pandemic as the number and type of scams increase, particularly those associated with Covid19. Hopefully, it has reinforced things that we were already aware of and we learned something new as well.
I found today's session interesting and quite scary. Jane put it over well and, hopefully, we have all learned something

September
After a rather extended break due to the Covid lockdown, we re-started our monthly meetings in September. The format was slightly different to the normal meeting as this time it took place online.
Jean Hancox gave a very interesting presentation titled “Anyone for tea? - a brief history of tea in Britain”. She took us through a fascinating journey from the introduction of tea into Britain in the 17th Century, the rise of the East Company and the clipper races, the growth of afternoon tea in high society, the opening of tea shops for the general public, to where we are now - where tea is part of everyday life.

February
Claire Moores gave us a very interesting talk entitled "Physick, Pothecary or Chirurgeon? – uncovering Cheshire’s medical men and their work"
Starting with a brief history of the development of the medical professions, Claire described how the professions of Physicians, Surgeons and Apothecaries developed. Who was aware of the link between the Surgeons and Barbers in the 16th /17th century!!!
We also learnt about some of the important medical men of Cheshire. Amongst them was Thomas Haygarth, an 18th-century British physician who discovered new ways to prevent the spread of fever among patients and reduce the mortality rate of smallpox. He spent 30 years working in Chester. John Latham who was born in Gawsworth later became came President of the Royal College of Physicians. Peter Holland born in Knutsford was a pioneer of occupational medicine. He was responsible for treating the Gregg family, the owners of Quarry Bank Mill, but was also retained for a fee of 12 guineas a year to care for the apprentices at the Mill.

January
Sue Taylor's talk was entitled “The history behind famous foods”. Sue took us on a fascinating journey through the famous brands which at some point have been found in our kitchen cupboards.
Illustrating the talk with some memorable adverts jogged many memories from the past. Many of the foods are still around today, however the adverts themselves have moved on somewhat !!!.

Anne Bayliss