Category Archives: Local history

By Jill Bryant

The fast-approaching 200th anniversary of the opening of Tolpuddle Old Chapel got off to a cracking start with a visit from the Wessex Morris Men.

After dancing in the street, history was made when the performers and followers went into the old chapel and sang the first hymn to be sung there in 174...

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At 03.00 on the morning of 21 March 21 1918, a lightning barrage crashed down on British positions on the Western Front. Particularly hard hit in the initial bombardment were artillery positions, headquarters and logistics hubs, deluged with a mix of shrapnel, high explosive and poison gas.

The British response was badly hindered by a thick...

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In this season of good cheer, here’s a winter offering with a difference – a panto programme from a POW Camp!

‘The New Alladin’ [sic] was performed in the Gaiety Theatre of Stalag VIII-B at Christmas 1942. The camp was sited near the town of Lamsdorf (modern Lambinowice) in Silesia, south-west Poland.

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On a cold and frosty late January evening in 1987, 18 railway enthusiasts arrived at Peter and Heather Foster’s home in Dorchester to watch some railway films and so the Dorchester Area Group of the Somerset & Dorset Railway Trust was born.

Thirty years on, around 40 members of the Dorchester Area Group celebrated their 300th meeting at the Colliton Club,...

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War often conjures images of battle, bloodshed and bodies. Quick to disregard the complex intricacies of war, we too often revisit history numerically: what date did the battle begin? How many soldiers fought? How many died?

Statistics are impressive. However, it’s easy to forget that behind every slain soldier is a person, and behind every person...

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