Welcome to the Bury St Edmunds Past & Present Society, and the wonderful Spanton Jarman Photographic Collection.
The Society was formed in 1960 to promote and encourage an interest in the history of our town and its surrounding area. To this end we hold a series of lectures each year from October through to March on topics of local history. From this year the meetings will be held in the newly restored Medieval Guildhall in Guildhall Street, Bury St Edmunds.
Monday 4 October
Dr Nick Amor
Keeping the peace in Late medieval Suffolk
A close study of the county’s 14th century archives suggests that the fear of crime was greater than the reality. This talk considers the actual levels of crime, particularly homicide, and the rise of Justices of the Peace who were appointed to keep law and order, and of the jurors who served with them on peace commissions. The role of JPs and jurors in determining the shape of Suffolk society is addressed against the traumatic background of the Great Famine, Hundred Years’ War, Black Death and Peasants’ Revolt.
The Society’s NAME is taken from the title of a book by Thomas Carlyle (1795-1881), the eminent author, biographer and historian. Published in 1843, its title was Past and Present. Carlyle devoted the whole of Book II to a description of life in the Abbey of St Edmund. The earliest edition of the Jocelin of Brakelond’s Chronicle, edited by John Gage Rokewode (a member of the Gage family of Hengrave Hall) was published by the Camden Society in 1840. This, of course, gave only the Latin text, and Carlyle’s brilliant English version made it available to those who had not had a classical education.
A copy of our constitution can be downloaded here
President: Margaret Statham
Chairman: Stephen Cook
Vice Chairman: tba
Secretary: Patricia Mackie
Treasurer: Stephen Cook
Website: Andrew Norburn
Membership Secretary: Patricia Mackie
Spanton Jarman Project: Betty Milburn
Programme Secretary: Jane Carr
Publicity: Martyn Taylor
Membership is open to everyone, we charge a minimum subscription fee of £15.00 per person, or £20 for two people living at the same address.
Visitors are welcome to attend our lectures for a fee of £5 per meeting.
If you wish to apply for membership, or want to see the benefits of becoming a member You can read more on our join us page.