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Charlecote Park


Thursday 6th October 2022                                                                 2.30pm Dunchurch Village Hall

Beguiled by Bridges (Part 1 Britain)                                                                Speaker:  Keith Holmes

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Keith has presented a number of his outstanding photographic essays to us in recent years, and this time he returns with a new talk, again compiled from his nationwide and world-wide travels.

He will present amazing examples of bridges and viaducts large and small, ancient and modern, promising a dazzling display of architectural wonders. This first part concentrates on the many and varied structures to be found here in Britain. By way of introduction, Keith writes:


“It’s a long time ago that the idea for a talk on bridges came to mind.  There would be beautiful places to visit, magnificent bridges to photograph and interesting people to meet on my travels.  However, the task of turning the spark of an idea into an entertaining talk has taken longer than expected due to the distances involved, permissions and, one that nobody could foresee, the pandemic.  

Tyne Bridges

Visiting bridges has been delightful; from the beauty of Dorset’s River Frome to Newcastle where the mighty bridges spanning the River Tyne are a legacy of its industrial past and a symbol of 21st century redevelopment.  I met Clifton Suspension Bridge’s first woman Bridge Master; the engineer tasked with maintaining Brunel’s 160 year old masterpiece for future generations. At Paddington I watched engineers instal the first span of a landmark bridge as part of the redevelopment of the area. 


From the historic to the present, there are clapper bridges over moorland rivers and the spectacular new bridge at Tintagel across a cleft in Cornwall’s coastline. What’s more there are curiosities and some lesser known bridges to entertain you.”

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Wednesday 19th October 2022                                                            7.30pm Dunchurch Village Hall

Railway Crime                                                                                                          Speaker:  Mike Riley

Mike Riley, who has given us previous lively talks on the Great Central Railway and Railway Accidents, returns to  give a fascinating illustrated run-down of notable crimes on the railways of Britain during the last two hundred years. (We all know about the famous Great Train Robbery of 1963, but what of the murder of Elizabeth Camp, the first woman ever to be murdered aboard a train in Britain (1897), and of the Merstham Tunnel Mystery (1905)?) 

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The Great Train Robbery - 1903 Film

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Thursday 3th November 2022                                                             2.30pm Dunchurch Village Hall

Eighteen Ships                                                                                             Speaker:  Anthony Addams

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Ancient wrecks tell us about trade. When a future king drowned, a civil war ensued. The greatest treasure ship we captured was......? Why was George III shown a model ship? The Grey Ghost carried how many passengers? How did the Polynesians navigate 30,000 years ago? Why did The Fram get stuck in the ice? Enjoy ships of the Belle Epoque. Looking like a fish, the first successful submarine was.....? Magellan discovered how to sail round South America, but did he have a map? Eighteenth-century pirates loved which ship design?

Anthony takes us on waves of excitement as he unveils secret after secret on the high seas.

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Wednesday 16th November 2022                                                       7.30pm Dunchurch Village Hall

The Life and Work of Ernest Gimson                                                                Speaker:  Mark Temple

Mark Temple explores Ernest Gimson’s work as an architect and furniture maker in the Arts and Crafts tradition, alongside three generations of the Gimsons and numerous other characters for whom Stoneywell Cottage became their home.


The Children's Bedroom

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Thursday 1st December 2022                                                             2.30pm Dunchurch Village Hall

Island Hopping - Around British Islands                                                            Speaker:  Keith Cattell

Isle of Staffa with Fingal's Cave

Take any small piece of land, surround it with water, and it becomes a place of romance and delight.

This is a trip around some of the smaller island components of the British Isles, looking at their history, scenery and buildings.

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Thursday 19th January 2023                                                               2.30pm Dunchurch Village Hall

RNTA Annual General Meeting

Followed by........


"Accustomed as I am......."                                                                                      Speaker: David Howe

David came to us at an AGM a few years ago, with his hilarious “Laughter is the Best Medicine”. This time he will entertain us with the pleasures and perils of public speaking, drawing from memorable moments in his 24 years of giving talks and presentations.

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Thursday 2nd February 2023                                                              2.30pm Dunchurch Village Hall

Treading the Duckboards                                                                                        Speaker:  Kate Wills






Kate came to us in March 2022 with her fascinating talk about Northampton Guildhall. In a complete change of theme, this time she will talk about Army Concert parties, one of her thoroughly researched topics from World War I.

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Wednesday 15th February 2023                                                          7.30pm Dunchurch Village Hall


The Magic of Morocco                                                                                         Speaker:  Roger Butler

From the markets of Marrakesh to the sand dunes on the edge of the Sahara – a visual feast, including the Atlas Mountains, remote valleys, ancient forts, hilltop villages and colourful towns.

The Atlas Mountains

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Thursday 2nd March 2023                                                                   2.30pm Dunchurch Village Hall

Sophistication in British Art Deco Glass                                               Speaker:  Charles Hajdamach

  • Keith Murray at Stevens & Williams

  • Stuart Crystal and the Harrods Exhibition, 1934

  • Graham Sutherland, Paul Nash, Eric Ravilious and Dame Laura Knight

Bowl - Graham Sutherland

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Wednesday 15th March 2023                                                               7.30pm Dunchurch Village Hall

“The Most Dissolute Man in London”:                                                                 Speaker: Gillian White

The 1st Duke of Devonshire and the Building of Chatsworth                                                

William Cavendish, 4th Earl and 1st Duke of Devonshie, has gone down in history as both the saviour of British liberties and “the most dissolute man in London”. This talk looks at his exciting political life as one of the aristocrats who overthrew James II and brought William of Orange to the throne, and also considers the gambling, womanising, duel-fighting side of his story. But Cavendish was also the builder of one of England’s greatest country mansions, Chatsworth House, and we’ll also look at the architecture and decoration of this great building that took twenty years and two architects to complete – and was really only done by accident. 

Godfrey Kneller 

Portrait of William Cavendish

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