Categories for 2023
SLHA News ...
News 2023
Lectures and Conferences

Expand All | Collapse All

Sleaford Heritage
A day of talks and a guided tour

A conference arranged by SLHA was held in The Source (Riverside URC) on Sleaford’s Southgate on Saturday 12 August. Speakers and presentations were:

Wendy Atkin and Dale Trimble, Old Sleaford Heritage Group, gave the story of the Manor House in Old Sleaford and explored the evidence from the on-site excavations in 2015. The house dates from the sixteenth century and the archaeology has yielded a wide range of information, especially from the Tudor period.

Steve Hayes of the Sleaford Navigation Trust described the history of the Sleaford Navigation which ran to the town from the Witham at Chapel Hill. There were seven locks to raise the canal to Sleaford; it enabled industries to thrive both in town and countryside.

Mike Lock of North Kesteven Heritage was the speaker about Navigation House, an impressive Grade II listed building on the former public wharf near the terminus of the canal. This former company office was played an important role when the town was linked to the Witham by the Sleaford Navigation.

Cogglesford Watermill, on the Slea to the north-east of the town, was the subject of a presentation by Anne Flannery and Robert Pratt of North Kesteven Heritage. This mill, dating from the early eighteenth century, has been fully restored to working order and is a popular visitor attraction.

After lunch a walking tour of the Sleaford Castle site was led by Mark Banham, Chairman of Sleaford Museum (see right)

Garry Titmus outlined the Sleaford Castle Development Project, of which he is Chairman. The archaeology of the castle site is being examined and plans are in place for publicising the castle’s history and raising its profile.

August 2023

Rail at British Ports
Focus on Immingham - past, present and future

Lee Armstrong, Head of Commerce (Rail) at ABP Immingham, gave an illustrated presentation to SLHA members at St Hugh's Hall on Wednesday 17 May.

Rail infrastructure serving British ports has declined considerably but it continues to play a significant role. Larger and better designed wagons are now used for carrying a range of bulky goods to and from ports.

The destinations of goods imported through Immingham and carried by rail are mainly in the northern half of the country. Coal for the steelworks at Scunthorpe is still a large element of the imports though at a lower level than a few u[years ago.

British ports are making good progress towards carbon neutrality in their operations.

Image: cranes for loading containers onto rail trucks at Immingham Dock 

May 2023

The Hearth Tax
An aid to understanding early vernacular buildings

Jenne Pape, a member of SLHA's Building Recording Group, has found Hearth tax records invaluable in her study of early Lincolnshire vernacular buildings. She gave an illustrated talk on the subject at the Sunday Special in Nettleham on 22 January.

The number of hearths for a particular house as recorded in the late seventeenth-century Hearth Tax records can be set alongside other information such as the number of chimneys on the building when shown on a contemporary map.

Sometimes there is close correspondence between the information from different sources. At other times there are discrepancies and Jenne suggested a number of reasons why this should be so.

Mud and stud cottage at High Toynton.
Two chimneys but how many hearths?

January 2023

Potters' Hill, Norton Disney
An Historic Landscape investigated

Bob Garlant of the Norton Disney History and Archaeology Group was one of three speakers at a 'Sunday Special' held in Nettleham on 22 January. His illustrated talk covered the recent site investigations in and around  Potters' Hill on the western edge of the parish close to the A46.

There is clear evidence of huts and other features of an Iron Age settlement and also of a large and impressive Roman villa which had tessellated floors.

On site in Norton Disney


January 2023Norton Disney

Boston, like other towns and cities, lost scores of industrial buildings in the 1950s to 70s. As the older town-centred industries declined or disappeared, new developments, such as car parks, relief roads and supermarkets, took their place.

Neil Wright spoke about Boston's transformation in a talk to SLHA members as part of the 'Sunday Special' at Nettleham on 22 January. Using his own fine collection of photographs and drawings from the 1960s, he gave details of some large and impressive buildings - now lost and infrequently recorded - including warehouses, mills, railway structures, factories and cinemas.

Packhouse Quay, Boston, site of
several lost warehouses.
(Early 20th century postcard)

January 2023

Road Hogs and Motor Scorchers
How the press reported Lincolnshire's early motorists

On Wednesday 18 January, Andrew Walker, Chair of SLHA, gave an on-line talk about the cars and motorcycles on Lincolnshire roads in the early twentieth century. He drew most of his material from reports and articles which appeared in Lincolnshire newspapers.

The attitude towards motorists - who were relatively wealthy individuals - can be followed through the newspaper columns. Speed was a constant issue, and the newspapers regularly referred to car drivers as 'road hogs'.

Two Lincoln women motoring in c.1911

January 2023

Norwich Castle
A Royal Palace Re-born

The first 'live' SLHA talk of 2023 was given in St Hugh's Hall, Lincoln by Tim Pestell on Wednesday 11 January. Tim is Senior Curator of Archaeology at Norwich Museum and Art Gallery, which is housed in Norwich Castle.

A multi-million pound project is currently underway which is transforming the interior of the castle and creating new areas for museum display. Retaining the features of both the original Norman structure and the extensive Victorian remodelling has been difficult and expensive.

Work on the project is expected to be completed by Easter 2024.

Norwich Castle, Museum entrance

January 2023Norwich Castle