Titchmarsh History Association is delighted to support The Parochial Church Council in their ‘Lights Out’ vigil around the War Memorial in Titchmarsh, between 10pm and 11pm on Monday 4th August 2014.
Villagers are encouraged to attend and asked to bring a candle for a shared moment of reflection to mark the 100th anniversary of the date Great Britain entered the First World War.
We have provided detailed information about each of the 24 Titchmarsh men who fell during World War One. These tributes will be used as part of this special commemoration when we pay our respects to all who sacrificed their lives during this conflict.
In recognition of the work we have already undertaken, the Heritage Lottery Fund has awarded funding for a further year. This will enable us to carry on our programme of research and presentations, but a priority now is to sort the mass of photographs and documents we have collected into a usable archive for use by future historians. Our presentation on the village between the wars attracted a loyal audience who braved the poor weather and the alternative attraction the World Cup semi-final to learn more of village history. Shirley talked about the domestic scene; Sylvia about the stories emerging from her analysis of the parish magazines; Ian used Mike’s research to talk about transport during the period; and Leslie used video and recorded memories to tell us more about the influence of Stella Skinner – headteacher here from 1938 to 1962 – on folk dancing nationally.
On Wednesday 10th April 2013 I was fortunate to join 53 other people at the Titchmarsh Clubrooms to hear a remarkable series of accounts of Titchmarsh at war. We were privileged to hear an intimate account of wartime life in the village and learnt about the rationing, blackouts and air raids of the 1940s. These amazing stories were made poignant by the presentations relating to the lives and deaths of individuals within the village, told by their descendants and others who brought the stories to life by making them deeply personal.
We saw old documents and photographs, and along with the information gathered from discussions with villagers, a vivid picture of life during the two world wars was painted. We were told the life stories behind some of the names on the war memorial, and how experiences in the Second World War changed the village forever. It was especially moving to hear from villagers who remember those times. We left the Clubrooms knowing more about the history of the village, but more important we also learnt from the legacy of those who were there then and who are here now, and who generously shared their recollections with us.