Charles Dickens and his gardens



On 12th May, Jean Lear gave the society an interesting talk about the gardens at Gad's Hill Place near Higham, where Charles Dickens lived. She had been involved in a project to help restore the gardens and talked about the work that had been done as well as explaining what the gardens were like when Dickens lived there. It was interesting to find out what Victorians could buy from catalogues, Dickens may have bought some wire work garden furniture from them, which they found evidence for in the garden and in photos.



Sister Janet - Heroine of the Anglo- Zulu War

On 9th June, Mrs Stossel gave a talk about Sister Janet, who worked as a nurse in the Zulu War and was influenced by Florence Nightingale. Her book tells the story of Sister Janet and there is background on battles of the war, by Brian Best.



Preparing for a Royal Wedding



Miss Carter gave us a humorous insight into the background preparation for Princess Anne's wedding in 1973 including information about the people involved and the day itself. After all her hard work leading up to the day, Miss Carter was able to see the wedding for herself in Westminster Abbey.





Victoria's Dreadful Uncles

Mrs. Boyd gave a most interesting talk on each of George III sons, Victoria's uncles,  outlining their various temperments and characteristics.   It very well illustrated that whilst seeking a legitimate heir to the throne the complexities of 'Royal Marriages',  and human nature, resulted in numerous illegitimate children being born before a legitimate heir - Victoria.




Black People in Medway 1655 - 1914

Our President, Mr. Brian Joyce, gave a most interesting talk on the historical evidence of Black people being in the Medway area from as early as 1655.   Referring to his researches of Birth, Marriage and Death Certificates he was able to  show that over the period a significant number of black people not only visited the area but became resident. The power point presentation was made the more interesting with photos of black residents from Edwardian times .
He has written a book on the subject which can be obtained from Mr. Joyce or through this Society
The subject of the meeting tied in with the Curriculum being studied by Students of the Robert Napier School and many of them together with their teachers were in the audience.