The ‘new’ committee has survived its first year in office with back up from the old hands, especially Graham and Jane. We hope that the 2012-3 programme was stimulating. We were pleased that the meetings were so well attended. Enclosed with this newsletter is our 2013-4 programme. All lectures will take place at St. Nicholas’s Hall and will start at 7-30pm. The only variation to this is that the AGM will be held starting at 7 pm, before the first lecture on September 24th.
The first speaker in September is Professor Jackie Eales, the current President of the Historical Association. In her first Presidential year, she lectured at many branches all over the country and we are very pleased to welcome her to West Surrey. Professor Eales focuses on the manner in which different historians have treated Elizabeth 1st, in an effort to look behind the carefully constructed official public image that was presented to her subjects and reveal some measure of the individual behind the mask.
Our second lecture on October 15th will be Emeritus Professor Anne Duggan who will address us on ‘Thomas Becket: Traitor, Martyr, Saint?’ Professor Duggan is acknowledged as the expert on Thomas Becket, a character who has intrigued many over many generations. Was he a traitor deserving death or a saint martyred for his faith?
Dr. Jason Peacey will be the speaker on November 12th. His topic is how the clash of conflicting political and religious viewpoints that were held at the time of the English Civil War led to a huge flood of printed documents as all parties sought to sway opinion. The battle of the printing presses was seen as a vital element in the battle for hearts and minds. Dr Peacey examines this broader debate through a case study of a man with strong Surrey connections.
Our December 3rd lecturer is Professor Mary Fulbrook, who will speak about her research that was published earlier this year entitled ‘A Small Town Near Auschwitz: Ordinary Nazis and the Holocaust.’ Professor Fulbrook has examined in detail the burgomaster of a small town near Auschwitz to gain insight into his world and how those who considered themselves ‘decent people’ acted as officials in the Nazi regime.
2014 topics will include the Indian sub-continent in the lead up to Independence and Partition, the Spanish Civil War and at a time when the concept of a united Britain is under question; we look back to Aethelstan, a remarkable ruler who has some claim to be recognized as the first King of Britain.
The annual cost of Associate Membership has been raised to £12. An application form for this is enclosed. Could you please return this, together with your payment, to Frank Flower, ‘Ifiori’, 1, Brynford Close, Horsell, Woking, Surrey, GU21 4DW, or bring it to September’s meeting. We look forward to another year of interesting topics.
Chris Mitchinson (Chairman)