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2017 meetings reports FEB  MAR APR MAY JUN JUL SEP OCT

The society usually meets on the third Monday of the month at 7.30 p.m. in the hall of Llanymynech Presbyterian Church, Chapel Street.
There is no annual subscription but we ask for a £3 donation from each person attending.
Tea and biscuits [included in the donation] are provided at the end of each meeting. A varied programme of speakers and visits is provided.
The forthcoming programme is:
                                            PROGRAMME for  2017
th] AGM and Members evening.
MARCH [20th] Sarah Thursfield Clothing children in the past.
APRIL [17th Easter Monday] Caroline Stewart Walking in the footsteps of Gerald of Wales. 
MAY [15th] John Hainsworth
Llanfyllin workhouse – an introduction
JUNE [19th] Visit
Guided visit to Llanfyllin workhouse 2.00 p.m.
JULY [17th] David Thornycroft
The rector of Llanymynech and  the battle of Shrewsbury 1403
SEPTEMBER[18th]  Visit to Oswestry Guildhall to meet archivist for talk and display on archives 2.00 p.m.
OCTOBER [16th]
Visit Guided visit to Whittington Castle by Sue Ellis 2.00 p.m.
NOVEMBER [20th] Tony Beardsell Llanymynech limeworks- its history and recent findings.

Glyn Gaskill – chairman  830094 gaskill@globalnet.co.uk 
Liz Amys – treasurer 828165.
Paddy Martin - minutes secretary 830506
 Mary Pritchard – catering 830381
Joan Zorn - 839130



In July 2016, the society enjoyed a talk from Mike Watkins and Wilma Hayes on a WW1 War Diary. The focus of the talk was the Canadian Lieutenant William L Hayes MC. We were given this Internet link to learn more CLICK. Once you click this link you will have to find your own way back to this page.

In Nov 2016, we were expertly led by David Thornycroft into the world of Mad Jack Mytton of Halston . The evening was enlightened by the production of the gun which belonged to Mad Jack. The piece was brought in by its current owner, James Lloyd. The previous owner of the gun was a Pant resident who had been a member of our society.

DSCF0537 (2)

James Lloyd [left] with David Thornycroft and Mad Jack’s ‘fowling piece’

Direct link to memoirsof John Mytton 1837 edition! CLICK

When the book opens scroll down to read.

To seethe list of documents from the late Chris Backshall donated to Oswestry Museum , please CLICK HERE


2017 meeting reports

January 2017

  History Society lunch
Eighteen members of the society enjoyed an excellent lunch and hospitality at the Dolphin.
Special guests were Terry and Jane Postings who have recently stepped down from their roles in the society. Their work for the society down the years has been much appreciated by members. 

 February 2017

    A.G.M. and Members Evening 20th February, 2017

Glyn Gaskill welcomed about sixteen members. He referred to the successful lunch held in January at the Dolphin and said a letter had been from the guest of honour, Terry Postings, the retiring treasurer
Glyn was unanimously elected Chairman. Liz Amys was chosen as treasurer and Paddy Martin as Secretary to keep a simple record of meetings.  Joan Zorn agreed to serve on the committee as well.Mary Pritchard volunteered to organise the refreshments as a non-committee member.

Liz then gave details of the finances, having taken over from Terry Postings.

Glyn outlined the programme for the coming year. This was followed by a discussion of ideas for 2018. The committee will follow these up.

Members' offerings followed. Val Jones shared fascinating memories of the history of the society itself as she remembered it. Ruth Allcock had researched lost royal palaces and Joan Zorn had brought some 1940's records of the village.

Eileen Anderson had brought a small simply-carved stone thought to have been used to receive money without danger of infection in times of plague.

The meeting ended with refreshments.


Paper given by Val Jones at February 2017 meeting


Llanymynech History Society was founded in the 1980s.  It was the brainchild of Bob Wilson a retired wine merchant from Tettenhall near Wolverhampton, who with his wife Adele retired to a small cottage in the village which they named Little Tettenhall.  Bob took an active interest in village life, running the junior football club, taking the lads to play in competitions as far away as Holland, and introducing a very successful wine club.

The first chairman of the society was Peter Thomas who lived on Rhiew Refail in Pant.  The first meeting was held in the Church House, as the Village Hall was closed due to alterations, which involved building a dividing wall in the large kitchen to provide a smaller meeting room.

When the alterations were finished we met in the new small meeting room until the membership increased and we transferred to the larger hall. Again during alterations to the Village Hall the society moved supposedly on a temporary basis to the Presbyterian Chapel school room, and have met here ever since.

Soon after we moved to the Village Hall, Peter resigned due to other commitments and Bob became chairman. Marie Ashton was the treasurer and Rosemary Jones and Betty Evans were tea hostesses.

Bob was very interested in history and gave many excellent talks himself. As they grew older, Bob and Adel moved back to Wolverhampton to live near their son.

We were very fortunate to have as our new chairman Chris Backshall who sadly passed away last year.  Chris was an efficient and popular chairman, who found many interesting speakers, and often would fill in at short notice giving talks himself.  

The only three  founder members still in the society are Joan Jones,  Olwen and myself.  Olwen used to attend with her friend Sybil Pugh who was our next door neighbour.  It is very sad that many of our members have passed on. Some of the other founder members were David and Rosemary Jones, Herb and Betty Evans, Chris and Don Wade, Mary Roberts, Stan Brown, Harry Boden and his first wife May and later with his second wife Kay, and Irene who pronounced her name the French way Iren.

Over the years we have had many interesting speakers and one or two not so interesting speakers.  Being a native of Welshpool I remember not so long ago really looking forward to hearing a speaker talking about the town, but was sadly very disappointed.

We also have outings during the summer months. One visit on a lovely summer evening in the early ‘90s was to Llanfyllin with a very good guide. At the end of the evening we visited the Old New Inn. I was very impressed with the tour and wrote an account of the visit.

 Another memorable visit which some of our current members will remember was to Plas Teg, a Jacobean Mansion between Wrexham and Mold which was a weird and wonderful old haunted 17th century Grade 1 listed building, which had been featured on TV. The only occupant was Cornelia Bayley an elderly lady with long flowing red hair, who with help from an odd job man was in the process of very slowly restoring the building, a mammoth task as everywhere looked very tired, worn and run down, but had obviously once been very grand. When Cornelia purchased the property in 1986 it had trees growing through the roof.  It had taken her three years to painstakingly remove all the paint, using a nail file on the intricate bits, from a beautiful carved oak staircase.  She took us on a tour of the rooms, the upstairs bedrooms and bathrooms gave an insight into some very early en suite plumbing.  In the dining room the table was set with a dusty, what had been white, by this time grey table cloth which looked as if it had been laid about five years ago.

Adjacent to the kitchen was a room full of several varieties of colourful parrots. Cornelias pride and joy.  Which we were very honoured to have been shown as it was not normally on her tour.  Plas Teg was a visit which will long be remembered.

The society has given me many hours of enjoyment, and I hope it continues to thrive for many years to come.

Val Jones.
20 - 2 - 2017

 March 2017

There was good attendance at the meeting of Monday, March 21st when the speaker was Sarah Thursfield. Her subject was the history of how children were clothed from Medieval times.

      Far from children being dressed as miniature adults, as the theory has been put forward, changes in their clothing often became the new fashions they favoured as they reached adulthood. Sarah's deep knowledge of the history of clothing was apparent in her talk and made for a fascinating and informative evening.

A very appropriate vote of thanks was given by Val Jones

 April 2017


CLICK to read about Gerald’s visit to OSWALDESTREE !

More than twenty people attended the meeting on Monday 17 April when Caroline Stewart told us about the journey made by Gerald around Wales in 1188. Just as interesting was the telling of Caroline’s own journey following in Gerald’s footsteps without a car! Her journey was made by bus, train, bicycle and on foot. The task took several years to complete and was finished the month before her talk.

The purpose of Gerald’s tour was to recruit men to fight in the third crusade and he was accompanied by the archbishop of Canterbury. The flow of history was brought significantly to light, such as Gerald being unable to comment on Harlech castle as it had not been built at the time of his visit! At one place, Caroline met with a modern day army recruiting officer who was familiar with the purpose of Gerald’s tour.

Ruth Allcock gave a fitting vote of thanks.

 MAY 2017

There were several new faces at the May meeting when John Hainsworth expertly spoke on the work of the Llanfyllin Dolydd Building Preservation Trust. The background of the development of providing for the poor in the nineteenth century was comprehensively outlined. Several documents involving national and local developments were highlighted.

Photos illustrating the  many challenges and successes of the restoration of the Llanfyllin Workhouse were covered. There were certainly numerous positive aspects to celebrate. Many previously neglected parts of the building have been sympathetically transformed to modern working areas. There still remains much to do, particularly involving restoring the main central roof. An appeal for funds is currently active.

The workhouse is thriving with 15 workshops let to local enterprises, residential accommodation, a café-bar and a wide range of  community activities.

Further information can be found on the trust's very informative website at http://www.the-workhouse.org.uk/ .

CLICK to see booklet on the workhouse written by John Hainsworth. An updated version is available from the workhouse which is open most days from 10.00 a.m. to 5.00 p.m..

 JUNE 2017

Llanfylllin Dolydd (1) (Mobile)

Workhouse master's house showing lantern roof which is the next major restoration project.

The society enjoyed a excellent guided tour of Llanfyllin Workhouse [ the Dolydd] lead by John Hainsworth and Martyn Davies. The tour was rounded off with a video showing the history of the institution followed by refreshments. A grand afternoon out!

 JULY 2017

Battlefield Church.

Site of the Battle of Shrewsbury 1403

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David Thornycroft gave an entertaining and enlightening presentation on the rector of Llanymynech and the battle of Shrewsbury, 1403. The way in which the violence and thuggery of the knights was controlled by the church was a different picture from the image of bold and brave knights carrying out heroic deeds. The rector was one David Hwitton who marched with Hotspur against King Henry IV. The talk embraced the skulduggery and strategies of medieval warfare. Holy men fought alongside soldiers with instances of the pope giving absolution to priests who forgot themselves so far as to deliberately shed blood .


Oswestry Town


The society enjoyed a fascinating visit to Oswestry Guildhall to see the town archives. The archivist, Sara Downs, had prepared an interesting range of photos and documents, several of which were relevant to Llanymynech. Sara described her work and the problems associated with storing and cataloguing the archives. The Oswestry Cemetery Project was also described.


A familiar local castle was brought to life when the castle manager,  Sue Ellis, took the society around Whittington Castle.  The overall development of the castle from an Iron Age fortified place to the cherished ruins of today were outlined.
The unique position of the castle being naturally defended by water, rather than on a hill, was made clear. The ‘vandalism’ when Thomas Telford used the castle as a source of stone to build the A5 was described.
The castle today is used a rich source for many re-enactments and educational visits. 


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