General Meeting Report June 2016
6 Jul 2016 by david
Report from Henry Hodges Hon. Sec
CHEPSTOW SOCIETY _- Meeting Report for June 2016
The June meeting of the Society held as usual in the Drill Hall was reasonably well attended considering the light evenings are with us THE SPEAKER for the evening was Rose Hewlett on “Victorian Village Life”. The talk was based on a “Sketchbook” illustrating the village of Frampton on Severn in around 1865. It covers almost every dwelling in the village at that time and notes who the occupants were. It comes from the Clifford family who were the owners of the land and Lords of the Manor at that date. It was compiled it is thought by one of the Daughters of the house for her father who had been laid low by a stroke and was housebound as a consequence. It allows the reconstruction in some detail of the life and times of a largely agricultural settlement of that period. There were about 200 families in the village some of which is arranged in a traditional form around a village Green. The Sharpness to Gloucester ship canal runs past the village so there were merchants and boatmen living there as well as those engaged in farming. There were two schools and two pubs , Agricultural wages were low and times were hard for families on as little as eleven shillings a week, but the Cliffords were generous landlords by the standards of the times and rents were often remitted in the face of distress. The Telegraph came to the village in 1860 but the nearest railway station was between 5 and 6 miles away.
Following the usual break members discussed local matters which included an application for planning permission to replace the old north stand at the Racecourse by a modern unit which will be also used by the Kennel Club of Wales on non- race days. Members also heard a report on the meeting held to discuss what might happen in 2018 when the present charging regime on the Severn bridges ends. The next meeting will be at the Drill Hall at 7.15pm on Weds 20th July when as part of the Chepstow Festival a vintage film will be shown entitled “FOREST LIFE - THE RIVER SEVERN” All are as usual welcome , admission £4 .