Genealogy news roundup: Cheshire East burial records available online

By Rosemary Collins, 26 July 2017 - 3:06pm

Plus: 14 new archives receive accreditation; New £26m Postal Museum opens; Findmypast adds Somerset records; Gwent Archives receives funding to commemorate soldier's letters

St Mary's Church, Nantwich (Credit: youaintseenme)

Records of over 130,000 burials in Cheshire East are now available to search on Deceased Online.

Cheshire East Borough Council was established in 2009 as an amalgamation of the former boroughs of Macclesfield, Congleton and Crewe and Nantwich.

Deceased Online has now indexed and digitised records of the six cemeteries and one crematorium in the Crewe area, dating from 1861 to 2015.

It has also digitised a further 144,000 records from the Macclesfield area, which will be released later in the year.

New £26 million Postal Museum opens

The postal service is able to display its unique collections to the public for the first time in almost 20 years following the opening of London’s brand-new The Postal Museum.

The museum, located in Phoenix Place, Camberwell, is operated by the Postal Heritage Trust and will celebrate its opening with weekends of family activities on 28-30 July and 5-6 August.

Adrian Steel, director of the museum, told Who Do You Think You Are? Magazine he hoped it would “change people’s view of what the post is, what it represents.”


14 new archives receive accreditation

14 local and specialist archives have received recognition under the Archive Service Accreditation (ACA) scheme.

The new archives, including Birmingham Archives and Collections, Surrey History Centre, and West Yorkshire Archive Service, bring the total number of ACA accredited archive services in the UK to 86.

Accreditation is awarded to archives to recognise their success in good management, sustainability and responsiveness to stakeholders, among other criteria.

The accreditation process is supported by seven bodies, including The National Archives, the Archives and Records Association and the national archives’ bodies in Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland.

Findmypast adds Somerset records

Millions of records of births, marriages and deaths in Somerset have been added to Findmypast.

The new collection includes transcripts of over 2.1 million parish baptisms, 258,000 marriage banns, 1 million marriages and 1.5 million burials.

The records span four centuries, with some dating back to 1501. They include the baptism of Reginald Francis Cheese at St Barnabas in Knowle, Somerset on 16 August 1896.

Cheese subsequently changed his surname to Cleese and became the father of Monty Python comedian John Cleese.

Gwent Archives receives funding for project commemorating soldier’s letters

Letters from an Abersychan soldier to his sweetheart will be commemorated in a new project organised by Gwent Archives.

The project, ‘Sharing Private O’Brien’, is inspired by letters written from Private William O’Brien, who was killed in battle in 1917, to Rose Curtis.

The archive has now received £9,400 funding from the Heritage Lottery Fund for the project. The project will enable people in Monmouthshire to participate in events that will commemorate William and others from Abersychan, as well as learning more about an ordinary soldier’s experiences during WWI and about the heritage of Abersychan.

Schoolchildren from Abersychan will create two animated films based on William’s letters, young people will create a roll of honour for Abersychan soldiers, and adult volunteers will research and stage a guided walk of Abersychan.

LGBQT sites receive listed status

Two important buildings linked to England’s LGBQT heritage have received Grade II listing from the government on the advice of Historic England.

The move marks the 50th anniversary of the partial decriminalisation of sex acts between men in England under the Sexual Offences Act, which passed on 27 July 1967.

The two sites are both in Devon – The Cabin in Buck Mills, a studio and summer cottage shared by artists Judith Ackland and Mary Stella Edwards; and the Chapel of St Anne in Saunton, which features a stained glass window created by artist and suffragette Mary Lowndes.

In addition, 14 other sites have been re-listed to include their importance to LGBQT history. These include the London grave of James Barry, a respected military surgeon who was found on his death in 1865 to be biologically female; Reading Gaol, where Oscar Wilde was imprisoned for ‘acts of gross indecency with other male persons’; and Chantry House in Steyning, West Sussex, home of Vita Sackville-West and her husband Harold Nicolson, who both had same-sex affairs throughout their marriage.

New £26m Postal Museum opens in London
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New £26m Postal Museum opens in London
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Protests over ‘dangerous precedent’ of access charges at Northamptonshire Archives
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