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Kempley Social History Goes On-line PDF Print E-mail
Written by Prof. Basil Jarvis   
Thursday, 01 September 2011 00:00

Kempley may be just a small village but on Thursday 01 September it bursts upon the world stage via the Internet. Christened the Kempley Tardis, the site will tell the social, economic and religious history of the village over the past 1,000 years. The project, sponsored by the Friends of Kempley Churches and with cash from the Heritage Lottery Fund, demonstrates a new and exciting way of looking at the past, which is accessible to all.

Visitors to the site will be able to take virtual tours of the two churches in a full 360o view. They can marvel at the rare wall paintings and view the oldest complete timber roof in Northern Europe and listen to expert commentaries as they tour 900-year-old St Mary’s. English Heritage, who helped by funding the video, is particularly pleased with this element.

There are databases of baptisms, marriages and burials enabling academics and the public to trace family histories and relate them to the many historic buildings, the farms and the landscape. A particular innovation is a series of audio stories telling the real story of both current and historic figures in the village. A series of linked aerial photographs enables the visitor to overfly the village and relate the surroundings to maps going back to the very beginning of ordnance survey mapping

Central to the village story is the auction of 1919, when the 7th Earl Beauchamp sold most of the village and much of neighbouring Dymock. Over two days the whole social and economic fabric was turned inside out.

The immense amount of work to bring this all together was undertaken by a team of volunteers (The Friends Social History Project) under the direction of Project Manager, Chris Bligh who lives and works in Kempley.

Last Updated on Wednesday, 14 September 2011 15:55