Category Archives: Local History

‘Fighting for our Rights’: Kingston’s role in the British disability rights movement

The town of Kingston-upon-Thames in Surrey and its surrounding neighbourhoods is a community blessed by a rich, diverse and fascinating heritage, with much of the area’s history being relevant to Britain’s wider past and, thus, its impact on present-day society … Continue reading

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Launching the League: The foundation of the League of Nations Union in Kingston

There are times in history when the global will very much influence the local, and during the interwar period Kingston-on-Thames in Surrey saw a burst of activity from a local lobby group which was designed to both promote the new … Continue reading

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When Food was Scarce: Memories of a Female Control Officer in World War One

While there has been a growing amount of scholarly and other research on the lives of women in Britain during the Great War, there is still much to investigate, especially in relation to particular types of occupation held by women … Continue reading

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A Nazi in Guildford: The activities of Arnold Leese in Surrey in the 1930s

Not many people in Surrey know that the town of Guildford in the heart of the county was home to one of Britain’s most notorious anti-Semites of the interwar period. During the 1930s, the fascist ideologue and racist activist Arnold Spencer … Continue reading

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The First ‘Multi-Media’ Show? Lawrence of Arabia in Surbiton

Many people with an interest in imperial history are familiar with the life and wartime career of T.E. Lawrence (1888-1935), mainly through the famous epic feature film Lawrence of Arabia (1962). The smash-hit and critically acclaimed movie starred the late Peter O’Toole … Continue reading

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Red Scare: Surbiton and Fears of Bolshevism

One hundred years ago this October (depending upon which version of the calendar one uses) the Bolshevik party under Lenin achieved a dramatic seizure of power in Russia, a coup d’etat which sent a chill of fear across much of Europe, … Continue reading

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Blackshirts and Women: New study looks at suffragettes who became fascists

A new pamphlet from the Bristol Radical History Group explores the appeal of interwar British fascism to a number of women who were formerly militant suffragettes. Written by Rosemary L. Caldicott, Lady Blackshirts: The Perils of Perception – suffragettes who became fascists (2017), … Continue reading

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