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Events
Tuesday 20th August 2019 at 2pm

Guided Tour of Shilstone House

Led by resident archaeologist Abi Gray 

Nestled amidst the rolling hills of the South Hams countryside is Shilstone House, a family home with a remarkable and extensive history. The site, in the parish of Modbury in South Devon, contains an array of architectural and archaeological features representing almost 6000 years of human endeavour. At the heart of the site is Shilstone House, a former Domesday manor which overlays evidence of late prehistoric occupation. Formal gardens surround the dwelling and include lawns, terraces and a medieval walled garden as well as the only known seventeenth century Italianate water theatre and associated water gardens in the UK making the site nationally important.

This guided tour of Shilstone House and grounds will last approximately one hour and thirty minutes and will be followed by tea and cakes at the Devon Rural Archive. Guests will explore the history of the site through its surviving archaeology and rare architectural features before seeing the results of a near fifteen year project to restore the house. There will also be a chance to view artefacts from the site in the exhibition gallery.

Tickets are £15 (includes a tea and cakes) and booking is essential.

To purchase tickets please contact Abi Gray on 01548 830832 or office@dra.uk.net. 
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Payment may be made in cash, by cheque payable to 'The Fenwick Charitable Trust', or by card over the telephone and using our online terminal. When requesting tickets via email, please include your name, your telephone number and the number of tickets you require. You will receive a unique link to the online payment terminal to submit your details. Payments are non-refundable. 
Tuesday 17th September 2019 at 2pm

Guided Tour of Shilstone House

Led by resident archaeologist Abi Gray 

Nestled amidst the rolling hills of the South Hams countryside is Shilstone House, a family home with a remarkable and extensive history. The site, in the parish of Modbury in South Devon, contains an array of architectural and archaeological features representing almost 6000 years of human endeavour. At the heart of the site is Shilstone House, a former Domesday manor which overlays evidence of late prehistoric occupation. Formal gardens surround the dwelling and include lawns, terraces and a medieval walled garden as well as the only known seventeenth century Italianate water theatre and associated water gardens in the UK making the site nationally important.

This guided tour of Shilstone House and grounds will last approximately one hour and thirty minutes and will be followed by tea and cakes at the Devon Rural Archive. Guests will explore the history of the site through its surviving archaeology and rare architectural features before seeing the results of a near fifteen year project to restore the house. There will also be a chance to view artefacts from the site in the exhibition gallery.

Tickets are £15 (includes a tea and cakes) and booking is essential. 

To purchase tickets please contact Abi Gray on 01548 830832 or office@dra.uk.net. 

Payment may be made in cash, by cheque payable to 'The Fenwick Charitable Trust', or by card over the telephone and using our online terminal. When requesting tickets via email, please include your name, your telephone number and the number of tickets you require. You will receive a unique link to the online payment terminal to submit your details. Payments are non-refundable. 
Monday 9th September 2019, 1pm to 3pm

De-Mystifying Palaeography: 
old documents at your fingertips

A workshop with Lucy Browne

The DRA holds a growing collection of old documents (dating from 1635 onwards), relating to the ownership and transfer of property throughout the county. Often these manuscripts appear illegible, that is until you learn to identify individual letters, words and even standard phrases within them. 

Palaeography is an essential skill for historians who need to be able to read historical handwriting for their research. So if you are interested in learning how to read old documents, join us for this introductory workshop with genealogist and local historian, Lucy Browne, who has been working with Devon’s collection of published and manuscript sources for many years. 

Tickets are £10 and booking is essential. 

To purchase tickets please contact Abi Gray on 01548 830832 or office@dra.uk.net. 

Payment may be made in cash, by cheque payable to 'The Fenwick Charitable Trust', or by card over the telephone and using our online terminal. When requesting tickets via email, please include your name, your telephone number and the number of tickets you require. You will receive a unique link to the online payment terminal to submit your details. Payments are non-refundable. 
Thursday 5th September 2019 at 7pm

A Rural Legacy Lost:
Salmon Fishing on the Dart

An illustrated talk by Nick Baker

Net salmon fishing on the River Dart was not only an occupation, but a way of life, and it had its own associated dialect which is now in terminal decline. This illustrated talk will discuss the tradition of harvesting salmon as a means of business and pastime. It will begin with an investigation of salmon as a species, a fish that focuses its travels and migrations for the sole purpose of reproduction; the talk will then look at the ways people have tracked the salmon’s life cycle, and measured the strength of its population over time. The talk will reveal the challenges the salmon population faces from global warming and climate change; illustrate the associated historical dialect and jargon; and show the impact that the decline of salmon fishing and the loss of farming have had on the housing and economic structure of Stoke Gabriel in Devon. 

Nick Baker was born in Stoke Gabriel, Devon, which is situated on the banks of the River Dart, and which has for innumerable years been a focus of salmon fishing. He has a first degree in geography and geology, an M.A. in geology education, and a PhD in Earth Sciences. For many years Nick has taught geology and geography at a senior independent school. 

Tickets £5 each
or £30 to attend all 6 lectures remaining in 2019 

To purchase tickets please contact Abi Gray on 01548 830832 or office@dra.uk.net. 

Payment may be made in cash, by cheque payable to 'The Fenwick Charitable Trust', or by card over the telephone and using our online terminal. When requesting tickets via email, please include your name, your telephone number and the number of tickets you require. You will receive a unique link to the online payment terminal to submit your details.

All lectures are held in the lecture room of the DRA, in the grounds of Shilstone House near Modbury. The car park is accessible from 6:30pm, when doors open, and free refreshments are available in the exhibition gallery. There is ample free parking, and blue badge holders can pre-book a space near the building.
Thursday 19th September 2019, 11am - 3:30pm

Family History Helpdesk

With the Devon Family History Society

​The DRA holds microfiche copies of local parish registers of baptisms, banns, marriages and burials. These records, together with the census returns that are also available here at DRA, are invaluable to family historians, and those researching the social history of their home.

Experts from the Devon Family History Society will be offering one-to-one sessions at the DRA for people wishing to delve into their family history. If you are new to family history research, or if your researches have hit a brick wall, then book an hour's slot with a member of the team. 

Tickets are £3 and booking is essential. 

To purchase tickets please contact Abi Gray on 01548 830832 or office@dra.uk.net. 

Payment may be made in cash, by cheque payable to 'The Fenwick Charitable Trust', or by card over the telephone and using our online terminal. When requesting tickets via email, please include your name, your telephone number and the number of tickets you require. You will receive a unique link to the online payment terminal to submit your details. Payments are non-refundable.