Formed in 1983 to record and promote interest in the history of the Derbyshire village of Sawley
Past Events - 2009

30th November 2009 - "Two Queens and a Countess."
The last talk of 2009 was given by David Templeman and was a fascinating tale of loyalty, policy, treachery and intrigue in sixteenth century England. Henry VIII and his wives, son Edward VI and daughter Mary were given due consideration, but most of David's time was taken up with with an examination of the relationship between Elizabeth I of England and Mary Queen of Scots. The alliances of the two women and the pressures applied by the churches, the women's suitors, and in Mary's case husbands,and the various court factions and parties was considered. Special attention was given to the rise, marriages intrigues, power, and ultimate failures of Elizabeth, Countess of Shrewsbury (Bess of Hardwick). These were indeed "interesting times".

26th October 2009 - "Have you got a slate loose?"
The Society's winter programme of talks continued on Monday 26th October when Malcolm Burrows asked members and visitors "Have you got a slate loose?" Malcolm's talk was a history of roofing materials in English vernacular architecture (see box below).

26th September 2009 - Sawley Township Charter Day
The celebrations, on Saturday, September 26 2009, of the 750th anniversary of the Sawley Charter provided Sawley with a day to remember.
The Charter, granted by King Henry III in 1259, gave the Bishop of Coventry and Lichfield, who then held the manor of Sawley, the right to hold a market once a week and a fair once a year. This effectively turned Sawley, at that time the largest village into the area, into a township.
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"Have you got a slate loose?"
The Society's winter programme of talks continued on Monday 26th October when Malcolm Burrows asked members and visitors "Have you got a slate loose?" Malcolm's talk was a history of roofing materials in English vernacular architecture. He explained some of the technology and tradition behind the use of thatch, stone slabs (both grit-stone and limestone), slate, common tiles and pantiles. The presentation was illustrated with a series of excellent photographs which showed the wealth of history that is to be found just above our normal sight-lines and which we miss so easily as we walk around with our eyes directed on the ground.

As I walked through Derby the next morning, keeping a watch out for a particularly fine example of decorative slating that Malcolm had illustrated the previous night, I felt sure that I wasn't the only member of the society who had discovered a new interest in the urban landscape.
Past Events