A member of The Federation of Family History Societies
St James' Church, Haslingden
St John's Church, Bacup
St Mary's, Church Rawtenstall


Rossendale Branch Newsletter September 1998

The Lytham Fair was a resounding success. There were more than 700 visitors to the Lowther Pavilion on the day. We all had to work very hard but we still enjoyed ourselves. There seemed to be a never ending queue at our 1881 census stall.

Family History Roadshow and Rossendale Roots Exhibition. I hope you will all support this event which is being held this Saturday. Members of the Chorley Group will be at Rawtenstall library from 11.00am - 3 pm with their Roadshow material. They will be bringing the IGI, the 1881 census and the Griffiths Valuation records for Ireland. This is primarily a recruitment drive so examples of our project work will also be on display. As there are a number of large exhibition boards boards round the walls of the lecture hall I am hoping to put up various pedigrees which will show how the valley has changed over the years and how it has been influenced by successive waves of migrants. I have to admit that I have perhaps been rather over ambitious. I will be happy to display any items which you think will be of interest, pedigrees, photographs, or whatever. Could you please bring them to the library on Friday afternoon if possible.


The Federation now has its own web site at http://www.ffhs.org.uk This includes most of the free leaflets available from the Federation, including the list of contact addresses for member societies.

Coming Events. Talks, Conferences, Exhibitions.

Saturday 5 September. A Family History Roadshow and Exhibition will be held in the lecture hall at Rawtenstall library.

Saturday 10 October. N.W. Group of FHS. Family History Fair, Stockport Town Hall. 10.00am - 4.30pm Admission £1.50.

Friday 30 October. The Society's Annual Dinner is this year hosted by the Fylde Branch. It will be at the Masonic Club, West Drive, Cleveleys, Blackpool. The Guest Speaker is Ann Hind the Deputy Coroner of Blackpool. She will speak on "The Law: A matter of Life and Death". Places are £14.00 per head. An application form was included in your May magazine. If you have lost it contact Mr. P. Pearson, 13 Summitt Drive, Freckleton, PR4 1PP before 29th September.

Cornish Ancestry?

I didn't have any takers from my request in the last newsletter for someone to search the 1851 and 1861 census for the Whitworth quarrymen who might have started the Britannia Coconutters. Though a couple of you did say you had Cornish ancestors. I still think this could be an interesting project.


At various times I have been working in the Newchurch graveyard with Michael, Valerie and Mary. We have been checking the transcripts which were originally done by members of the Society in the years 1984 - 1986! The so called New Graveyard is in a mess. Of the 165 stones we have checked 27 have been overturned, many of the others are small sunken stones and overgrown flat stones and kerbs. It is a very sad sight. We will not be able to finish the task before the winter. I hope it doesn't take another 13 years before the project is completed.

Rawtenstall library has had a display of photographs taken by Carol Griffith. These show Waterbarn Baptist Chapel Stacksteads and the adjoining graveyard which she is trying to save from demolition. Has the graveyard been inscribed? Would anyone interested please contact our Projects Organiser Michael Hiluta.

The Boer War took place in South Africa between 1899 and 1902. If you are interested in tracing a relation who fought or fell on that battlefield you should contact Pam McFadden, P.O. Box 20, Ladysmith 3370, South Africa. She is hoping to build up a database that will trace every soldier's grave, ever Boer War veteran's fate.


Cemetery Ghosts are only Genealogists with Lanterns!

From -The Liverpool & District FHS. New South Wales. May 1998