History Section


La Société Jersiaise

The History Section


Minutes of the meeting held on Tuesday November 16th 2004 at 5.15pm
Members' Room

Members present :
Frank Falle (Chairman), Jean Arthur, Marie-Louise Backhurst, Mary Billot (Secretary), Mervyn Billot, Gavin Booth, Bertram Brée, Roy Dobin, Caroline Easterbrook, Douglas Hooke, Nicolas Jouault, Frank Le Blancq, Suzanne Le Feuvre, David Le Maistre, Georgia Le Maistre, Bob Le Sueur, David Levitt, Bill Tower.

1. Apologies for absence :
Francis & Anne Corbet, Sue Groves, Sue Hardy, Tertius Hutt, Sarah Jordan, Alec Podger, Richard & Gwyneth Syvret.

2. Minutes of the meeting of October 19th 2004 and amendments

  1. There were no amendments; the minutes were approved as a correct record.

3. Matters arising from the minutes not covered by the agenda
Mont Orgueil Castle
Signage. Bob Le Sueur would like to see the draft text for the signs. Frank Falle said that he has the volume of text, which is voluminous; Rybot and Nicolle were the sources. It gives the history of each building and the preferred option for the text. Comments have to be submitted by November 23rd. He will lend his copy to the SJ Library for Bob and Mervyn Billot to study there; he will also deposit future documents in the Library once he has studied them. Prof. Michael Jones, Prof. Platt, Dr Neil Rushton and one other will discuss nomenclature.
  1. 5.7 David Le Maistre said that the paperback version of Wace's Roman de Rou was described as a 'revised version of the translation' by Glyn Burgess, originally published by the SJ. Frank said that Roger Long knew that it was being reprinted.

  2. Chairman's communications
  3. 1 Frank Falle said that Stuart Fell (E&PS) would come to the January 2005 meeting to talk about planning applications and protection of buildings. He was not able to come to this meeting as previously arranged.
  4. 2 Section Budget 2005. He asked whether members spend on anything other than postage and stationery via the Office. Georgia Le Maistre asked about photography expenses for recording buildings about to be demolished. Nick Jouault said that he is happy to record digitally onto disk. Frank will put down £50.00 for this item and £30.00 for presents for the study tour to Vannes in September 2005.
  5. 3 Frank circulated a booklet on the German Occupation called Carrot tea by Carol Ansell, who wants a distributor. It was a graphic design project for her degree from the University of West of England. Marie-Louise Backhurst said that it was interesting and that perhaps she should produce copies on demand.
  6. 4 The 2004 Autumn lunchtime lectures have attracted very good attendances of over 70 for each one. Bob Le Sueur asked whether the information was lost. Frank said that the talks would need further work on them before being of sufficient standard for the SJ Bulletin; the scripts should also be given to the SJ Library. Marie-Louise said that publication of all the lectures would unbalance the subject content and that as Editor she had the final decision on content. She could not guarantee publishing even one of the lectures annually. Gavin Booth said that the papers could go on the Section's website pages after editing. Mervyn Billot said that there could be problems with graphics and Frank asked about copyright. Bob advocated that the lecture material should be given to the Library and that it was up to each speaker so to do.
  7. 5 The 2005 lectures will have a maritime theme; the dates have been fixed (see October minutes). Frank will talk on November 16th on the Le Hardy and Dumaresq connections with HMS Victory. Bob Le Sueur will talk on Seymour Tower if absolutely necessary. Other topics suggested were Philip d'Auvergne and the start of shipbuilding.
  8. Chairmen and Secretaries' Meeting, November 2nd 2004
  9. The History Section display in the Museum display case. Geraint Jennings wants to know about content with assistance from Francis Corbet and Bertram Bree. Frank will try to contact Geraint.
  10. The Cultural Strategy report includes duplication in provision, the role of the SJ and its funding. A change of relationship has been mooted for the SJ to pass from the JHT to the ESC Committee. The meeting agreed that the JHT reimbursement should not become a States based grant. The proposed Council for Culture was weighted in favour of the politicians and the performing and visual arts; no costs were given.
  11. Collette Stevens has resigned as Vice President because of health reasons, to everyone's regret. Angela Underwood has resigned as Librarian as she and Greg are leaving Jersey shortly. Anna Baghiani has holidays in December and a hospital stay in January 2005. Executive hopes to recruit locally or perhaps a temporary person. The annual maintenance closure will take place in January.
  12. 7 Frank will send a letter to Angela Underwood thanking her for all her help in the last three years.
  13. 8 The Section Christmas Party will take place on Tuesday December 14th (note date) in the Members' Room at 5.15pm. Bertram Brée will introduce the slides of Avranches. Non-Section members who joined the trip will be invited. There will be a charge of (up to) £2.00 per head.
  14. 9 Mary Billot said that there might be a delay in preparing and sending out the minutes as her p/c is being upgraded.

  15. Members' contributions
  16. 1 Bertram Brée said that divers are investigating the site where the Alabama (Confederate ship) and the Kearsage (Union ship) sank off Cherbourg after a naval engagement. Capt. Thomas Saumarez reported hearing the battle in Jersey (Jersey Times). Mervyn Billot said that he heard the guns of Cherbourg in June 1940.
  17. 2 Bill Tower is researching the Channel steam packets. Kevin Le Scelleur (Friends of the Maritime Museum) would also be interested. Stead in his Traveller's guide to Jersey reports on sailings from Weymouth to Jersey after the Napoleonic Wars.
  18. 3 Nick Jouault said that the JEP mentioned the sale of the Ouless painting of the sinking of the Dispatch in 1851 or 1853; it occurred between the heads of the Harbour.
  19. 4 David Le Maistre circulated a postcard showing the 'pebble' at St Catherine; it features in the St Martin parish book. He asked about the floating dock shown in the background of a picture of the sailing vessel Gladiator in the old harbour. He reminded members to look at backgrounds of family photos and circulated a 1945 photo showing German tanks loaded onto a landing craft (R40) about to be shipped back to France from Anne Port beach. He went to the talk by Louise Magris on bats and squirrels. Bats are a protected species therefore the repair or removal of fascias behind which bats roost needs to be cleared with P&E first.
  20. He asked whether the Royal Antediluvian Order of Buffaloes still exists locally. The next Antiques Fair at the RJAHS on 27/28 November will include more Ian Monins postcards for sale.
  21. 5 Marie-Louise Backhurst said that a revised planning application has been submitted for the Collins Vine St/King St development. It now would keep the façade but all interior walls in the four buildings would go; they are possibly 17th century. She has researched the buildings and will write another letter to Planning.
  22. She is collecting street names and wonders whether Pitt St is named after André Pitt (1789-1832) or the Earl of Chatham (Pitt surname), a Lt-Governor. She has noted in the Morning News (18/3/1848) that John Kimber, boatman, was drowned by the Zebra on its way to see the Chinese junk in the Roads.
  23. 6 Jean Arthur asked David Levitt whether he knew of the sundial of 1762 on St Mary's church, paid for by Thomas Nicolle.
  24. 7Bob Le Sueur said that the wooden camera obscura at Rozel has collapsed. He attended the recent CIOS meeting when a collection of coloured slides were shown, taken by the commanding officer of MG Battalion in the west of Jersey (1940-43). One included the camera obscura at Grève de Lecq. Mr Alan Allix owns the collection, which he got from German officers. Frank asked whether they shown be copied for the SJ Photographic Archive and also if Dr Paul Sanders knows of them as he is writing the updated history of the German Occupation. Roy Dobin volunteered to ask Mr Allix for permission and whether the slides could be shown to a Section meeting in February 2005.
  25. 8Suzanne Le Feuvre promoted the Farming Antiques Road Show at the RJAHS on November 21st. Experts will be on hand for valuations of any artefact, especially those relevant to the Jersey cow. She said that the seal of the first Jersey Agricultural Society (late 18th century) has disappeared.
The SJ Environment Section and the National Trust for Jersey are to produce a joint booklet on branchage, care of road sides, the scenic lanes competition, law of branchage, current practice.
  1. 9Georgia Le Maistre said that the lists of burials by Sinnatt's Funeral Directors (1828-1860) includes drownings. She is campaigning for Beaufort House, 15 Regent Road, to be saved from demolition. It was de-listed some years ago; it has a datestone Nicolas Le Quesne & Elizabeth Le Feuvre 1768. There is a planning application for it to be replaced by two blocks of flats. The road is one of the few undeveloped areas close to the Town centre. Residents and interested organizations (the Vingtaine de la Ville, National Trust) are sending in objections.
  2. 10Frank Le Blancq has replied to an enquiry about inundations by the sea in mediaeval times along the west coast. He sent information about possible storms in 1362 and the late 15th century to the Ph.D student. He has met Dr Sanders who was particularly interested in Father Rey, Jesuit priest and meteorologist and his wartime activities.

  3. Date of next meeting
  4. Tuesday December 14th at 5.15pm, in the Members' Room.
  5. This is our Christmas gathering at which Bertram Brée will introduce the Section's trip to Avranches in September. Please bring your photos, postcards and guidebooks.
  6. There will be a small charge to pay for refreshments.