Founded in 1975, with a membership of around 70, the group shares an interest not only in history local to Chulmleigh and district but to the entire South West of England. It describes itself as not a society of academics but a genuine cross-section of “local” people, which includes not only Chulmleigh but also Ashreigney, South Molton, Chawleigh, Witheridge, Morchard Bishop, Black Dog, and so on. Its aim is not only to further and foster interest in the local history of the “South West” but to do this in such a way as to encourage friendship amongst its membership.
The Annual General Meeting (usually followed by a speaker on some topic of interest) starts its winter programme of monthly meetings. These involve speakers on a variety of topics, a social evening in January and a Society dinner in May, usually with an after dinner speaker. This event also starts the summer programme of visits, running from May to September, which includes at least one coach outing. Other annual events include a Saturday coffee morning at the Town Hall and a Society “table” in the Town Hall during Chulmleigh Fayre week, when members are available for general enquiries and to explain our aims and activities.
The Society’s research and record-keeping aspects of our activities currently include a more detailed local history of Chulmleigh than has previously been attempted; liaison with other societies; the production of an annual illustrated “Transactions” publication describing the Society’s activities, which is distributed free to members and other local history archives; a periodic newsletter; updating and expanding our own plan archive and library at the Town Hall and making this available to members; conducting sympathetic interviews with older members of the locality and recording these on disc; and developing a photographic record of Chulmleigh and surrounding areas.
The annual subscription is £6.00 single and £10.00 joint (two people sharing an address) plus £2.50 payable at each lecture attended. Visitors are welcome to attend at £4.00 per person.
Roy Gosney, Chairman
Sue Ellwood, Secretary