Welcome to the Bromsgrove Society

The Bromsgrove Society exists to preserve the history and promote the sustainable development of the town of Bromsgrove in north Worcestershire.

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Autumn 2020 Programme

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Talks for our 2020/2021 season commence in September. In addition to our regular meetings on the third Tuesday of the month, there are some additional events.

Note: Due to on-going Government restrictions, all meetings for the Autumn 2020 programme will be held online via the Zoom platform.

To attend, participants will need to pre-register using the links below. Note: Registration will open one month before each event.


  • 15 September: Homes Fit for Heroes? Bromsgrove and the Post-war Housing Crisis. Speaker: Annie Deeley.
    Local historian and researcher Annie Deeley, who runs the popular Facebook page Bromsgrove Past & Present, tells the story behind Prime Minister David Lloyd George’s famous slogan and Bromsgrove’s efforts to overcome the national housing shortages after both world wars. The talk will be illustrated with examples of slum clearance in Bromsgrove and, in 1946, the arrival of the first prefabs in Sidemoor and the development of council housing in Catshill, Charford and Aston Fields. Register here.
  • 29 September: “Big Bertha”: Celebrating the Centenary Year of a Bromsgrove Icon. Speaker: Alastair Moseley.
    Alastair is a long-time railway enthusiast with a passion for the Lickey Incline, sparked at a young age when he visited the Incline to watch the trains with his father. His talk will focus on Bromsgrove's banking engine, fondly known as Big Bertha. Alastair will tell us about the development of Bromsgrove’s much-loved banking engine, why it came to be created and why it was fondly known as “Big Bertha”. He will explore some of the engine's technical features and how these were developed and changed during its 36 year career. Alastair’s presentation will include photographs of the locomotive throughout its life, some of which have not been published previously. This talk is sure to be of interest to railway enthusiasts and Bromsgrovians alike. Register here

Later talks will be:

  • 20 October: The Story of Hartlebury VAD Hospital in WW1. Speaker: Douglas Smith  Register here.
  • 17 November: Lord Horatio Nelson: Britain's Greatest Hero?. Speaker: Max Keen [Register from 17 October 2020]
  • 01 December: Britain in the 1950s: Speaker: Philip Bowen [Register from 01 November 2020]
  • 15th December: 821 Years of History in our Town: The Bromsgrove Court Leet. Speaker: Neil Beaumont  [Register from 15 November]

All meetings will be held at 7.30 p.m. 'Doors' to the online meeting room will open at 7.15 p.m. to give people time to login and connect to the meeting. Note: Once received, the meeting registration link is unique to you and cannot be used by anyone else.

These meetings are open to both members and non-members and are being offered free of charge. If you are not already a member, we encourage you to join the Society. Membership costs just £9.00 per year, which includes a complimentary copy of the annual Rousler magazine.

Recordings of our Summer Season Talks held in July 2020 are now available on our YouTube Channel.

If you wish to donate to the Bromsgrove Society you may do so via Paypal using the button below.


Latest Newsletter & AGM

The Bromsgrove Society Newsletter


The September 2020 issue of the Society's newsletter is now available, containing details of:

  • Our Autumn/Winter Talks Online
  • The opening of 'The BirdBox'
  • Bromsgrove Court Leet's virtual events
  • Bromsgrove School's new Heritage Centre
  • The Burma Star Association and VJ Day Commemoration
  • ...and more!

Click the links to download the September Newsletter and the Minutes from the Society's 2020 AGM (PDF format).


The Bromsgrove Society Celebrates its 40th Anniversary!

BSoc 40th Anniversary newBack in the late 1970s public concern was growing in the town as a number of centuries old and well loved buildings were falling into disrepair and facing the threat of demolition. Many people were anxious about the changing character of the town should the destruction of buildings such as The Mitre Inn, Stoke Prior Mill and Farm House and the old Workhouse go ahead. When the Stratford Road Almshouses were demolished without notice a steering group was formed to make the feelings of the public known.

Chris Pancheri and Jennie McGregor-Smith wrote to the Council and the local newspapers to drum up support for the formation of a new civic society which would promote pride in the town and district whilst encouraging an interest in conserving and enhancing the built and natural environment.

On Tuesday 13th May 1980 over 200 people packed the inaugural meeting and the new civic society for the district, The Bromsgrove Society, was formed.


Bromsgrove Rousler 2019

Rousler 2019The latest edition of the Bromsgrove Rousler, the popular local history magazine, is now available. The 2019 edition – number 34 in the series – once again features a fascinating mix of personalities and events that have helped shape Bromsgrove’s history.

Topics in this year’s Rousler include:

  • The Founding of the Bromsgrove Society
  • The Bilberry Hill WWI Gun Proof Range
  • The Work of Conservation Architects Freddie & Mary Charles
  • Two Byngs from Bromsgrove
  • History of Woodcote Manor
  • Local Artist Sybil Barham
  • Poet Joe Harrison

As well as being sold through local outlets, the Rousler is again available as a paid download through this website

An index to all editions of the Rousler back to 1986 is available as a free download.


Subscription to the History of Bromsgrove Book

To commemorate the Bromsgrove Society's 40th Anniversary, the Executive is planning to produce a new publication.

Provisionally entitled 'A History of Bromsgrove', the book will cover the history of the town and district from earliest times through to the present day based on the latest research. Local historians Jenny Townshend and Julian Hunt are hard at work on the text and the book will be lavishly illustrated with drawings, maps and photographs. Publication is scheduled for Summer 2020.

Click Read More to sign up as a Subscriber.


World War 1 Book

There is a possibility that a book may be compiled about our 'local lads' who took part in WW1, 1914-1918.

If any of your family from this area took part in the Great War and you would be willing to share their story, whether they survived, whether they were buried abroad or closer to home, whatever their story...

Please contact Chris Nesbitt, 01527 877227 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Upcoming Events

Buy Books Online

web Worcester Canal

A variety of books about Bromsgrove and the surrounding area is now available to purchase via our online bookstall.

We accept payment by credit/debit card or Paypal, using the Paypal gateway, or you can also pay by cheque.

You can browse the Bromsgrove Bookstall here.

Online Payments

Help us to save money and serve you better.

With postage costs continually increasing, we are keen to encourage more people to pay their subscriptions by either setting up a standing order with their bank or using Paypal on this website.

You can renew online and check the current subscription rates on our Membership Page.

You can also opt to receive your newsletter electronically - please contact the Membership Secretary.
 Payment can now be made by PayPal
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