We’ll be at Kew Green on Saturday 5 September

Hort posterThe Society will have a stall at the Kew Horticultural Society’s annual show on Saturday 5 September. Please come and say hello and browse our selection of publications.

Coming up: A day conference in September at The National Archives

The National Archives, Kew

The National Archives, Kew

We are co-organising a day conference at The National Archives on Saturday 26 September 2015.

Modern times: the influence of technology on the history of family and place” is being organised by the Richmond Local History Society, together with the Friends of The National Archives, the East Surrey Family History Society and London Historians, and is open to any of these organisations’ members.

Find out more and book tickets

LAMAS Conference with a Middlesex theme on 21 November

The 50th Local History Conference of the London & Middlesex Archaeological Society will take place on Saturday 21 November 2015 at the Museum of London. The theme is ‘Middlesex: Our Lost County’ with a wide range of talks. Find out more

Forthcoming talks

Coming up this autumn we have talks on:

  • Richmond’s experience of the Second World War
  • the 600th anniversary of the foundation of Richmond’s Carthusian monastery
  • how Asgill House and Richmond Palace are connected with North America.

In 2016 we will have talks on:

  • Virginia Woolf in Richmond
  • a history of local cricket
  • The artist John Zoffany in Kew
  • The 100th anniversary of the Star and Garter Home in Richmond
  • Bamber Gascoigne’s project to restore West Horsley Place in Surrey
  • The Men of the Alberts in the First World War

Find out more and see our complete calendar of all events

Flying the Society’s flag in Kew, Ham and Richmond

The Society was formed on 24 June 1985. Our presence this summer at three key local fairs and fetes shows that thirty years on we are still going strong.

At the Kew Fete on Saturday 20 June we had a busy day selling books and distributing a flyer about our forthcoming talks.

Len Chave’s stand for the Ham Amenities Group at the Ham Fair on Saturday 13 June included several Richmond Local History Society publications and our talks flyer.

Kew Fete 2

Our stand at the 2015 Kew Fete

Alyson & Diana, RLHS at Kew Fete

Alyson Barr and Diana Thompson at Kew Fete







Len Chave

Len Chave

Ham Amenity Group’s display of publications at Ham Fair in June 2015

David Blomfield at the 2015 Richmond May Fair, about to draw the winning questionnaire

We had a very good day at Richmond’s May Fair on Saturday 9 May.

As well as having the opportunity to sell our publications and to launch the new issue of our journal Richmond History, we managed to encourage many more people than before to visit our stall and to find out what the Society also has to offer.

Many people took out membership for the first time and we had 39 entries to our competition, only five of them from members.

A newly recruited member, Peter Griffiths, won £10 worth of publications by submitting the winning entry. The Society’s new President, David Blomfield, is seen here just before he opened the box to make the draw.

The Society’s colourful new bunting, which we used at the Richmond May Fair and at the Kew Fete, was created for us by Tessa Maclean.

Who we are – and how we got here

A new President, Chairman and Journal Editor

The Society has a new President – Dr David Blomfield. David chaired the Society for ten years from 2003 to 2013. Prior to that he was editor of our journal, Richmond History, from 1994 until 2001, and resumed the editorship when Christopher May passed away in November 2014.

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Robert Smith

Robert Smith, who has been acting in the role since November 2014, was elected Chairman at the Society’s AGM on Monday 18 May 2015. He also edits the Society’s website and runs its Facebook page and Twitter account.

Robert has lived in Kew since 1993. His career has been in marketing and communications, including five years running the press department at The National Archives.

He said: “I am very pleased to be taking on this role. The Richmond Local History Society has itself an impressive history. Founded in 1985 by the late John Cloake, it has made a very significant contribution to our understanding of the history of Richmond, Kew, Petersham and Ham. But its work deserves to be better known and I hope to encourage more people, particularly local residents, to join us in learning about and discovering the history of the area.”

Simon Fowler

Simon Fowler is the new editor of our annual journal, Richmond History.

Simon has been a member of the Society since it was set up. He is a professional writer, researcher and teacher specialising in the two world wars and the twentieth century. Simon used to work at The National Archives in Kew where his many roles included editing  its family history magazine, Ancestors.

He is working on issue 37 of the Society’s journal, which will be published in May 2016.

Our journal, Richmond History: a new issue and a new, free, online index

Cover 2015The 36th issue of our annual journal, Richmond History – featuring, for the first time, a full-colour illustration on the cover – has been published.  Find out more

A free index to articles that have been published in Richmond History is now available online.  Find out more

From the Journal tab on our website menu you can also find out more about each issue of Richmond History from no 28 onwards.

Copies of Richmond History can also now be ordered online. You can pay using your debit or credit card or via PayPal. Find out more on our Bookshop page

Other resources linked to our website

Richmond Old Burial Ground

Richmond Old Burial Ground

The Museum tab on our website menu will take you to the Museum of Richmond website.

From the Resources tab you can also access Stephen Orr’s website The Vineyard, Richmond: An Online History and links to Richmond Poor Law Union application and report books held at Surrey History Centre, where over 103,000 names of people applying for poor relief in Richmond Poor Law Union between 1870 and 1912,  are now searchable, free of charge.

Richmond Old Burial Ground, close to Richmond Park, was first opened for burials in 1856. Most of the burials took place over the next 60 years. Over 1000 graves, recording the deaths of more than 2000 people, have been photographed and the inscriptions noted by a group of volunteers. A list has now been published on this website. Find out more