April 2007 – Report on meeting
We are pleased to report we had a very successful meeting on the morning of Saturday 14th April at the George Street Centre, Ryde. Twenty one existing members attended and twenty two non members came. One guest joined the group during the meeting and several more took away membership leaflets.
The various working group leaders gave their reports on progress made by their teams since the last meeting in January and all encouraged others to consider joining the groups to help with the workload.
David confirmed that the Mapping group has continued to make good progress and has now completed 20 of the estimated 61 maps it will take to cover the whole of the cemetery.
Janette advised that this week we reached the land mark figure of the 2,500th name being uploaded to the website. She thanked the Transcribing Troupe, who meet every Saturday morning, for their continued effort in achieving this figure and went on to explain the process of checking the records and maps for accuracy. We set ourselves a target of 4,000 names being uploaded to the website by our next AGM.
Carol spoke about the work of the publications group; the proposed resource packs, the proposed book “Ryde’s Heritage – Our Town, Your Histories”, the latest newsletter (everyone was encouraged to take a copy), the bi-monthly articles in the Ryde Beacon, and the folders of information that the group is building on various aspects of Ryde’s History.
Ann spoke about the work of the Research Group, how they check the information that is on the website for accuracy (using at least 3 other sources) and making changes where necessary. She then searches census records, old newspapers, commercial directories, etc. and adds information to the records on the website. At the moment the Research Group is very small and Ann asked anyone who might be able to help with this vital aspect of our work to make contact with her.
Sally-Ann explained about the Family History Work Group and that last year she and Carol had held a morning workshop to help people get started in researching their family histories. She said that they would hold a similar workshop this year if there is enough demand for it.
Sally-Ann also explained about the Natural History Work Group and how the biodiversity study of the cemetery is also an important part of the project. As well as being a rich historical resource the cemetery is full of interesting plant and wild life. Anyone interested in this aspect of our work should please contact Sally-Ann. The Biodiversity study will be done in conjunction with the Isle of Wight Natural History Society.
David Burdett from the IW Society spoke about the submission to have Portsmouth and Spithead recognised as a World Heritage Site and that as Ryde would be included in the area it was hoped that Ryde Social Heritage Group would support the application. Sally-Ann suggested that information about this be included with the minutes of the meeting with a request that members let the committee know their feeling on this.
The highlight of the meeting was an illustrated talk by Roy Brinton, our Honorary President, on early Ryde and how the town developed from a small hamlet on the beach and a few farms on the hill to the thriving town it is today. Roy used a variety of slides to illustrate his talk, and he has agreed to help the RSHG update the history of Ryde article on the website with some of these illustrations.
Our next full meeting will be on Saturday 14th July, when Richard Smout will provide information about Sources of Family History in Ryde.
Our meetings are free to Members on production of a membership card and £2 to guests.