Why Family Historians need Metal Detectors and other matters

Robert Braund's seal (Roger Paul)Huge excitement amongst the Braund research team. A metal detectorist has turned up a Medieval seal near Stokenham, Oxfordshire. In case you’re wondering – not the carcase of a cute furry mammal but a document seal. Said seal is inscribed ‘Robert Braund’. Although Braunds are predominantly a west country family from the 1400s and earlier references are in Lincolnshire, we do have a Robert Braund who owned land in Stokenham in the 1250s – amazing. Finds such as this appear on the Portable Antiquities website, definitely worth a look.

Blogging has taken a back seat whilst I give and prepare a number of talks, including those for Who Do You Think You Are? Live at the weekend. I have agreed to meet up with so many people that I just hope I have time to give the talks! I have already taken my first booking for 2015 – get in early to beat the rush I say.

The annual march to commemorate the English Civil War Battle of Torrington has come and gone. Fortunately we avoided the worst of the bad weather. I elected not to drum this year – one can have too much of ‘The English March’. I have learnt that keeping a low profile and avoiding press photographers is impossible when one is standing by someone who looks archetypally seventeenth century. Even the photographer said to my companion, ‘Didn’t I take your picture last year?’ On the subject of bad weather we have remained if not exactly dry at least not flooded. The building work was ‘winded’ off a couple of times but I now have a functioning letter box again and the conservatory has a roof. Still quite a bit of internal work to be done but I am getting there.

I am now the proud possessor of 16 boxes of Family Historian’s Enquire Within so you may purchase them directly from me if you like – or even if you don’t – I rather need my house back. I will have some for sale at Who Do You Think You Are? so stop me and buy one – or two. I have to lug these best part of a mile to the station each day so could do with not having to take too many home again, especially as I am bound not to be able to resist the temptation of making book purchases of my own.

I have been thrilled by the response from ladies wanting to take part in my 1946-1969 memories project I anticipate that the last few spaces will go at the weekend and we will start soon afterwards so get in touch soon if you would like to join in.

My recent introduction to Google+ inspired me to attempt a family hangout. My granddaughter was singularly unimpressed at being dangled in front of the camera so she could participate – made more difficult by the fact that her mother was making contact via a phone. It is the next best thing to being there though, so I hope that we can do it again and I have visions of reading stories via Google+.

An impending computer disaster is the imminent demise of my apostrophe key. I am a bit of an apostrophe fiend and have been known to boycott businesses advertising potatoes’ or vacancies’ so this is serious. It of course shares a key with the @ symbol. The lack of an @ could cause difficulties too.


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