‘History is not what you thought. It is what you can remember’ R J Yeatman
As a community historian, I aim to create a full picture of the history of my chosen research areas, using all available sources to create a One Place Study. To do this, I adopt a strategy of community reconstruction, which involves dissecting a small, definable, geographical area to examine, in as much detail as possible, the individuals, buildings and processes of the past.
The areas under investigation are all in North Devon:-
- Bucks Mills – small fishing hamlet, which grew up in the early nineteenth century
- Buckland Brewer – a comparatively large rural parish
- Bulkworthy – a smaller rural parish, once a chapelry of Buckland Brewer
I am chair of The Society for One-Place Studies and the author of the one place studies handbook Putting Your Ancestors in the Place: a guide to one place studies. I am listed on the Register of One Place Studies. I was also the critical reader and family history adviser to the Open University with regard to the course ‘Family and Community History’, known as DA301 and I went on to tutor this course.
‘The Thames is liquid history’ John Burns