Perils of Bell Ringing

On Christmas morning 1903 , about five minutes to eleven, just before the divine service, a churchwarden at Silchester Church, found to his cost, that Church bells can pose an unexpected threat to life. The Hants. and Berks. Gazette described the incident as follows; A serious accident occurred […]

1752 and All That: the derivation of the modern calendar.

A Talk by Mark Bowman Why 1752? Well that was the year that Britain changed its calendar system and famously lost eleven days. The title of the talk is a play on ‘1066 and all that’ the hilarious book from the 1930s by Sellars and Yeatman which treats […]

Tour of Reading University Campus

Called “An Historical Tour around the University’s London Road Campus”, the link to view the video is:  During 2019, as part of its outreach programme, ‘The Friends of the University of Reading’ ran guided historical tours of the University’s London Road and Whiteknights campuses. Because of COVID, […]

The Toadster of Tadley

Tadley has its fair share of local folklore, including the “Tadley Treacle Mine” and the “Tadley God Help Us” episode. The story of the “Tadley Toad” is not primarily about a Toad but a sad tale of a particular person living in “Poor Tadley” in the late 18th […]

Timeline of Tadley and St Peter’s Church

Settlements on the Burghclere and Kingsclere downs, beside east-west trade route, the Ridgeway. Local area is the centre of wool industry. Tumuli found at Wootton, and on south side of Wasing Wood.   Bronze and Iron Age Important trade and communications centre at Silchester, with pagan temple and […]

Smelly Alley in Reading

Union Street, also known locally as Smelly Alley, is a pedestrian alley in the centre of the English town of Reading. It is lined with small shops and other retail outlets, and connects Broad Street and Friar Street. The name Smelly Alley came about in the 1940s, as […]

Quakers in Tadley and Baughurst

During the Civil War Baughurst saw local skirmishes and suffered from plundering.  After this it became one of the biggest and wealthiest Quaker centres in Southern England.  Following a visit in 1657 to Basingstoke by George Fox, the Quaker founder, James Potter of Baughurst went to prison for […]

Tadley horse thrown overboard !

Blue Gown (1865) was a sweet-tempered, compact, short-legged,  bay colt that won the Derby in 1868. It was owned and  bred by Sir Joseph Hawley of  Hawley House in Tadley,  He sold the horse in  1869 to a French syndicate for 5,000 guineas.  Blue Gown  returned to England, […]


For those of you that missed it, here is this year’s TADS quiz. Grab a pencil and paper… there are four rounds : Each section has 10 questions worth 1 point each, Click for answers at the end of each round ! Round 1 – General History 1.  […]

Poisons for Medicine

TADS Zoom Talk on 18th November 2020 Poisons for Medicine  By Graham Harrison Who would use poisons as medicine? Well the Victorians certainly did as Graham told us in his amusing and interesting talk, seemingly in large quantities. But before we chuckle too much, we must not forget […]

TADS 2021 Calendar

  It is available from the following outlets at a cost of £6:50:  NOTE: Credit cards are NOT accepted Profile Print & Copy (50 Bishopswood Road, Tadley, RG26 4HD) 5 Church Road, Pamber Heath, RG26 3DP ————————————– Also available from the Online Shop – Pay by credit card […]

USAAF dedication to the people of Tadley

On 6 June 1997 a plaque, dedicated to the people of Tadley, hosts to the USAAF during WW II, was erected at Blake’s Lane, on the south wall of the Toucan Travel building. This plaque was initiated and designed by Gordon Timmins, MOD police dog handler and local […]

Tadley and the Parliament Fart

Henry Ludlow (1577 – 1639) who lived locally in Tadley Place, was an English politician who sat in the House of Commons [1] between 1601 and 1611.    During the Speaker’s address Henry let out a resounding fart. The House erupted in laughter. And then, so it seems, […]

Tadley folklore – Did Tarzan ever visit Tadley?

As a local history society we are interested in local folklore that includes oral traditions such as tales, proverbs and even jokes passed down through the generations.  Family stories have been an interesting source of  local history information over the years, When we hear a new one we  […]

Jane Austen and the Military – Recent Online Talk

Tadley and District History Society provides monthly external talks on history related topics at 8 pm on the third Wednesday of the month.  This months online talk on Aug 19th 2020 was  by Rupert Mathews. Rupert had come up with what might seem a very strange slant on […]