Past Events and Meetings


Past Meetings of the Chaldon History Group

Sunday 9th October 2016
1366 and All That: Jackie Malyon, a Historian of Surrey Villages, gave a talk on what was happening in England, and Surrey 650 years ago. This was followed by a short presentation by Madeline Hutchins and Sean Maskey on the building of Chaldon Court (dated by dendrochronology to 1366), and a chance to see round the house. Liz Bonsall led a session on Meet the 14th Century Neighbours, with information from Mary Saaler covering Tillingdown, Farleigh and Merstham. Display boards had information on 14th century Chaldon, with the manors, Chaldon, Tollsworth and Willey and its sub manor Stanstead, the Church, and the stone quarries.

IMG_5789Image: Chaldon Court 1366 build, with speculative position of aisled hall





Chaldon Explored: Summer Walk

The Chaldon History Group was launched in August 2015 with a walk, Chaldon Explored, following the route of the book of that name, forty years after its publication in 1975.

On Sunday 7th August 2016, another walk took place, in what is now intended to be an annual series of such walks. This was Chaldon Explored: The Inside Story, Part One, and covered the North East portion of the village. The owners of four properties kindly agreed to allow the group of 24 people into their properties to see the key architectural features. Gordon Gillett gave an illustrated talk on Tollsworth Manor and showed the group the historical features of the house. We also visited Cold Blow, a Medieval hall house, and saw the staircase of Glebe House.


Visit to the Surrey History Centre, Woking

On Saturday 16 April, nine Chaldon residents were treated to a wonderful ‘behind the scenes’ tour of the Surrey History Centre by one of the staff members there, Sally Jenkinson. She gave information on the design of the building (opened in 1998) which was highly innovative at its time and still operating very effectively. She explained the imagery contained in the Surrey Tapestry behind the welcome desk, and the inspiration for the glass panels in the foyer windows before taking the group ‘behind the scenes’. First was the archaeology section, with trays of tiny fragments of bone, charcoal, flint etc being segregated, bagged and labelled, and large bones and antlers standing on top of filing cabinets. Next, in the archives section, the group saw where new acquisitions enter the building, and where they are taken for any cleaning, then any conservation that is necessary, before being boxed up or put in polyester pockets or acid free paper and card to keep them safe. The final section of the tour was in one of the two huge strong rooms in the middle of the building, where the archives are stored at the appropriate temperature and humidity, and with plenty of air circulation.

The group emerged from the strong room into the public research room, and there pored over a selection of documents relating to Chaldon including maps, pictures, sales particulars and a Parish Council Minute Book.

After lunch, there was the opportunity to return to research room as individual members of the public to consult the documents further and order any others relevant to personal research or interest.

Click  here to see the website for the Surrey History Centre, and here for their information on how to find the centre. Its postcode for Sat Nav is GU21 6NT The pedestrian entrance is on Goldsworth Road, but the car park entrance is on Kingsway.


Talk on Archaeology

Nearly thirty people came on Saturday, 12 March, to Chaldon Village Hall, Rook Lane, 2 to 4pm, for a talk by Chris Taylor, curator of East Surrey Museum, and a chance to see and handle artefacts.

“Archaeology on Chaldon’s Doorstep”

Chris Taylor took us on a journey to look back at our area in a time when it was nothing like it is now.

drawing of wooly mammoths walking on a ridge
Woolly Mammoths
Wooly Mammoth in a pit trap, being stoned by the hunters
Woolly Mammoth in a pit trap, being stoned by the hunters
The well illustrated talk covered from the Palaeolithic to the end of the Roman period. It gave a brief introduction to each period, with the main points of interest. Next, Chris Taylor looked in detail at the archaeology from the period that has been found in the area. A mammoth tooth and axes were available to see and to handle, some found very close to Chaldon.

Proceeds from the entry fee and donations for teas and cakes went as a donation to the East Surrey Museum.

Click here for the website of East Surrey Mueseum, Caterham in the Vally.

 Chaldon Church and the American Connection

Our meeting on 30 January for Ted Howard’s talk on “Chaldon Church and the American Connection” was very well attended, with nearly forty people, and the talk much appreciated. Ted Howard told the story of his research into why, in 1796, a 68 year old woman from Charleston, South Carolina was buried in Chaldon Church. He gave many fascinating details of the period, including grim facts about slavery, and a picture of Charleston and Chaldon at that time. We learnt about the Beresford family, and Ted did solve the puzzle of why Mrs Sarah Beresford was buried in Chaldon.

We were able to give £135 to the Friends of Chaldon Church from the entry money taken, and £35 from sales of copies of the book Chaldon Explored.

Chaldon Church. view from the gate, along the footpath
Chaldon Church
Tomb marker for Sarah Beresford, of Charleston South Carolina who dies 25 January 1796. On the wall of Chaldon Church Surrey UK
Tomb marker for Sarah Beresford


The Chaldon History Group

The newly formed Chaldon History Group exists to develop and share knowledge and understanding of Chaldon’s history. All those interested in its aims are welcome to attend meetings and visits.

For further information and to be added to the email list contact Liz Bonsall on or Madeline Hutchins on