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Rushden Branch
Northamptonshire Family History Society

Following discussions by Pat Jenkins with those she thought would be interested, a meeting was called to see if we could get a branch of NFHS set up for Rushden. Some of the main committee were a little worried that we'd take away their members but we were very keen.

In the end we decided that if we didn’t get the support we asked for, then we'd try to set up under the umbrella of Rushden & District History Society, as most of us were already members of that Society. Eventually the all clear was given and we held our first meeting, as a full branch of NFHS, on September 1st 2003 when Sarah Bridges talked about  "Family History in the Northamptonshire Record Office".

Our first committee was Pat Jenkins, Jacky Lawrence, Joy Clayson, Guy & Jan Sellick-Taylor, Greville Watson & Kay Collins. Guy was our first chairman and would entertain us occasionally with tales of "Uncle Bert", but his reign was brief as he died suddenly following an operation and his wife died within 6 months, although she had been ill for several years.

Amanda Sheehan took on the chairman's role temporarily and was voted in at the AGM. Greville had resigned in 2005 due to other pressures and was replaced by Nola Parry who has since resigned too, but the rest are still in post with Amanda guiding the Society from strength to strength [2007]. Meetings regularly see 40 attending.

The Rushden & District History Society was already running a "Research Group" and they had transcribed the 1901 census for all thirteen parishes of the Higham Ferrers Hundred (an old administrative area) and presented it on a CD. Since our branch of the NFH Society began, joint projects have been run to transcribe wills and to transcribe and index church records. [2011: now transcribing census for other HF Hundred parishes and close by Bedfordshire parishes]

We hope the fruits of our labours, shared here on the Rushden Research website will be of use to the worldwide audience.

Meetings are usually on the 1st Monday monthly at South End Infant School, Wymington Road 7.30pm (changed at Bank Holidays to previous or following week) All welcome.

2011 : We still have attendances of around 40 - 45. Amanda moved away, and Pat has taken over as chairman. NFHS is celebrating its 30th birthday with a conference at Wellingborough Museum on 24th September.

Kay Collins

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