The Society arranges talks at fortnightly intervals during the months of October to April.

The venue is the assembly hall at

Hythe Bay C of E Primary School,

Cinque Ports Avenue, Hythe. CT21 6HS

All talks are on Tuesdays: Doors open

at 7pm for a 7.30pm start.

Visitors are welcome.

Donations are invited: £1 from members, £2.00 from non-members.

Many of the talks have a particular relevance to Hythe, the local area and the county of Kent, but our programme is pretty eclectic and we try to cover most categories of interest such as the arts, biographies, technology, etc.

Talks last about an hour with an opportunity for questions at the end.

Talks Programme 2018-2019

Amended 29th January, 2019.   See News and Notices for details.


9th October

Peter Osborne

The Mirrors

A forerunner of radar, acoustic mirrors were built on the south and northeast coasts of England. The ‘listening ears’ were intended to provide early warning of incoming enemy aeroplanes and airships. With the development of radar and faster aircraft which would be within sight by the time it could be located, the mirrors were finally rendered obsolete.


23rd October

Andrew Ashton

The Crystal Palace

The History of the Crystal Palace and the Great Exhibition.

The Crystal Palace was, for a while, the largest glass structure in the world. This talk looks at the fascinating, often incredible history of the Palace from its creation to its tragic end.


   13th November

Dr. Juliette Pattinson

The Liberation of France in 1944

This talk examines the Liberation of occupied France from the Nazis. It considers the triumphs as well as the darker side when old scores were settled.


27th November

Len Howell

The Cinque Ports

A description of the privileges and duties of The Cinque Ports in their heyday, their rise and decline, their structure and officers.



8th January

Patsy Erskine-Hill MA. MSc.

The Fire Takes Hold

Printing, literacy and bookselling in early Renaissance Venice,

book capital of the world for a hundred years.


 22nd January

Chris McCooey

Smuggling on the South Coast

The ‘Infamous Traffick’ began with ‘Owling’… the illegal export of wool to the continent.   High taxes on tea, tobacco and spirits etc meant that  importing these commodities made the risk involved worth while.


12th February

 Gillian Rickard BA,Dip.Loc.Hist.

The Lives of Vagrants, Gypsies and Travellers in Kent


26th February

Geoff Hutchinson

Rudyard Kipling … His Life in Verse

With his enthusiasm for local historical characters and his passion for drama, Geoff Hutchinson’s talks are always informative and entertaining. He will take us back to 1933 and invites us to spend some time with Rudyard Kipling with tales of his eventful life through his books and verse.


12th March

Melody Foreman

Women Pilots of WW1

This talk examines the role of women who flew military aircraft during WW11 from the Air Transport Auxiliary to the ‘Night Witches’ of Russia……


26th March

Bronwen Sadler

William Wilberforce and the abolition of Slavery

How William Wilberforce M.P. and a group of like-minded people set out to abolish slavery in the British Empire…thus leading the world.


A short talk on why the Californian did not go to the aid of the Titanic.


9th April

Imogen Corregan FRSA

The Cathars

Who or what were The Cathars? Why did the Church not just treat them as heretics but persecute them?

The unhappy tale of an extraordinary sect.


23rd April

Dr. Marc Morris

Castles, the most popular and prominent monuments in Britain.

Although castles are always associated with sieges, battering rams and boiling oil, Dr. Morris, a specialist in medieval studies, explains how they had a much broader range of functions.


A review of last season’s programme can be seen Here