Well, what a year so far! It started well, but …
As individuals and a Society, we have had to rearrange our lives to cope with the restrictions placed upon us. I have not been particularly affected personally, with friends and family staying well. Others have not been so lucky. Many vulnerable people and key workers are living with the restrictions and fear that a pandemic brings. It made me think of how our ancestors coped with the various diseases and pestilences such as cholera that have raged through humankind’s past.
As with any crisis, it causes problems but creates opportunities. I have learned new skills and experiences (Zoom, Teams, webinars) to stay in touch online with friends and organisations. Some local family history groups have enjoyed their online meetings and are considering streaming their future meetings live (when resumed) so that distance members can still take part. If anyone has the necessary skills and wishes to consider taking this on for Fenland FHS, please let me know and the Committee can consider the viability.
In a few idle moments I took some time to have a look at some more distant branches of my family tree to see what new information I could find. Like most people, I have a couple of ‘brick-walls’ that I was hoping other lines may have some direct knowledge to assist with.
When I joined the Fenland FHS, Ron Holmes was already a force to be reckoned with regarding the production of Memorial Inscription and Church Register resources. He was dedicated and enthusiastic, and this Society owes him a great debt of gratitude for the work he put in providing materials for those researching their local family trees. His ill health meant he had to pare back his work, but with his expertise and knowledge he remained a valuable member of the Society. It was with great sadness that I heard of his passing in June and you will find an obituary within the pages of this edition. Thank you, Ron. I hope you are enjoying your fishing in heaven (and perhaps checking up on the accuracy of some of those MIs!).
The Society will not be holding the 2020 AGM in September. Like many other organisations we will be deferring the meeting until such time as it is safe and convenient to do so. I hope all members are keeping well. Remember, in the meantime you can keep in touch online, via email or the Facebook page, for a chat or if you have any queries in your research.
Susanah Farmer – Chairman