Daniels’ site

Once a prime local employers and notable for the production of munitions during WW1, the Daniels’ site has been the subject of a recent planning application. A member of the Daniels’ family believes that the the site has underground tunnels constructed in 1914 for the the storage of shells etc and a huge underground storage area for water. This appears to have been dismissed by the planning survey.

From Gloucestershire Live by Ben Faulkener (5th Sept 2017)

Peter Daniels of the family who the site is named after, wants the committee to hold off making a decision.

“There are caves under the site to support ammunition, underground water facilities require investigation. Local women worked 12 hour shifts and were the main suppliers of shells. Those people in Rodborough helped us win the First World War and that should not be forgotten. Please defer this application – if it is no we have lost this application to investigate the site.”……

Paul Fong, Hunter Page Planning: “A very detailed historic and archaeological assessment has been done to avoid delay. It is clear this is mixed use and I don’t want housing and employment to escape you.”

Does anyone have any information to support this?




This is from the large archive of photos from the now closed Gloucestershire Gazette Office. The photos are undated.

Scout presentations – undated. Copyright Gloucestershire Gazette


Lots of new photos

Here at remembering Rodborough we are very excited to have received a large shoebox full of negatives from the Dursley Gazette office. We will be working our way through these, so that we can display them at our forthcoming events. We are going to need help in identifying names, places and dates for many of them!

Can you date this photo?

Sharing our history

Despite the pouring rain, we had a great turn out at the Coffee Pot yesterday. We are always thrilled at the little gems of information gleaned. It feels like adding extra pieces to the jigsaw of Rodborough.

Who knew that this milestone sits on Dudbridge Road? I, for one, have never noticed it.

Rodborough – a vibrant community

We are very grateful to Rodborough Parish Council for a generous donation that has enabled us to set up this website.

The grant awards evening was an uplifting experience; Rodborough has so many active community groups, among them the Butterrow Book Group, who have adopted the redundant phone box on Rodborough Lane (It has been bought by the Parish Council) and will be converted to a book share kiosk. It dates from somewhere between 1936 and 1952. Does anyone know?

It’s interesting to reflect that photographing what we think of as ordinary may have huge historical value.

This photo was taken in 2012 as a modern day comparison to …..
…this photo of Butterrow Pike pre-phone box.

Also spotted and both in use, were two phone boxes in Dudbridge

Dudbridge Hill. The Police car registration dates from 1987. Note the man on the roof and the apparent lack of any safety precautions!
Dudbridge, opposite Redlers 1990

Another successful exhibition

On Sunday 26th March Rodborough’s Community hall was filled with lovely people, lots of buzz and chatter and interesting exchanges of information. Thanks to everyone for their support and to those who have offered to help – ‘Welcome’.

Photo – thanks to Rodborough Parish Council

If you missed the event, we will be at The Coffee Pot, Community Cafe, The Old Endowed School, Walkley Hill on Weds May 17th from 10-12 with our vast archive of photos, which you may browse at leisure and enjoy good company and delicious refreshments.

Book now available at discounted price of £10 from Remembering Rodborough

We are delighted to announce the launch of our book. It has chapters on Eugene Paul Bennett V.C. of Rodborough and a chapter on  Rodborough dealing with how the whole community coped during the First World War


This welcome new addition to the library of books dealing with the local history of the Stroud area is meticulously researched, informative and often – perhaps surprisingly – quite amusing. It summarises the investigations of groups and individuals involved in studying the story of the First World War in Stroud, Rodborough, Minchinhampton, Woodchester, Stonehouse, Brimscombe, Chalford, France Lynch and Bussage. In addition, it is enhanced by introductory and concluding chapters from distinguished journalist Peter Evans, born locally and former leader writer for The Times.

Some contributions to the book deal in detail with the history of individual combatants in the First World War, others record more about how the conflict affected local people. Fund-raising events, the work of volunteer groups and the use of women to fill employment gaps caused by the conscription of so many men, are just a few of the subjects covered.

Four chapters concern single topics: Paul Bennett’s VC, Minchinhampton Aerodrome, Woodchester Wayside Cross and the Cole brothers of Brimscombe. Other sections tell of the impact – and unintended consequences – the war had on parishes and individuals. Stories included describe Stroud’s intriguingly named ‘1917 Patriotic Economy Exhibition’, Rodborough’s unique ‘fruit evaporator’, Minchinhampton’s tragic double suicide, the mirror and Bible that saved the life of a Chalford soldier, a Woodchester hen that laid a 6 ounce egg with three yolks and how a Stonehouse soldier survived a torpedo attack.

All this, and a great deal more, makes ‘The Stroud Valleys in the Great War’ a compulsive read for all those interested in how local communities endured and survived the ‘War to end wars’

The Dudbridge Blackbirds

The Stroud News carried several pieces about a family of blackbirds who achieved acclaim in 1911. House painter, Samuel Haden of Bay Tree House, Dudbridge, kept a tame female blackbird, who was allowed to fly freely within his house. Feeling so much at home, the bird constructed a nest on the mantel shelf in the living room and laid four eggs. Accounts vary as to whether a ‘Mr Blackbird’ was involved; it has been suggested that Mr Haden substituted fertile eggs from the wild. However, four baby blackbirds hatched, thrived and eventually flew away. Stroud News readers were invited to view the chicks and Mr Haden proudly wrote to the new King, George V and his mother, sending photos and received a royal response.
Such was the notoriety of the birds that at Stroud Carnival, in June 1911, a float was paraded with a nest made of hay and little boys in black clothes, with blackened faces sat inside bobbing up and down.
The original nest can be seen at the Museum in the Park. It sits on the mantelpiece in Gallery 7, alongside a changing display of old old local scenes from the Wilf Merrett postcard collection.

The Stroud Valleys in the Great War – book launch

In 2013 Rodborough’s dignified WW1 memorial bore a list of largely unknown surnames and initials. An effort to discover their identities, revealed so such more about the life of Rodborough and its people; the tragedies, their courage and inventiveness during  this great adversity and how they began to rebuild their lives afterwards.

A collaboration with other local researchers led to the formation of The Five Valleys Great War Researchers group and a new venture to put our research into print.  We are thrilled to announce the publication by The History Press of ‘The Stroud Valleys in the Great War’. The actual book will be released in February  (copies will be available from Remembering Rodborough at a discounted price of ten Pounds), however the Kindle version is already available on Amazon. The introductions and first two chapters can be viewed at no charge by clicking on ‘Look inside’.

Should you read it and wish to leave an Amazon review, we would be pleased.

Rodborough’s churchyard

Over the winter months, the churchyard is a pleasant spot for a stroll and if you visit on  Wednesday morning you can reward your effort with delicious coffee, cake and company at The Coffee Pot, community cafe in the Endowed School.

So much of Rodborough’s history is displayed here and at this time of year when the vegetation is less vigorous, more of the memorial stones are visible. I was alerted to some new finds this week by Brian, who does such a wonderful job keeping the churchyard in order.

Checking these against the burial register, it struck me again that there a number of entries of people listed as ‘pauper’ with no numbered grave plot. Does anyone know anything about pauper burials?