We have at last launched our all-new website! We have named it Roade Remembered to sit alongside our Facebook site of the same name - a popular site for posting memories and photos of Roade.
The old site will remain as our legacy website as it contains some archival material that has not been transferred. It was created as a one-off by a local resident in 2009 and has since served us well. However, it is no longer able to serve our purposes adequately.
The Society was formed in 2005 as a result of the local interest shown at a photographic exhibition by Bill Hudson of his collection of photographs of local buildings and people.
Bill subsequently became our first Chairman and bequeathed his collection to the Society. This resulted in our first publication “Roade Through the Camera” the only comprehensive history of Roade village and its rapid development over the centuries.
We have built on this over the years and now have over 2,500 photographs and plans which this website is unable to accommodate. This collection is now available on our new site as a result of the valuable input by members of the website team, particularly Alan Mott (site developer), Patrick Barlow (software developer), Peter Mawby (our photo archivist), and Nigel Elliott (technical adviser).  The site is a rich resource for family history enthusiasts and now contains 9 sets of information on local families. All are fully searchable.
It also has sections on Village History, Maps & Plans, Oral History and Videos, with many included on our YouTube channel. The Home page features Announcements, News, and Upcoming Events.
Please click here to access Roade Remembered

At the Northamptonshire Heritage Forum Annual Awards on the evening of Thursday, 6th Oct 2022 the endeavours of Roade Local History Society were highlighted with the prestigious accolade of receiving the ’Judges Choice Special Award’, recognising what they viewed as a fantastic year for the Society. Organising a successful large scale event and producing a hugely enjoyable publication demonstrated passion, in-depth historical research and active community involvement.

Cutting Remarks - The Story of Roade’s Railways and Cutting through the Ages
by our Chairman Chris Hillyard was published in November 2021and has been well received.

The book records the significant impact the railway had on the social and economic development of the village from the 1830s to the present day. It will appeal to railway enthusiasts, the technically minded and people interested in rural and local social history.

240 pages, 65000 words, Hardback, containing over 300 images and illustrations.

To purchase, please refer to our new website https://roaderemembered.org.uk/


Roade Local History Society is grateful
to the following for their generous
financial support for this book:

Christopher Denton, Roade

Roade Parish Council

Click here for more details about the book.

Click here to see more about Roade's railway cutting and the major exhibition we staged in 2018.

Projects  - help needed!

"Projects" are an important part of our activities and we welcome help with these.
This is the list of projects up to December 2022.
Please see our new website https://roaderemembered.org.uk/ for the latest list of projects.

Coronavirus Diary Project - can you take part?
Northamptonshire Archives and Heritage Service would like people to "begin a record or diary of your thoughts, feelings and daily activities during the coronavirus pandemic and especially any changes you have noticed in your community".  Click here for details.
If you decide to take part in the project, RLHS would be very grateful if you would let us have copies of your submissions. Please email secretary@roadehistorysociety.org.uk

Oral History Interviews
Since 2007 we have been interviewing local residents as part of our Oral History project and we have made these available for purchase on CD. Click here for more information.

Click here for a tribute to our founder and former Chairman, the late Bill Hudson.

Memorial to Captain J H A Ryan MC

The headstone on the Ryan family grave in Roade Cemetery has now been straightened. Captain James Ryan was killed in WW1 and was buried in France but also commemorated on the side of the headstone and on Roade War Memorial. RLHS would like to thank all the donors and Roade Parish Council for their support. We are especially grateful to Gavin Warren, Chairman of Northamptonshire County Cricket Club, who arranged for NCCC to meet half the cost of restoration. James and his father, Dr W H Ryan of Tilecote House, both played cricket for the County.

Some of the donors on Remembrance Day, 14th December 2021.
Left to Right - RLHS Chairman Chris Hillyard, David Clarke, Mary Wloszek,
NCCC Chairman Gavin Warren, Vivian Blyth with pre-restoration photo.

Bypass Roade Action Group Video 1987  BRAG

Roade Cutting

Of the numerous challenges which Robert Stephenson faced during the construction of the London & Birmingham railway, Roade Cutting remains one of the most visibly awe-inspiring engineering achievements of the nation’s railway infrastructure. It is the timeless legacy which Stephenson and his engineers left to our village and the nation.

Designation as a ‘Site of Special Scientific Interest’ in 1986 ensured its protection as an asset of National Geological Significance. In 2018 its engineering excellence was recognised with the award of a prestigious ‘Red Wheel’ by the Transport Trust, designating it a ‘National Transport Heritage Site’. The Cutting enabled the completion of the world’s first long-distance inter-city railway, which was officially opened on Monday 17th September 1838. Click here for more information about the Red Wheel

A two-day grand exhibition celebrating the 180th anniversary of the opening of the London & Birmingham Railway was held at Roade Village Hall on the 8th and 9th September 2018.  RLHS welcomed exhibitors from a variety of national and local railway societies. Strong additional support came from local history, industrial archaeology and transport heritage organisations and many local community groups and individuals. We were very grateful for financial support from Northamptonshire Community Foundation, Milton Keynes Heritage Association and local sponsors.

The principal RLHS exhibit was a model of the Cutting, former Station and diverse railway infrastructure. The model is indicative of the village’s social and economic development since the railway came to the locality in the 1830s. It was made by Society members, local artisans, artists, technical specialists and Elizabeth Woodville School staff and students. The model was accompanied by a series of display boards about the history of the Cutting and its impact on the community. 

The exhibition was opened by the Rt. Hon. Andrea Leadsom MP and the Red Wheel was unveiled by Stuart Wilkinson, Chairman of the Transport Trust, and Chris Hillyard RVM, Roade Local History Society.  The exhibition was very successful and awards were subsequently received for the event and the model.  Click here for more information about the Roade Cutting Exhibition.

Chris Hillyard has responded to many requests for a book based on his research and that of Roade resident Alvin Barby.  Our publication CUTTING REMARKS The Story of Roade’s railways and Cutting through the ages is now for sale. See here for more information.

Oral History Interviews

Click the poster above to open a larger version in a new window

Since 2007 we have been interviewing local residents as part of our Oral History project and we have made these available for purchase on CD.
The interviews each last about an hour (though some are much longer) and can make excellent gifts. Income from these sales helps us to fund our various projects and exhibitions.
For more information about the interviews please email secretary@roadehistorysociety.org.uk

Recent Events
(Recent Events up to December 2022 can be viewed on this link:Earlier events

Royal Canadian Air Force
Roade Local History Society has installed a small memorial to commemorate six Canadian airmen who lost their lives when their Wellington bomber was struck by lightning over Roade in 1944.

RCAF Dedication

RCAF Exhibition

Full Circle - connecting people with the screen heritage of the Midlands.

Tucked away in boxes in attics and sheds,cupboards and garages are the filmed records of families and communities which are a uniquely important window into our local and community history. The Media Archives for Central England (MACE), the regional moving image archive for the East and West Midlands, is seeking 60 partner organisations to look for this valuable material in their own communities as part of a project to find and uncover the hidden filmed heritage of the midlands. The project will provide new copies of film for depositors and for community use in local schools, community archives and local collections. It will ensure the long term preservation of the materials found so that it can go on being used by future generations. Roade Local History Society has received several films that qualify for free copying for the owners. We will be holding a film show in the New Year, but meantime would welcome talking to anyone who has potentially suitable films that they may no longer be able to view and would like converted to DVD.  This covers films of such things as public events, shows, gatherings, scenes, etc in Northamptonshire, but does not include films of holidays or family.

If anyone has film that should be preserved or you would like copying to DVD, please contact our Secretary (see the Contacts page).

We are building a comprehensive archive of photographs and documents about Roade for research and publication. To date we have produced 'Roade Roll of Honour’, ‘Roade Through The Camera’ and 'Roade Village Scrapbook 1953' and now 'Cutting Remarks The Story of Roade's Railways and Cutting through the Ages'. See our Publications page for more information about these.

We have been organising events related to local history since May 2005. These normally cover Roade and its environs and sometimes the wider county. A feature of events has been 'Sons and Daughters of the Village": presentations by residents, past and present, who have created  history in their lifetime or have interesting reminiscences about their life in Roade. Events normally take place every month (except August) and start at 7.30pm in St Mary's Church Hall, unless otherwise stated. Non-members are very welcome. Entry is £3.00 per person for non-members or £2.00 for members and refreshments are available.
Talks may be subject to change if necessary.
For details of our next event, please see What's On or Roade News or the Notice Boards around Roade.