Watford & District Industrial History Society



“35 years in sewage and still smiling!”

Brian Keegan describes how because of the efforts of successive generations of engineers, legislators and educators our water is now safe to drink and our rivers largely pollution free. It wasn’t always like that! Prior to the mid-19th century thousands of people died through drinking contaminated water and raw sewage ran down the streets of London and other large cities.
Brian started his career in the water industry with the Great London Council in 1965 working on schemes E & F for the reconstruction of Abbey Mills Pumping Station and career has spanned the second half of this transformation. Using examples from his own experience and some anecdotes he will give a brief history of the part played by engineers in bring about this transformation


The Grahame Neale Memorial Lecture: “Brunel’s fan"

Michael Bailey returns to talk about Brunel’s Locomotive Draught Experiments of 1840/41.
This lecture will be PRECEDED by the ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING, hence the earlier start time of 7-30PM.


Another selection of old films from Frank Banfield's collection.

Come and enjoy a variety of nostalgic movies, silent, black and white, or even colour with sound!


“History of Handley Page and Radlett Aerodrome"

Chris Scivyer gives a brief history of Radlett Aerodrome which covers the history of Handley Page from 1909 - 1930, Radlett Aerodrome and Handley Page 1930- 1970, and what has happened to the site over the last 47 years. After the talk, it's our social time sampling a delightful spread of nibbles always brought in by our members, plus hot drinks. Do join in this convivial gathering.

JANUARY 18 2018

“Rebuilding the Welsh Highland Railway"

Stephen Jupp, a volunteer fireman, on the WHR, talks about the restoration of the railway from Caernarfon to Porthmadog and joining up with the Ffestiniog Railway.


“The History and Restoration of the Paddle Steamer Medway Queen, Heroine of Dunkirk"

Pam and Mark Bathurst. Their talk covers the ship from her initial launch in 1924 up to the present day, including an extensive part on her exploits to and from Dunkirk in 1940. The presentation has pictures, films interviews and recordings.


“The story of Choo-z-Suzy and her Crew"

Chris Scivyer tells the story of a B17 Flying Fortress which crashed in Bricket Wood on 28th December 1944. Chris Sciver has researched the cause of the crash, and the 79 missions that the aircraft made in 1944. Illustrated with official photos and documents of the time it is an interesting story. The crew bailed out over Kings Langley with one man falling without a parachute.