Interviews with local families


The image above is from the family archive of the Males of Stembridge. In the following film Hugh Male uses images from the family archive to talk about his grandmother, Kathleen Jeanes. From the 1930s through to the 1950s she produced entertainment through musicals and plays, in the Parish and further afield. A most amazing woman who is an important part of the ‘entertainment and celebration’ DNA of the Parish. In the image above she holds the silver & ebony baton gifted by the community to mark a production in the 1930s.

Film : Hugh Male talking about the work of his grandmother – Kathleen Jeanes – Entertainment.

Our work continues and builds upon the tradition of capturing the voices of local people from within the Parish or of those who are directly connected with it. In most cases, and with prior preparation, our film recordings incorporate images which help to both illustrate and support any recording and its theme. This helps us to achieve a number of interests including the scanning and digital recording of old images and documents for our archive. The idea is that ‘those who own the story- tell the story’. One thing can often lead to another, and to-date we have well over 200 recordings on a wide variety of topics and interests, along with transferred film and video footage now many decades old.

WW1 : WW2 : Cider : Emigration : Withies : Gloving

For each of the sections on the website, you will find supporting film footage and recordings of local people who are, or have been, directly involved in those particular aspects of the Parish’s life, culture, economy and heritage. What follows are examples of short films, not already included in the above chapters.

Betty Hebditch of Burrow Hill Farm 1919-2016

Film : Betty Hebditch

Betty talks about her memories of the Rood Sisters of Bladon Hill – renowned far & wide for their cheesemaking : her Yeovil High School Scholarship and travelling into Yeovil each day in the early 1930s : her work at the Nestles factory at Thorney Halt : her sacking when as a married woman she told the ‘boss’ she was going to have her first child : her father’s (Harry Patten) and grandfather’s work as thatchers : floods : going to Stembridge Primary School : food scarcity during the war and news of her uncle’s death in WW2.

Charlie Stone of Stembridge 1926 – 2018

Film : Charlie Stone

Charlie talks about his carefree days as a child with countless hours spent messing about on the River Parrett with evcauees : his early working life and knowing where all the keys of the Parish were kept : trains to Yeovil & family days on Weymouth beach.

Margaret Elliott of Stembridge 1936 – 2020

Film : Margaret Elliott

Margaret talks about her lifetme’s work and passion of sewing and creating quilts, screens, tapestries – with ‘never an idle moment’ approach to life. One of her fondest memories is the ‘attendant to the Carnival Queen’ outfit made by her mother from a WW2 parachute and the booties she knitted for her new baby brother born on the first day of the National Health – 5th July 1948.

Graham Bradford of Kingsbury Episcopi

Film : Graham Bradford

Graham Bradford, brought up in Kingsbury Episcopi from a few months old, talks about growing up as young man : his friends and getting about, on foot then bicycles and motorbikes : working at the Wyndham Bakery from aged 10 years.

Jen Tucker of Lower Burrow

Film : Jen Tucker – The Tilleys of Church Street

Jen Tucker from Stembridge and Lower Burrow filmed in 2015 – talking about her family – the five generations of Tilleys of Church Street, of one being locked up in the ‘gaol’ on the Triangle, deaths, tragedies, accidents and community service to Parish & Church life.

David Locke of Kingsbury Episcopi

Film : David Locke

David Locke of The Avenue talks about the lucky draw which took him to witness the Stanley Matthews Cup Final of 1953, along with his memories of Yeovil vs Sunderland – one of the greatest giant-killing football matches of all times at Huish, Yeovil in 1949 – standing on beer barrels at the Brewery End – the same weekend Ralph Fry completed the first two houses of The Avenue in Kingsbury Episcopi.

Betty Cox of East Lambrook

Film : Betty Cox of East Lambrook

Betty Cox, born at Oaktree Cottage, Burrow Hill – talking about her memories of growing up in East Lambrook- of cycling to the Convent in Langport, coal-fired clothes’ boilers, bucket toilets in the garden, evacuees in WW2 and journeys on foot to get to school in Langport……. and getting told off for dirty shoes.