Archive | February 2016

Feb 18th | Visit to Suffolk Record Office

Visit to Suffolk Records Office, Ipswich, on 18/2/16 by Capel Ladies Club

Our first outing of the year was an evening visit to the Suffolk Record Office in Ipswich, where our guides Heather Marshall and Bruce Martin took it in turns to tell us something of the work they do. It is their responsibility to maintain and look after original documents from many different sources, including published works like histories, poetry and newspapers, maps and charters, wills and letters, and to get them out on request for visitors to see. Items can even be brought down from the strong room to be placed on stands and cushions on large tables in the map room or the hall of the Record Office for people to examine.

Many of these documents are very old and fragile, and have to be kept in controlled conditions in the strong room, protected by large fire doors where the temperature and humidity levels are constant, so that the records don’t crumble away or go mouldy. We were allowed to enter the strong room where Heather showed us some ancient maps of the area, some of them in huge cylinder-shaped leather boxes. We saw copies of the local Ipswich paper all bound in volumes and going back two or three hundred years. One of the oldest documents was a town charter for Ipswich drawn up in the time of Henry I and copied out by monks on thick manuscript, with a huge seal at the bottom and illuminated letters at the top.

Some records have been photographed and transferred to micro-fiches which can be accessed on screens that can be scrolled through so that you can examine a particular Census or Parish document.

Capel Ladies were made very welcome by Heather and Bruce, who had brought out a number of records, maps and documents to do with Capel, from old maps of the village to the school Log Book, and we spent a most interesting time poring over them all. So much so, in fact, that before we knew it the time was up and we had to leave. I’m sure that some of us will return to the Record Office at some point to carry on where we left off – and to probe further into Suffolk’s fascinating history.

(The Record Office is open every day except Sundays, Wednesdays and Bank Holidays, from 9.30 – 4.30 p.m., and access is free of charge, although you will have to sign in when you visit and you need proof of identity with you.)

Feb 4th | Hand & Nail Care – with Kay Oxford

006There was a good turnout for our first meeting of 2016 to hear Kay Oxford telling us about how to look after our hands and nails and showing a small group how to give themselves a basic manicure.

Kay began by telling us a bit about herself. She trained at Suffolk College, and did her work experience at Shrubland Hall, near Ipswich. Later she was asked back there to work over one summer, and ended up staying for five years.

005She also worked at a gym in Manningtree doing aerobics and step classes as well as beauty therapy. For a while she became a mobile beauty therapist in the Ipswich area but as this involved a lot of evening sessions she gave it up and decided to open her own beauty salon in Ipswich – “The Gentle Touch” in Crown Street, where she has been for the past fifteen years.

007Kay began by getting us to name all the different parts of the nail by filling in the labels on a quiz sheet, and then talked about the different ailments affecting nails. She went on to describe step by step how to give yourself a basic manicure, and a small group of us (chosen by names in a hat) worked through each step as she talked.

It was a very relaxed and informative session, and I’m sure all our nails will benefit from this gentle and correct treatment if we follow Kay’s advice.

004On the same evening Magdeleine Hunt was selling her own handmade jewellery and crafts, and many of us bought necklaces and other pretty items from her in aid of AGE UK.

Future speakers include a lady woodcarver, a wildlife expert and a theatrical costume designer, and we have trips out to the Ipswich Records Office, The Brook Inn for a meal, and Stowmarket Rural Life Museum. Why not join us?