Historical Society



Olveston Parish Hall, Upper Tockington Road, Tockington BS32 4LQ

Wednesday 12th April 2023, 3.00pm (doors open 2.30pm)

In response to a packed house and a terrific local response to the first showing of ERIC & JEAN – THE MOVIE in St Mary's Church, Olveston Parish Historical Society will be hosting this second showing of the film. The event is open to all, whether seeing it for the first time or wanting another chance to see this wonderful film.

It portrays the life stories of local, long-lived residents, 93 year old historian Eric Garrett & much loved 98 year Olvestonian, Jean Panes.

It is produced and directed by Steve Humphries, himself an Olveston resident and maker of many acclaimed social history documentaries for the BBC, ITV and Channel 4.

We discover village life through the 20th century, seen through the eyes of these two people, as they remember their childhoods, the loss of parents, hardships, education, a world war and the changes Olveston parish has experienced in nearly 100 years.

The film uses face to face interviews with Eric and Jean, family and archive photos, on-the-ground footage of the village filmed last September, and drone footage taken at the same time, showing, from above, the beautiful countryside surrounding the parish and its landmark buildings. Truly, this is Olveston as never seen before!

Olveston book cover
Available for sale will be the newly published book written by Steve, “For the Love of Olveston”. This tells the broader history of the parish through the memories of Eric, Jean 
and several other local people, aged around ninety, whom Steve has interviewed. Illustrated with over 100 photographs, it will be on sale for £10. The entire print run sold out at the first showing and copies of the second print run are going fast.

Everyone is welcome to this screening on Wednesday 12th April (doors open at 2.30pm with the film starting at 3pm) in Olveston Parish Hall, Tockington. There is plenty of free parking. Admission is free and refreshments will be provided - donations welcome.

For further information or to reserve a copy of the book, please ring Jenny on 01454 202011.



October 2022 - April 2023

All meetings take place in the Methodist Church, The Street, Olveston BS35 4DR at 7.30pm, with refreshments served before the start of the meeting.

Annual membership is £10, payable on the door - covers all talks and refreshments

Visitor fee is £3, payable on the door - includes refreshments

All welcome!

Wed. 5 Oct 2022

A short AGM will be followed by an evening of Severn Salmon Fishing. Thornbury & District Museum volunteer Tony Cherry tells the story behind the museum’s latest publication. This showcases the late Nick Large’s beautiful 1960s photographs of the local salmon fishing industry. Nick’s text reveals what he learned from talking to the salmon fishermen. In addition, we’ll watch a 10 minute film about Christabelle Tymko, who took over her father’s ranks of salmon putchers. Christabelle has been invited along to answer questions about her experiences.

Wed. 2 Nov. 2022

In this month of Remembrance, we’ll be showing some remarkable (and often moving) Second World War Stories, 10 minute films of older South Gloucestershire residents, some sadly no longer alive.   These films bring the war years truly to life, as the participants recount stories of love, loss, flight, prejudice, family life, work and communities.

Wed. 7 Dec. 2022

The Railway Comes to Thornbury: On the 150th anniversary of the arrival of trains in Thornbury, Meg Wise of Thornbury and District Museum will tell us how it all started and will regale us with tales of how, for a while, the railway was a vital part of the market town of Thornbury.

Wed. 4 Jan. 2023

Dan Farrell, design engineer at the Moulton Bicycle Company, tells how Stephen Moulton in 1842 brought the secret of vulcanised rubber to England from Massachusetts, establishing a rubber factory in Bradford-on-Avon, creating ‘Rubber Town’ and supplying the world with rubber goods made in Wiltshire. Today’s attractive town had a vibrant industrial past!

Wed. 1 Feb. 2023

A change of speaker and topic tonight, as our original speaker has withdrawn for health reasons. 

We're delighted that Philip Ashford is coming to tell us about Piracy and War in the Bristol Channel, 1400 to 1700. His researches have thrown up many previously untold stories, with many surprises among them. 

Wed. 1 Mar. 2023

To coincide with a touring exhibition at Thornbury & District Museum, tonight we’ll see extracts from beautifully filmed interviews with South Glos. residents of Indian heritage. These Indian Stories stories span a century and encompass war, migration, family, work, community, friendship, home-sickness and belonging. They offer a real insight into individual lives and their wider context.

Wed. 5 Apr. 2023

Brian Kemp returns to give us the second instalment of his history of Olveston Court and Manor, this time 1600 to the Present Day. We look forward to another fascinating, intensively researched and well-illustrated talk.




Contact details for Olveston Parish Historical Society:

  • Chair and principal contact: Richard Newley 01454 202011
  • Programme Secretary & Secretary:  Jenny Newley  01454 202011 
  • Membership Secretary & Treasurer:  Anne Young  01454 412528  
  • Holder of the society's publications:  Les Harper  01454 612304




Scroll down the page to find the 'Graveyard Survey' link.  Here you can find out all about the Historical Society's project to transcribe and digitise the transcriptions of all the graves and memorials in Olveston church and churchyard.


The Society 

The society was formed in 1966 to "promote interest in the history of Olveston and the surrounding areas and to collect and preserve documentary and photographic records". The Society meets at the Methodist Church on the first Wednesday of each month from October to April.  Talks usually have a local connection, either through the subject matter or the speaker.  In the summer months we usually have two trips, often following up talks given during the previous winter. Visitors are always very welcome at all our meetings.

You can use these links to find out more about:


This photo shows an OPHS trip to Owlpen Manor in Gloucestershire

OPHS visit to Owlpen Manor












































Events are usually held at the Methodist Church, The Street, Olveston BS35 4DR at 7.30pm.  

Existing and new members are welcomed, as are visitors. 

Annual membership fee (which gives free entry to the entire season of talks):  has, until now, been £8. 

N.B. We predict that our October 2020 AGM, which will be conducted by email with existing members, will decide to set a nil subscription for the 2020-21 year. 

Entry to single talk:  Normally, £2 payable at the door.