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Contains 'Bedfordshire Chapelries: an Essay in Rural Settlement History', by Dorothy Owen. 'Bedfordshire Heraldry: A Conspectus', by F. W. KuhIicke. 'Middlemen in the Bedfordshire Lace Industry', by Anne Buck. 'Joshua Symonds, an 18th-century Bedford Dissenting Minister', by H. G. Tibbutt. 'The 1830 Riots in Bedfordshire, Background and Events', by A. F. Cirket. 'A Bedfordshire Clergyman of the Reform Era and his Bishop', by Joan Varley. 'Worthington George Smith', by James Dyer. 'Aspects of Anglo-Indian Bedford', by Patricia Bell. 'The 1919 Peace Riots in Luton', by John Dony.
This collection of essays was presented to Miss Joyce Godber (formerly County Archivist) on her retirement as general editor for the BHRS.
Few people have done more for those interested in the history of Bedfordshire than Joyce Godber. Born at Kempston, brought up at Willington, she has spent much of her life serving the county of her birth. As County Archivist from 1945 to 1968 she made sure that no comparable record office had a more complete coverage of its area’s sources, and none had collections more thoroughly catalogued and indexed. She had great satisfaction in seeing the office move in 1969 from its unbelievably cramped quarters in the Shire Hall to the well-designed and spacious premises in the new County Hall, towards which she had worked for many years. The Bedfordshire County Record Office had been the creation of Dr G. H. Fowler, and he was also founder and first editor of the Bedfordshire Historical Record Society, Miss Godber followed him here too, and was editor from 1945 to 1976. The editorial work, and her own contributions to the series ranging from the Newnham Cartulary to the charming life of the Marchioness Grey, took up most of her spare time for many years. Her work in both fields led to her comprehensive History of Bedfordshire, written during her last two years as County Archivist, which has become an essential tool for all studying any aspect of the county’s past.
As a small tribute to the work done by Joyce Godber over the years, a group of friends and colleagues considered that it would be appropriate to produce a volume of studies on aspects of Bedfordshire history, all of which expand some topic mentioned, but of necessity briefly, in her History of Bedfordshire.