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Norwich Naturalists: SHNH 2016 Summer Event & AGM

Norwich Naturalists: SHNH 2016 Summer Event & AGM

The SHNH – Society for the History of Natural History Summer 2016 event and AGM on Norwich Naturalists will be held on Friday 1st July 2016 at the Castle Museum Norwich, UK. The meeting will focus on naturalists with links to Norwich and Norfolk.

This will be a day meeting, held in the Town Close Auditorium, from approximately 10.00 – 17.00.  There will be a visit to Thorpe Marshes Nature Reserve on Saturday 2nd July. SHNH Programme & Registration (2)


Friday 1st July

Norwich Castle Museum opens at 10.00:   Registrations, tea/coffee on arrival

10.30 – 12.30 Morning session:   

10.30 – 11.00  Hugh Torrens William Smith in Norwich/Norfolk
11.10 – 11.40  Caroline Grigson: Sir Thomas Browne’s observations on animals
11.50 – 12.20  Tom Kennett: James Edward Smith Norwich Naturalist & founder of the Linnean Society of London
12.20 – 12.30  Discussion

12.30 – 14.00 Lunch break

14.00 – 14.30: Society for the History of Natural History Annual General Meeting

14.30 – 17.00 Afternoon Session:

14.30 – 15.00 Clive Slater: A history of John Henry Gurney Senior’s Raptorial Collection. Why was it lost to Norfolk?
15.10 – 15.40  Pat Morris The work of Walter Lowne of Great Yarmouth.

15.40 – 16.00 Discussion and winding up.

16.00 – 17.00 “Behind the scenes” collection tours with curator David Waterhouse to include the Fountaine-Neimy collection of Lepidoptera. There will be two groups, for 30 minute tours, with option to explore the museum displays/ have tea in Museum café)

18.30 Conference Dinner: venue and cost to be announced (estimated at £25 – £30).


Saturday 2nd July

Optional visit to Thorpe Marshes Nature Reserve with Chris Durdin, the local walk guide, starting at 10.00, for approximately 2 hours’ circular walk through ungrazed and grazed meadows, and around a former gravel pit Broad.

Bordering the River Yare, Thorpe Marshes is the Trust’s first truly urban site, located on the eastern fringe of Norwich. The site is a wonderful mixture of habitats: flower-rich marshes criss-crossed with dykes that are home to many dragonfly and damselfly species, including the rare Norfolk hawker, and the even larger emperor dragonfly. Several species of common butterfly can also be encountered on a good day

Directions: Located in Thorpe St Andrew, just outside Norwich. To visit the reserve, walk along Whitlingham Lane, at the traffic light junction with Yarmouth Road. At the end of this short road there is a footbridge over the railway line which gives access to the reserve

There is no parking on Whitlingham Lane. The site is easily reached via bus from Norwich city centre. The paths can often be muddy, so wellingtons are recommended.  Two local pubs on the Yarmouth road will provide lunch options.

For more detailed information see


The Maids Head Hotel, 20 Tombland, Norwich NR3 1LB, near the cathedral precinct, has a bus stop nearby which serves the city centre close to the Castle Museum. It has reserved a limited number of double rooms for SHNH for the nights of 30 June/1 July and for 2 July and these will be held until 30 May. Please contact me if you wish to have more information on rates, availability or book one of these rooms.

Gina Douglas
Meetings Secretary