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Family History Group @ Prince & Princesses Event @ Leigh Park Community Centre
Sep 23 @ 10:00 am – 2:00 pm

Are there any Princes or Princesses in your family tree?

The Westbury Family History group will be on hand to show you how you can get started in the fascinating activity. And although they won’t be able to go back to medieval times in just a few minutes, they can probably find out quite a bit about your family from names, a few dates of birth and some addresses.

No need to book, no additional charge, just walk up and ask them – the group will be in the hall during the Princes and Princesses event.

Note this event is only available to those attending the Princes, Princesses, Nights & Damsels event.


Beyond the Blue Plaques @ Westbury Library
Sep 23 @ 11:00 am – 12:00 pm
County Archivist, Steve Hobbs

County Archivist, Steve Hobbs

Popular County Archivist, Steve Hobbs returns to the Festival and this year will be looking at those buildings in Westbury which are not included in the town’s Blue Plaque Trail but hold fascination in their own right.

Spaces are limited so please book through the Library on 01373 822294.

Great Western Railway & Westbury @ Methodist Church
Sep 26 @ 7:30 pm – 9:30 pm

Join Colin Maggs, railway historian and the author of more than 60 books about British railways, particularly those in the southwest of England, including Branch Lines of Wiltshire in 1992 and  A History of the Great Western Railway in 2013.  He has also written innumerable newspaper and magazine articles and made several TV and radio appearances on the subject of railways.  Colin was awarded an MBE in 1993 for services to railway history and an honorary MA from the University of Bath in 1995.

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Westbury Leigh – from the archives @ The Hollies Inn
Sep 27 @ 7:30 pm – 9:00 pm

Westbury Leigh

County archivist and Westbury rResident, Steve Hobbs revisits Westbury Leigh. Last time he covered this subject he led a popular walk around the village. Many people said they would have liked to have heard more and not everyone was able to join a walk – also Steve ran out of time before covering all that he researched. So Steve will return to Westbury Leigh and this time you can sit down!

Not only can you sit down but you can have a drink or a meal from the Hollies’ extensive menu.

If you want to eat, we strongly recommend you book your table direct with the Hollies to avoid disappointment.  Tel. 01373 864493


Leighton House Walks @ Leighton House
Sep 30 @ 10:00 am – 4:00 pm


11am Sunday 1st of October – click Book now below and choose the active tour

Two years ago we sold out, when Lt Col Andrew Field led select tours around Leighton House, the Army Officer Selection Board.

Lt. Col Andrew Field MBE has once again offered to lead small parties around his fascinating site. If you have always wondered what was behind those very high grey stone walls, then now is another chance to have a peek!

The first two tours of the day also include a chance to visit and learn more about the unique apple orchard at Leighton House with local apple experts, Mike Pearce and Warren Harding.  The orchard has a tree of every apple variety available at the time when the Laverton family lived in the house. This tour will take part after the main tour so tours 1 & 2 will be longer

We expect this event to be very popular, book early.

YOU MUST PROVIDE CONTACT DETAILS AND NAMES OF PARTICIPANTS WHEN YOU BOOK – this applies at the Box Office as well. Failure to do so may result in you or members of your party being refused entry by the Army on the day.

The Tour

The ground at Leighton House is not very flat (it is an assault course in places!) and the house is not ideal for disabled access (it is a working military facility not a public venue). If you are disabled, we will do our best to accommodate you but we hope that you understand that some areas might not be accessible.

All visors should be reasonably fit as the tour involves quite a bit of walking, and will last about 1 hour; we’d advise “sensible shoes”.




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Spend an night with the Old Bill @ Methodist Church
Oct 3 @ 7:30 pm – 9:30 pm

A double-bill with the oldbill.

The evening will begin with a short presentation by local historian Ward Jones, who has been looking into the history of the police in Westbury.  After a short break you will be entertained by the Wiltshire Police Band who will be playing a varied programme of music.

The band was formed in October 1985 by a small group of enthusiastic musicians from within the police force. It is a traditional military style band, comprising of woodwind, brass and percussion sections and is led by their Musical Director, Martin Perry

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The band welcome new members of grade six standard or above and, since 1998, there is no commitment to join the police force!

More information from their website

Heritage Open Day @ Heritage Centre
Oct 7 @ 10:00 am – 4:00 pm

Westbury Heritage Society is celebrating its 25th anniversary and would love you to join us for the celebrations.

Come along to the heritage centre in the High Street for a range of activities, exhibitions and a special prize competition for all the family to enjoy.  You can learn more about the white horses of Wiltshire, see artefacts not usually on display and test your local knowledge.

Free tea and cakes will be available from 3 pm – please come and help us celebrate!



As part of our anniversary celebrations on Tuesday 10 October, your are invited to a very special event … a talk on White Horses of Wiltshire from David Dawson, Director of the Wiltshire Archaeological and Natural History Society.  It promises to be an excellent and informative evening.

Photos from the archives @ All Saints Church
Sep 24 @ 10:00 am – Oct 5 @ 3:00 pm

Tucked away in the cupboards at the Heritage Centre are hundreds of photos donated to Westbury Heritage Society over the years.

Lacking space to display all of them, they are rarely seen by the public.

This exhibition will give visitors a chance to see images of the town as it was; not just buildings, but pictures of its inhabitants at work and play.













Please note: All Saints Westbury is a working Church.. It is normally open between 10am and 3pm but times do vary. Also there are sometimes services in progress. Please respect any notices asking for quiet for events such as funerals.

Cabot’s First Voyage by Evan Jones @ Methodist Church
Sep 25 @ 7:30 pm – 9:00 pm

Everyone has heard of John Cabot; some may know that he was actually a Venetian called Giovanni Caboto.  Some may even know that he set out on his voyages of discovery from just down the road in Bristol under the commission of Henry VII . But do you know much else about him?





Dr Evan Jones is a specialist in medieval maritime history and is an internationally renowned expert on Cabot and he will be our guide for this talk.

Dr Jones is one of the principals behind the Cabot Project at Bristol University an international collaborative project which began in 2009 and is till uncovering information about Cabot, Bristol & the voyages.

he is a co-author of Cabot and Bristol’s Age of Discovery: The Bristol Discovery Voyages 1480-1508 (University of Bristol, 23 Nov 2016), ISBN 0995619301, 104 pp., £11.99. For more information: see the book’s webpage.


Tickets are available here but you can also pay on the door on the night.  Members’ tickets only available on the door.

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Extraordinary Women of West Wiltshire @ Westbury Library
Sep 29 @ 11:00 am – 12:00 pm

What do the following women have in common?

  • Etheldred Benett, pioneer geologist of Norton Bavant;
  • Lady Blanche Arundell of Wardour Castle;
  • Praxell Hinwood, protesting pauper of Warminster;
  • Mary Bruce, motoring and aviation pioneer of Bradford on Avon;
  • Maria Thynne, secret bride of Longleat


Find out more about the lives of these diverse and unusual women who lived in Wiltshire from the 16th to 20th centuries at a talk by Principal Archivist,Claire Skinner illustrated with images from the archives of Wiltshire and Swindon History Centre

 This thought-provoking talk, illustrated with images from the archives of the Wiltshire & Swindon History Centre, tells us more about women such as motoring and aviation pioneer, Mary Bruce, the “protesting pauper of Warminster” Praxell Hinwood, pioneer geologist Etheldred Benett and others.

Tickets only available from Westbury Library

Tickets £3.00/£2.00 available from Westbury Library

01373 822294