To Do

There is an infinite amount of information about the history of Witham, in the sense that you would never find it all, however long you looked.  The contents of this web site are only the tip of the iceberg. And they are very selective. Some subjects are dealt with in great detail, whilst others are virtually ignored. It just depends what I have been working on since the website was launched.

So I thought I would jot down some ideas about what else could be added to it, if anyone was ever in a position to add anything.

In general, anything which is digital, for instance already typed on a computer, will be a good choice, because it can be just copied straight over onto the website, without any scanning or typing. Also the website would pick up the text so you could find words and phrases with a search. Here it would be useful if I explained how my computerised information is organised, but I’m not sure I know, or have time to spell it out. I suppose some of it is organised and bits of it aren’t.

I will just say that there are a number of Access databases on the computer from which the tables could be useful to have on the website, and which have taken some time to compile over the years. They would need to be exported into Excel for the website. This is made more complicated by the fact that some of them are in old formats, dating from when I first discovered Access quite a long time ago – what a revelation it was, too. But it can be done. I’m very grateful for the amount of help that I have received with all these matters from Nick Smith  ( and Phil Gyford.

Similar material will be found in my  lever-arch files, except of course it is on paper, so it would need to be either scanned, or a copy-typed out onto a computer, to produce the digital format. Scanning would mean that the reader could see what the original looked like, but the words would not be recognisable by the website if someone tried to search for them. Typing would have the opposite result – the overall view would be gone, but the words would be recognisable. For that reason, typing would be good for our purposes. Except of course for the need to actually do the typing !

The ‘main’ lever-arch files are divided into three types, People, Places and Subjects. Within each type, the papers are alphabetical. Labels on the files describe the contents. Other files are for special things. There are a lot for Newspapers, arranged in order of Newspaper title, and then within each title, in date order. The date is often written on the back of the sheet in pencil. A few files have material from the Essex Record Office and from The National Archive (labelled as PRO, Public Record Office, which is what it was when I used to go there). There is one for other places. A few defoted to certain sources, eg Parish Records, Parish Registers, Sale Catalogues, Building Plans, Articles.

There’s one labelled References in red which I think has a few explanations about my files etc. which will be out of date now, as it’s all pre-computeer. There are also details there of anything I have given to ERO. But this is getting way from describing what could go on the website, so I’ll stop this part now. Files are labelled anyway, I hope.

TO BE CONTINUED, eg. with books and booklets,and photos.







tithe map


manor records, especially table giving manor numbers to street numbers

booklets and pamphlets, listed in ?books, real ones in my small boes. Ideallytyped out, or failing that, photocopies with tags to pick out key words.

Relevant parts of books and articles (I have most)
Kiddier, Old Trade Unions

Mike Wadhams The Development of Buildings in Witham from 1500 to c.1880 (I once asked permission from Post-Medieval Archaeology to put this online but received no reply.


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