Harmonising Landscapes

Newstead Abbey Volunteer Research Group


20th century oral history project

Did you used to live at or work on the Newstead Abbey estate? Maybe you used to deliver goods and services to the house? Or visit friends or relatives that have a connection. Do you have memories of family visits or ghostly encounters?

If so the Newstead Abbey Volunteer Research Group (NARG) would like to know.

Historically and at times we undertake projects to collect the stories, reminiscence, memories and photographs of Newstead Abbey during the twentieth century. It was still owned by the Webb family until 1925 when Augusta Webb died and passed the abbey to her son Charles Ian Fraser. It was then sold to the Nottingham businessman Sir Julian Cahn in 1931 who gifted the house and gardens to Nottingham Corporation. However, parts of the house remained privately occupied until the 1960s.

Over time we hope to piece together a history of Newstead Abbey during this period such as what were the private apartments like? Who worked there? Who came to visit? What sort of activities took place? What changes were made in the house and grounds?

We also like to capture the memories of local people for whom Newstead has been a part of their life, visiting the park and gardens. What changes have you observed? Do you have special memories of your visits to Newstead? Has it been a part of your life? Maybe you’ve even seen one of its ghosts! Once the information has been collected, we hope to hold an exhibition based on the memories people share with us. These memories will contribute to building a true history of Newstead Abbey’s more recent past.

Please email us at Newstead.Abbey@nottinghamcity.gov.uk with the subject heading NARG project. *

Thank you for your support – we really appreciate it, and are looking forward to seeing all the interesting memories!

* By submitting photography to the email address, it confirms yourself as the owner with suitable rights of the photographs, and gives permission for the photo to be shared on website and social media associated with Newstead Abbey & Nottingham City Council, as part of the Newstead Abbey Volunteer Research Group Project.

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