Origins and other UEHS notes



History of the Society

On 2nd January 1986 a short article in the Cumberland & Westmorland Herald announced the launch of a history society for Kirkby Stephen and the surrounding area.

The idea was introduced by Tom Clare, County Archaeologist at the time, who had given a series of well-attended and popular evening lectures on local history. The first meeting of the new Society was held in February 1986 at Kirkby Stephen Grammar School on ‘Matters Heraldic’ by Fred Hughes.

The Society's logo

This was drawn from a small bronze dolphin that is now in store at the British Museum. It is part of a group of 120 objects, mainly small Roman bronzes, purchased by the Museum in 1874 from Bryce M Wright, a dealer with premises in Great Russell Street, London – “found in the neighbourhood of Brough, Westmorland and some of them evidently from Kirkby Thore”. It is an armour fitting, one of a pair used to secure shoulder straps to the breast of a Roman soldier’s iron mail shirt.

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