Book review: Calne Place Names: discover the history of Calne through its place names
Calne Place Names: discover the history of Calne through its place names
Tim Havenith, 2020
270 pages, illustrated
This A-Z of place names for Calne is much more than just a gazetteer. It begins with a look at some of the town’s developments, such as details of the award-winning Phase II which included the new library building, and also details forthcoming developments which have been put on hold due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
Each entry has been carefully researched with details setting the place name in its wider historical context where possible. You can discover fascinating information about the people of the town whose names have become immortalised, such as Arthur George Angell, fruiter, grocer and mayor.
Calne Place Names is a good mix of historical and modern information, bringing the past and present together; there is a real feel of community running through the pages.
The entries are varied: from the fascinating look behind the ‘Doctor’s Pond’ plaque, to Guthrie Close and its links to Mrs Guthrie’s training school for female servants, to the search for Calne’s castle.
Engaging and clearly written with easy to view dates of origin for the streets, the book also makes it easy to locate the sources for the information, found in useful end notes. Varied quotes are included which provide added interest and with over 380 entries, this book is the culmination of what must have been a long-term research project. The dedication and enthusiasm of the author is apparent throughout its pages.
An interesting and enjoyable read for anyone who wants to discover more about Calne or who is looking at beginning their own research project but is not sure where to start.
You can view Calne Place Names at the Wiltshire & Swindon History Centre and Calne Library, or borrow it via your local library, reference CAL.940.
County Local Studies Librarian