Exhibition “The Quest for the Castle”

R.A. Lister & Co. – 150th Anniversary

A new exhibition has just opened at Dursley Heritage Centre commemorating the 150th year since R.A. Lister & Co. was formed in 1867 by Robert Ashton Lister. Lister’s went on to become Dursley’s largest employer, occupying a huge site in the valley below the town and providing employment to thousands. It manufactured a wide range of engineering and industrial products; including dairy and sheep shearing equipment, agricultural implements, woodcraft items and most significantly a wide range of petrol and diesel engines for use in many applications. The company went on to become renowned throughout the world for the quality of its products. Lister’s and Dursley became synonymous!

The exhibition will run until 16th September 2017.

Tabard Players Exhibition

Just opened at the Heritage Centre, an exhibition to commemorate 50 years of the Tabard Players, the Tabernacle based amateur dramatics group. Come on in and find out more about the history of this local group and some of its great productions. See if you recognise anyone, maybe even yourself! The exhibition will run until mid-July.

Old Dursley Gazettes on show

Many volumes of the Dursley Gazette from previous years are now held by the Heritage Centre and we currently have two large bound volumes on display. The volumes date from 1953 and 1959 and are available to browse so come along in and take a look. Perhaps you’re researching a particular topic or just want to be reminded what life was like in Dursley over 50 years ago? Whatever the reason the old newspapers make fascinating reading.

The volumes will be changed over the next few months so if there are particular years you’d like to see please mention it to a volunteer and we’ll see what might be possible.

Future Exhibitions

Exhibitions planned for later in 2017 include an opportunity to view bound volumes of the Dursley Gazette, many of which are now held in store by the Heritage Centre. Most copies between 1950 and 1971 are available and some of these will be on view between March and May.

During the summer months, June, July and August, it is intended to commemorate the 150th anniversary of the start of R.A. Lister & Co. an important part of Dursley’s history. If anyone has anything of interest please do get on touch.

Following on from the Lister exhibition, the old cloak once worn by the Bailiff of Dursley will be on view. This bright red cloak was worn by the last Bailiff when the post was discontinued in 1896 and has been recently restored.

An ongoing small exhibition commemorates those men (and one woman) from Dursley, who died during the equivalent three month period one hundred years ago. If anyone has any information about anyone we’d love to hear from you.

Tent Methodists’ Exhibition

A new exhibition about the little known ‘Tent Methodists’ has just opened at the Heritage Centre.

George Pocock’s Tent

This group was a breakaway group from the Wesleyan Methodists and centred on Bristol but George Pocock came up with an idea of a large tent which could be taken around to local towns which didn’t have a suitable chapel. This allowed preaching to often very large crowds to take place.

We also have an ongoing exhibition about the men from Dursley who died in WW1 100 years ago. The exhibition will run until January 2017.