The Dorney History Group
The Dorney History Group

Dorney Parish News: Articles by Virginia Silvester

Virginia Silvester lives in Dorney Reach and you can find her most interesting research on Dorney Reach on this link


She regularly pens historical articles about Dorney for Dorney Parish News and Charles Cody (Editor of Dorney Parish News) and Virginia have kindly agreed for the articles to be published on this website. 

Dorney and the Chalcots Estate
In the aftermath of the Grenfell fire [14th June 2017], was anyone else intrigued by the names of four tower blocks in London, partially evacuated due to safety concerns?
These are on the Chalcots estate in Primrose Hill, and the four high-rise tower blocks are called Dorney, Taplow, Burnham and Bray. What, I wondered, could possibly be the reason for these names? ......
Virginia Silvester Chalcots estate.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [97.1 KB]
Dorney and the Motorway [M4]
Love it or hate it, the motorway is an integral part of living in Dorney, and its arrival had a profound effect on residents. Plans for a Maidenhead by-pass were first discussed in 1923, and work started in the 1930s on a dual carriageway with cycle tracks..........
Virginia Silvester Dorney and the motorw[...]
Adobe Acrobat document [100.0 KB]
Crime in Victorian Dorney
Local newspapers are a great source of detail about the past, and fortunately for us, large chunks of historical issues of the Windsor and Eton Express can be seen online, at . Just like now, crime was well reported, and here I’m taking a look at events which affected Dorney residents in the period up to 1860.....
Virginia Silvester CRIME IN VICTORIAN DO[...]
Adobe Acrobat document [143.9 KB]
Dorney Shopping Then & Now
When the previous owners of our house moved here in 1965, the outgoing occupants left a helpful list of “retailers who have given satisfaction”. Looking at this note half a century later, it reads more like the Victorian era. Not only milk and newspapers were delivered to Dorney Reach, but so were bread (3 days a week – not counting that there was still a baker’s shop in Dorney village), meat (daily), fresh fish (3 days a week), and fruit and vegetables (twice a week)........
Virginia Silvester Dorney shopping.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [123.4 KB]
T.W.E. Roche of Dorney
A couple of years ago, I was asked by someone at the South Devon Railway about a former resident of Dorney Reach – TWE Roche. Mr Roche had played a key part in the negotiations to buy the branch line which became the South Devon Railway from British Rail, after it closed in 1962; and his address was St Helier, Dorney Reach.
Some residents of Dorney will no doubt still remember TWE Roche, who seems to have been a remarkable and interesting man......
Virginia Silvester TWE ROCHE.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [111.1 KB]
A Dorney Character: Jeremiah Dell
Browsing through the old newspapers online, my attention was attracted by a report of an incident at Burnham Fair in October 1850. A 90 year old resident of Dorney called Jeremiah Dell had walked up to the fair in the morning with his 9 year old grandson. Described as “highly respectable”, he and the boy spent all day at the fair enjoying its amusements, and, it is hinted, he had drunk a few beers......
Virginia Silvester A Dorney Character.pd[...]
Adobe Acrobat document [138.4 KB]

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