Swindon Heritage is a not-for-profit community interest company (CIC), founded in the autumn of 2012 by a team of three local historians – Frances Bevan, Graham Carter and Mark Sutton – who are passionate about the heritage of our town.
We pride ourselves on producing a top quality magazine because this reflects what we believe are the key themes running through Swindon’s heritage, namely: innovation, co-operation and excellence. And we believe that by highlighting these aspects of our past we can help to promote a more positive image for our town that will not only serve to bring more visitors (and hopefully more investment to the town), but also foster a better understanding of our heritage among those living in the town.
We have now produced 17 quarterly editions of the magazine – more than 1,400 pages showcasing Swindon’s fascinating and often glorious past – and we are certain that the rich vein of material will never run dry. And we have now grown to have more than 500 subscribers behind us.
However, Swindon Heritage was conceived as more than a magazine. We have organised events, supported many other local history groups and individuals in Swindon and neighbouring towns and villages, and been instrumental in a range of projects and initiatives for the benefit of the town. For example, we co-founded Swindon in the Great War, a project that made sure the centenary of the conflict, when it arrived, was not overlooked in Swindon; organised Swindon Remembers, which marked the 75th anniversary, in 2015, of the Battle of Britain by throwing a spotlight on Swindon-born pilot Sqn Ldr Harold Starr; and we launched the town’s first blue plaque scheme in 2016.
We rely on sales of the magazine and the small amount of advertising space we have to sell. Our success is possible because of the support of our families; our friends and colleagues in Swindon’s many local history groups and individual local historians, who provide us with the knowledge and encouragement necessary to put the magazine together, often along with full and free access to their substantial archives; and the expert and practical help of a small number of individuals who give their time and expertise to keep Swindon Heritage on track, including Paul Gregory and Mike Pringle.
We also enjoy good relationships with a range of other key people in the local community, including many organisations and professionals in the town who share our goal of promoting a better Swindon, so we are strong believers in working with other sectors of our community, such as business, the arts and sport.
Our aim is to showcase the work of the many local history groups and individual historians operating in Swindon and its surrounding towns and villages, and help them bring their work and the whole story of the town’s heritage to a wider audience, especially young people.
If you would like to contact Frances, Graham or Mark, please click here.