History Group

The Westbourne Local History Group was formed in 1978 by a few like-minded individuals with an interest in the lives and times of the village of Westbourne, particularly the previous 150 years.

wp8ababf41_05_06Now the period in question is around 200 years. During the intervening time, the Group has published 16 books which are listed below. Generally each book represents the research of an individual member, and so far ten authors have seen their efforts in print. Some of the subjects initially suggested are still to be investigated, so there is ample opportunity for any budding historian, and new members are welcome. We meet bimonthly to discuss progress and share information in informal surroundings. Of the publications, the first five in the series are no longer available, although Number 2, The Village Schools has been revised and updated to 2011, and un updated version of Number 1, Tradespeople of Westbourne, is under way. Other out-of-print volumes may follow if there is sufficient demand.


Tradespeople of Westbourne 1845-1938” shows how businesses have come and gone during that time. They range from specialists such as wheelwrights and watch repairers to “all-in-one” shops such as Comber’s. In 1895, this latter advertised itself as family grocer, baker, pork butcher, corn and provision merchant, and also offered British wines, patent medicines, Crosse and Blackwell’s specialities, tinned meats and fruits, as well as brooms and brushes.

Everyday life in Westbourne over almost a century is cleverly illustrated by the latest publication from the village’s local history group.

The book was originally compiled by Peter Ellacott in 1981, with a series of tables showing which traders were operating at any given date. It has now been updated by Peter Wilkinson and Peter Barge, with new indexes of individual trades and more than 300 surnames of those who followed them. There are also new illustrations and photos.

“Tradespeople” is available from Peter Barge at 7 Whitley Close, Westbourne, PO10 8TT (tel: 01243 374409), price £4.50. Please add £1.60 for post and packing if applicable.


Westbourne and the Great War, by Nigel Peake

This latest publication charts the history of the village between 1914 and 1918, and includes biographies of the 55 men who died and are commemorated on the war memorial. It also contains the names of more than 300 who served, plus their regiments or ships. Produced to mark the centenary of the war’s outbreak, the book draws on national and local archives to show how a typical Sussex village fared when large numbers of its menfolk disappeared into the forces.

Copies (price £6) can be obtained from Peter Barge, 7 Whitley Close, Westbourne PO10 8TT (Tel . 01243 374409). Please add £1.60 for post and packing if appropriate.


No.1 Tradespeople of Westbourne 1845-1838, Originally by Peter Ellacott .

Updated & reprinted by Peter Wilkinson & Peter Barge September 2015

No.2 The Village Schools 1819-1984 by Nigel Peake

No.3 The Poor of the Parish and the work of the Select Vestries, 1819-1835 by Peter Ellacott

No.4 Westbourne Then and Now, by Stephen Johns

No.5 The Westbourne Union, Life in and out of the New Workhouse, by Ian Watson

No 6  Westbourne Church Guide, by Lindsey Fleming (reprint)   £3.50

No.7 Cleaning up  Westbourne, by David Hogg £3.50

No.8 Westbourne Worthies, by David Hogg £3.50

No.9 The Bastards of Westbourne, by Peter Ellacott £3.50

No.10 Westbourne’s War 1939-1945, by Tom Edwards £3.50

No.11 A Millennium  in Tandem , Westbourne and Stansted, by David Hogg £3.50

No.12 Slndles Farm, a story of a Farm and its Farmers, by John Veltom £5.00

No.13 Westbourne Memorials, Church and Churchyard, by Jill Storer with Keith Linder £4.00

No.14 Cottage Economy. by Augusta Ann Pitney, edited by Denise Thain £3.50

No. 15 The Village Schools 1819-2011, by Nigel Peake (updated and revised)  £3.50

No. 16 Westbourne and the Great War, by Nigel Peake  £6.00

Numbers 2 to 5 out of print.

Numbers 1, 7 to 16 inclusive available from Peter Barge, 7 Whitley Close, Westbourne, Emsworth, Hants. PO10 8TT.

Tel. 01243 374409 or e-mail to pbarge591@btinternet.com

Post and packing: £1.60 for one title; £2.20 for two or more volumes

Please make remittance payable to Westbourne Local History Group

Group Members:

Peter Wilkinson – 01243 575414 wilkinsonhjp@btinternet.com

David Hogg –       01243  37669 davanhogg@aol.com

Roger Wilding –   01243 374502 roger_wilding@yahoo.com

Nigel Peake –      01243 372718 nigelpeake29@gmail.com

Peter Barge –      01243 374409 peterbarge91@gmail.com

Some interesting links for you to follow:


Westbourne History Group books and publications now available for sale in the “Village Stores” (ex Lashleys) as they now stock all the available ones.


The following book Westbourne & The Great War has a link to more detail about the publication and its contents. Please click on the image