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Grant for Cataloguing South West Estate Archive

One of the South West’s finest family and estate archives will become much more accessible thanks to a cataloguing grant received by the South West Heritage Trust. 


The archive, which relates to the Wyndham family, is the largest held at the Somerset Heritage Centre in Taunton and is regarded as a foundation stone of West Country history.


£31,570 grant received

A total of £31,570 has been given by the National Cataloguing Grants Programme so that the Heritage Trust can undertake major cataloguing work on the collection and make the results fully available online. 


 “The project will take us fifteen months to complete,” Liz Grant, an archivist with the Heritage Trust, explained.  “But it means that a vast amount of new information will become accessible.  The archive is very extensive and documents the lives of West Country people and places over hundreds of years.”

A selection of estate documents from the Wyndham archive

A West Somerset family

The Wyndham family settled near Williton in Somerset in 1520 and acquired major estates in Somerset, Devon and Wiltshire.  Their archive contains material from the 12th century onwards and includes papers relating to the development of Watchet, manor records for Williton, thousands of property deeds and large amounts of correspondence.


“We’re very grateful to our funders for making this project possible,” Tom Mayberry, Chief Executive of the South West Heritage Trust, said.  “The Wyndham archive is of outstanding significance, and now far more people than ever before will be able to discover its rich and remarkable contents.”


With grateful thanks 

The Cataloguing Grants Programme is administered by The National Archives and supported by organisations including the Pilgrim Trust, the Foyle Foundation, the Wolfson Foundation, the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation and the J. Paul Getty Junior Charitable Trust.  In 2015 grants worth £325,000 were awarded to eleven projects.


Read more

To find out more about the facinating history of the Wyndham family and more about the archive collection you can click here.

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