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Verwood 1985 BBC Domesday Project. - Hillside School.


In  1985 the BBC instigated the DOMESDAY Project for groups to record information about their area to form part of the large UK Project. 

Hillside School was selected for Verwood and under the inspirational leadership of Mrs P. Reeks and Mrs. D Imlach, the then top year produced the following information. 

Note that this is the children's work and gives an insight into Verwood's recent past. 

The photographs that have been reproduced on other pages were copied from old photocopies and are therefore of very poor quality. It is hoped that these will be replaced with the originals when these can be located. Updates and additional information has been added in orange text.

The following letter was received from the BBC but the current state of the project is not known.


November 1985

Dear Colleague,

I am writing on behalf of the Domesday Project and the BBC to thank you for your splendid contribution to the Domesday Disc, which we have now received safely.  We have been most gratified by the very high quality of the work that has been done.  We naturally hoped that those who took part would find the project interesting and of real educational value and are delighted to hear that this seems to have been the case.  We have been amazed at the imagination and attention to detail that has gone into so many entries.  As thousands of photographs, floppy discs and cassettes pour into Bilton House we are beginning to get an impression of what an exciting resource we have created together. Please pass on our thanks and congratulations to everyone who has been involved in your school and community.  We hope you enjoyed compiling your entry and will be pleased with the way it appears on the Domesday Discs.

As you will realise, we now begin the complex process of fitting all the local material together, and adding to it large amounts of official statistics on Britain, Ordnance Survey maps, nature walks, film clips, satellite pictures and much more.  This process will take us a full year before the discs are ready to be launched in November of next year.

As to the future, we have heard from some areas that people are keen to continue with this kind of co-ordinated project work. Others feel that the tight timetable forced on us by the Domesday anniversary may have limited what they could achieve.  We will, therefore, be considering whether there is sufficient interest to mount a second phase of the project at some time in the future, so that other classes or groups can have a chance to take part and our coverage of the country can be extended even further.

Once again, thank you very much on behalf of the whole Domesday team here.  We hope you have enjoyed the project as much as we have.

With best wishes,
Yours sincerely,

Peter Armstrong

Editor Domesday Project


PROJECT CONTRIBUTORS aged 8/9 yrs in 1986 (were)

A. Bruce
L. Cochran
J. Easdown
J. Harding
U. Kirby
N. O'Shea
J. Smith
J. Turner

C. Bryant
A. Coley
K. Emerson
W. Harvey
C. Little
L. Probert
K. Smith
S. Waugh

B. Buckley
Z. Collins
N. Fletcher
N. Irving
K. Martin
K. Ramsbottom
W. Stevens
L. Williams

P. Child
K. Davies
C. Frost
P. King
N. Morris
R. D. Seviour
A. Strong
A. Withington

 ALSO: -           I & D. Imlach, P. Reeks & J. S. Clifton.


This report by Chris Little who aged 9 (in 1986) was one of the Hillside First School contributors to the project appeared in the October 1996 edition of the Viewpoint Magazine.

After finishing the Domesday project last Autumn, we decided that it would be nice to see the Domesday Exhibition and the Domesday Books.

We set off for the Domesday Exhibition, London at 9.30 am on Friday 16th May. On the way to the Fleet Service Station where we were going to stop half way, Chris F. and I had to spot and write down how many churches, bridges, vans, tractors and lorries we saw. The rest of the way we just looked at some of the sights. When we stopped, we were outside Hyde Park where we had lunch. 

After lunch we got back on the coach and headed for the Domesday Exhibition. On the way we saw lots of the sights of London . We saw Trafalgar Square , that was the best of them. When we arrived at the Public Records Office and went inside, there was a lady giving out stickers. 

We first watched a Video and that was very interesting, then we went downstairs. We saw a model monk that had a life-like face, then we saw a Norman soldier like the monk. There were lots of old books in the room, the great Domesday Book was split into three and the little Domesday book was split into five. Then we went into a room which had what was called a Magic Lantern, which was projecting pictures with questions and answers. After that we went into a room where there was a man making parchment. To make parchment you have to get a sheepskin, then you get a half moon shaped knife and scrape the hair off the skin, the knife is also used to smooth it down to the level you can write on. 

Later we went into the Domesday Shop and I bought a pencil sharpener, a pen, a badge and a keyring for Dad because he could not come. When we had come out of the exhibition, Mrs. Reeks took us to the Thames Embankment. I enjoyed watching all the boats on the river, the traffic on the road was amazing. We saw bridges further along the embankment and tried to get to one of the bridges, thinking how nice it would be to stand in the middle of one, but we realised that there wasn't time. 

We got back on the coach and headed for Battersea Park , on the way we passed Battersea Dogs Home. Just inside Battersea Park there was a cage, in it was a deer and a peacock. We walked towards a lake, on it we saw some ducks and geese, also there were some windsurfers. We stopped to have tea by the lake. After tea we had a little play, then we all piled back on to the coach to head for home. 1 wished there had been more time. We set off for home through more tremendous traffic jams. We arrived at Fleet Service Station at about 7.30 pm where we had a drink and a play on some play apparatus. After we had left Fleet Service Station, we had a singsong. We arrived home tired but we'd had an enjoyable day. Dad was waiting with the car to take us straight home.



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