Initial historical research into South Wonston revealed an ancient heritage in the barrows that are sited on the land. Artefacts from Winchester Museums Service included flint axes and scrapers, and bronze draggers. Also of interest were documents mentioning the Winchester Racecourse which was sited on the nearby Worthy Down, and is mentioned by Jane Austin in one of her poems. There is, in addition, evidence of the land being traditionally used by gypsies and travellers in centuries past.
More recent history relates directly to issues concerning sustainable living. Oral histories taken from older residents of the village today reveal the settlers who bought land as small holdings directly after the first world war and lived on them for many years. (See Appendix 6 for details). The current housing estates began to be developed after the second world war. Water was not brought to the village until the early 1960s, and some residents can remember collecting rain water and digging wells for water. These histories have formed a fascinating inspiration for children’s workshops and thinking about the future of South Wonston in relation to climate change.
Many thanks to Avril Burt, Jean, Tom and Peter Wheble for taking the time to tell us more about the history of South Wonston
Mia Kellow is a resident of South Wonston whose family have lived in South Wonston since staking off some land in the early 20th Century. Below are some excerpts of her interview.
Creative Workshops and Events
South Wonston Primary School - 3 workshops
Approximately 90 children from South Wonston Primary School took part in a series of presentations and workshops in the last week of June 2010.
Robin Iles from Winchester Museums Service came along and gave a talk and showed artefacts relating to the villages. Children were able to hold 6000 year old pots and flint axes and imagine what it had been like then in South Wonston/Sutton Scotney. They then created collages out of recycled materials, thinking what is precious to them and imagining what they would like to save from their lives for future generations.
Village Hall Event 14th July 2011
On 14th July in South Wonston Village Hall, as part of the celebrations for 25th anniversary of the Village Hall Past Matters mounted the heritage exhibition from the Discovery Centre and a display of children’s artwork to enable more local people to get involved in the project, and think about their heritage. Many of the older residents of the village attended and told stories of their lives in South Wonston. More names were gathered for potential oral histories.
Village Hall Event 22nd October 2011
On 22nd October another event was held in the hall to celebrate the unveiling of the legacy artwork in the village hall. During this event in addition to the heritage interpretation boards and more work from the pupils of South Wonston posters which suggested ways in which the community could take aspects of the past to think about the sustainable future of the village were displayed. In relation to South Wonston this considered the use of solar panels and zonal heating in homes; the development of the current allotments on to a permanent site with water and encouraging wild flowers in the verges to help the insect population, specifically bees. Whilst this event itself was sparsely attended, the consequent meeting for Winchester Action on Climate Change later in the same week had over 20 attendees, mostly as a result of the profile of the project in the village.
The legacy artwork for South Wonston is situated in the Village Hall. The graphics were created by Ian Kirkpatrick and depict scenes from memories collected during the project. The glass created by Alex Hoare relates to observations of the landscape and maps of the area, both ancient and modern.
The images below depict the artwork back from and then the unveiling at South Wonston Village Hall on 15th October 2011.
The artwork by Ian Kirkpatrick
The unveiling at South Wonston Village Hall on 15th October 2011.
Charlotte Bailey, Ian Kirkpatrick, Alex Hoare, David Selby