History & Genealogy

Family History

Finding out who your ancestors are and how they lived is a fascinating and potentially life-changing activity. If you feel the urge to explore your past and that of your relatives, our family history courses can help to guide you to the right places, whether on the world wide web or the many national or local records offices of London and the south-east, whatever your ethnic background.


Looking into the past can reveal much about the present. Covering European and British history from the 14th to the 20th century, our expert tutors present history in an accessible and detailed way illustrated with slides and texts.

New for Summer 2013 – Evening History courses at the Widmore Centre!

British Social History 1500-1800

This course is a study of the lives of the people – poor as well as rich – in the early modern period, looking at the nature of the family, the patterns of crime, and the continuing importance of religion, and show how this society differed in many respects from the rest of Europe.


London is one of the world’s great cities with a rich and diverse history that goes back to Roman times and its study is an endless and fascinating exploration. Our London tutors┬áhave a wide range of expertise in the many facets of London’s past – political, economic, social, cultural and architectural. Courses range from college-based lectures illustrated with maps and slides to walks on specific themes, to a mixture of ‘walk and talk’. Courses can range from one two-hour walk in a particular area of London to a 28-week survey of the metropolis from the seething centre to the sleepy suburbs.