Founded in 2009, through a grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund(HLF), FoSJP Public History Talks continue to thrive and are a popular Autumn event attended by an audience of 20‑70 people.

Talks take place between October and December, usually on the first Sunday of each month, between 3pm and 5pm. The venue is Shirley Parish Hall, situated on the corner of St.James’ Road and Colebrook Avenue, a short walk from the Park. Talks are free and open to both members and non‑members of FoSJP. Refreshments are also available for a small donation.

Topics relate to the local history of Shirley and in particular the area around St.James’ Park. Talks are given by a variety of speakers, local historians, University historians, and also members of FoSJP’s own history team.

Since the completion of the Shirley Heritage Project in 2015, the talks have been organised by the Shirley Local History Group.

Shirley Local History Group Autumn Talk 10th Series 2018

October – December 2018

  • Sunday 7th October Title: The Theatre of the World’ a story of Tudor Southampton – an author’s journey‘ Speaker: Dr Cheryl Butler
  • Sunday 4th November Title: ‘Snippets of Shirley Life During WW1.’ Speaker: Michaela Lawler-Levene
  • Sunday 2nd December Title: ‘Notable and Notorious Women of Southampton’ Speaker: Sandra Lochead

Talks held 3-5pm at Shirley Parish Hall, (corner of Colebrook Avenue/ St James Road, Shirley SO15 5NS.

  • Talks are free.
  • Refreshments available.
  • Wheelchair accessible.

The history group is always grateful for assistance with the baking and serving of refreshments and donations for the raffle.  Baskets for making food hampers and tinned food / bottled drink donations are gratefully accepted in November ready for the December raffle.  (Please bring to the Shirley Parish Hall Nov meeting or leave with Theresa at the Shirley Parish Office, 133 Church Street).

Thank you for all the support received these past 10 years.

Contact email: Website:

Click on the links below for more information about past talks

October – December 2017

A ninth series was organised for Autumn 2017. Topics were:

October – December 2013

A fifth series was organised for Autumn 2013. Topics were:

October – December 2011

Following the success of the first two series of talks, a third series was organised for Autumn 2011. Topics were:

October 2010 – March 2011

Following the success of the first series of talks, a second series was organised for Autumn 2010, although because of poor weather, the final talk was postponed from December to March 2011. Topics were:

October 2009 – March 2010

Following the confirmation of HLF funding for the Shirley Heritage Project, our first undertaking was to organise a series of monthly public talks. The first series, held at Shirley Parish Hall, took place between October 2009 and March 2010. The purpose of these talks was to provide background information on topics relating to the Park’s history, including:

FoSJP would like to thank all who attended the talks, the contributors, and local groups who supported us – such as Southampton City Council Arts and Leisure, Museum, and Library staff, and Hampshire County Council – with permissions to use images, book stalls, off-prints, and advice.

The talks were very well received and requests were made for further talks.