At the entrance to the St Martin’s Church yard there is a rather curious pagan symbol that has no real business being there, right next to a Christian Church. It’s a standing stone carved into the shape of a female figure known as La Gran’mere du Chimquiere (Grandmother of the cemetery). What is more there’s a second such stone outside the Castel Church. So where did they come from and why are they outside 2 island churches ?
One of the most enduring effects of Guernsey’s association with Normandy is the system of fiefs in the island. The island’s link with the Crown is feudal, as the Queen is still Duchess of Normandy. In this article we look at how Guernsey’s fiefs came about and how they worked.
The telephone was invented in 1876 by Alexander Graham Bell, and a limited telephone network was in operation in London as early as 1879. Before long, this had spread to other areas of Britain, and it was only a matter of time before Guernsey showed an interest.
Place-names are not just arbitrary sounds or quaint words. They had meaning to our remote ancestors who derived them for a reason. They give us insight into their world . In this article we look at just a few of some of Guernsey’s place names and their meanings.
Standing opposite each other in Victoria Gardens opposite the Town Fire Station, like sentinels from another age, you’ll find two heavy calibre artillery pieces – trophies of a previous war. They’re not British or even French but German and date back not to the dark days of Occupation but to the First World War. How they came to be here and their survival through another world war, and subsequent re-discovery, is even more fascinating.
The Bayeux Tapestry tells one of the most famous stories in British history – that of the Norman Conquest of England in 1066, particularly the battle of Hastings, which took place on 14 October 1066. But who made the tapestry and how long did it take?
The film “The Guernsey Literary & Potato Peel Society”, released in 2018 , has thrust Guernsey onto the World stage and has again highlighted to the world that the Channel Islands were the ONLY part of Britain to be occupied by the Nazis in World War II. In this article we can’t hope to cover the German Occupation in the necessary detail to do it justice or to even express adequately the pain and suffering of islanders in a time that must surely be one of our islands most darkest ordeals in its long history. Instead we simply offer up a short link to a video interview of some people who were actually there !
Not a lot happens on the island of Sark, that was until August 1990, when it was the centre of a bizarre invasion and attempted coup. What is more, the manner of the ‘official response’ to this armed incursion was equally extraordinary. Invasion! Frenchman Andre Gardes, an unemployed nuclear physicist, having convinced himself that he was the rightful heir and “Seigneur” of Sark, resolved to take action....
Guernsey folklore used to possess a rich set of ancient cures and remedies for various ailments intermingled with many superstitious tales. In this article we look at a few.
Whilst the RGLI can be considered Guernsey’s ‘official’ response to the war it wasn’t the islands only one. One such contribution was the creation of a number of hospital facilities right here on the island for soldiers who were returning sick or wounded from the trenches.
Tucked away in the corner of Guernsey’s Priaulx Library is a framed plaque, written in ornate gothic script that lists the names of 29 Guernseymen. Not just any Guernseymen but men who were there at the possibly most famous naval engagement in history. It’s a list to make you stop and wonder what deeds these men performed that day, what horrors and what acts of courage they witnessed. We may never know for sure but in this article we dig into some of the details of these men that we do know. Men who, that day of days, served their beloved Admiral Nelson and the hungry guns.
Dingbats are always a good source for visio-cryptic style quiz questions. So in this article we’ve created some exclusive Guernsey themed Dingbats – they are either Guernsey Places or ‘Guernsey things’.
Since the 1980s there has been a veritable explosion of Archaeological evidence to suggest that Guernsey was very much a part of the Roman World. In this article we look at the interface between the Celtic Worlds and the Roman World in Guernsey and the channel Islands.
In this article we share with you some “suitable chants” in Guernsey French, as given to us in a GFC programme in the 2016 season.
On the 9th of May 1945 Channel Islanders tasted freedom for the first time in nearly 5 long and terrifying years for it was on that day that the British forces finally liberated Guernsey from German Occupation. One of the first casualties when the Germans arrived on the island on 30th June 1940 was the truth, or at least the right to press freedom. In this article we look at a remarkable story that cou;d finally be told after the war.