• Wed

    Dear Members

    We have decide to 'ring the changes' this year and hold a 'Leap into Spring' party on March 1st instead of the Twelfth Night Party.

    Keep the date free and look out for further details.


    Sue May & Mary Done

    Events Team

  • Mon
    7:30 pmSt Annes Church, Kew Green

    'Zoffany in Kew'

    The Kew Society is delighted to be joining with the Friends of St Anne's and The Richmond Local History Society, to promote this talk about Zoffany in Kew by Frances Hughes.

    Tickets are available on the door for £4

    Doors open at 7.30pm. Talk 8pm

    John Zoffany (1733-1810) is buried in St Anne's Church graveyard. He lived in Strand on the Green and seems to have enjoyed a somewhat stormy relationship at St Anne's. An immigrant, born Johan Zoffanij, he first made his name as a theatrical painter, patronised by Garrick; he then made a fortune out of his portraits of the royal family. However, his lifestyle was so extravagant that he had to go off to India to make himself another fortune. One of his more famous pictures there, somewhat surprisingly, was a Last Supper, and on his return George III suggested that he paint another one for St Anne's.

    His choice of models was characteristically eccentric. Most of the disciples were appropriately local fishermen - all of whom would be known from then on by their apostolic names! - but he cast himself as St Peter, his own young wife as St John and a prominent member of St Anne's Vestry - a lawyer with whom he had quarrelled over making his will - as Judas Iscariot. (He had played a similar trick in his Indian painting) St Anne's refused to pay unless he agreed to repaint the figure; so Zoffany gave the painting to St George's Brentford. It can now be seen in St Paul's, also in Brentford.

    Frances Hughes is a freelance lecturer in Art and Theatre History for the National Association of Decorative & Fine Arts Societies (NADFAS), the National Trust and the National Portrait Gallery and tour guide at the Garrick Club. She is Chair of the Irving Society and Chair of the Henry Irving Foundation and from 1990 to 2010 was Hon. Sec of the Shakespeare Reading Society (founded in 1875). She spent 38 years in education (including 18 as a headteacher)


  • Tue
    7pm - 9.30pmSt Anne's Church, Kew Green

    David Weeks

    Kew Society members & guests celebrated the 1st day of Spring with a wonderful party and a bit of added magic!

    David Weeks, a renowned Magic Circle magician and one of only 300 world wide 'Inner Circle Magicians'  delighted us with many magical surprises right under our noses and had us all guessing followed by the inevitable cry of 'how did he do it'!

    You can see more about David by following this link

    Penelope Dupré Cuisine supplied the most delicious canapes

  • Mon
    7pm-8.30pmSt Annes Church Hall

    David Allister, Richmond Council Head of Parks and Open spaces gave an excellent talk to the Kew Society about 'The Frontier of Park Management'

    For 11 years David Allister has been the Head of Parks and Open Spaces for the Richmond Council. During that time he has seen 2 trends in park management. The first is the national trend of cuts and decline in the industry, but the second one is of continued improvement in the Borough of Richmond which has seen satisfaction levels rise from 66% when he joined to a current high of 94%. David has led a unique approach to park management which is setting the new standard and will need to continue to push the frontiers to ensure Parks remain as important in the future as they have in  the past.

    Our thanks to David for a really interesting evening.

    If you missed this talk click here for the presentation

  • Wed
    7:00 pmSt Anne's Church Hall, Kew Green.

    Don't miss this fascinating talk on Capability Brown, or to address him correctly,  Lancelot Brown,  celebrating the anniversary of his birth 300 years ago.

    Brown was appointed by the Duke and Duchess of Northumberland at Syon House to undertake major landscaping work and as a result was commissioned by King George III to redesign Richmond Gardens (as Kew Gardens was known then) Apparently there are still some trees in Rhododendron Dell dating back to his plantings.

    We are fortunate to have two speakers this evening:

    Chris Sumner, an architect and historian is a Trustee and former Chair of the London Parks & Gardens Trust and Chair of the Planning & Conservation working group. Chris also worked for English Heritage and the Greater London Council.

    Susan Darling, has a background in science and an MA in Garden History and is now a freelance landscape and garden history researcher and co-ordinates research at the London Parks & Gardens Trust.

    Tickets are £3 for members & £5 for non-members.

    Refreshments available at 7pm, talk starts at 7.30

    Book online here for tickets (fees)

    Download this form to pay by cheque (no fees)



  • Thu
    11:00 amSyon Park, Brentford.

    Private Tour of Syon House and Garden


    Following on with the theme from the talk on May 4th, The Kew Society is linking with Syon House to celebrate the 300th birthday of Lancelot 'Capability' Brown, landscape designer for both Syon House and Kew Gardens. We are delighted to be offered a chance to be taken round the House and Gardens by tour guides with specialist knowledge of Syon House.

    Today, Syon House is the London home of the Duke of Northumberland whose family were granted the former monastic site at the end of the 16th century. The Tudor mansion was remodelled by interior designer Robert Adam for Hugh Percy, 1st Duke of Northumberland in the 18th century and the interiors are an architectural tour de force - the great hall may be Adam's finest classical work. The Gardens within the 200-acre park were transformed by 'Capability' Brown and feature a stunning domed conservatory.

    The House tour scheduled 11am - 12.30pm is followed by lunch (not included in the price, but a group table will be reserved in the restaurant) The Gardens tour starts at 2pm.

    Tickets are £12 for members and £14 for members guest(s)

    Click here to book online (with fees)

    Click here to download the form to pay by cheque (no fees)

    Syon House has many stairs which may make the event unsuitable for members with restricted mobility. Car sharing may be possible. Please email  if you can either offer a lift or would like one. There is a free car park at Syon House but it is a distance from the house without any nearby dropping off point available.


  • Sun
    11 am - 2 pmMeet outside the Cricketers Pub, Kew Green

    'Thames Towpath Clearance'

    Volunteers are needed for our first 'Thames Towpath Clearance'. We are aiming to kick-start The Kew Society towpath clearance plan to help manage vegetation growth and build up of litter along the River Thames local towpath 'grotspots'.

    We are working under the guidance of The Thames Landscape Strategy and we hope to ultimately open up views, improve the appearance of the riverside and note simple improvements that can be made along the towpath.

    This is also an opportunity to increase enjoyment and understanding of how and why the riverside is managed.

    The Kew Society is hoping to make this a regular event - it should be a fun few hours and yes, it will help improve the beautiful Thames towpath we are so lucky to enjoy.

    We have chosen to launch our new venture on 22nd May as is it International Biodiversity Day. Biodiversity is a word used to describe the variety and variability of all living things on earth. It includes the trees, the plants and fungi that grow on and under trees and in the soil, the insects, the birds, the mammals and any other thing that makes soil their home.

    Our meeting point will be outside The Cricketers Pub on Kew Green at 11am on Sunday 22nd May. We hope to wrap up by 2pm and there is an opportunity to visit some Kew Green private open gardens from 2-4pm, access is via the towpath.

    Volunteers are recommended - for comfort - to bring their own gardening gloves and refreshments, and wear sensible/sturdy shoes.

    Please register your interest by 20th May by contacting Avril on

    More information will then be supplied to those interested. We'd love you to come and help - SO PLEASE DO TAKE A FEW HOURS ON SUNDAY 22nd MAY TO HELP US - AND SIGN UP!!

    Kind regards

    Avril & Mary

    The Kew Society Environment Team.












  • Sat
    11am - 6pmKew Green

    The Kew Society has been running another photographic competition with the junior schools of Kew,

    The Judges are fired up and ready to make the very difficult decision of who should be the winners.

    Prize giving will be at the Kew Midsummer Fete. Times to be announced.


  • Wed
    6.30pm - 8.30pmThe National Archives

    The talk by Emma Hall and Roger St Paul, West London Waste Authority,
    on Waste and Recycling was the basis for a lively, interesting and
    well-attended evening of discussions and ideas.

    The presentation can be found on by clicking this link

    During questions suggestions were made that Richmond Council could improve
    communication on re-cycling options and introduce easy ways to aid
    recycling in addition to the Townmead Road Re-use and Recycling Centre.

    The statistics regarding waste and recycling were an eye-opener !

    It was noted that Kew The Music 2016 had its own environmental champion
    looking after the green side of things, from how to improve fuel
    management to encouraging guests to recycle. 100% of the music series
    waste has been recycled - all 18 tonnes of it! A model for all"


    Don't miss this important talk by Emma Hall from The West London Waste Authority who has kindly agreed to come and talk to Kew Society members about the impact of waste on our community.

    Doors open at 6.30pm & talk starts at 7pm.

    To book on line here (with fees)

    To pay by cheque (without fees) down load the form here





    Link to the West London Waste Authority


  • Sun
    10am - 2pmKew Village

    Kew Village Market Aug 2016

    We had a great morning at the Kew Village Market with many members coming to chat and we signed up new members too.

  • Wed
    9am - 6pmCamberley

    Sandhurst tour

    Sandhurst horse

    Wednesday 10th August found a happy band of members up with the lark to board their coach and travel from Kew to The Royal Military Academy Sandhurst.

    We were met by our guide for the day, Tony Merrifield, and were privileged to watch the splendid Commandant's Parade in Old College Square.  This formed the dress rehearsal for the official Sovereign's Parade which took place the following Friday.
    The precision of the March Past in Slow and Quick time was a joy to watch - the ceremony was accompanied by a rousing programme of music provided by the Band of the Royal Armoured Corps.
    The Sovereign's Parade marks the passing out from Sandhurst Military Academy for the  204 Officer Cadets who have completed the training for the Commissioning Course and is the result of many hours of hard work.  It means that they will be officially commissioned as officers of the British Army from midnight on the Friday - when the clock strikes twelve, the celebrations begin with the now newly commissioned Second Lieutenants proudly displaying their rank insignia for the first time ! 
    184 of the Officer Cadets were from the United Kingdom, whilst the remaining 20 were from overseas and will return to their countries' armies.
    During the ceremony, The Commandant, Major General P. A. E. Nanson CBE, rehearsed the presentation of the Sword of Honour, the Overseas Sword, the Overseas Award and the Queen's Medal to the top Officer Cadets.  
    The parade ended in splendid style with The Adjutant riding his horse 'The Black Charger' up the steps of Old College and following the graduating Officer Cadets through the Grand Entrance - a splendid piece of horsemanship which received a huge round of applause!
    Following a buffet lunch, our group was entertained with more stories about the history and current and changing focus for Sandhurst. During a visit to the Roman Catholic Chapel in the grounds, Tony revealed the interesting facts connected with the baptismal font, altar, stained glass windows and amphitheatre of pews.  Here resides the ship's bell of HMS Sandhurst commemorating links with the Royal Navy and the Royal Naval College Dartmouth.  
    Our group then moved on to the Royal Military Memorial Chapel and the fascinating rooms which house historic artefacts and paintings to hear more about the formation of this military institution in 1801 and links to Colonel Le Marchant, George III and his second eldest son Prince Frederick, Duke of York.
    The Kew Society members ended their day in style -  Tony gave us a running commentary as we toured the 500 acre site in the coach.  
    It was a wonderful day out and we are so grateful to Sue May, the Events team and Tony Merrifield for putting together this unique opportunity



  • Fri
    10:45 amThe National Archives

    These tours are now full. We hope that we will be able to book more dates in the future.

    We are delighted to offer Kew Society Members a  'behind the scenes' guided tour of The National Archives.

    There are two tours available on Friday 19th August at 11am & 11.15am - (Now full)

    And two tours available on Saturday 20th August at 11am & 11.15am - (Now full)

    The Tour will visit the repositories and reading rooms and view some original and historic public records. If any tour attendee have a particular area of interest amongst the records held at the venue (e.g. local area history) please let us know at the time of booking. The National Archives have offered to check if there are any original records that can be produced for viewing during the tour.

    The tours are fully accessible but do require walking fitness as it is a large building even on the flat! Tours last approximately one hour.




  • Sat
    12 noonKew Green

    The Kew Society will be having fun at the Kew Horticultural Show, now in its 72nd year!

    Come and see our stall, play a game & join in the fun.

    Outside stalls open at 12 noon to 5pm

    Marquee opens at 1pm & closes at 3.45pm

    Prize giving at 4pm

    Auction of produce at 5pm.

    See this link for details of the Cups



  • Mon
    7:00 pmSt Annes Church

    Explore inside St Anne’s

    The Kew Society is pleased to offer an opportunity to tour the interior of St Anne’s Church with Sue Mason.

    Sue is a local mathematician –turned- artist whose publications include ‘Flowers Of Love’ a Kew colouring book.
    Sue will be giving an informal talk about the new font, the embroideries and the carving of the Paschal candlestick.

    She will also talk about the altar and chair carvings in the Lady Chapel. The talk will last about an hour.

    Please assemble at the front porch at 6.45pm

    Please note the group size is limited to 30
    Tickets are £5 per person
    All receipts are to be donated to St Anne’s

    To book a ticket on line please click here (with fees)

    To pay by cheque, click here to download the form (no fees)

  • Fri

    The Kew Society is delighted to offer the opportunity of a non-stop return river cruise  aboard the ‘Kingston Royale’ boat from Richmond to Hampton Court with a fascinating commentary provided by Jason Debney, Thames Landscape Strategy (TLS).

    We will be passing many historic houses and Jason will be updating us on past and future work of the TLS and providing pointers about wildlife along this gorgeous, historic route!

    Drinks and snacks will be available from the on-board bar.

    Embark at St Helena Pier; please be here by 12.45pm [returning about 5pm]

    St Helena Pier is near Richmond Bridge, outside the White Cross Pub at the bottom of Water Lane. TW9 1TJ.

    Tickets are £22 per Member and £25 for Member’s guest(s)

    Please note these tickets are non-refundable but they can be transferred


    To book tickets on line (with fees) please click here

    To pay by cheque (no fees) please click here


  • Mon
    6:45 pmThe National Archives

    To all members, please join us at The National Archives for our Annual General Meeting.

    We will welcome you at 6.45pm for a drink with the committee, followed by the AGM at 7pm.

    Afterwards there will be a chance to socialise and catch up with other members and the committee.

    We look forward to seeing you then.

  • Wed
    7:00 pmThe National Archives

    Restoration of The Great Pagoda

    Talk by the Royal Historic Palaces about the project to conserve the ‘Great Pagoda’

    Speakers : Dr Lee Prosser and Polly Putnam, Historic Buildings Curators at Historic Royal Palaces

    Venue: The National Archives, Kew, Richmond. TW9 4DU

    Doors open at 6.30, talk starts at 7pm (ending by 8.30pm)

    Parking available via Bessant Drive

    The Kew Society is delighted to have been offered the opportunity to hear more about the project to conserve the Great Pagoda. This is a two-year restoration project to return the building to its former glory. The Pagoda is expected to reopen to the public in 2018.

    Kew’s iconic Pagoda was completed in 1762. The ten storey octagonal structure is 163ft high (almost 50 meters) The Pagoda was one of the jewels in the crown of Georgian London and designed at the height of the 18th century craze for Chinoiserie. The original building was very colourful; the roofs being covered with varnished iron plates, with a dragon on each corner. There were 80 dragons in all, each covered in a thin kind of glass in many colours. The completed project will offer one of the earliest and finest birds eye views of London.

    Please come along and tickets will be available at the door on the night - bring a friend or neighbour. 

    Kew Society Members: £3

    Non members: £5

    Pagoda DSCN5430a (1)

    Photo by Caroline Blomfield


  • Tue
    6:45 pmThe National Archives

    To all members, please join us at The National Archives for our Annual General Meeting.

    We will welcome you at 6.45pm for a drink with the committee, followed by the AGM at 7pm.

    Afterwards there will be a chance to socialise and catch up with other members and the committee.

    We look forward to seeing you then.

  • Thu
    7:15 pmJodrell Theatre, Kew Garden

    Melvyn Bragg

    We are delighted that Melvyn Bragg has offered to give a talk to our members about how he first became interested in writing novels whilst living in Kew in the 1960's

    This event is hosted by The Kew Society and The Richmond Society to raise funds for The Museum of Richmond.

    Richard Deverell, Director of the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew will introduce the evening.

    This event is now completely sold out, in case of returns, please add your name to the waiting list below.

    Museum of Richmond Members. Please add your name to the waiting list here

    Richmond Society members. Please add your name to the waiting list here.

    Kew Society members. Please add your name to the waiting list here.

    We are very sorry if you have not been able to get a ticket, as you can imagine this has been a very popular event.

  • Tue
    7:30 pmDuke Street Church, Richmond

    The Richmond Society and The Kew Society are jointly hosting a By-Election Hustings.

    Free Admission

    This is your chance to hear the local Parliamentary candidates' views, not least on Heathrow and then ask your questions.

    Pre-submitted questions will stand a greater chance of being taken but there will be a short opportunity for questions from the floor.

    See poster below for more details.

    Hustings poster 2016 29th 

Events Archive

For previous events please check our archive.