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The Society was set up some 40 years ago by a group of people interested in our significant part in the history of Devon. Those people included local author and historian the late Gerry Woodcock who was head of history at Tavistock College.  Gerry has left us with a wonderful legacy of historic research, publications and much more, including 27 important volumes of his popular series Tavistock's Yesterdays which the Society has indexed as a tribute to his work. 


We organise indoor meetings and lectures during the autumn and winter period with trips and visits in the spring and summer around the area. 

Our indoor meetings from September to March are held in the Parish Rooms (shown by purple star on map) which is located at the rear of the vicarage beside The Bedford Hotel in Plymouth Road, Tavistock. We usually meet at 7:10 pm on the second Tuesday of each month (except for October when it is either the first or third Tuesday to avoid clashing with Goose Fair).

We have published a number of books and booklets. These are available direct from us via our contact form, or from the Museum shop, visitor information centre or Book Stop in Tavistock. We are also actively engaged in local historical projects with the aim of preserving the history of our market town. 


We have over 100 members from all over West Devon and beyond and we encourage anybody with an interest in local history to join us. Individual annual membership is £16 per person and for any additional members living at the same address there is a discounted subscription of £8 per person. Membership for those in full time education is free. 


Our membership year runs from 1st March to 28th or 29th February each year.  New members joining at or after our December meeting will get 15 months for the price of 12!  The benefits of your annual membership are: 

  • Attend all our indoor meetings (eight per year – September to March) and most outdoor meetings for free (for non-members and guests the cost is £3.00 per meeting). The exception would be our annual all day outing or others where there may be an admission charge and where costs are applicable to members and non-members. 

  • You get emailed our bi-monthly newsletter and are kept in touch with local history related events, and issues of interest. 

  • You are also covered by the Society’s insurance with the British Association of Local History. 

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