Local Historian's Memory Lives On In Road Name
13 Oct 2015

Linden Homes’ 1779 development in Lightmoor, Telford has today played host to guests and local dignitaries, to celebrate the life and work of a local historian, who was awarded an MBE at the age of 88.

In partnership with the Friends of Ironbridge Gorge Museum (IGMT), both organisations have worked together in a special partnership that plays tribute to the late Ken Jones MBE, who passed away in 2012.

The collaboration project, spearheaded by Friends of IGMT, has resulted in the development’s first road being given a title that would create interest and importantly, create a lasting memory of someone who was so imperative to Ironbridge and its history.

Ken Jones Close was exclusively unveiled today by Sir Neil Cossons OBE – a former first director of the Ironbridge Gorge Museum Trust and chairman of English Heritage, who later went on to speak to guests about Ken’s contribution to Ironbridge and Telford.

As vice president of the Friends of IGMT, Ken was recognised in 2010 for recording the history of Shropshire and was appointed MBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours list. He was instrumental in setting up a scheme to record an oral history of the Coalbrookdale coalfield area and preserve the remains of the Industrial Revolution in the Ironbridge Gorge.

Geraldine King, chariman of the Friends of IGMT, said: “I’m delighted the road has been named in Ken's honour. He, himself, would have been very self-deprecating about this, but the Friends feel proud on his behalf. Ken Jones Close is near to his birthplace and overlooks the railway line he loved so much.

“Ken came from humble beginnings and went on to a life of considerable achievement. His easy-going manner, friendliness and warmth resulted in him being held in great affection by everyone he came into contact with.

“Also his talents as an oral historian were exceptional, and the legacy of his recordings will live on for future generations to hear. Well into his 70s, and after meticulous research Ken produced an outstanding history of the railway line which meant so much to him, The Wenlock Branch, Wellington to Craven Arms. Later he also wrote Pitmen, Poachers and Preachers: life and the Poor Law in the Madeley Union of Parishes, an unsurpassed social history of this area.”

Kate Huntington, connections and marketing manager for Linden Homes West Midlands, commented: “It has been a delight to have joined forces with such a well recognised and respected organisation that supports the conservation and development work of the Museum.

“We are so pleased that Ken’s name will live on in our development and that it will help to educate future home buyers in the outstanding work he did in the area and his contribution to preserving Shropshire’s important history.”

1779 offers a fine selection of two-, three- and four-bedroom homes for sale. The development’s latest show home has recently opened and has wow-factor interior décor combined with an attractive and practical internal layout – so much so that properties aren’t anticipated to be on the market for long.

For further information, visit the 1779, open 10am–5pm, Thursday–Monday: 0843 6344789.

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For further information, contact Jenny Holden at MMS on 01889 571910 or jenny.holden@mms-marketing.co.uk

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