Ventnor Heritage Centre

"To make the past present, to bring the distant near . . . to call up our ancestors before us with all their peculiarities of language, manners, and garb, to show us over their houses, to seat us at their tables, to rummage their old-fashioned ward-robes, to explain the uses of their ponderous furniture . . . " Thomas Babington Macaulay describing what the study of history can do (written in 1828)

Ventnor Heritage Centre Publications |

Ventnor Heritage Centre Publications

Ventnor Heritage Centre has a wide range of books and pamphlets on the history of Ventnor and the surrounding villages. These are for sale in the Heritage Centre shop (see list below) and can also be provided by post at cost. Cheques should be made payable to Ventnor & District Local History Society.

Books: (Post and packing £2.50 each unless indicated otherwise)

Dickens on an Island (£6)
Here Layeth – Memorials at St Boniface Old Church (£1.95)
Inns & Ale – Bonchurch to Chale (£1)
The Ventnor West Branch Line (£4)
The Undercliff Isle of Wight, Michael Freeman (£9.50)
Ventnor Isle of Wight – The English Mediterranean, Michael Freeman (£9.50)
Victorians in Search of Winter Health, Michael Freeman (£9.95, post & packing £2.50)
Wight Wildlife, Jim Knighton (£1)

Spiral Bound Booklets – £3.00 each (Post and Packing £1.50 per booklet)

Conflict and Conflagration
Old Men Remember
Paddling to Ventnor Pier
RAF Ventnor – The Cold War Years
A Seaside Story
Ventnor Breweries
A Winter Sanatorium
While I Breathe I Hope


All Stations West (£11.99)
England’s Eden (£11.99)
Ventnor Scrapbook (£11.99)
Ventnor & the Undercliff / Ventnor No Finer Place (£8.95)

Society Local History Pamphlets (A4)

We have many pamphlets written over the years by Society members on specific topics. A full list of titles is available in the museum, and copies can be printed to order, price £1.50 each plus postage and packaging £1.50.

From our archives

Ventnor Town Hall

The Town Hall started life as the Undercliff Assembly Rooms. Its front elevation is in classic style with fluted columns supporting the handsome cornice.  It had seating for 600 persons and a large stage with retiring rooms and offices for the School Board.  Provision was allowed for the addition of a gallery. Mrs Snowden Henry of Bonchurch laid the foundation stone on 20th December 1877; this can still be seen today.  The building was completed in 1878 by local builders Henry Ingrams Odd news items are noted: In 1936 the Fire Brigade delayed responding to a fire at the Town Hall mistakenly thinking that the firing of the maroon to summon the fire brigade was a salute to the great liner, RMS Queen Mary, who was passing by on her maiden voyage.  Or perhaps this story referred to another incident in 1939 when response to another fire was delayed for some time as the R.M.S. Empress of Australia passed by with King George & Queen Elizabeth on board? The Town Hall was home to Ventnor Urban District Council and the venue for shows, plays etc for many years until the late 1960s.  At this point it was used by a wig-making factory and …Read more...