The Burgum family history society is a member of the Guild of one name studies and researches the names


The most significant event in the history of the BURGUM FAMILY HISTORY SOCIETY took place in July 2000. It was called BURGUM 2000. The event generated a great deal of publicity and news about it (and the associated BURGUM 2000 Exhibition at the Dean Heritage Centre) appeared in several local newspapers. There was also local coverage on BBC local radio and both the BBC and ITV local news stations.

BURGUM 2000 was a four-day family reunion which began on Thursday 27th July 2000. Approximately one hundred people met at Clearwell Castle, in the Forest of Dean, in England, on the first day. Nearly sixty people flew in from the United States of America for the event! One person (Ruth Bridges) flew in, all the way from Australia!

Day One began with registration and a welcome drink, followed by a lunchtime finger buffet. The families had full access to the castle and its beautiful gardens and the weather was wonderful. Blue skies, warm sun and fluffy white clouds added to this special day. At 3.30pm everyone assembled on the Castle lawn for a group photograph. This event was also captured by the TV cameras. Both the BBC and the ITV came down to cover the event. That was followed by tea and cake. The cake, sporting the logo of the BURGUM FAMILY HISTORY SOCIETY Journal, was made by David Burgum.

Later in the afternoon, Doug Burgum gave a talk on the Burgum Family History. After an introduction about his researches, he went on to tell the stories of Henry Burgum, the pewterer (1739-1789) and that of Count Rumford and John Burgum, the artist. In the evening, everyone sat down for a lovely dinner in the main hall. It was a wonderful day.

The second day involved a coach tour of the Forest of Dean and the surrounding area. This was the "Burgum Trail". The coaches stopped at Littledean, Flaxley and Abenhall, where the Burgums once lived and worshipped. Doug showed how the Burgums lived in villages very close to each other and where almost certainly related. The guests were then treated to a boat trip on the beautiful River Wye. That was then followed by a super lunch at the Old Court Hotel.

In the afternoon the tour continued taking in Weston-under-Penyard, where A.T. Burgum was christened. They then went on to Linton and Aston Ingham where many of the Burgums lived and worked. There are several Burgum gravestones in the churchyards of these two churches. (Other than a heavy shower at Weston-under-Penyard, the weather continued to stay fine.

On the Saturday, most people took the opportunity to visit the Dean Heritage Centre and learn something of the history and culture of the Forest of Dean where the Burgums once lived. A special exhibition at the Centre entitled BURGUM 2000 showed what could be achieved with family history research. The exhibition highlighted various research tools and then went on to tell some of the amazing stories that Doug Burgum had uncovered. (The exhibition ran from 17th July until 6th August 2000).

Saturday evening everyone met up at the Forest Hills Golf Club to celebrate Doug and Vicky Burgum's 25th Wedding Anniversary. The BURGUM 2000 guests were joined by Doug and Vicky's friends swelling the party to well over 200 people! Ashley Burgum (one of Doug and Vicky's two sons) stood up and made a short speech about being one of the off-spring of this happy union!

Sunday morning, a special service was held at the Zion Chapel, in Soudley (picture left). Many people in the Forest worshipped at independent chapels, such as this one built by the Bible Christians in 1846. The Zion Chapel is now in the care of the Dean Heritage Museum Trust. Ken Sollars took the service while Barrie Davies played the organ. A collection was made in aid if the Zion Chapel Appel Fund - the chapel is in need of repair.

Sunday afternoon was "Open House" at Bradley Hill Farmhouse, Doug and Vicky Burgum's Forest home. The weather was kind and about 230 guests enjoyed the sunshine, the hospitality and the company. Many people made new friends and sat and talked about the success of the BURGUM 2000 Reunion.

It was a happy day and Doug and Vicky were rather sad, although rather tired, when the last of their guests departed.

For further details (transcripts) of the publicity, please click on the appropriate listing below.

The Forester Newspaper (14th July 2000)

The Western Daily Press (18th July 2000)

The Forest and Wye Valley Review (28th July 2000)

BBC Radio Gloucestershire (27th July 2000)

ITV Central News (27th July 2000)

BBC TV Points West News (28th July 2000)

The Western Daily Press (31th July 2000)

Click here to read some of the comments we received about BURGUM 2000.