Zooming in Spring

April 2021, and still under the threat of this dreadful Pandemics and unable to hold meetings. However, on April 8th members of the Local History Society met once again via a Zoom meeting. Although, not by any means are these meetings a substitute for our monthly physical meetings of exchanging greetings and gossip, there are, however, some advantages to Zoom. Not having to turn out on a dark wet cold evening, being able to sit on a comfortable chair and imbibe in the odd glass of wine. 

A few more members are now overcoming their reluctance to use modern technology and joined us for the meeting. Those that switched on their technology were treated to a presentation by one of our members, John Dewis. His subject was “A Local Hero”. Very few local people would be aware of this man and the in-depth research carried out by John was fascinating. The “Hero” in question was one John Robinson Binns (known as Jack). 

Jack Binns always considered Peterborough as his hometown.  Born in the workhouse in Brigg, Lincolnshire in 1884, he was taken and brought up by his maternal Grandmother who lived in Peterborough. He was educated at St Marks Primary school and The National Boys school. His first job was as a Messenger for the Great Eastern Railway. While doing this job he was injured and spent six months in the local hospital, the building that is now the Peterborough Museum. 

During his convalescence he spent time learning about telegraph communication and went on to have a distinguished career, becoming known as The Marconi Man and was instrumental in saving the lives of many passengers on the shipwrecked HMS Republic. 

If members would like to read more about this remarkable local hero, then more information can be found here-


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