The Lidstone Family History Society was formed on 1st August 1978 by Hugh R G Lidstone
The ancestors of every Lidstone and their many variant names, e.g. Lydston, Leadston, Ledston, Lidston etc., traced worldwide lead back to the beautiful South Hams of Devon and the farmstead of Lidstone, now spelt Ledstone, just over a mile from the town of Kingsbridge.
The society has enrolled over 380 members since it started. Three gatherings/reunions have been held these were in 1985, 1987 and 1998 in South Devon.
In 1989 the Society published the family's social history in "Lidstone of the South Hams of Devon". Over sixty "Lidstorians" the societies bi-annual magazine, have been issued to members. These include reports on the amazing achievements and pioneering lives of our ancestors.
26 branch family trees have been issued to the relevant members and numbers 27 to 31 are in the pipe line. Research continues on yet more branches.
The Society is based in England and its headquarters are at Ledstone Farm, Ledstone, Kingsbridge, South Devon. Our members so far come from Australia, Canada, Cayman Islands, Netherlands, New Zealand, South Africa, UK and USA.
The Society belongs to The Guild of One Name Studies and the Devon Family History Society.
After 30 years, the society is still thriving and attracting new members mainly through this website.
Hugh R G Lidstone, Founder
Hugh R G Lidstone was born at Probus, Cornwall in 1913, but was brought up in Bexhill, Sussex. After school he worked at his fathers garage business in Sussex but in 1933 the family moved to Plymstock in Devon where they opened a garage in Yealmpton. On moving to Devon Hugh met Dorothy Harvey and in September 1938 they were married.
In 1938 Hugh enrolled in the Royal Air Force and served for 24 years before retiring from the RAF in 1962. In 1944 By the King's Order Flight Sergeant HRG Lidstone Royal Air Force was Published in the London Gazette on 14 January 'As mentioned in a Despatch for distinguished service I am charged to record His Majesty's high appreciation' signed Archibald Sinclair, Secretary of State for Air. On 2nd June 1962 Aire Chief Marshal E.L. Huddlestone, Air Officer Commanding-In-Chief, Royal Air Force Transport Command issued his Commendation to Squadron Leader HRG Lidstone 'in appreciation of the meritorious service which you have rendered to the Royal Air Force while serving in transport command'.
Following retirement from the RAF in 1962 Hugh and Dorthy moved back to Devon and Hugh became a Negotiator for the firm George Wimpey. On retirement from work Hugh developed his interest in family history following on from his childhood read of the book 'Thurlestone Church & Parish' by Rev Frank Egerton Coope. In 1978 Hugh joined the newly formed Devon Family History Society and on 1st August 1978 Hugh founded the Lidstone Family History Society. In October 1978 Hugh sent out the first Lidstorian after 33 had agreed to support the society and this has led to the society we have today.
The Lidstone Badge
The badge was designed because there wasn't a Lidstone coat of arms. It is a shield divided into four quarters with the Anglo-Saxon name 'Leofedes Tun' in blue on a golden scroll underneath.