Posts Tagged ‘1897’

Snow at St Mary’s

September 17, 2015

Photographers who entered the ‘Seasons’ category at Market Lavington show at the start of the month commented on how difficult it was to portray four seasons that looked different this year.

Perhaps they’d not have had the problem in 1897 when this photo was taken.

Snow at St Mary's Church in 1897

Snow at St Mary’s Church in 1897

Snow clearly fell that year – and settled or pitched as people say around here.

We can see part of St Mary’s Church and a corner of the village school on the right. That could be a chap trying to clear the path up to the church.

Snow clearance on the path up to the church?

Snow clearance on the path up to the church?

Now that path is treacherous at any time. If slippery with compressed snow it would be awful.

Straight ahead we are looking at Grove Farm. That’s the path that leads to the Community Hall now.

On the left, the little single storey building is the bier house and behind it a row of cottages stand along the edge of Church Street.

The view is difficult to recreate during summer. The trees are in full leaf and hide items.

Bier House and church remain

Bier House and church remain

What we can see is that the church and bier house stand, more or less unchanged. That line of cottages behind the bier house has gone to reveal Church Cottage.

Let’s hope we get no snow until the winter and maybe some of us could look forward to a bright sunny day with snow on the ground – in January.



Another Diamond Jubilee Medallion

July 28, 2015

It must have seemed amazing that Queen Victoria celebrated 60 years as the monarch of the United Kingdom and the Empire. Well, it is amazing that anyone should be head of state for 60 or more years. Our present Queen, Elizabeth II is only the second English/British monarch to serve for more than 60 years.

So no wonder, when Victoria reached her Diamond Jubilee, it was celebrated and memorabilia manufacturers had a field day. We have already seen two Diamond Jubilee medallions or brooches on this blog and here is a third, found by metal detectorist Norman on the old recreation ground.

Queen Victoria Diamond Jubilee Medallion found on the old Recreation Ground in Market Lavington

Queen Victoria Diamond Jubilee Medallion found on the old Recreation Ground in Market Lavington

The front tells us, or would without the damage, that Victoria the Good had reigned from 1837 to 97.

The reverse has a little more information.

The reverse side of the medallion

The reverse side of the brooch

To commemorate the 60th year of the reign of H. M. Queen Victoria.

It is not clear how this medallion was fixed to a garment. Not all that well, presumably, as it got lost.

But it has been found and is now safely at Market Lavington Museum.

James Gye

September 7, 2014


The Gyes have, for many a year, been a part of village life in Market Lavington but actually, when James was born in 1840, he was born in the parish of West Lavington. He became a Market Lavington man when parish boundaries were reorganised and the area known as Fiddington was transferred to Market Lavington.

We have an old and rather fragile photo album of Gye family members. It is not usually on display but do feel free to ask to see it.

Photo album inscription

Photo album inscription

It was given to S Gye by Ada D’Albertausne

The first photo in the album is of Sarah Gye. Maybe she was the recipient.

However, here we see a picture of James that graces a page of this album.

James Gye of Market Lavington - 1840 to 1900

James Gye of Market Lavington – 1840 to 1900

This photo is cabinet sized and as we can see it slots into a frame within the album.

The writing which gives names and dates is a later addition and whilst we believe it tells us the truth, we cannot be certain.

Let’s zoom in on this fine Victorian gentleman.


There’s James whose grandson still lives in the village.

Grandson, like grandfather, was a carpenter.

We find James on the 1851 census living with his parents, William and Sophia. William farmed 50 acres at Fiddington and was born in Market Lavington. Sophia had been born in Easterton.

By 1871 James had become a carpenter and was married to Mary Ann. They lived on Stobbarts Road and already had four daughters.

In 1881 the family lived at Fiddington Clay. A couple of boys had been born and five children still lived at home.

By 1891 the Gyes had moved to White Street and, no doubt, had the yard now known as Gye’s Old Yard.

And despite the photo caption, James died in 1900. Mary Ann, his widow lived until 1919. Both are buried in Market Lavington churchyard.

Diamond Jubilee

September 6, 2014

Queen Victoria became much loved – well, we all love an old lady and as most British people, by 1897, had never known another monarch, she must have seemed like a timeless symbol of our country. People in their tens of thousands bought commemorative items back then, for in 1897 Victoria celebrated 60 years as queen. It was her diamond jubilee.

We have looked at some commemorative items we have in Market Lavington Museum in the past. You can see a commemorative magazine here and a brooch by clicking here.

We now add a medallion, courtesy of Norman’s metal detecting finds.

Diamond Jubilee medallion at Market Lavington Museum

Diamond Jubilee medallion at Market Lavington Museum

This was lost in the old recreation field and no doubt somebody was saddened to realise it had gone.

It’s cheaply made of base metal and has evidence that it once had a loop at the top. Presumably this was attached to clothing in some way, but sadly, for the owner, it broke and the medallion fell to earth.

100 years or so later it was found by Norman and now has a permanent home at the museum.

A local club, the Easterton Archers, also use metal detectors to locate arrows that have missed the target.

Easterton Archers meet on Wednesdays behind Easterton Village Hall

Easterton Archers meet on Wednesdays behind Easterton Village Hall

This 2014 archer looks satisfied so no doubt he hit every time.

Late 19th century cart adverts

November 29, 2013

At Gye’s the builders they kept everything. When, eventually, the firm ceased trading some things which seem like oddities today came to the museum. These were adverts that had been kept, more than 100 years ago now, just in case.

This one takes the form of a four page leaflet. It was once part of a larger brochure.


So here we have an ad for a liquid manure or water cart – one which won a first prize silver medal at Amsterdam in 1884 and offered to you by Eddington Iron and Wagon Works of Hungerford.

Next we have a crank axle spring float.


Cottrell Rose and Co was the name of the company at the Eddington Iron Works in Hungerford.


They offered a special cart for street scrapings.


We’ll finish with the brewer’s cart.

This, perhaps, is the point to mention that Hungerford has a fantastic Virtual Museum at .

It is from this site that we can date our pages to 1897 for they show similar pages with that date.