Posts Tagged ‘1953’

Celebrating the Queen at 90

June 11, 2016

Tomorrow Market Lavington will be ‘en fête’ as we celebrate our Queen’s 90th birthday.

But here we look back to fun in Coronation year – 1953 with a news cutting.

Fancy dress children at the Coronation year carnival in Market Lavington

Fancy dress children at the Coronation year carnival in Market Lavington

We see some of the younger entrants in the Carnival held that year. Dressing up was always a part of village events, for young and old. We rather suspect the polar bear outfit was a tad warm in June but the wearer, with hands muffed, manages to look cold. Those with visible faces look nervous. Did they not like the camera or was there a judge there as well.

We’ll look forward to seeing you tomorrow down in the Community Hall and the museum which will be open throughout the day.

Coronation Capers again

May 12, 2016

At the 1953 coronation

Our queen became 90 this year – an event which Market Lavington will celebrate on 12th June. The queen of course will remember her own coronation day and so do the rest of us, old enough to have been around at the time. No doubt these local youngsters will remember dressing up.

Youngsters in fancy dress celebrate the Coronation of Queen Elizabeth II in 1953

Youngsters in fancy dress celebrate the Coronation of Queen Elizabeth II in 1953

Strangely, the only person we can name is the pipe smoking man on the left. He is Stan Cooper We can’t name the well-dressed youngsters, but we are confident that somebody can.

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Yes! Surely these people can be identified.

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A scrap book of news photos.

March 27, 2016

Another item recently loaned to the museum to allow us to copy relevant items is a scrapbook of photos, published in local papers. The scrapbook starts in 1950. This cutting comes from 1953 by which time the scrapbook was on Volume 2!

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What we have here is largely a Northbrook family but it tells us as much about local newspapers as the family really. It seems unlikely that space would be found for four generations of one family today. And it seems almost unthinkable that married women would be given their husband’s name – but it was the norm then.

The little lad is Michael John Hibberd and with him are his mother, Mrs M Hibberd (the M was her husband’s initial. She was called Honor), Grandmother, Mrs Harry Cooper (her own name was Edith) and great grandmother, Mrs Emily Burt.

The Coopers and Hibberds lived on Northbrook in Market Lavington. Great Granny lived in Devizes.

Devizes Registration District

March 8, 2016

This poster, dating from 1953, tells people where they can go to register births and deaths. Back in 1953 most people did not have cars and getting to a registrar could be a problem. So, the registrar, to a limited extent, came to the people instead.

Poster telling people where and when they could register births and deaths.

Poster telling people where and when they could register births and deaths.

The registrar certainly didn’t go everywhere, but Mrs Turner, the Devizes registrar did come to Market Lavington twice a month. She came on the first and third Wednesday of each month and set up shop at the home of Mrs A Merritt on White Street between 10.45 and 11.45 in the morning.

The information for Market Lavington

The information for Market Lavington

Presumably, if you lived in Market Lavington you knew where Mrs A Merritt lived but it is possible that people came in from other local villages and they might not have had a clue.

These days, registration of births and deaths is in Devizes.

It’s all a reminder that living memory actually takes us back to a very different age.

The Catalpa Tree

July 31, 2014

61 years ago, George Dobson, who was then Market Lavington’s oldest inhabitant, planted a tree to mark the coronation of Queen Elizabeth II. We have featured this before on the blog and you can click here to see the occasion.

It flowered for the first time in 1976 and it is now a handsome and well grown tree.

The Coronation Tree in Market Lavington. This catalpa or Indian bean tree was planted in 1953.

The Coronation Tree in Market Lavington. This catalpa or Indian bean tree was planted in 1953.

There is the tree which is close to The Old School as well as our museum building and the church. This photo, taken earlier this month doesn’t show the flowers, but the tree is well covered with the delicate and beautiful blooms.

Here’s a little collection of them.

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And here’s a close up on a single flower.

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Later, the tree will have the big purple bean like pods which give it the alternative name of Indian bean tree.

The Catalpa is not native to the UK but it seems to adapt well to our climate and growing conditions.

 

Wordley’s Advertise

February 12, 2014

It is no wonder we feature the agricultural engineers quite frequently. For many years Wordley’s and their successors were big local employers and very much vital to the local economy.

Today we look at an advert that appeared in a local paper.

Wordley's of Market Lavington advertise in 1953

Wordley’s of Market Lavington advertise in 1953

This advert appeared in the Wiltshire gazette for 12th November 1953. Prices and equipment are, of course interesting. Wordley’s hoped farmers would buy new equipment for the 1954 season during the winter months.

The combines are, of course, tiny by the standards of today. But then the advert was placed more than 60 years ago. A five and a half feet combine is just tiny. Even the largest, 12 feet machine offered is singularly small.

And these machines were offered with TVO or diesel engines. TVO stood for tractor vaporising oil. It was based on paraffin which was untaxed. Petrol incurred fuel duty. But TVO had disadvantages, notably the engine had to be hot before the oil would vaporise. So TVO engines had to be started on expensive petrol and then swapped to the much cheaper fuel. TVO worked well for hard tasks, like ploughing, but light work could mean the need to switch to the petrol tank if the engine wasn’t hot enough.

Diesel engines, using compression ignition were more expensive to manufacture so the TVO versions were cheaper to buy.

TVO was discontinued in 1974. Old tractor enthusiasts have to mix their own these days.

If you got a bagging combine then you needed an extra crew member whose job was to manage the filling of sacks. That just doesn’t happen any more.

The most expensive combine listed, the 12 foot diesel at £1625, was certainly not cheap. In 1953 the average man earned £9-15-0 per week. That’s £9.75 in present currency. Today the equivalent person earns £475 per week. That’s close on 50 times as much.

Cornbury Mill

December 28, 2013

Not long ago we showed a picture of a man apparently fishing in the stream by Cornbury Bridge – just a few yards below the old water mill known as Cornbury Mill.

The stream, which marks the boundary between the two parishes of Market and West Lavington, flows right under the mill so it has parts in both parishes.

Back in 1953 a local newspaper picked on the mill as one of the scenic gems of Wiltshire.

Cornbury Mill - a newspaper photo from 1953

Cornbury Mill – a newspaper photo from 1953

The paper is, of course right. The old mill building and house was and still is a scenic gem.

This is the paper’s caption.

 

The caption tells us who lived there and that the stream carried trout

The caption tells us who lived there and that the stream carried trout

Aha! Maybe our fishing man was hoping to entice a trout to take his bait.

We do not know which actual newspaper this was in, but we do know some of the incorporated papers

 

Incorporated newspapers

Incorporated newspapers

It’s a lovely picture and it reminds us of times when newspapers felt able to do little features like this.

And here is a more recent photo of the mill taken in 2011.

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A 2011 view of the mill from the rear

Building the Vestry

April 29, 2013

Here we show another recent photographic gift to the museum which Easterton Jim has got named for us. Here’s the original photo.

Easterton men building the vestry on St Barnabas Church in 1953

Easterton men building the vestry on St Barnabas Church in 1953

It shows Easterton’s St Barnabas Church having the vestry built on in 1953.

The people have been numbered – and because this image and another were on one page these people are numbered 24 to 29.

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And the people are:

24 Bob Godfrey
25 Alec Chapman
26 John Dodge
27 Bob Sainsbury
28 ? possibly lived at Kestrel Cottages
29 Bill Stockley

Once again, many thanks to Jim and to Rosemary for making this picture accessible to many and helping to portray a little more of the history of our parishes. And if anyone can name number 28 we’d be delighted.

Harvey Lodge’s Day Book

March 6, 2013

Harvey Lodge was a haulier – livestock and more general, based in the Lavington area in the 1950s. We have seen this photo, or one very like it, before on this blog.

Lorries belonging to Harvey Lodge of Market Lavington in about 1953

Lorries belonging to Harvey Lodge of Market Lavington in about 1953

There we have Mr Whitbread of Devizes, Jack Romaine of Urchfont and Mr Harvey Lodge himself. He was from Market Lavington.

Today we’ll look at Harvey’s diary or day book – a big desk diary.

Harvey Lodge's day book with records of his work

Harvey Lodge’s day book with records of his work

We have looked at one of Harvey’s day book before, picking a day in 1952 which says ‘Foot and Mouth starts at Chippenham. That would have been a bad day for farmers and hauliers but today we’ll take a look at a more normal day, precisely 60 years ago on March 6th 1953. This would have been a time when the country was looking forward to a coronation but for farmers and hauliers it was just a working Friday – and that meant Chippenham market.

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Harvey’s work, for March 6th 1953 involved taking a calf to Mr Specer at Halsted Farm in Easterton

It looks as though the day began taking stock to Chippenham Market. Farmers, of course, cannot know what they will buy at market, so no doubt deals were struck with Harvey and his team to get purchased stock home. It seems Harvey got animals coming in the right direction – Cheverell Mill, possibly Clyffe Hall and Devizes. The calf going to Spencer at ‘Halstead’ was going to Easterton.

Then he could turn his attention to other items, Hay and sticks amongst them.

It is always interesting to see prices. That £1-10-0 for taking two cows to Hartmoor (Devizes) is equivalent to at least £34.25 today.

Stan and Elsie Cooper – brother and sister

February 3, 2013

Here we have a photo which was taken at the Coronation celebrations 60 years ago in 1953.

Elsie Cooper (in wheel chair, and her brother Stan next to her at the Market Lavington Coronation celebrations in 1953.

Elsie Cooper (in wheel chair) and her brother Stan next to her at the Market Lavington Coronation celebrations in 1953.

Elsie Cooper is in her wheelchair sitting next to brother, Stan. The location of the photo is the football field at the top of Northbrook.

We’d like to use this post to tell you how we try to find out more about people. First of all we try to get some estimate of the age of the people in the photo. This is often quite hard in post war pictures for people tended to look old and careworn. One of the things we’d like to decide with regard to the Coopers was whether they were born before or after 1911. We’d like to be able to locate them on a census if possible for then we can discover who the parents were. For them to be on that census they’d need to be over 42 on the photo.

Next we can turn to that sad document, the burial register for St Mary’s Market Lavington.  Here we find that an Elsie Cooper was buried in 1964, aged 67. A Stan Cooper was buried in 1997, aged 83. If these are the right people we can probably make a start by using the censuses for Elsie.

Result! On the 1901 census Elsie May Cooper is the 5 year old daughter of John and Elizabeth Cooper. They lived in The Market Place and John was a blacksmith.

We can now use the wonderful FreeBMD website to locate a possible marriage between a John Cooper and an Elizabeth and again, we get a result in the shape of a marriage between John and Elizabeth Hoare in 1896. The same site can let us search for children born to a Cooper with a wife’s maiden name of Hoare – but only after 1911 (the records don’t have the maiden name before then) and again we get a result in that Stanley H Cooper was born to the couple in 1913. I also note that a Lawrie Cooper was born to the same parents in 1915 and that’s grand since the person who gave the photo is a descendant of Lawrie.

We’ve had luck, and we all need that, but we could now sort out a whole family tree should we want to.