Posts Tagged ‘1959’

The Village Fete in 1959

December 21, 2014

It may be close to Christmas and we may be enduring that dreary December weather – so why not remember happy days in June. In this case it was Saturday June 27th 1959. This was the day of the Market Lavington fete in that year.  We have quite as collection of fete posters at Market Lavington Museum and this is one of them.

Poster for Market Lavington Fete in 1959

Poster for Market Lavington Fete in 1959

Perhaps the first thing to note is that the posters were sponsored by an insurance company. That’s quite a nifty way of getting their name in the public eye – and associated with fun and happy times.

The fete was in the grounds of Clyffe Hall and was officially opened at 3pm by Mrs D Davies who was the Vicar’s wife.

The attractions for visitors to watch included a judo display by a local club, a fencing display by pupils at Dauntsey’s School and country dancing by Market Lavington school children.

There was a comic dog show and a lady’s ankle competition.

The band of the Royal Wiltshire Yeomanry played during the afternoon.

Visitors to the fete were promised all the fun of the fair. It was, of course, a country fete so there was clay pigeon shooting and bowling for a pig plus other competitions.

1959 was 55 years ago as this is written. Most householders would have had a TV by then but many would not have had a car. Village events were still big – a chance to get out, have a bit of fun and meet people.

A view of the Market Place

December 6, 2012

The Market Place has changed more than any other part of our village. Of course, until the 1850s we’d certainly have been classed as a town and actual markets would have been held in the Market Place. By the 1950s parts of the old square were derelict and other buildings were deemed to be in the way of progress. It was time for change.

Here we see a view before change, although the evidence of demolition work is there.

Market Lavington Market Place in about 1959

The view is taken from the end of Chapel Lane (the path down to the fish and chip shop). We wonder if the photographer was pleased with his or her framing of the scene. The bits of advertising sign and a gutter downspout might have seemed odd at the time, but they add interest now.

So, we look at the East side of the Market Place with its delightful row of Tudor aged buildings. These were all swept away, to be replaced with a car park for the agricultural engineers. These days we’d see this as wanton vandalism, but we must not be too harsh on the folks of fifty or more years ago who saw an expanding engineering company as more employment and so more money in the local economy – a benefit for everyone.

On the left hand side we can see the end of the Co-op building and a heap of rubble. Behind the rubble a sign can just be made out saying ‘Dewey, Builder’. Next to that is a mini – the one visible car. These were introduced in 1959 which probably dates our photo quite well.

Now to those signs on the right. One is clearly for Lyons Cakes but the other has us baffled. All we have is the big word beginning with CR and the smaller word with KIN. Any ideas?

The changes of the 1960s have now all been swept away. We’d now be looking at the chemist shop and Rochelle Court, built on the site of those agricultural engineers.