Posts Tagged ‘1970s’

People in the Volley

August 29, 2016

This post shows that the old Volunteer Arms was once a thriving, busy pub. It closed some 30 or so years ago and it is now almost forgotten. Let’s face it, half the population don’t remember it at all as anything but a private house.

Here we have a colour photo of an event at the pub.

A 1970s event at the Volunteer Arms

A 1970s event at the Volunteer Arms

Centre stage in that photo is Sandra and I withhold her surname as she still lives in the village. Our curator went to ask her more about the photo but she did not remember the event but she was able to name some of the people.

At the extreme left is Billy (again surname withheld) who used to live in the village but now lives in Trowbridge. Next to him is Philip who also still lives in the village. The tall chap – his head next to Philip in the photo is Dave.

It is always interesting to see the fashions of the time. We have men in flared trousers which dates this to early to mid-1970s.

It looks as though the regulars at the Volley had a fine collection of produce but just what was happening to it all, we don’t know.


Happy children

August 1, 2016

Back in the 1970s and 80s the Market Lavington Church Fete was a garden based fete, often at Beech House. A children’s entertainer was laid on and here we see the 1976 children watching the unknown 1976 entertainer. And we see almost universally, the smiling faces of happy children.

Happy children iat a Market Lavington Church Fete in 1976

Happy children at a Market Lavington Church Fete in 1976


Some of us think it is sad that these days children might expect something on an altogether grander scale. They are spoiled by seeing the biggest and the best on TV.

Let’s move forward almost twenty years to a time when some of the 1976 youngsters would have been in their early twenties and thus could have had babes or toddlers to take to similar events. And here is a local event for children.

Celebrating the 50th anniversary of VE day in 1995

Celebrating the 50th anniversary of VE day in 1995

This is clearly a patriotic event – note the union jack hats and face painting. There looks to be more an expression of awe and wonder on many of these faces but the unknown entertainer is clearly holding the interest.

We don’t have the precise location for we only have a negative for this image. Other negatives in the set definitely show diners at a 1945 VE day celebration meal so we assume this was taken on that day.


Happy adults as well!

This one shows Peggy, our museum founder, (wearing green) tucking into her meal of corned beef and mash.

A Gypsy Rover

July 16, 2016

At Market Lavington Museum, we have no expertise on Romanies, gypsies or travellers but take an interest in all sorts of varied photos of the village. Here is one showing an unusual vehicle passing along Church Street. There is a touch of romance associated with the travelling life style – somewhat separate from the world that most of us live in. It seems (but probably isn’t) carefree – almost idyllic.

Were these people Romany folk, latter day travellers or holidaymakers? We don’t know, but the vehicle they have behind the horse certainly looks modern. The couple give every indication of being in control and contented.

People enjoying a travelling lifestyle on Church Street, Market Lavington in the early 1970s

People enjoying a travelling lifestyle on Church Street, Market Lavington in the early 1970s

This scene was captured on Market Lavington’s Church Street between 1971 and 1976. Many locals will recognise Peter Francis’ photographic shop in the background. Some will remember the Vivo grocery shop. A small number might remember this colourful garden shed on wheels passing through.

By 1976 the Vivo shop had become a Spar shop . The prices on the window are in decimal values so we know it was after February 15th 1971. We think a Mr and Mrs Powell ran the Vivo store. Maybe it is Mrs Powell looking out through the window.

The caravan has the attention of the shop keeper

The caravan has the attention of the shop keeper

After Vivo and Spar, Mr Dempsey took over this shop and now it is a private house.

As ever, any further information would be gratefully received.

Northbrook in the 1970s

February 24, 2016


Our information on this photo centres on Tom Burden’s cottage and says it was demolished because it was past saving.

The cottage referred to is the Tudor one at the left of this photo. Many people felt the demolition was something of a scandal but if asked, ‘would you have lived there?’ the answer was invariably, ‘oh no!’

It may have been sad, but the old, tumbledown damp and fairly derelict cottage went and was replaced by a modern house much more suited to present day needs. And we have photos and personal memories of the old cottage. It is now long gone but it is not forgotten.

There are many other changes that might be seen in that view today.


Well actually it is hardly recognisable as the same place.


December 8, 2015

Much of our parish is out of bounds to members of the public for Market Lavington goes for some miles over Salisbury Plain which is military range. However, when the flags are not flying there is a right of way across Salisbury Plain. You start at the top of Lavington Hill and take the track that heads across the plain. It is about 10 kilometres across to Orcheston but on the way you’ll pass the sites of a number of long gone farms. Today we’ll look at the site of one of them called Philpotts.

The old farms on Salisbury Plain were never on metalled highways but they were close to tracks. The Plain was always wild and windswept and trees were often planted as shelter for farm houses and buildings. That is what may still offer a sign of past habitation but you might also come across clearly originally cultivated plants even though the inhabitants had to leave more than 100 years ago.

This is the site of Philpotts in a photo taken in the early 1970s.

Site of Philpotts Farm still delineated by the shelter belt of trees in the 1970s

Site of Philpotts Farm still delineated by the shelter belt of trees in the 1970s

This was the shelter belt.

By 2008 it was looking a bit more scrubby.

Site of Philpotts in 2008

Site of Philpotts in 2008

If you walk further, you’ll pass New Farm and Candown Farm before leaving Market Lavington.

It could be a pleasant way to walk off some of that Christmas lunch that you’ll be having soon but if your tastes are more gentle then you can visit the museum which will open its doors on Sunday 27th and Monday 28th December between 2pm and 4pm. Now there’s a chance to get guests and children out of the house for a while.


Big Brother watches over the Vanishing Past

November 27, 2015

An interesting title for an interesting photograph

Northbrook in the late 1970s

Northbrook in the late 1970s

This photo shows a scene on Northbrook in the late 1970s. It was taken by our curator’s brother in law, Bill, on one of his visits to Market Lavington from his Sussex home. Bill was a very keen amateur photographer and a member of his local camera club. This photo was entered in competitions where it won prizes. The title for the blog is the one Bill wrote on the back as the title of his photograph.


The past is no longer vanishing. It vanished quite soon after. That was ‘The Tudor Cottage’ on Northbrook which was erased from this world in a single day amid much anguish from local folk. It has to be said, though, that whilst the old cottage looked an absolute delight, it wasn’t well suited to late 20th century needs. If you asked people upset by its demolition if they would have lived there, the invariable reply was, ‘oh no!’

Even so, the old cottage went with much regret and has been replaced by a modern house offering a modern family the space they need in a dry and comfortable building.

Even ‘Big Brother’ has altered – by getting even bigger. When the photo was taken this house, built on a slope was little more than a bungalow with a garage and utility room underneath. Since then it has sprouted an upper floor as well.

Here’s the similar modern view.

21st century Northbrook

21st century Northbrook

Thanks to Bill for taking such a stunning photo and producing the large print of it. It will bring back memories for many.

A dinner treat for the Congregational men

November 11, 2015

Here we have a photo of a group of men from the Congregational Church sitting down to a meal together.

Diner treat for Congregational men in about 1965-70

Dinner treat for Congregational men in about 1965-70

We think the photo dates to between 1963 and 1972 and we believe that the location is The Manse.

The men were clearly being looked after by four waitresses.

It looks as though the photo was taken just before the chaps started tucking in to their starters. It looks as though they had a choice – typical of the period – of grapefruit or prawn cocktail.

We know who some of the men are and we’ll start with the chap nearest us on the left and work round clockwise.

Harry Hobbs
Not Known
Bill Askey
Not Known
Dave Burt
Pastor Bertram Powner
Dickie Burt
V Sainsbury
Not Known
Not Known
Not Known
Not Known

We do not have any names for the women.

Do let us know if you can name any of the people or can tell us the occasion.

Peter Francis – his home and shop

October 10, 2015

Peter Francis almost became our village photographer by accident – or perhaps that should say by illness. He had been destined to be a part of the family butchery business but ill health found him unable to continue at that job. He fell back on his hobby, as a way of making a living and became a professional and very well respected photographer.

He and his wife, Bessie, had premises on Church Street. They had a retail shop, studio and dark room facilities. They lived in the flat above the shop.

Here is the building as many folks will remember it.


Peter Francis’ shop on Church Street in Market Lavington

The building is still there, of course, but now has only a residential function.

The windows display items for sale but also serve as a showcase for the work done by Peter and Bessie.


One of the shop windows features wedding photos

This one looks to feature recent wedding photos. Weddings were always good money spinners for photographers.

We can also spot a slide projector which reminds us of just how much photography has changed in the last twenty years.

The Drummer Boy Pub

March 14, 2015


This was recently bought as a blank greetings card and it shows the Drummer Boy Inn on Church Street in Market Lavington, probably during the 1970s.


Church Street and the Drummer Boy pub in about 1970

Before describing the picture, we’d like to mention the issue of copyright as we understand it. The paragraph below comes from . It is thus a statement of copyright law.

The length of the copyright period will depend on when the image was created. Generally speaking, copyright in images lasts for the life of the creator plus 70 years from the end of the calendar year of their death. That means that images less than 70 years old are still in copyright, and older ones may well be, depending on when the creator died.

The image above is thus in copyright for any photo less than 70 years old, by definition is. In this case we at Market Lavington Museum know that the photographer was Peter Francis. Peter died in 1998 so this photograph is copyrighted to his heirs or assigns until 2068. Peter had no specific descendants but was closely involved with the museum and orally, he assigned copyright to us. We therefore believe this card should not have been published without permission from us.

But let’s now leave that on one side and take a look at the image. It shows Church Street and its poignancy at the moment does concern the Drummer Boy pub which recently closed. We expect it to be converted into housing. This Peter Francis image shows what it looked like and has the sign hanging outside.

This was the sign as taken by our curator in 2014. It is a different sign from the one in the Peter Francis photo.


Drummer Boy sign 2014


The other change in the photo is that the single storey shop front further up Church Street has gone. It was once Mr Milsom’s garage and had also belonged to the Hopkins family and more recently was held by a company called Sutech. Where it stood is now a part of Milsom Court – a small group of village houses.

Other than that the scene is pretty much unchanged in the last forty years.

Planting a Lime Tree

December 29, 2014

Oh woe is us. The caption we have for this photo is ‘Gardening Club plant a lime tree at Broadwell’.  People aren’t named and there is no date given. But of course, the photo has clues.

Gardening club plant a lime tree at Broadwell

Gardening club plant a lime tree at Broadwell

The photo almost shrieks ‘70s’ at us. First of all it is a colour print and they weren’t common prior to the 70s. The two pushchairs in shot are both McLaren Buggies of that era – from a time when push chairs were lightweight and portable.

Easily recognised is Peggy Gye.

The unmistakable Peggy Gye

The unmistakable Peggy Gye

She certainly looks the right sort of age – about 50 – for this to be the 1970s. We have ideas for the names of others, but nothing is certain so we won’t make suggestions.

Instead we ask for help. Can you name any people here?