Posts Tagged ‘carpentry’

More plane truth

June 25, 2016

Back in 2011 we looked at a plane for shaping wood. It seemed time to look at another. It has come from the Gye workshops, but was not owned by a Gye as we shall see.

Here is the plane.

A plane at Market Lavington Museum

A plane at Market Lavington Museum

There are many people (our curator is one) who love the simple elegance of these old hand tools. This particular plane has been designed to create an attractively shaped moulding as we can see from underneath.

This is a moulding plane for producing a specific shape

This is a moulding plane for producing a specific shape

We can see the oddly curved blade end poking through here, matching the wooden base of the plane and giving an idea of the moulding shape that can be created with this plane.

We can’t date this but it could be late Victorian or maybe early twentieth century.

Like many a carpentry tool, the owner’s name has been stamped in to it. On this plane both ends carry this mark.

The plane once belonged to J Sainsbury

The plane once belonged to J Sainsbury

Here we have the very familiar name of J Sainsbury and we also see what we guess is a maker’s mark – T&W.

Sad to say, we have not identified just which of the many J Sainsburys this one was.

A long case clock

May 26, 2014

The old song tells us that,

 My grandfather’s clock was too large for the shelf,
So it stood ninety years on the floor.

Well that wouldn’t be the situation with our long case, for it is in miniature and it stands about 25 cm tall.

model long case clock at Market Lavington Museum

Model long case clock at Market Lavington Museum

Well, we have put it on the floor there, but you can see, from the skirting board behind it, that it is just a small piece.

The carpentry was done by Tom Gye, well known carpenter and builder of Market Lavington. Tom was about 14 when he made this which dates it to around 1934.. The clock mechanism, which is in working order, is a small alarm clock, removed from another case.

This is another recent gift to the museum and you can see it on display in the upstairs room.


The Plane Truth

September 3, 2011

Hand tools for all trades were the only tools until comparatively recent times. In Market Lavington, power in the form of electricity came to the village less than 100 years ago and powered tools were an expensive luxury for craftsmen until about 50 years ago. Many carpenters continued to use hand tools, particularly if only occasional usage was needed. We have just recently been given a number of planes that were used in Market Lavington for generations.

The one featured today is a beading plane.

A beading plane at Market Lavington Museum

This is a simple wooden frame with a wooden wedge holding a steel blade in place.

The cutting blade

There we see the cutting edge of the blade – designed to leave a raised beading, which is roughly semicircular in section.

This tool appears to have been made by a Sheffield company – W Marples and Sons but it also carries a defaced mark – that of Holbrook of Bristol.

We know that this tool was used by a man who worked for Gyes, the carpenters and wheelwrights of White Street in Market Lavington. The man concerned was Charlie Burnett who we have met before on these pages. (Click here)

Charlie was an Easterton born man and we do not know where he served his apprenticeship, but possibly in Easterton. Charlie followed his blacksmith brother, Bert, to Gyes – we think in the 1930s. He probably took his own tools with him when he went there so he almost certainly already had this plane.

We know it was Charlie’s for like all good workmen he took care, not only of the condition of his tools, but also of its security. The tool was and still is, clearly named.

C Burnett stamped the plane with his name - his mark of ownership

Charlie stamped his plane with his name, not once, but twice. On the other end he has overstamped the manufacturers name.

We can also see the defaced Holbrook name on this end.

We’d guess there are plane experts out there who’d be able to tell us who did make this plane and roughly when. Do, please, get in touch if you can tell us anything about it.

Carpentry at the old chapel

July 24, 2011

This is part of the structure from the 1892 Congregational Church. It has been removed as the building is converted to a dwelling house.

Decorative timber from the roof support at the 1892 Chapel in Market Lavington

It bears this inscription.

The inscription has been hidden since the chapel was built.

‘Fixed August 4th 1892 by Sirus John Tree Stafford of Southwick near Trowbridge working for William Smith, builder of Trowbridge.’

Sirus John Tree Stafford was born towards the end of 1868. His birth was registered in the Westbury district of Wiltshire.

At the time of the 1871 census Sirus was the youngest son of Sirus senior and his wife Ellen. Sirus senior, aged just 33, was described as a retired farmer. The home was 6, Southwick Street in North Bradley, Wiltshire.

Ten years later, in 1881, saw the Stafford family at Greenhill Cottage in Southwick. Sirus senior had died and our Sirus’s mother has the name Henrietta on this census. She was an annuitant and young Sirus, aged 12, was a scholar.

By 1891 our Sirus was a carpenter and was the oldest of the three children at home with mother, Henrietta, at Greenhill Cottage.

Sirus married Sarah Ann Jackson in the spring of 1891.

We know Sirus was carpentering for the firm of William Smith of Trowbridge, working on the Congregational Church of Market Lavington in 1892.

In 1901 Sirus, his wife, Sarah and five children lived at Poles Hole, Southwick. Sirus was a carpenter.

In 1911 Sirus and family had moved to a home from his younger days – Greenhill Cottage at Southwick.

Sirus died in the first part of 1936.

This piece of wood has been away at the Wiltshire and Swindon History Centre in Chippenham, for treatment, but is now a part of the display about the chapel which can be found in the museum kitchen.

On the sands at the top of Northbrook

April 6, 2011

Today we are returning to the poultry business run by Mr Fred Phillips. Fred lived in the area of the village known as Spin Hill and ran his poultry business in the area between there and the top of Northbrook.

The photo shows the view from Spin Hill. The field in the middle distance has Fred’s chicken houses in it. The photo dates from the early 1930s (Fred died in 1934). A similar photo now would show the Northbrook Close housing and, perhaps, St Barnabas School on the left hand side.

Fred Phillip's chicken houses - between Northbrook and Spin Hill - a photo at Market Lavington Museum

The High Street is hidden in the valley which lies between this sandstone ridge and the chalk downland of Salisbury Plain which forms the backdrop of the photograph.

Fred’s hen houses provided a lifeline for the well known local firm of builders and carpenters, the Gyes. In a time of depression, work was scarce and producing the custom designed hen houses for Fred was a major source of work and income for the carpenters.