Posts Tagged ‘church’

St Mary’s fete 2015

June 15, 2015

Just a couple of days ago St Mary’s Church held their fete in the grounds of Clyffe Hall. This may be run under the auspices of the church, but the reality is that it is a village event with many local organisations having stalls of their own. Market Lavington Museum is amongst those organisations which put on a show. Our aim is not to raise funds but rather to raise awareness and also for the exchange of information. But let’s start at the beginning by thanking Margaret from New Zealand who was in the village researching her Garratt or Garrett ancestors and who very kindly helped set up our gazebo and tables. image002 Here we have an empty set of tables, ready to be covered in some of our photographs of the past. And here we have a shot including the hall itself, with similar assembly work going on. image004 I think Margaret was quite blown away by the whole scenario. She said it felt as though she was taking part in an episode of Midsomer Murders. Literally hundreds of people look at the stall. The fete may only be ‘live’ between 2 and 4 pm, but other stall holders are there all morning wallowing in the past and sharing memories.   There are great moments for us – those times when an older person looks at an old school photo and calls out, ‘That’s me’. That’s a cue for a crowd to gather round as stories flood out. One such lady was paying her first visit to Market Lavington in forty years and was more delighted that these words can do justice too. More amusing is when a younger person discovers they are in a photo. You might hear a comment about being a museum artefact, sometimes ruefully from the person concerned and sometimes with great glee from their nearest and dearest. Margaret was not the only overseas visitor. In the afternoon four ladies from Waiblingen, involved in the local exchange scheme were at the fete. It seems that like Margaret, they felt they had stepped into a film set when they arrived at Clyffe Hall. So there we have Kristine, Martina, Katja and Doris at the fete. image006 How wonderful that some memories of our village life will be taken back to other countries and continents.

A Palm Sunday Parade

May 7, 2015

Amongst recent gifts to the museum we have photos from an Easterton Palm Sunday parade in 1988.

Yes, we know that 1988 will sound like yesterday to many of our readers, but it was nearly thirty years ago which probably means about a third the population of the world wasn’t alive then.

Let’s take a look.


Here we see a group getting ready. The Vicar, Ralph Wilkins is on the left and the crucifer (the man with the cross) is David Duffield. Liz Ferris is holding the donkey. We do not know the name of said donkey nor can we make out the person in blue behind it. Looking out of the photo on the right side is Peter Duffield.

The Duffields moved away from Easterton close on 20 years ago and we are on our third local vicar (now classed as a rector) since Ralph and his family moved on to pastures new.

This group are beginning to form up outside the church lych gate at St Barnabas Church in Easterton. The view looks along the road towards Eastcott and Urchfont.

A very old lady

April 17, 2015

Our very old lady was Betty Lamborne We know very little about her but there is a memorial to her on the south side of the church but in a piece of wall that faces east. We can see the memorial in this photo which we have at the museum.

Memorial to Betty Lamborne on the south wall of St Mary's Church, Market Lavington

Memorial to Betty Lamborne on the south wall of St Mary’s Church, Market Lavington

Let’s enlarge that to make it more legible.

The inscription is still clearly visible

The inscription is still clearly visible

It says in memory of Betty Lamborne who died June the 16th 1782 aged 107 years.

We can have doubts about the absolute accuracy of this age but there can be little doubt that Betty was, for her time, a very, very old lady.

The memorial is still clearly readable although our photo dates from the 1960s.

We can also have some doubts about the accuracy of the inscription on the church for the burial register records that Betty was buried on June 16th 1782 so she probably died a few days earler. It also records her age as 106.

We haven’t, as yet, tried to trace anything of Betty’s family. Baptisms of people called Lamborn, Lamborne or Lambourne were carried out in Market Lavington between 1695 and 1755. Perhaps some of them were children of Betty??

If any family history person knows anything about our Betty we’d be delighted to hear from them.

Farewell to Ralph Wilkins

April 16, 2015

Was it really twenty five years ago when Ralph Wilkins, Vicar of Market Lavington and Easterton moved on to pastures new?

Well yes, it was indeed in 1990.

We have recently been given a fairly formal group photograph of the St Barnabas, Easterton, parochial church council at a farewell gathering.

Farewell to Ralph Wilkins with Easterton Parochial Church Council - August 1990

Farewell to Ralph Wilkins with Easterton Parochial Church Council – August 1990

This photo was taken on 29th August in 1990.  It’s a properly captioned photo and we have all of the names of those present. They are, from left to right:

Barbara Bond
Nancy Allen
Natalie Bond
Heather Phillips
Joe Bolter
Sue Allen
Keith Wright
John Sayer
Ralph Wilkins
Jim Medley
Mary Doyle
Ruby Shearer
Margaret Bond
Mollie Sayer
Elizabeth Hardy
David Hardy

What a lovely reminder of the people and times a quarter of a century ago.

The Grove in 1972

March 27, 2015


Yesterday we looked at a water colour of the grove in 1986. Today we have the opposite view in a black and white photo from 1972.

The church across the Grove in 1972

The church across the Grove in 1972

The photographer may have selected a rather grey day for this photo which shows a view across the fields of Grove Farm to the church. The Grove Farm buildings are to the right of the church and beyond them we see more of the village and the scarp slope of Salisbury Plain.

To the left of the church we can make out what is now our museum – your museum in fact for it is the Market Lavington Museum.

Museum and Old House

Museum and Old House

That’s our museum building just to the left of the pole. Further left and apparently sheltering under branches of the cedar tree we have The Old House.

The photo, of course, was taken long before houses were built on the former fields of Grove Farm. It’s a very different view today with mixed modern houses providing needed homes for many people.

Market Lavington Real Nativity – 2014

December 23, 2014

The Real Nativity has become an established part of the run up to Christmas. This year it was blessed with good weather which meant it could take part – where appropriate – outside.

However, performers and large congregation gathered in the church where we start with Mary doing the chores. She is joined by the Angel Gabriel who tells her she will have a child – the son of God.




Joseph is understandably concerned that his fiancée is expecting a child but he sees Gabriel in a dream and is told all is well.



Roman centurions arrive.


They order everybody to go to their home town for the census. They are a fearsome duo so they are obeyed.



The people of Bethlehem congregated in that town.


Members of the cast can, of course, join this throng.


The angel kept a watch over all although maybe that wasn’t part of the original story.


Joseph arrives in Bethlehem with Mary. She is ‘great with child’ and is riding a donkey.


They try to find an inn which can take them but innkeepers keep shouting at them, ‘no room!’


Eventually, a kindly inn keeper says they can bed down in the stable with the animals and leads them away to this makeshift shelter.


Meanwhile shepherds, out in the flock minding sheep are trying to keep warm.


Aha. 21st century health and safety applies. There’s a real fire so there had better be a real fire extinguisher. Or our photographer can hide it by just using the glow from the fire.


Shepherds arrive in the stable (AKA the Community Hall) where Mary has produced the baby Jesus.



Three kings arrive.


They pay homage to the baby Jesus.


The donkey joins the onlookers.


During the action, the villagers have been singing approriate Christmas Carols and we ended with a wonderful rendition of ‘Hark the Herald’.

Well that wasn’t quite the finish. Mulled wine, mince pies and a good old chinwag were much enjoyed by all.

We at Market Lavington Museum are pleased to make these photos available for participants in the event to download. In case any aren’t aware, larger versions of photos can be seen by clicking on them.

Bell ringers of 1950

December 14, 2014

Bell ringing still goes on in Market Lavington but today we are looking at a slightly reduced team from 1950. There are six bells in the tower at St Mary’s and here we see five ringers taking a rest just outside the church.

Market Lavington bell ringers of 1950

Market Lavington bell ringers of 1950

Back then bell ringing seemed to be very much a male preserve and here we see a collection of men who seem a bit overdressed for the exertions associated with ringing. One chap has dispensed with the tie but perhaps it is the jacket which seems a singularly unsuitable garment for ringing.

The captioning for this image is another one that is not as good as it might be. The person on the left is just given the name Bailey. Then we have Jack Saxton and Tom Gye is sitting on the fence. Next is Melville Bailey and Bert Shore is on the right. He was married to Flo Burbidge who had been born (back in 1908) in our museum building.

Tom Gye was still ringing into the 21st century.

Just for the record here’s the team with some from Potterne at ringing the bells in November 2014.


Bell ringers at Market Lavington – November 2014


A Postcard from the recreation ground

December 13, 2014

This card is another recent acquisition at Market Lavington Museum.

The Church from the Recreation Ground - possibly Edwardian

The Church from the Recreation Ground – possibly Edwardian

Market Lavington’s recreation ground used to be the field behind what is now Shires Close. It was clearly used heavily for football – the goal mouth area is very worn. The flock of lawnmowers (sheep, of course) are making sure that the field’s grass is kept under control.

Colour in this picture is, of course, artist added and may not always be a close representation of reality but certainly where plants survive in the old ‘rec’ it looks to be a floral area of grassland.

Behind the recreation ground we can see, at the left, Meadow Cottage under what appears to be rather mossy thatch. The other house below the church is Spring Villa.

Further round and under the spreading cedar tree we can pick out the tiled roof of the village school which is now, of course, The Old School

This is a high summer image. The pollarded trees which form the perimeter of the church land are in full leaf and a young man enjoys a siesta amongst the flowers on the rec.

A Walton's series card

A Walton’s Series card

This card was never posted but we note it is in Walton’s series. Mr Walton owned the department store in Market Lavington.

Printed in Belgium

Printed in Belgium

It is also interesting to note that the card was printed in Belgium. It is a cheap card. The board is very thin – hardly more than paper. Mr Walton would have been selling in competition with Mr Burgess and no doubt sought to be as cheap as possible.

Commemorative Ware

December 10, 2014

A recent gift has added another piece of local commemorative ware to our collection. In this case it is a small dish with an image of Market Lavington Church.

Commemorative dish showing St Mary's Church in Market Lavington

Commemorative dish showing St Mary’s Church in Market Lavington

The dish – about 10cm across was made by Britannia Designs of Dartmouth. We estimate it to be mid to late twentieth century – that fits with the history of Britannia Designs. The church image may be loosely based on this earlier postcard.

A postcard showing a very similar view of the church

A postcard showing a very similar view of the church


Plans for a church window

October 2, 2014

This is a story of an amazing bit of luck that brought an item home to Market Lavington. The item is a plan for a stained glass window in St Mary’s Church.

Plan for a stained glass window on the south side of St Mary's Church, Market Lavington

Plan for a stained glass window on the south side of St Mary’s Church, Market Lavington

We can see that this slightly foxed drawing shows detailed plans for the window on the south side of the church.. The plans were drawn up at the Whitefriars Glassworks in London. The window commemorated the life of the Hon. Louisa Hay who died in 1898.

There are very hard to read pencil notes around the plan. Here it is suggested that a man has been drawn instead of a woman.

Planner's notes around the drawing

Planner’s notes around the drawing

This picture was found in Ireland by the president of the Irish Antique Dealers’ Federation – Mr G H Stacpoole. That surname will be familiar to local readers for we have a steward, who is also a church warden, related closely to G H Stacpoole. And as a result, the plan was returned to England, to Market Lavington and can now be seen on display in our entrance room.

What a fantastic item – not only a work of art in its own but also an insight into the way church windows were designed.

And now let’s see the actual window in the church.


The actual window in St Mary's Church

The actual window in St Mary’s Church