Posts Tagged ‘coach’

Devizes and Wiltshire Advertiser – September 18th 1924

July 4, 2016
Devizes and Wiltshire Advertiser - September 18th 1924

Devizes and Wiltshire Advertiser – September 18th 1924

The front page of this paper certainly lives up to its name. It advertises all sorts. But the big advert is for the Lavington and Devizes Motor Services Ltd.


Lavington and Devizes Motor Services Ltd. advert

The trips out for the coming week are listed. There are three trips to Bournemouth at nine shillings (45p) return. It sounds laughably cheap but that nine shillings represents just about a day’s pay for a labouring man. If he had a wife and children we could be approaching close on a week’s wages for the transport to Bournemouth. You got a long day out for your money.

The trip to Wembley was more expensive – but then it is a longer journey and that had a very early start from Lavington.

The special for that week was Frome cheese show – then as now this was a popular event.

What a lovely advert.

Another charabanc in Salisbury

January 23, 2014

Today we look at another of the many charabanc photos we have at Market Lavington Museum.

Fred Sayer had a substantial fleet of vehicles, based in Market Lavington and he ran trips to all sorts of tourist destinations during the 1920s. If trips were heading to the seaside they were almost bound to pass through Salisbury where a ‘comfort break’ was made. An enterprising photographer took photos of the party on the outward journey and had prints for sale on the return. So, as per usual, the location is Salisbury but certainly quite a few of the people come from Lavington.

A Charabanc carrying Market Lavington people photographed in Salisbury in about 1922

A Charabanc carrying Market Lavington people photographed in Salisbury in about 1922

The driver, in white coat and cap is Percy Notton and amongst those on the vehicle we have Ivy Pomeroy, Jack Plank, W Trotter senior,  Harry Merritt, Mrs Gye and baby Tom Gye and also Mrs Ross and her son.

Standing by the bus we have Joe Gye and Charles Ross.

The charabanc is a Commer Car and has a registration, partly hidden by the starting handle of A? 9868.

The photo can be dated by the age of Tom Gye, the baby, to about 1922 or 23.

As ever, any tales about these people, or identities of others in the photo would be very welcome.

Fred Sayer takes a ride

June 11, 2013

Yet another bus?

We are quite big on buses at Market Lavington Museum – certainly as far as photos are concerned. The reason is simple. Coach trips, to the coast, from the area passed through Salisbury where a ‘comfort’ stop was made. A Salisbury photographer snapped the people and had prints ready for sale when the coach returned in the evening and made another stop. People, happy and relaxed after a day out bought the images and many have found their way to the museum.

But this one is special.

A charabanc trip from Market Lavington in the late 1920s

A charabanc trip from Market Lavington in the late 1920s

Now why is that special? It certainly isn’t for the charabanc for we don’t see the front end, although no doubt some will find that chain drive fascinating. And I’m afraid we only know the identity of one of the people on board – but that man makes this a special photo.

Fred sayer, who owned the Lavington and Devizes bus company is one of the passengers

Fred Sayer, who owned the Lavington and Devizes bus company, is one of the passengers

This is Fred Sayer. He’s special because he owned the buses. We believe this photo dates from the late 1920s.

Fred had many buses. The Lavington and Devizes Motor Services Company could carry up to 600 people on outings in their own fleet of vehicles. It was a huge business for Market Lavington.

But Fred still remains a bit of a mystery to us at the museum.

Our basic information is that Frederick Herbert Sayer was born in about 1880 in the Bath area. He married Mabel Weston and they had a son, also called Frederick Herbert. In 1911 he was a bus driver in Stroud, Gloucestershire but soon after he moved to Market Lavington. At some point he progressed from being a driver to owning the company. He ended his days in Cheverell in 1934.

We know that the younger Frederick Sayer married Jess Trotter whose family ran The Volunteer Arms in Market Lavington.

Please do get in touch if you know anything about this man or his family.

The Market Place – but when?

March 11, 2013

Here’s a photo of Market Lavington Market Place with some kind of parade lining up – both military personnel and youngsters in scout uniform.

A parade in the Market Place, Market Lavington

A parade in the Market Place, Market Lavington

It isn’t the best quality photo you ever saw and we haven’t fully worked out when it was taken, but it has much of interest.

A separately written caption tells us that this is an Armistice Day parade after World War 1. This could, technically be correct, but it certainly isn’t immediately after the first war. Take a look at the rear end of a car which is in the photo.


That bit of car looks to be about a 1937 model – or newer

Whilst we can’t positively identify that car, it looks to be something built from about 1937 onwards.

Now we are going to look at the hotchpotch of buildings at the back of the Market Place.

Where Fred Sayer kept his suite of buses and charabancs

Where Fred Sayer kept his suite of buses and charabancs

This had been where The Lavington and Devizes Motor Services had stored vehicles. The windows on what was left of the lovely old house to the right carry evidence of that usage.

We are adviswed to travel by bus or coach

We are advised to travel by bus or coach

There was can see the notices urging us to ‘travel by bus’ and to ‘travel by coach’. The middle window indicates that a phone had been used by the company. But this doesn’t help us with date.

Market Lavington Prize Silver Band

Market Lavington Prize Silver Band

A small contingent of Market Lavington Prize Silver Bandsmen are playing. The bass drummer looks to have a young admirer.

On the right of the photo is the main collection of people on parade.

Men and boys on parade in Market Lavington

Men and boys on parade in Market Lavington

It looks as though the soldiers are wearing forage caps which were introduced in about 1939. It seems to point to a time for this photo being the 1940s. Unless you know something different!

The Market Place in the 1950s again

April 16, 2011

Today we are getting two photos for the price of one for we have a montage. This was originally done, in pre digital days, by careful cutting and placing of two photos. Now we have done the same job digitally which produces a considerably more seamless joint.

The picture shows the Market Place before redevelopment in 1960.

A composite picture of the Market Place – a photo at Market Lavington Museum

On the left we have a building next to where the co-op shop stands. The telephone box in the village stands next to it. Behind the telephone box is the last part of a maltings and next to that is a coach, possibly a Bedford.

A coach in the Market Place, Market Lavington

Behind the bus there are a couple of houses that have fallen into disrepair and then there is the fire station.

Market Lavington’s fire station still stood in the late 1950s

Beyond fire station doors we can peep into St James’ Square and then we move round the corner to Wordley’s yard. A Wordley’s lorry stands in front of the yard along with a couple of cars.

Parked vehicles in the Market Place including a Wordley’s lorry

Finally and almost behind a tree we can see the top of Northbrook making its way down to the stream of the same name.

A coach trip to Weymouth in 1926

September 5, 2010

Back in the 1920s, Market Lavington had its own motorbus and coach firm, which was owned and run by Mr Sayer. We have already featured some of Mr Sayer’s adverts on this blog.

In Salisbury, a photographer came up with a good ruse. He could take a photo of a charabanc party on the outward journey and have prints ready to sell to the people on their return. Today’s photo is one such picture.

Coach trip from Market Lavington to Weymouth at Salisbury in 1926. The photo is now at Market Lavington Museum

 The person who donated this photo to Market Lavington Museum was able to name all of the people on the charabanc, and to tell us that this was a 14-seater Crossley coach.

The original notes which tell us who was on the coach trip

Numbered faces are named below

  1. Harry Hobbs
  2. Harry Jordan
  3. Ernest Hopkins
  4. Betty Pike
  5. Mrs Godden
  6. Daisy Hopkins
  7. is Emily Hopkins
  8. is Sam Hopkins
  9. Betty Jordan
  10. Mrs Jordan
  11. Alfie Alexander
  12. Mr Jordan
  13. Mrs Shepherd
  14. Grandfather Hopkins
  15. Lilian Pike

 I’m sure we all hope this group had a lovely day out.