Posts Tagged ‘coronation’

Coronation Capers again

May 12, 2016

At the 1953 coronation

Our queen became 90 this year – an event which Market Lavington will celebrate on 12th June. The queen of course will remember her own coronation day and so do the rest of us, old enough to have been around at the time. No doubt these local youngsters will remember dressing up.

Youngsters in fancy dress celebrate the Coronation of Queen Elizabeth II in 1953

Youngsters in fancy dress celebrate the Coronation of Queen Elizabeth II in 1953

Strangely, the only person we can name is the pipe smoking man on the left. He is Stan Cooper We can’t name the well-dressed youngsters, but we are confident that somebody can.


Yes! Surely these people can be identified.


1911 coronation in Easterton

October 9, 2015

This is a follow up to yesterday’s post in many ways. The coronation in 1911 clearly was not in the Edwardian era for it was near the start of the reign of George V. He came to the throne in 1910 on the death of his father, Edward VII and so technically it was a new Georgian era. But a photo of coronation festivities, in Easterton, in 1911 can be compared with the photo at Paxtons and we can see similarities in fashions.

Celebrating the 1911 coronation in Easterton

Celebrating the 1911 coronation in Easterton

We can see as clear as you like, men in straw boaters and women in big hats. The card is clearly captioned so we know this is 1911.

Having said that, the item which catches our eye is what looks to be a water dispenser at the far end of the table. Did this provide hot water for tea and if so what powered it?

Once again we can’t name people. Who knows, though, somebody might.

The Catalpa Tree

July 31, 2014

61 years ago, George Dobson, who was then Market Lavington’s oldest inhabitant, planted a tree to mark the coronation of Queen Elizabeth II. We have featured this before on the blog and you can click here to see the occasion.

It flowered for the first time in 1976 and it is now a handsome and well grown tree.

The Coronation Tree in Market Lavington. This catalpa or Indian bean tree was planted in 1953.

The Coronation Tree in Market Lavington. This catalpa or Indian bean tree was planted in 1953.

There is the tree which is close to The Old School as well as our museum building and the church. This photo, taken earlier this month doesn’t show the flowers, but the tree is well covered with the delicate and beautiful blooms.

Here’s a little collection of them.


And here’s a close up on a single flower.


Later, the tree will have the big purple bean like pods which give it the alternative name of Indian bean tree.

The Catalpa is not native to the UK but it seems to adapt well to our climate and growing conditions.


Stan and Elsie Cooper – brother and sister

February 3, 2013

Here we have a photo which was taken at the Coronation celebrations 60 years ago in 1953.

Elsie Cooper (in wheel chair, and her brother Stan next to her at the Market Lavington Coronation celebrations in 1953.

Elsie Cooper (in wheel chair) and her brother Stan next to her at the Market Lavington Coronation celebrations in 1953.

Elsie Cooper is in her wheelchair sitting next to brother, Stan. The location of the photo is the football field at the top of Northbrook.

We’d like to use this post to tell you how we try to find out more about people. First of all we try to get some estimate of the age of the people in the photo. This is often quite hard in post war pictures for people tended to look old and careworn. One of the things we’d like to decide with regard to the Coopers was whether they were born before or after 1911. We’d like to be able to locate them on a census if possible for then we can discover who the parents were. For them to be on that census they’d need to be over 42 on the photo.

Next we can turn to that sad document, the burial register for St Mary’s Market Lavington.  Here we find that an Elsie Cooper was buried in 1964, aged 67. A Stan Cooper was buried in 1997, aged 83. If these are the right people we can probably make a start by using the censuses for Elsie.

Result! On the 1901 census Elsie May Cooper is the 5 year old daughter of John and Elizabeth Cooper. They lived in The Market Place and John was a blacksmith.

We can now use the wonderful FreeBMD website to locate a possible marriage between a John Cooper and an Elizabeth and again, we get a result in the shape of a marriage between John and Elizabeth Hoare in 1896. The same site can let us search for children born to a Cooper with a wife’s maiden name of Hoare – but only after 1911 (the records don’t have the maiden name before then) and again we get a result in that Stanley H Cooper was born to the couple in 1913. I also note that a Lawrie Cooper was born to the same parents in 1915 and that’s grand since the person who gave the photo is a descendant of Lawrie.

We’ve had luck, and we all need that, but we could now sort out a whole family tree should we want to.

More on Easterton Fire Brigade

January 13, 2013

Some readers may recall that on January 1st 2013 we showed a picture of ‘Easterton Fire Brigade’. It was clearly some kind of carnival item but we had no idea when or why or who was involved.

A blog comment suggested it was after World War 1 to judge from the souvenir helmets some of the men wore.

But now we have much more information along with a second picture of the same ‘Easterton Fire Brigade’.

A pretend Easterton Fire Brigade at the celebrations for the Coronation of King George VI

A pretend Easterton Fire Brigade at the celebrations for the Coronation of King George VI

This picture was made into a postcard so it has a caption which gives us a date.

The postcard caption

The postcard caption

So, the ‘New Engine and Brigade’ were a creation for the Coronation Carnival of 1937’

This picture is taken from the other side of the ‘appliance’. We see that the hon. Sec. of the brigade was a rather dubious character

I Doubtem was said to be the Hon. Secretary

I Doubtem was said to be the Hon. Secretary

Our donor for this picture tells us that he was led to believe that the driver was his Uncle Jack – Arthur John Spencer. He’d have lived and farmed at Halstead Farm on Easterton High Street at the time.

The other men are still not known and maybe we’ll struggle to identify them under the false whiskers. But once again, we’ll try. Can you name these men? Of course we now know the photo dates from 1937.



Can you name any of the men?

Can you name any of the men?

The 1937 Coronation Committee

October 10, 2011

In 2012 we’ll be celebrating the Diamond Jubilee of Queen Elizabeth II. The museum will have a royal themed display but don’t expect too many images of members of the Royal family, but rather, artefacts and memorabilia of the way our parishes have celebrated royal events in the past.

These days it can be quite hard to find a group of people willing to help organise things. Back in 1937, it seems, people were more willing or more able to offer their time to support causes and events.

Just look at the people on the organising committee for Market Lavington’s celebrations of the coronation of King George VI in 1937.

Market Lavington's 1937 Coronation Committee

That’s 24 people to help organise events for Market Lavington. We can name all of the people.

Standing (from left to right)

  • Peggy Welch
  • Jo Gye
  • Ivy Trotter
  • Ivy Pomeroy
  • Nellie Hiscock
  • George Davis
  • Winnie Mundy
  • Johnnie Merritt
  • Mrs Osmond
  • Philip Phillips
  • Mrs Burgess
  • Rene Davis
  • Vic Osmond

Sitting (left to right)

We have met many of these people before on this blog. If the name is suitably hyperlinked you can click to see more about the person.

Coronation Capers in 1953

June 2, 2011

Royal occasions remain fun for many in the 21st century. Midway through the 1950s we were before the dawn of mass television and still the era of more home-made fun. Here we see a couple of local ladies having a 1953 version of a good time with, more or less, a carnival atmosphere.

Coronation capers in 1953 – a photo at Market Lavington Museum

A pram from that era has been decorated. Of course, photographs then were black and white so we have to imagine what was, almost certainly, a creation in red, white and blue.

Pushing the pram is Mrs Harold Ellis.

Mrs Harold Ellis

Her ‘baby’, in the pram, is Mrs Bella Burt.

Mrs Bella Burt as the baby in the pram

Stan Cooper is looking on.

Stan Cooper enjoys the scene – and also a pipe which was, of course, entirely acceptable in 1953

We do not have names for the youngsters. Maybe you can help with that.

A Coronation Handkerchief

April 29, 2011

Let’s celebrate Royal Wedding Day by looking back to a royal event in 1937. That year saw the coronation of Prince William’s Great Grandfather who was crowned as King George VI.

Many souvenirs were made to mark the occasion and amongst those we have at Market Lavington Museum is this handkerchief.

Handkerchief for the Coronation of King George VI in 1937

This is a machine knitted item – probably many were made – and is believed to be in a man made fibre. The patterns, pictures and words have all been made by creating appropriate holes during the knitting process. Just one colour (blue) of thread was used. The white is showing through from underneath.

This handkerchief had belonged to Elsie Gye. She gave it to our founder curator, Peggy Welch.

Elsie, formerly Miss Spiers, married James Gye in 1930 and they lived at Homestead Farm on Drove Lane. The Spiers had been market gardeners on the sands in Easterton.

We at Market Lavington Museum wish William and Kate a lovely day and a long and happy marriage.

Market Lavington Coronation Band in 1937

February 11, 2011

No matter where we are, we all love a reason to celebrate and the coronation of King George VI, on May 12th 1937, provided just such an occasion. Perhaps it was a really special time, for it enabled the country to get over the crisis created by the abdication of Edward VIII the previous year.

In Market Lavington, a group of people formed the Coronation Band, adopting a range of weird and wonderful costumes for the occasion.

The Coronation Band of 1937 - a photo at Market Lavington Museum

This photo has been reasonably well recorded.

In the back row we have:-

Alan Baker, Ken Buckland, Cliff Case, Fred Shepherd (Jean Mundy and Geo Davis peeping from behind), Jim Cooper, Bob Hobbs, Les Baker, Bert Cooper, Bob Drury and Stanley Davis.

In the front row:-

Ern Razey, Mervyn Hobbs, Charlie Davis, Peter Francis, Tom Ingram and John Drury.

In the left corner:-

Dickie Baker, Jack Bolton, Bob Bolton and Michael Baker.

There’s a limit to picture size shown on a blog, but by zooming in we can see that faces are clearly visible and easy to recognise.

A close up on some band members

As ever, we’d love to know more about the people shown in this picture. If you can help then please contact the curator.

The Coronation Tree and more on ink wells

October 5, 2010

Our Queen’s coronation was away back in 1953. To mark the occasion a catalpa tree was planted in the church yard by what was thought to be Market Lavington’s oldest inhabitant, Mr Dobson. Mr George Dobson has already featured in these pages  – a story 0f when he lost his motorbike licence aged 95, in 1953.

George Dobson, aged 95, plants the Coronation Tree in 1953 - a photo at Market Lavington Museum

Here we see George Dobson, born in the 1850s, with spade in hand by the tree. He stands opposite the Reverend Arthur who was the Vicar of Market Lavington at the time.

The others, from left to right are Tom Gye, Mrs Perry, Mrs Taylor (from The Fives Court), Reg Taylor, Gordon Shepherd, Miss Duncan and the Congregational Minister. Surely he had a name!

The tree flowered for the first time in 1976, a year before the Queen’s Silver Jubilee. It is now a well-grown tree and looks very handsome in the churchyard, quite close to our museum building.


Yesterday’s post about an ink bottle has brought this response from regular correspondent, John in Australia.

My mother Violet was at one time the cleaner of Lavington School. My brother and I at one time had to help mum clean the school, and part of our duties for mom was to fill the ink wells on each desk every morning and yes the bulk ink was kept in a very large bottle. We used pens with changeable nibs and, like you said, later moved to fountain pens. I believe that using this type of pen helped us form our letters properly and made our writing legible.

Lavington school’s 3 classrooms had large round fires, which burnt coke and heated the room. We had to light these fires in the morning with mum and make sure the coke hod was full for the day. The coke was kept at the back of the school in a shed.

Teachers when I was there were

  • Mr Norman Bardwell
  • Mrs McDowell
  • Mr Metheral (Headmaster)

Thanks, John for your memories of 1950s school life.