Posts Tagged ‘person’

George Dobson – again

August 9, 2011

Back in 1953, George Dobson was Market Lavington’s oldest inhabitant at the age of 96. Times change and there will now be quite a few residents older than that in the village. This is not all down to people living longer. In part it is because the BUPA Care home in the old Vicarage building and other associated buildings has become a feature of the village.

We described something of George Dobson’s life in an earlier item. This time we’ll content ourselves with a little extra information. In 1939, George and his wife, Mary, lived on The Spring in Market Lavington.

We recently featured a 1953 newspaper article about aspects of Market Lavington. Today we are looking at this paper again and its mention of George Dobson. It includes a photo of George with his motorbike.

George Dobson and his motorbike. George was Market Lavington's oldest inhabitant in 1953

And here’s the extract that is about George.

1953 news article about George Dobson

In fact, George’s motorbike accident led to him receiving a three year driving ban and he didn’t live to see that out.

What was the Co-op in the nineteenth century?

July 20, 2011

Our present shop,The  Co-op, has a prime position on the High Street, next to the Market Place. When there was a market, back in the nineteenth century, it must have been even better for commercial premises.  It has been a co-op for 100 years and was a grocery store before it was a co-op. But what was there in the nineteenth century?

At Market Lavington Museum we  have a poor quality photo of the premises in about 1885.

The present Co-op building in 1885 - a rather poor condition photo at Market Lavington Museum

This is the current coop building, although the end part, with the gable end facing High Street has been demolished.

If we zoom in, we can just make  out some of the writing above the window.

Signage above the window

What we see here says plumbing, painting and …..

The shop was in the hands of Mr Cannings. This was Henry Cannings and we have already looked at his life – and a lavatory chain. Click here to read it.

We do not know if the man outside the shop in the photo is Henry.

We’d love a better copy of that photo if anybody has one.

Spring Cottage

July 13, 2011

Spring Cottage is, as the name suggests, a cottage on the road known as The Spring. It is easy to find in 2011 for it is near the roundabout with Grove Road. The cottage was there in the 1880s when this picture was taken.

Spring Cottage in the 1880s from a photo at Market Lavington Museum

Our original photo, at Market Lavington Museum had suffered a little damage over the years and it has been digitally ‘repaired’ in this copy.

Our records tell us that the people in the photo are Mr and Mrs Pinchen.

Francis Pinchen and Mrs Pinchen - but which of the ladies is it?

That is clearly not complete for there are three people standing at the garden gate.

We thinkthat either  Mr and Mrs Pinchen were the man and women on either side of the fence.  Mr Francis Pinchen had been born in about 1814 in Market Lavington and he was a builder by trade. His wife, Sophia, was a little older than Francis and hailed, originally, from Sheerness in Kent. The couple can be found on 1851, 61, 71 and 81 censuses at Spring Cottage.

Sophia died in 1884. Francis married Eliza Craske in 1885 in the Woolwich area. Eliza(beth) was almost 30 years younger than Francis.

The second possibility is that Mr and Mrs Pinchen could be Francis and his second wife, Elizabeth – and then she could be the lady standing next to him.

In 1891 and  1901 Francis is still at Spring Cottage  with his new wife, Elizabeth.

Francis died in 1902. He was buried at the Drove Lane cemetery in Market Lavington.

Harry Greening

July 9, 2011

Yesterday, we looked at a letter regarding the retirement of Mrs Elisha from her teaching post at Market Lavington School. Today we are looking at an invitation to attend the retirement party of Harry Greening.

Harry was the founder head of the secondary school in Market Lavington (but serving a wider community).

Card inviting Tom and Peggy Gye to an evening to mark Mr Greening's retirement from Lavington School

It will seem amazing to many locals that it was as long as thirty years ago that Harry retired. He remained active in village affairs – notably gardening and the annual produce shows of which he was a very successful stalwart. Sadly, Harry died on Christmas Day in 2010. He was 89.

Harry was born and raised in South Wales. He was active in World War II, serving in the navy and commanding a landing craft, ferrying troops ashore at the D-Day landings.

When demobbed, he took a teacher training course. He obtained employment at Broade Chalke, near Salisbury where he was also responsible for founding the cricket club.

In 1962 he came to Lavington School. Amongst the features he created was the very successful school farm. He also organised a very successful link between his Lavington state comprehensive school and the nearby independent Dauntsey’s School. Under this agreement, the two schools shared some teachers and facilities and those students who gained sufficiently good grades at age 16 could get a county paid place at Dauntsey’s for their 6th form.

It is, perhaps, sad to report that initiatives from elsewhere have ended both of these initiatives.

Towards the end of his life Harry’s eyesight failed but he still got to the village produce shows and his onions were always brilliant!

Harry displays onions at a Market Lavington produce show

Lord Warrington of Clyffe

July 4, 2011

Lord Warrington of Clyffe

This sketch is of the kind that artists still make in courts where cameras are not permitted. It shows Justice Warrington peering through his glasses and over his papers. No doubt a defendant is beginning to feel worried about what sentence will be handed down.

Thomas Rolls Warrington was born in 1851. His father was a London jeweller and goldsmith.

Census data doesn’t fall well for us with young Thomas. He missed the 1851 census but he was at home, with no occupation given for the 1861 and 1871 census. As yet, we have failed to find him in 1881 or 1891 which means he next appears on the 1901 census. By this time he’s a barrister, and a KC which means he’s a senior barrister.

However we know he was called to the bar in 1875. In 1883 he married Emma Maud Sturgess.

Thomas became a QC (Queen’s Counsel) in 1895 and was created a judge in 1904.

By 1911 the Warringtons lived at Clyffe Hall in Market Lavington.

He retired in 1926 and was created the 1st Baron Warrington of Clyffe of Market Lavington in the county of Wiltshire. The Warrington’s  continued to live at Clyffe Hall.

Both Thomas and Maud appear on the 1926 electoral roll.

Thomas died in 1937. He left no heir and the barony became extinct.


A long-gone house on Northbrook

June 25, 2011

This house is said to have been on Northbrook, on the slope leading to The Sands. We do not know precisely where this was and would really appreciate any help that can be given to locate the spot on which this building stood.

A long-demolished Northbrook cottage - a photo at Market Lavington Museum

Our information suggests that this picture was taken in 1910 and that the person standing by the cottage is Mrs Newman who was the grandmother of Mrs E Oram.

We can see Mrs Newman in more detail.

Mrs Newman stands by the cottage

Locating Mrs Newman leaves a lot to guesswork.

A Mr and Mrs Newman did live in Market Lavington at the time of the 1911 census. They were Frederick William Newman and Lucy. Frederick was aged 52 and Lucy was 47. This lady looks older than 47. This was not the house which Frederick and Lucy occupied at the time of the 1911 census. They lived somewhere near the Manor. On earlier censuses Frederick’s occupation had been ‘cricketer’ Maybe Frederick helped create the cricket ground which is now a part of the Lavington School site.

Can anyone out there help us to get our records correct?

John Williams of Easterton

June 14, 2011

For much of the information here we must thank Sheila Judge who did the research into the Williams family who lived at Easterton Manor.

John William Morgan Williams - 1855 to 1942

John William Morgan Williams  was born on October 9th, 1853. His father died suddenly in his 50s in 1885 and John became the owner of Easterton Manor. Let’s quote Sheila Judge.

John William Morgan Williams, inherited Easterton Manor, and all the estate and outlying properties. He was still a bachelor, he worked in a bank in a nearby town, and he was as fond of travelling as ever. He had matriculated at Pembroke College in 1873, and doubtless enjoyed his time at college to the full. By that time, photography was a recognised skill, and there are pictures of the  young John W.M. Williams as a young man, so it is possible to see what he looked like. In fact, he was a very handsome man, tall, dark, and well built, with an attractive and compelling expression

His features were well defined, he had dark eyes and a decidedly Roman nose, and very well groomed dark moustaches. He was attractive to the ladies, a fact he enjoyed and probably exploited, and they seem to have been fascinated by him. The year after his father died, “young John”, as the village thought of him, went to the Isle of Jersey, on holiday. There he met a very lonely young lady, Florence Letitia Giffard, and later in the year he married her, in Jersey, on October 5th, 1886. She was an outstandingly beautiful girl, and it is not surprising that he gave up his bachelor state for her. They returned home to Easterton. Florence had not visited the Manor previously, and so it is hard to know what she expected to find in her new home. Stories have it that she found the place neglected, very old fashioned, and in need of up-dating and re-decorating, plus new furnishings.

The Williams family grew with the birth of children between 1887 and 1900.

Mr. & Mrs. Williams had lived well, and spent money freely since their marriage in 1886. They travelled, spent time in London, and visited and entertained locally. When Gwen was old enough, her mother took her to Jersey to meet her relatives there. The family had a good social standing, and the parents were a popular couple.

Sheila Judge paints a picture of a downward turn in the quality of life. John suffered something of a breakdown in 1920 and his fondness for women caused a bit of a scandal and a law case. His wife stood by him and did what she could to keep the household running without the income that might have come from the farmland which the family had once owned.

John died in 1942. He still has descendants in the Easterton area.

Heel Nails

June 9, 2011

Our Phillips Stick-a-soles and heels man has proved to be one of the most popular pages on this blog.

That single page is looked at more than once every day, on average.

Now we have been given heel nails, from the same firm, Phillips, for adding extras on worn heels that are not suited to the stick-a-sole type of fixing. These came from a house in Easterton where the resourceful householders did their own shoe repairs.

These nails for all rubber shaped heels are a recent acquisition at Market Lavington Museum

In times past, for most people, a cobbler was an essential person in a village. Both Market Lavington and Easterton had cobblers, boot and shoe makers, cordwainers and the like in the nineteenth and early 20th centuries. Ken Mundy was the last cobbler with premises on High Street in Market Lavington until the early 1980s.

You can see our collection connected with Phillips and cobblers in the upstairs room at the museum. There’s more about cobbling in the trades room, downstairs.

Great Grandmother’s Bathing Costume

May 27, 2011

This costume  (and other garments)  were given  to Market Lavington Museum by  the great grandson of the lady who wore them.

Swimming Costume worn by Florence Letitia Williams of Easterton Manor - about 1905We

The costume is certainly not the skimpy little things we might think normal today. A lady must keep herself well covered so here we have a costume with sleeves and a collar and even a belt on the top part and a length of leg on the lower part. The general style of this cotton garment might be called ‘sailor suit’.

We have met the lady who wore the costume before in these pages. She was Florence Letitia Williams, of Easterton Manor, but of Jersey in the Channel Islands in her unmarried life. She must have been accustomed to the sea.

The wasp waisted style of the costume (actually, it is about 25 inches around) was certainly appropriate for this lady, seen  in the photo below.

Florence Letitia Williams of Market Lavington who wore the bathing costume.

Another costume, although not identical, has many similarities with our new acquisition at Market Lavington Museum.


This one, found at , dates from 1905 so we think Florence’s costume was Edwardian.

The Smith Family

May 21, 2011

Earlier this year, as a display was being developed, we featured Charles Smith in mannequin form but with a singularly bald head. One of our stewards – a fantastic group of people – has now found a hat to make him look  less like an egg-head.

A felt hat has been added to Mr Smith. He looks so much better with it.

Even better is that a search through the photo archive has revealed a real photo of Charles, his wife, Mary Jane (her mannequin was featured too) and their children. So here we show the real Mr and Mrs Smith.

Charles and Mary Jane Smith and family. Charles, like many other members of this Market Lavington family was a dew pond maker

The Smith family shown here consist of:

Children in front:
Standing – Walter Goulding Smith 1897 – 1975
Seated – Minnie Ethel Smith 1894 – 1906

Seated left to right:
Thomas  Smith 1878 – 1947
Charles John Smith 1852 – 1917
Mary Jane Smith 1855 – 1938
Charles junior 1882 – ?

Standing behind, left to right:
Jack Smith 1884 – 1972
Mary Ann Jane Smith 1886 – 1971
Willie Smith 1888 – 1918