Posts Tagged ‘range’

Blacking box

August 11, 2016

One of the fixtures at Market Lavington Museum is the old range which has always been a part of the building. It is no longer serviceable but it still looks the part and gives us the opportunity to display a range of related items. Here we have one appropriate collection.

blacking box and brushes by the range at Market Lavington Museum

Blacking box and brushes by the range at Market Lavington Museum

This locally made box contains the vital brushes for keeping the range black. It’s a job we still do using Zebo which is still obtainable. We apply it with rags rather than brushes. No doubt other black grate polishes are available.

Little exhibits like this add atmosphere and will bring back memories for older visitors who may remember ranges actually in use.

Of course, these days range style cookers seem to be in fashion but they are very different beasts using gas or electricity and usually with enamelled wipe clean surfaces. The old coal fired ranges needed real skill and attention to keep them looking good and to keep them at a good cooking temperature.



A permanent display

February 12, 2015


Our kitchen range is a part of the structure of the museum.  As such it forms a permanent display. We believe it was installed when the cottage was built in the 1840s – and there it still is. Actually, it is not in good order, but is cosmetically OK and it certainly is a real feature of our kitchen display area.

The range in the kitchen at Market Lavington Museum

The range in the kitchen at Market Lavington Museum

There we see it – a small, cottage sized range with rather huge saucepans on top. The range would have been in use in living memory for the Burbidge family lived there until the 1950s.

We have more clutter around the range than would have been the case. On the mantle shelf we have appropriate photos of the Burbidge family along with lamps and a candle wick trimmer. There are also various tins and trinkets.

The walls around the range have displays of items which may have been used in the kitchen area. This includes hair curlers – the house never had a bathroom.

The rug in front of the stove is made from old rags. Nothing was wasted in the domestic economy of past times. It was used in Market Lavington before coming to the museum.

Our museum reopens for 2015 on Saturday 2nd May at 2.30pm. You can come and see it for yourself then.

Opening Day

May 1, 2013

Yes, the new season begins for us today and we look forward to seeing you in the museum during the coming summer and autumn months. Maybe you’ll get there today.

A lot of our work has been done in the closed season. Walls have been painted; the door has been strengthened and painted. The porch has been spruced up.

New displays have replaced the 2012 offerings.  This year you’ll be able to see a display on schools and another on views from the church in past times.  We get a look at the railway in another and can see a different range of clothing connected with getting ready in the morning on our mannequins. The clock which used to grace the village on the Workmans’ Hall is now on display.

Our stewards have helped out with a lovely spring cleaning session, making sure windows, and floors are in good order and removing the cobwebs which appear in the winter. Artefacts out on display in kitchen and trade rooms have all been given attention to make them look as good as possible.

Our stewards have also attended refresher sessions to make sure they know what is going on.

So now all we need are visitors coming to see our lovely, friendly village museum. It is, after all, your museum. We just have the good fortune to help with running it.

And here, as a reminder, is our kitchen range, part of the original house, still in its original place.

The kitchen range at Market Lavington Museum

The kitchen range at Market Lavington Museum

A Trivet

April 12, 2013

These days most people would have no idea on how to cook on a kitchen range. It was a work of skill getting things to the right temperature with judicious addition of fuel and control of dampers. And of course, at the same time you actually had to manage the food as well. It’s so different from our ‘touch of a button’ life with technology managing the heat leaving the cook free to deal with the food.

Back in those old days all sorts of extras were available. What we are looking at today is called a trivet. This one could be clamped onto a range and used to keep a pan warm in front of the stove.

Late nineteenth century trivet at Market Lavington Museum

Late nineteenth century trivet at Market Lavington Museum

As we can see this is quite an ornamental piece of cast iron. A utilitarian item could quite happily be cast into something which was ornament as well as useful. The underside, with the clamp, is more complex.

Underside of trivet with adjustable fastening

Underside of trivet with adjustable fastening

There’s a wing nut to enable adjustment to be made. The trivet could be held at varying distances from the fire.

This trivet is believed to date from the late 1800s and had been used by the Gale family of The Spring in Market Lavington. Presumably, it had been unused for some time when it came to the museum back in 1987.