Posts Tagged ‘Stonehenge’

A brickyard hut

September 22, 2015

There were all sorts of buildings at the brick works, down on Broadway. Today we look at one of them which, when the photo was taken, began to look like a bit of a tumbledown hut. But it was a hut with history.

The Aerodrome Hut at Market Lavington Brick Yard in 1958. Prior to 1922 this had been at the Stonehenge Aerodrome

The Aerodrome Hut at Market Lavington Brick Yard in 1958. Prior to 1922 this had been at the Stonehenge Aerodrome

This hut was known as ‘The Aerodrome Hut’. This may seem an unlikely name.

It was acquired, by the brickworks in 1922. It had been (perhaps) an aeroplane hangar at the Stonehenge airfield. The photo itself dates from 1958 which is long after the brickworks closed.

Although the back of the photograph says this was a hangar, it looks rather small. Is there anybody out there who can tell us any more about original uses for the hut or, indeed, what our own local brickworks used it for?

On display at Stonehenge

November 6, 2014

Market Lavington Museum has now closed for the winter (except by arrangement with the curator, of course) but we are delighted that some of our artefacts are now on display at the Stonehenge Visitor Centre. This building, which opened a year ago, is the point of arrival for all visitors to Wiltshire’s famous stone circle and other associated archaeological sites. It is situated on Salisbury Plain where vast numbers of soldiers from Britain, the Empire and other allied countries were trained prior to going to Europe to fight in what we now call the First World War. It is this military use of the Salisbury Plain area that is ‘celebrated’ in the ‘Soldiers at Stonehenge’ exhibition. Market Lavington and Easterton were very much involved in the training and temporary homing of soldiers and we are pleased to be represented at this display

Photography will not normally be permitted at this exhibition but we were granted an exemption to photograph our items.


Our Valcartier medallion has featured before (as an exhibit at Market Lavington) on this blog but we were moved, here, to see it alongside exhibits from the Imperial War Museum.

The backs of display cabinets are lined with a variety of images from First World War days.


Across the bottom we have the lovely photo of Market Lavington Market Place in full swing as a Red Cross fund raising market in 1915. Our local WW1 group plan to recreate this event in 2015. The top right photo shows Norman Neate, landlord of the Brewery Tap on White Street with two Canadian soldiers. The top left photo is not a Market Lavington one.


This poster has appeared on this blog before – but the name of Market Lavington is now ‘in lights’ at one of the most iconic tourist sites in the world.

We were invited to the official opening of this display which also incorporated a brief commemoration ceremony at the stones. This was a moving and dramatic occasion.

It was dark and Stonehenge was floodlit.


Some of the stones had images of marching First World War soldiers projected onto them.


The famous verse by Robert Binyon was read and then two buglers emerged from behind one of the stones to play The Last Post.


The two minute silence which followed was a deeply moving occasion.

We’d urge one and all to visit the Stonehenge exhibition. The good news is that members of English Heritage or The National Trust get free admission.

A Market Lavington Photographer at Stonehenge

March 3, 2011

We’ve said before, on these pages, that Market Lavington was lucky to have a resident photographer from the 1880s and onwards. This was, Mr Alf Burgess, and later his sons took over the business. After World War 2, Peter Francis took over and when he retired, Richard Hale, the present incumbent arrived.

But today we feature an Alf Burgess photo – a delightful shot of a group of people at Stonehenge. These famous stones are not in the parish of Market Lavington. They are about 12 miles away, across Salisbury Plain and they were just the place for a lengthy day trip out by horse and carriage. We have already featured some local folk having a picnic at the stones – click here to go to that page.

This shot is more formal in style than the previous (and older) photo.

Stonehenge by Alf Burgess - a photo at Market Lavington Museum

That’s the photo in a rather careworn cardboard mount – but that mount carries the photographer’s name.

Burgess Photographer - it would have said Market Lavington ut that bit of the mount is missing.

Lets look more closely at the photo.

The stones and visitors

This photo was taken before quite extensive rebuilding of the stones was carried out. A modern photo (thanks to the wikipedia site) shows a similar view in 2008.

Stonehenge as rebuilt - taken in 2008. Thanks to Wikipedia.

But let’s return to our picture and zoom in on the people. We do not know who these visitors to the stones were. They may have been chance people, but more likely Alf had commandeered some willing folks to be a part of his planned photo.

It would be grand if anyone recognised these fine visitors, relaxing at Stonehenge in the 1890s.

And who, we wonder, brought the carriage, which is nestled up against a stone?

A carriage at Stonehenge

What a lovely item.

Just for interest, the journey from Lavington to Stonehenge would not have been on the present main A360 road. Before Salisbury Plain became a military training area, the route would have been straight up White Street and on to Lavington Hill. The route continued straight ahead passing the remote farms at Philpot’s and Candown before arriving at the Drummer Boy Post where the route – the main road from Devizes via Redhorn Hill merged in. The way continued to the Bustard Inn (and how welcome that must have been) before arriving at what we now call Airman’s Cross where you’d take the left turn towards Stonehenge.

Stonehenge in the 1880s

May 12, 2010
No, Stonehenge is not in the parish of Market Lavington, but it is easily reached, and even in the 1880s local families went there for a day out.

A picture we have at Market Lavington Museum shows members of the Wadman and Welch families relaxing amongst the stones at Stonehenge. Since about 1980, special permission has been needed to get in amongst the stones, but in 1880, the site was open to all.

The Wadman and Welch families from Market Lavington at Stonehenge in the 1880s

The picture is old and rather careworn but it looks as though the families were able to relax, no doubt with a picnic basket full of goodies to enjoy.

We believe the Welch family consisted of James and his wife Sarah and their adult children Sarah, Mary and James. In 1881 this family lived at Beech House on White Street. Later this became the home of the museum’s former curator, Peggy Gye who was born Peggy Welch.

The Wadman family also lived on White Street in 1881. The family were Robert, his wife, Sarah and their son, William.

There are more folks in the photo than there were family members living in Market Lavington so we clearly have not got all of the people pictured. We have also not identified who is who on the photo. Maybe somebody out there can help us.