Tag Archives: picture postcard parade

Picture Postcard Parade: West Dean Church, Sussex

27 Jan

This is one of the postcards I bought last weekend at Shoreham and is one of the best views of West Dean Church that I have seen.

In fact I don’t think I have seen a postcard from this angle before, roughly speaking the photo was taken from the garden of the vicarage looking south towards St. Andrew’s Church, above the roof of the church can be seen the roof and chimneys of West Dean House. Beyond that I think the hill on the left is probably Singletonhill Plantation, but I am not sure.

I love the fact that the photographer has captured the detail in the garden as well, with lots of fruit trees and what looks like a rose arch pointing towards the church tower. The gateway to the church is hidden behind the tall plant(s) in the centre, but the path can clearly be seen leading down the side of the garden and along the back wall.

I still don’t know who the publisher/photographer was, despite now having several from the same publisher/photographer. This particular card was not sent through the post, but it does have a message written on the back in pencil “The Church at West Dean we attended on Sunday [Cheerie] Chums August Camp 10th – 17th 1929″. The word Cheerie is not very clear but it is the only thing can I think it says, I wonder who they were and where they came from?

Picture Postcard Parade: St. Lawrence Parish Church, Alton, Hampshire

18 Jan

I am somewhat embarrassed to admit that this is the only historic postcard I have of Alton, Hampshire. I shall probably remedy this in the future, but for now you will have to make do with just this one.

This is the church in Alton, Hampshire where Henry SHORNDEN/WRIGHT and his wife Sarah had most of their children baptised and where both Henry and Sarah were buried. The postcard has not been used, but probably dates from between 1905 and 1910. The blank space in the top right-hand corner being used to write your message in if your were going to send the card abroad, when all of the back was needed for the address.

The back of the card also bears the name of the publisher/photographer, W.P. Varney of West End Studio, Alton. A bit of time spent in the trade directories for Hampshire would probably enable me to find out when W.P. Varney was trading.

I hope to get back to Alton this year and spend a bit more time exploring the area. I did pay the town a very brief visit last year when I took the photo below of St. Lawrence Parish Church as it looks now.

Picture Postcard Parade: The Aquarium and Madeira Drive, Brighton

13 Jan

The postcard below is provided as a contrast to the one from last week, this one probably dates from the late 1960s or early 1970s and show a slightly different view (looking east) of The Aquarium at Brighton, Sussex. Madeira Drive is the road to the right of the Aquarium. The postcard was published by Photo Precision Limited, about whom I have been unable to find out any more information.

This is much more the way I remember it from my childhood. I have tried to remember when it was that I went on a school trip to the aquarium or dolphinarium as it also known. It must have been in the late 1970s. I don’t remember much about the visit, I have recollections of large red plastic covered seats with tables where we had our lunch, and I seem to recall the smell of egg sandwiches, but I could be wrong.

I remember there was a display by the dolphins (long since moved on) in a giant pool, with the dolphins splashing those sitting near the edge of the pool. Also I think they “sang” happy birthday to someone in our school group. I can’t remember anything else about the aquarium, but I do remember we went out onto the beach afterwards, where one of my classmates found a dead fish.

The building now houses the Brighton Sea Life Centre which is much more focused on conservation and education than when I was there, although I have not been there since that visit thirty or so years ago. This is how the entrance looks today (or a couple of years ago) on Google Street View.

Picture Postcard Parade: Palace Pier and Aquarium, Brighton

7 Jan

Mention yesterday of the aquarium at Brighton, Sussex gives me the perfect excuse to show you this delightful card from my collection.

There is so much going on in this scene, obviously the key features are the Palace Pier (now known simply as Brighton Pier) and the aquarium (now known as the Sea Life Centre), although this only shows the entrance to the aquarium, with it’s clock tower (now gone) and steps leading underground into the aquarium itself.

The pier itself is devoid (thankfully) of most of the “attractions” that clutter the pier these days. These were the days of promenading and when the pier was used as a landing stage, as evidenced by the two larger vessels on either side of the end of the pier. There are plenty of other boats out to sea on the right-hand side, but I don’t know if this is Brighton’s fishing fleet or just pleasure boats.

Back on dry land there are plenty of examples of horse-drawn transport, and I wonder what the man at the bottom has in his hand cart? Surprisingly though there are not that many people wandering about, perhaps it was early morning, judging by the shadows I would have said it was before midday at least. Sadly there are no trees or plants that would give us a clue as to what time of year it was.

The postcard itself is unused and printed on the back are the words “Valentine’s Series”, indicating that it was published by Valentine & Sons Ltd of Dundee, Scotland, a well-known international firm of postcard publishers. I would imagine this dates from the early 1900s and certainly pre-First World War.

Picture Postcard Parade: Interior of West Grinstead Church (Part Two)

29 Dec

This is second of two postcards of the interior of St. George’s Church in the parish of West Grinstead, Sussex. This photo was obviously taken at the same time as the one I wrote about yesterday, and published by the same people.

You could be forgiven for thinking that the church was starting to get overgrown, but presumably there was some sort of special occasion for which floral displays had been created, even if they do look a bit like ivy taking over the church. You can find out more about the church at the Parish of West Grinstead website.

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