Tag Archives: postcard traders association

Finding Postcard Fairs in the UK

31 Aug

I mentioned yesterday The Picture Postcard Show which opens in London tomorrow and lasts three days. Most postcard fairs are only one day affairs, although there are a few two-day fairs and some evening fairs. Whether they last one, two or three days postcard fairs are a great place to find postcards to illustrate your family history.

When it comes to finding out where postcard fairs are held there are two main places to look:

The Postcard Traders Association website

The Postcard Traders Association has a calendar of postcard fairs on their website. The good thing about this calendar is that you can click through and find out more information about the organiser, including contact details and possibly their website.

The main drawback with this list is that it doesn’t always get updated regularly, but it is a good starting place especially as a lot of the fairs take place on a regular basis. Also this doesn’t always feature some of the smaller fairs.

Picture Postcard Monthly

Picture Postcard Monthly magazine has a much fuller list of postcard fairs including some international ones (along with auctions and exhibitions). These usually cover the coming three months and also includes contact details for the organisers as well as indicating the number of postcard dealers likely to be attending.

As well as the list of fairs in Picture Postcard Monthly, it is also the main place where postcard fairs are advertised, as well everything else you would expect in a magazine such as news, letters and articles.

The Postcard Traders Association website has a page entitled How to Win at Fairs with advice to get the best out of your visit to a postcard fair. My own advice would be to set yourself a budget and stick to it, otherwise it could get very expensive!

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The Picture Postcard Show 2009

5 Sep

Today I attended the third and final day of the Picture Postcard Show 2009, at the Royal Horticultural Society Lawrence Hall, Greycoat Street, London. The show was organised by the Postcard Traders Association and is an annual event, probably the highlight of the British postcard collecting scene.

This years theme was “The Great British Seaside” and as expected there were some fabulous displays of postcards (and other material) about most aspects of the British seaside, with plenty of saucy comic postcards in evidence. The display which really stood out for me was one on the censorship of these saucy postcards, featuring material from the British Cartoon Archive.

In terms of my own collecting I came away with a few cards, perhaps more than I was expecting but still not many, and I certainly came away with some money in my pocket. I am sure you will be seeing some of these card on my blog in the near future, but to give you some idea, one was of West Grinstead Church (the FAIRS ancestral church) and one of The Main Road and Selsey Arms, West Dean (the BOXALL and MITCHELL families were from West Dean and the postcard shows the school that my grandfather and his brothers and sisters attend).

Perhaps the most remarkable thing was the free postcard that I got for buying a set of six Picture Postcard Show 2009 advertising cards. It is a modern card (the photo was taken in May 2009) and it shows a steam train emerging from Winchcombe tunnel. Winchcombe, Gloucestershire the village from which the tunnel gets it’s name is where my 2x great grandfather Henry BATEMAN was born, and where I hope to visit next year on holiday!

Probably the best find of the day, and it took a lot of finding, was not a postcard at all but a photo of the P&O ship S.S. Berrima, the ship on which my 2x great grandmother Dorothy Isabella BATEMAN sailed to Australia in 1921, and died within a week of arriving! To be honest the ship is quite a depressing sight and to my mind at least not a particularly nice ship to look at. I am not sure whether I will be able to show you this photo because of copyright issues, but I will have to see what I can do about getting permission.

The show wasn’t as busy as I was expecting, although by the sounds of it the previous two days had been busier. For me this was nice, not having to squeeze between hoards of people, by obviously not so good for the dealers. This was the reason I stayed longer at the show than I had originally planned and didn’t make it to the City of Westminster Archives Centre.

After spending almost five and a half hours on my feet, flicking through thousands of postcards I was only too pleased to get back on the train home. I am sure my neck and shoulders will be complaining tomorrow morning!

The Picture Postcard Show 2009 is coming

29 Jul

As well as picking up a postcard of Framfield Church at the weekend I also got a copy of the latest Picture Postcard Monthly (more about that at a later date) which included several reminders that The Picture Postcard Show 2009 is fast approaching.

The Picture Postcard Show (also known as BIPEX, the British International Postcard Exhibition) is being held from the 3rd to 5th September 2009 in Westminster, London and is one of the highlights (if not the highlight) of the postcard collector’s year in Britain.

As well as a large selection of national and international dealers selling a wide range of postcards, the show also features a themed exhibition of postcards, this years theme is The Great British Seaside.

It has been a few years since I have attended, but I hope to make it this year on the Saturday, and when I run out of money I can always make my way along to the Westminster City Archives (less than ten minutes walk away) for a spot of family history research.

Full details can be found on the Postcard Traders Association website, and whilst you are there check out the photos from last years event, and marvel over all those cards on offer.

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