DOVER KENT ARCHIVES

Page Updated:- Sunday, 07 March, 2021.

Published 25 April 2002

 

YOUNG and not so young, many of us indulge in a spot of nostalgia and Edwin is no exception. He loves to look back to what seemed in many ways a more leisurely age. For many of course, it was also a hard life with long working hours and, for some, the spectre of unemployment often loomed around the corner.

Mr JjiMte. who lives in Seabrook, likes to seek out old postcards and photographs, local theatre programmes. newspaper cuttings, old letter headings for businesses in the area or property auction catalogues which show when interesting properties, like public houses, shops and other businesses were about to change hands.

They often give a fascinating insight to life and the prices of things in years gone by and set you trying to work out what year they were printed. A special word has been coined, if that is the right expression, to cover this material, in which there is a great deal of interest. It is called ephemera.

An enthusiast will rummage through the stock of shops or market stalls selling secondhand goods, or search the catalogues of dealers selling ephemera, old postcards, books, stamps, cigarette cards and so on for interesting items.

The other day Edwin dropped in to show me some of the 'treasures' he had collected in recent months, such as programmes for the old Pleasure Gardens Theatre, in Folkestone, when a Yuletide show — "The old Annual Murray King & Clark's 30th Christmas Pantomime Beauty and the Beast or The Magic Blarney Stone" was being performed, with performances over six days.

Manager of the theatre at the time was Murray Ashford who, like fellow performer Edgar Sawyer, was described as a famous BBC comedian.
Their portraits, as well as that of female star Maudie Brock, appear in the programme, which cost two old pennies, and also lists the Playhouse Cinema film for the week "The White Anger while the opposition, the Central Cinema, offered Shirley Temple in "Poor Little Rich Girl," and a supporting film, "Everybody's Old Man."

Advertisers included the Electricity Showrooms, which were offering storage heaters for hire at four shillings (20p) a quarter, Jarman & Watts, the cleaners, who charged only about 17p to clean and press suits, costumes, frocks and light overcoats, while a local taxi firm, using Hillman cars, was charging four old pennies (less than 2p) per mile for travel outside the boundary, "return or single" — or six old pennies (2.5p) for two thirds of a mile in the town itself.

Pubs for sale
Having read with interest the book "Tales from the Tap Room." about some of Folkestone's old pubs, by Martin Easdown and Eamonn Rooney, I was particularly interested to see catalogues of property sales in 1908-9. The Eagle Tavern, at 52 High Street, was for sale at the Queens Hotel, Folkestone, in October 1909 by Medway brewers Style & Winch. Auctioneers Cobay Bros described it as excellent for conversion into a shop.

Also offered for sale by the brewers the same day. at the Queens Hotel, was another old public house, the Star Inn, together with a cottage, stabling for five horses and other buildings and pasture land, two acres in all, at St Mary's, Romney Marsh. It was for many years occupied by Thomas Hinds, whose tenancy cost him 28 a year!

At Hythe, in February the same year. Cobay Bros also offered for sale the site the old Hythe pub, the Sportsman Inn, one of Mackeson’s tied houses, in
High Street, with rear access in Dental Street. It had been destroyed by fire.

In the previous year Cobay Bros offered for sale Mackeson's The Channel Inn, "formerly licensed as a public house," at 53 High Street, Folkestone, with rear access from Tontine Street. It was offered as being suitable for use as a shop or "any business."

Edwin's father Thomas gave a lifetime of service to the railway, hence Eddie's interest in railways. Thomas worked as a station porter and also as a carter with horse and cart. The stables used to be opposite the station in Station Road. Today a Red Cross centre stands on the site.

Thomas served in the Home Guard in the Second World War and one of his duties involving the railway, consisted of checking the tracks over the mighty Folkestone Viaduct and through the Warren.

Geoff Cooke, of Hythe. is collecting information about the history and origin of Saltwood Cricket Club, thought to have been formed around 1890 and is hoping among Memories readers there may be someone with useful material on the subject.

If you think you might be able to help Geoff please ring him on 01303 269724.
AMONG interesting pictures Edwin has recently acquired is this one depicting an early Southern Railway 4-4-0 steam locomotive at Shorncliffe j Station, where his father Thomas Lilley worked. The engine below may have been at the harbour.
LOOKING ahead to May 1, author David Collyer, of Deal, will be talking about "Capel's Airship Station" at the next meeting of members of the Folkestone & District Local History Society. They meet at the Holy Trinity Church hall, in Sandgate Road, at 7.30pm. New members and visitors are welcome.

More details about the Society's meetings this year can be obtained from the secretary, Peter Bamford, of 7 Shorncliffe Crescent, Folkestone, whose phone number is 01303 223337.
/W
 

 

Seafront eyesore threat to town image, warning

•f AAA DOWN at the harbour proud property a owners were angry about a piece of uncared for “no man's land" opposite the Royal Pavilion Hotel, seen by many as an eyesore, and wanted action. Felix said he had often pointed to the harm it caused to the resort's Image, having a “disreputable refuse heap” at the entrance to their wonderful under-cliff area. The Herald believed the Folkestone council would never go ahead with the construction of a public tramway service, despite a decision by councillors to seek government for an extension of time In which to begin construction -not to mention a pledge given to a House of Lords committee by the Mayor that the service would be launched. If approval was given for a three year extension of building time, the editor was convinced no start would be made in that period, and that if the town ever had trams they would not be provided by the local authority but by private enterprise. Pleasure steamers from Hastings were set to call at Folkestone during the year with the cooperation of the Railway company. According to the Hastings paper these steamers, then being renovated, would be the Alexandra and Britannia.

 
State subsidy unlikely, new light aeroplane club is told

•f Qi)7 FOLKESTONE and Hythe MP Philip Sassoon JL7d I told the newly formed Light Aeroplane Club for East Kent, based at Lympne, that although the Air Ministry welcomed the formation of such clubs, where people could learn to fly, there was little hope of a government subsidy. The 12-page Herald reported the formation of the Council for the Preservation of Rural England to preserve the rural scenery and amenities of the rural community. An interesting question being asked 75 years ago was what had happened to the water that once flowed into the Bayle pond. This was after the Council surveyor reported that an estimated 20,000 gallons of water once passed through the 'pond' every day. Close to the Bayle pond was a property known as the Priory, with fine oak panelling, which was due to be converted into flats. Memories of a British victory in Afghanistan were revived by the death of Folkestone resident Lt-Colonel E.B. Mclnnis who was adjutant in the Lancers during the 1878-80 Afghan War when he distinguished himself several times. He was involved in Lord Roberts' celebrated march from Kabul to Kandahar and in rescuing a distinguished officer who was trapped beneath his horse when it was killed and put him on his own horse.
 
Woman joins men signing up to join Home Guard unit
<| Q fa KENT was to have 24 Home Guard bat-JL/9fctalions under new plans announced SO years ago and there were soon 2,000 inquiries from men and women Interested in Joining up. Seven years on since the end of the Second World War the UK still did not feel safe, with nuclear war seen as a serious threat. The 7th Kent (Folkestone) Battalion quickly signed on SO men, Including a veteran of the 1914-18 War and, numbered among other potential recruits was one woman. But her position was uncertain because, apparently, no role had yet been decided for the fair six. Travel expenses were being offered for attending parades and active efforts were being made to encourage more people to join the local force. At the same time there was a push to boost support for the annual Poppy Day appeal and as local committee was formed in Folkestone after a meeting addressed by Capt R Smith-Stewart, head organiser of the Earl Haig Fund. He revealed the network of appeals extended to Russia where 700 had been raised in Moscow, cash that was banked in London within 10 days. Kent County Council placed preservation orders on four of the county's rich heritage of windmills - Willesborough, Wittersham. Ash and West Kingsdown.
 
Enthusiast calls for Monaco style race in Folkestone!

*1 Q“7"7 A LOCAL car enthusiast had a “bright" idea. JL7 I I He wanted to turn the town's tortuous oneway system Into the UK's answer to Monaco, the start line for racing opposite the ‘Bouverie Island’ office block. Cars would race along Grace Hill, Tontine Street, Harbour Road, Marine Parade, Road of Remembrance, then past Sainsbury’s former shop, along Sandgate Road, Earls Avenue and down Bouverie Road West! Local road safety officer Peter Hogben summed up the official response ~ “Why not do it the simple way and hold the race at lydden or Brands Hatch?” he asked! Shepway: Council approved plans for a;64-page visitors’ guide and: 16-page accommodation guide, plus a holiday brochure printed in French, Flemish and German. Described as both excellent and better it was also going to be cheaper! The resort was hoping to muscle in on the growing tour market. Twenty-nine pupils of Southlands School, New Romney, accompanied by Headmaster Kenneth Bultitude and staff member Gay Crombie, joined a cruise on the SS Uganda in the Mediterranean, after flying out from Gatwick to Venice for an educational trip. At Crete they studied the Palace of Minos, took in Rhodes, where they inspected local crafts, and also made trips to see the Acropolis, Athens, Malta and Naples. On board ship they learned from Captain Bush, ex-Royai Navy, about Second World War battles in the Mediterranean.

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