Bathgate in old picture postcards

Bathgate in old picture postcards

Author
:   William F. Hendrie
Municipality
:   Bathgate
Province
:   Lothian, West
Country
:   United Kingdom
ISBN13
:   978-90-288-3167-4
Pages
:   160
Price
:   EUR 16.95 Including VAT *

Delivery time: 2 - 3 working days ((subject too). The illustrated cover may differ.

   


Fragments from the book 'Bathgate in old picture postcards'

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54. Bathgate's famous fountain at the junction of North Bridge Street, Hopetoun Street, Livery Street and George Street, was given to the town to mark the official opening of the 10ca1 waters works at PiershilI. It was later moved and was for many years a well-known feature of the Steel Yard at the opposite end of George Street. Many local people did not approve of the move and nicknamed this part of the town, the 'F ountainless Cross'.

55. The afternoon sun cast long shadows across North Bridge Street and Hopetoun Street at their junction with Livery Street and George Street after the removal of the fountain Ie ft this the Fountainless Cross.

56. Bathgate's Victorian post office in Hopetoun Street. Notice the cobbled surface of this street, which took its name from the fact that the land on which it was built was originally part of the Hopetoun Estate belonging to the Marquis of Linlithgow, who owned large are as of the neighbouring Bathgate Hills, inc1uding a share in the famous silver mines at Hilderston.

57. All present and correct, the staff of Bathgate Post Office line up in front of their Victorian premises in Hopetoun Street just down the hilI from where the public library is now situated. The size of the staff is a clear indication of the importance of the service which the Post Office provided in the days before telephones became common. A letter posted in Bathgate before breakfast would be delivered to any local address before lunch and with regular aftemoon deliveries, townsfo1k of ten used to send postcards to tell friends that they would call to visit them th at evening, with a guarantee that they would thus be expected. For even speedier service the four smart1y uniformed telegram boys were always ready to jump on their bicycles to rush news of important happenings sich as 'Matches, Hatches and Despatches', 'Marriages, Births and Deaths' to any part of the town or the surrounding outlying villages such as Blackbum, Seafield and Torphichen. The Post Office later moved to larger, more central premises in George Place, before moving to its purpose built modern sorting office in North Bridge Street, where it continues to serve the town as it has done since first established in 1840.

Today its services are different with telegrams a thing of the past and telephones entrusted to a separate organisation, but the Post Office is still crowded every weekday with townsfolk not only posting mail, but buying licences for everything from cars to television sets and even dogs and from collecting pensions and allo wan ces to using its Giro Banking Service.

The best known public face of the Post Office is, however, still its uniformed postmen and now postwomen doing their daily rounds and many are as well-known today as the famous Robert Heigh, the 'postie' standing to the right of the telegram boys in the picture, was in his day.

58. Shop fronts are reflected on the rain splashed surface of the road on a wet day in South Bridge Street. Power's newsagents later became the premises of Bodo Jowet, who greatly extended the business to take in books and stationery and the litt1e single storey building was demolished and replaced by a more modern two storey one.

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