Freshwater in old picture postcards

Freshwater in old picture postcards

:   Joyce E. Lester
:   Isle of Wight
:   United Kingdom
:   978-90-288-2318-1
:   80
:   EUR 16.95 Incl BTW *

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Fragmenten uit het boek 'Freshwater in old picture postcards'

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The object of this UWe book is to produce a short but interesting record of places, people and events in and around Freshwater during the period from 1880-1930.

Many treatises have been written about the Island and its past, which are readily available from local libraries. To write specifically about a village and its neighbours could best be achieved by a local person, not too old to forget and not too young to remember.

I hope that the presentation of these few pictures may reeall some of the stories passed on by parerits and grandparents. I would like to convey grateful thanks to my many friends for the generosity in allowing me the use of their cherished possessions.

Joy Lester, Freshwater Bay, LW. 1983

1. Freshwater Bay circa 1897. This picture of the Bay shows the old promenade, but in 1899 there occurred wholesale wreckage of the sea wall and esplanade during the recent storms. This led to much discussion as to remedial measures to prevent the continued encroachment of the sea and danger of the isolation of the Western Wight. However, when the Poet Tennyson fhst came to Freshwater Bay, meadow and down stretched unbroken to the edge of the beach. The Albion Hotel, standing in its unrivalled position, attracts many visitors, some of whom return year after year to enjoy the ever changing moods of the Bay and to witness the beautiful colours created by the sun when it rises above the Arch and Stag rocks in the early morning. (photo A.H. Kirk.)

2. Freshwater Bay circa 1896. Looking across the Bay to Tennyson Down one can just make out the old Beacon and below, on the cliff, the old Fort Redoubt, which was built about 1856. To the light of the fort stands the old Freshwater Bay Hotel showing the new third storey extension and below the hotel, situated on the sea wall, was an interesting Marine Bathing House, where the less hardy and more modest could bathe. In more recent years it was referred to as 'The Bath House' and was used as changing rooms - 6d. upstairs and 3d. downstairs - until it was finally demolished about 1950. (photo A.H. Kirk.)

3. View from Government Road, Freshwater Bay, circa 1908. This road, having been known as Military Road for many years, was built during the Crimean War. When fears of an invasion became remote, the road was allowed to become a series of farm tracks ten miles long. lt was not long before a disagreement with France created fresh fears and once again the road was rendered fit for the transport of troops and guns; these fears also coming to an abrupt end and by degrees the road relapsed again into becoming farm tracks. This procedure was repeated several times, the last taking place early in 1915 when enemy reports claimed that 'the Isle-of-Wight has been captured' thus giving rise to further fears of an invasion. Eventually the Council took control of the stretch of road, but problems are now arising with the erosion of the cliffs, bringing a section of the road perilously near the edge which could, in the future, cause possible c1osure. The house 'Sea View' in the foreground of the picture with the marquee in the garden is no langer with us, having been buried under the car park about ten years ago.

4. St. Agnes Church, Freshwater Bay circa 1909. This pretty little church is of no great age, for it was built seventy-five years ago, to replace a building known as the 'Iron Room', which stood in the Square and had become unsuitable for worship owing to the increased population and the number of visitors. The Reverend A.I. Robertson was rector at the time and immediate action followed the presentation of the site by Hallam Lord Tennyson, son of the late Poet Laureate. The stones and tiles are genuinely old, having been taken from an ancient farmhouse, which stood on Hook Hili - the hilileading to the Parish Church. The porch was the gift of Lady Tennyson, as a memorial to her mother, who also suggested the new church should be dedicated to St. Agnes as she had always admired the young and beautiful Saint. The foundation stone was laid by Harold Tennyson in April 1908 and the work completed, apart from the thatched roof for which Norfolk reeds were used, in the following August and on the twelfth day of the same month the church was dedicated by Dr. Ryle, the then Bishop ofWinchester.

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5. Freshwater Bay - Bathing Tents and Parade circa 1906. By this time the promenade has been restored after the ravages of the 1899 storms, the Bay now becoming quite a popular resort. A new sIipway had been incorporated with the rebuilding, where railings had been erected nearby the Albion Hotel. This sIipway provided better facilities for the boatmen and for the manoeuvring of bathing machines. In 1890 the Prince and Princess of Battenberg visited the Bay and received an address at the Regatta, which was inaugurated on their Royal Highnesses' marriage,

6. Freshwater Bay - Bathing Beach circa 1906. Showing the eastern end of the promenade towards the Arch and Stag rocks. The house 'Glenbrook', later known as 'Glenbrook St. Francis', was once the home of Lady Tennyson, the wife ofthe second Lord Tennyson, who as May Princep featured in many of Mrs. Julia Margaret Cameron's photographs, During the early part of the 1914-1918 War, Lady Tennyson started and supervised the Afton Red Cross Hospital, where some fifteen hundred patients had been admitted. It is interesting to note in the picture the amount of sand in the Bay compared with the beach today,

7. Early on September 29th, 1905 a serious fire destroyed the old Standard Inn, School Green, Freshwater, Mr. Walter Scorey was occupier at the time and he and other occupants managed to escape safely. To the left of the stricken premises there was a Blacksmith's Shop where later the Gaiety Theatre was built. The newer looking building operated as 'Warehams Art Potteries'. Strange that it should be so close to the existing Pottery Studio, which was established approximately two hundred yards to the east in 1953 after nearly î:lfty years.

8. London House, Freshwater circa 1920. This old established business was situated in Queen's Road, opposite the site of the old fire station and the footpath leading through Spinfish to Sheepwash and Middleton. The shop had many departments and in addition to those displayed on the building, stocked according to an 1883 advertisement, Brussels, Tapestry, Kidderminster and Hemp Carpets, together with sewing machines and paper hangings 'at wholesale prices', Inside a 'modem' payment system had been installed, whereby overhead wires ran to a centra! cash desk: from all departments. The assistant would place the customers money and bill in a container, attach it to the runner, pull the lever and away it wou1d go, returning after a few minutes with the change. The business, known to later generations as 'Shannons', closed down about the 1940's. However the building has since been restored and is currently occupied by 'Isle-of-Wight Glass'.

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