Sidmouth in old picture postcards

Sidmouth in old picture postcards

Auteur
:   Dr. G.H. Gerald Gibbens
Gemeente
:  
Provincie
:   Devon
Land
:   United Kingdom
ISBN13
:   978-90-288-2740-0
Pagina's
:   80
Prijs
:   EUR 16.95 Incl BTW *

Levertijd: 2 - 3 werkdagen (onder voorbehoud). Het getoonde omslag kan afwijken.

   


Fragmenten uit het boek 'Sidmouth in old picture postcards'

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49. Annie Fox was a maid in Sidholme. She said in 1952 that when Mrs. Lindemann sat in her boudoir she was offended to see in the distance a Scots Pine with some dead limbs in the Vicar's glebe, (see No. 43). Mrs. Lindemann sent to the Vicar to ask if her gardener might cut them off. He refused. But she was used to having her own way , being rich and beautiful, so she waited till the Vicar was away, and then had them cut off. He was furious, and would not speak to her. 'Come to last', said Annie, 'she sent his wife an olive branch, in diamonds! ' The tree is still there, sometimes wrongly called an Italian or Umbrella Pine. A century older, it still has about the same size head, but the trunk is far longer and covered in scars, It is protected.

50. Cottington was built about 1820, opposite Cotmaton House. After several owners it was bought by the Convent of the Assumption, a French educational Order of nuns, whose Services were open to the public, Major Berkeley Levett, e.v.a., (1863-1941), Brigade Major in the Greys 1914-1916, got it in 1920, and it was his enthusiasm that brought the Duke of Connaught here (No. 22). The Major was a shrub maniac, holding it essential to get the best form of a variety, handpicked in a specialist nursery, then watered personally. 'Never grow annuals: you can't make friends with them.' The house was in dreadful repair, and its place was taken by our first big block of flats, to general disgust, and then joy because they didn't sell. The great Cork Tree mysteriously fell ill and was felled. But the flats are accepted now, and even admired.

51. The Sisters of the Assumption were founded in France, 1829, as 'trailblazers through education'. They came to Cottington 1880 and actually got into the new Convent in 1884, when their clear, silvery bell was first heard. The Jesuit Fathers, expelled from France, were in Peak House, and helped the Sisters at first but soon left. The School prospered, and hundreds of local girls have been there, particularly as the Sisters' Christianity seemed wide. They have fifteen hundred Sisters now in forty-three countries, especially in the Third World, but their methods have altered, and instead of having forty Sisters in one place, they now have five to fifteen. Ours is at Hillhead, over the road, past Jenny Pine. Their life is for contemplation and for giving holidays. Mother Helen is still there, looking younger. The School, now St. John's. carries on well.

52. Sidmouth Manor was at first part of Otterton and belonged to Mant St. Miehel in Normandy til! Henry V gave it to Sion Abbey near Kew, 1415. After the suppression of the monasteries in 1539 it belonged to a series of private owners, who were all absentees, mortgaging it and getting all they could out of it without any care. That made Sidmouth wonderfully backward and unspoilt when Thomas Jenkins 'of Rome' bought it in 1795, mapped it, and sold it in pieces as a paradise for Regency nibs. Mr. G.E. Balfour made a fortune in the North, and bought the Manor in 1866. His wife died of chloroform at the dentist's, and he died only three years later, leaving three children, the eldest a boy of six. Six trustees had been appointed till he was twenty-five. Here is Colonel John Edmund Heugh Balfour, C.M.G., D.S.O., 1863-1952, last Lord of the Manor of Sidmouth.

53. The Trustees thought they must build a suitable house as the Lord of the Manor proposed to Jive here. They bought Broadway and its hilI, and built a Tudorish mansion with a baronial hall, and planted with good trees. "They fretted away the extensive property but it was still large.' Young Balfour enjoyed himseIf and also gave a lot ofland to the pubJic, and had many schemes for the Town, with the accelerator or brake appJied by W.H. Hastings, his Steward, and by R.W. Sarnpson, the architect, during all their Jives. (His job, remember, was soldiering, his D.S.a. well deserved in the Boer War.) At his death the farms were sold cheaply to the tenants, and the Sidmouth U.D.e. bought the rest - and the title - of the Manor, whose future was firmly restricted. For several years the West Bank School for Girls pleased everyone, but when it failed the Council had difficulty in finding a buyer who would accept the restrictions.

54. Om oldest resident landed gentry, the Carslakes, left about 1870, after only hundred and seventy years. MI. Cave of Bristol bought Witheby, Knowle-in-Salcombe, and Sidbury Manor in 1869, his deseendants thriving here. Devon is the great plaee for 'squireens' and the Huyshes of Sand are a fine example. (Hoskins 'Devon', ehapter 5, is very good.) Manor Courts we re the loeal government of England. in our day Balfour and Sir Charles Cave have held theirs as an antiquity. The tenants' names are mueh more loeal. Left to right: Albert Maeer, 'Jimmy' Russell, Henry Bastin, W.H. Hastings (displeased! ), James Pepperen and Bobby Gigg. Standing: 'Theof' Mortimore, Chippy Charles, John Russell, Alfred Maeer, F.H. Sisterson (biggest), Gigg (smallest), Perey Baron, William Cook, Robert Coles, Abraham Lake, Wi1liam Battey, and Sam Rowland.

55. When Balfour taak over the Maner from the Trustees, there was na proper public hall, and to build a Manor Hall was one of his fust actions, in 1891. It had a stage at the east end and a flat floor for dancing. It looked only like a big village hall, but the Arts Club put on shows that drew the public for rnany miles around and gave enormous pleasure. The dancing is still remembered through very rosy spectacles. Under the Council it became the Manor Pavilion, and was soon tumed round, with a good stage and changing rooms at the west end. The Manor offices below became the Arts Centre, their documents going to the County Record Office or to our Museum. Ramped seating infuriated the dancers, but dancing soon stopped being a to-and-fro affair and became up and down. One could now dance in a pond - better probably.

56. About 1888, when Devon only had three golf courses, a nine-hole course was made by the new Sidmouth Golf Club on plans and advice by Charles Gibson ofWestward Ho! A 'modest' little pavilion was built by these characters. Left to right: Dart, Henry Gigg, Wm. Rowland of Bickwell Farm, Martin the Manor estate Keeper, Till ('as a woman'), W. Pope, W.J. Irish when a small boy, and C. Pring. The club carried on like that for seventeen years and then, on the advice of the ex-champion W.H. Taylor, nine more holes were added to the southward and a new clubhouse by Sampson. About 1969 a new and far better course on Muttersmoor was planned. The Council mostly agreed as it would be so lucrative to the Town, but feelings rose because of the use of common land (even if covered in gorse) and at the Enquiry public.opinion was absolutely overwhelming, and the plan was scrapped.

57. At the turn of the century Sidmouth feit prosperous. The Manager of the Knowie bought the Red House in 1902 and opened it as the Fortfield Hotel, and then enlarged it. The Victoria was designed by Sampson for the Manor to have the finest hotel in the area. A lot of the grounds of the Royal Glen was bought, and Westmount was removed. 1t opened in 1904, fuil of electric light and lifts and suites. On September 28th, 1910, Canadian and American journalists toured the area as part of a drive to bring overseas people here. (The Manor had learnt to advertise by then, and all sorts of free suites at the Victoria were given to useful people.) It was effective, for in 1950 the AA Hotel Guide showed that we had four 4-star hotels, four 3-star and umpteen 2-star: only two eities in England had more. Hotels became clearly our main industry, but in these days of caravans, chalets, tents, and cheap air flights, local hotels have to try hard.

58. In 1893 Spas we re still the thing, so the Manor formed a Company to start Brine Baths, 'the only Baths in Britain where the Aix massage is done with fresh hot seawater'. Joints were massaged and moved under a heavy slow-falling column of very hot seawater - which feels gorgeous. They did quite well, on the front next to the Marine. In the 1914-1918 War officers were treated especially for the adhesions and contractures after big wounds. By the end of the war the Baths were dilapidated, money had run out, and they shut, In June, 1924, after their modernisation, Mrs. Balfour opened them again, with lots of famous doctors in the Victoria and Fortfield, of course. 2,593 patients were treated in the first six months, but by 1935 they shut for ever. At no time did anybody wam them that all Baths run at a loss, and are supported by the rates as an amenity.

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