The Borough of Havant in old picture postcards

The Borough of Havant in old picture postcards

:   Peter N. Rogers
:   Hampshire
:   United Kingdom
:   978-90-288-3182-7
:   144
:   EUR 16.95 Incl BTW *

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The Borough of Havant - a pictorial contribution to the records of its social history,

The distriets eomprising the Borough of Havant, were, prior to 1974, colleetively known as the Urban District of Havant and Waterloo, a title adopted in 1932, when the geographieal boundaries were changed together with the older title of 'Havant Union and Rural District'.

Throughout this book the name Havant will be used only in assoeiation with the town of Havant, the remaining locations eaeh retaining their own name and identities, including the districts of Drayton and Farlington prior to 1932. Within the following pages, much of the pertinent information contained in the text associated with each photograph, is freely available in many old documents, newspapers, directories and histories of the distriets and, as a consequence, there is no general aeknowledgement of sourees.

It is hoped that each item of information is indeed correct but that the reader will permit the author's indulgence in any diserepancies which may have occurred. All of the photographs are believed to be out of copyright but where such copyright is in doubt all known sourees are acknowledged, and again, it is asked that any inadvertant infringement may be forgiven.

The 1970's and 1980's have proved themselves to be the age of the computer and the age of high technology. A forward looking world contemplates with anticipation each marvel of invention, each new

development and each revolutionary contribution to an ever increasing automated society, wherein machines and electronic devices are actually thinking for us and determining our futures. Through these pages the casual historian, the nostalgie adult and the enquiring youngster will realise that the 70's and 80's have also proved to be, more so than at any other period, a time for looking back. The photographic contents of this book are offered as a reminder that progress has always been with us,that man has always been an inventive genius and that time has never stood still.

The many changes, be they for better or worse, that have taken place in our towns and in our times become apparent when comparisons are made with the scenes depicted in the following pictures. Buildings, vehicles and even the street furniture (larnp-posts, railings, signs etc.), showenormous changes. The changing times are also ref1ected in the clothing of the period.

The early years of the twentieth century are of ten referred to as 'the good old days'. Good days perhaps there were, but bad days were also ever present, for these were the times of indifferent sanitation, tuberculosis, diphtheria and death among children, contaminated food and water carts to lay the ever present dust in the streets.

The comments accompanying each photograph are intended to be, depending on the readers age, a gentie jolt to the memory or an incentive to enquire more

deeply into the historie past of the towns, villages and districts which now comprise the Borough of Havant. The compelling desire to read, wat eh, listen and involve oneself in all that is history , has resulted in much of the nation's leisure time being given over to historically orientated pursuits; whilst the passion for collecting items of historical interest, curiosity or importance, has prompted the expansion of antique and collecting markets. Booksellers have also enjoyed the increased sales of literature relating to local history.

No attempt is being made in this volume to compete with the many excellent publications which have appeared in recent years. They have, for the most part, dealt thoroughly with the histories of the borough whilst this book of photographs and commentaries has been produced with the intention of bringing to the public a large number of interesting and of ten rare pictures which depiet local scenes and events of yesteryear.

A cknowledgements

Almost all of the pictures reproduced here have been selected from the author's collection but the following have been most kind in making available material which is wholly owned by them. I am particularly grateful to Mrs. M.G. Hayward of Purbrook, Mr. RC. Pethybridge of Waterlooville and Mr. E. Noel of Widley.

Thanks must also be given to Mr. Pethybridge for his

help and advice relating to the Portsdown and Homdean Light Railway. To Mrs. Hayward for being generous in sharing with me her memories of the Purbrook Industrial School and to Mr. T.W. Marshall of Havant, who also contributed to the pictorial content of this book, by allowing me to copy from his own extensive collection. I trust that he will be delighted to see again the photographs as they appear in this volume.

Others deserving of grateful thanks, are the staff of the Local Libraries, Hampshire County Records Office, Portsmouth City Records Office and the Cosham office of the Ordnance Survey for their unfailing tolerance, courtesy, help and advice.

To David and Jennifer Jordan, for their patience in reading and correcting my literary shortcomings, I owe a particular debt of thanks.

Finally, acknowledgement is given to the very many photographers, living or dead, who were responsible for producing the originals of all the photographs and who recorded those times, places and events for us to enjoy in 1985.

Peter Rogers

'What is the use of a book,' thought Alice, 'without pictures or conversations. '

(Alice in Wonderland)

1. St. Faiths church is the feature of the Havant town centre and is an ancient place of worship dating from circa 1150. Traces of a Roman floor were found in the nineteenth century when restoration work was being undertaken and the crossroads shown in the picture are certain to have been the centre of the settlement in Roman times, the church occupying .an identical relative position to that of the Cathedra! at Chichester. The horse trough and drinking fountain are shown prior to the erection of the town war memorial which now occupies this corner.


Sf. faifh's rJhurch.

2. Dedicated to St. Faith of Aquitaine, the young girl who was martyred in ab out the year 290, the parish church of Havant has occupied this site since Saxon times although no definite evidence of a Saxon building now remains. Certainly the church was here in the twelfth century and the older parts of its tower can be dated from that period. The postcard shows the nave and the crossing of arches supporting the tower which was partially rebuilt in 1874 when it was discovered to be in a near state of collapse; at about this time the nave was also rebuilt. The chancel seen beyond the crossing is the oldest complete remaining part of the early church and dates from the thirteenth century. The town traditionally celebrated the feast day of St. Faith when a fair was held each October in the nearby fairfield, now the site of Fairfield Road.

3. North Street, from the Havant crossroads, shows the old Church Institute next to the 'White Hart'. The institute buildings, after major alteration, now accommodates a book shop and the offices of a building society, while the shop and houses seen opposite, today comprise the premises of a major bank. Also on the left in the picture is the 'George Inn', now in use as offices.

4. Unfortunately, the circumstances prompting this extravagant display at the premises of LH. Stubbs in North Street are not known. lt does seem, however, to be an exhibition of prizewinning carcases and cuts of meat following alocal trade event and Mr. Stubbs and his staff appear proud to be photographed with the results of their labours. The fact that fresh meat was presented to the public in the open air, with all the associated problems of dust, flies and dung polluted streets, shows the almost total lack of concern of both the vendors and customers in the years before the awareness of the need for hygiene.

5. Alocal phenomenon, the Lavant Stream, occurs at perplexingly uncertain intervals. Rising in the Idsworth area it flows through the Hampshire countryside until it arrives at Havant and the upper reaches of the harbour. Until its course was ducted below ground it would, on occasions, f100d North Street to the extent shown in the photograph. The scene looks south from near today's junction with Elm Road.

6. An almost identieal loeation to that shown in the previous picture but without the hazard of fiooded pavements. The year is 1907 and on the immediate right can be seen the coachworks of Messrs. Liningtons (earriage makers to the gentry since 1811). In later years they became leaders in the motor car world and now trade very successfully in nearby Portsmouth.

I /


7. The face of North Street has assumed many guises in its lifetime, an exarnple being seen here. This postcard dated 1905, shows a pair of cottages on the right which, after alteration, were for many years the premises of a local butcher. Removed in the 1970's, their site is now part of a parade of modern shops. The brick built house and shop next door remain today as the office and consulring rooms of an optician, but the entire terrace opposite was removed and developed many years ago,

j(orfh Sfreef .

8. The upper part of North Street shows a horse-drawn cab which had probably just left the railway station. Studied carefully, the photograph reveals the steps of the footbridge which accompanied the level crossing at the end of the road. This short section of North Street accommodated four public houses: the 'Six BeIls' on the right and the 'Foresters Arms', 'Perseverence' and the 'Star' on the left. Note the inquisitive children including the girl with the large hoop.

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