Monthly Archives: January 2015

Yeovil Born and Read

South Somerset District Council’s Community Heritage Access Centre has just received an exciting donation from Yeovil Library. These are eight books by the renowned Somerset author, Walter Raymond.

Walter Raymond (1852-1931) was born in Vicarage Street, Yeovil and educated at Kingston School. He was the son of a glover, but chose a literary career that would produce twenty volumes of novels, essays and plays. As a regional novelist he is often compared with Thomas Hardy and it is known that the two did write to one another.

Walter Raymond loved the Somerset countryside, which he called ‘Ciderland’ and ‘although he was born in a town, his heart was always in the fields with the folk.’

Walter Raymond’s literary works make a significant addition to other items associated with the author already in the CHAC Collection. These include a portrait by the late W. Urwick  and a photograph of his Vicarage Street birth place.

Following his death a commemorative plaque was erected in the old Yeovil Library, which was transferred to the new premises. This can be viewed on the stairs on the way up to the Reference Section. (Gratitude to Ansell, Robin and Barnes, Marion “Around Yeovil” 1995)

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A copy of Walter Raymond’s portrait in the Community Heritage Access Centre Collection and an illustration from one of his books donated to the Centre by Yeovil Library.

CHAC in focus

The Community Heritage Access Centre near Yeovil held its first “Photo Afternoon” on Thursday 15th January 2015 between 2pm and 4pm. This event was advertised through a display in Yeovil Library Window and we asked people to ‘book on’ so we knew names and numbers attending.

The event itself was very simple to organise, with a random selection of boxes from our photographic collection and our ‘Walk Books’ showing Yeovil in the 1960’s.

This selection proved very rewarding for all those present and two visitors knew each other but did not know they had both booked to attend the same event! One of the best stories of the afternoon was a daughter that had seen the event and informed her parents through their Christmas card, which they placed on their Christmas tree and opened on Christmas Day! At the end of the activity, they also confirmed the afternoon was one of their best Christmas presents.

The Photo Afternoon came about as a simple answer to a requirement from our newly achieved Accreditation Status for CHAC to be open 20 days a year. We are always open regularly, but this was under a specific, booked theme. The Photo Afternoon worked well and was simple to organise and is therefore something we hope to repeat. Our next scheduled event is due to be an Archaeological Finds Afternoon on Wednesday 4th March 2015 – booking essential!

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An enjoyable afternoon with a selection of the photographic collection – so many memories!

Views of Yeovil

The latest object donated to the Community Heritage Access Centre is a book entitled “20 Views of Yeovil” published by Gamis & Co.

This is a really exciting find as we have not seen this book before or many of the photographs inside. The book was handed in to our Tourist Information Centre. Interestingly, we could not find a date of publication, but the carts in Princes Street, provide an indication of ‘the age’.

There were also postcards inside, one showing a view of Princes Street from Bides GardensViews of Yeovil BLOG752Views of Yeovil 2 BLOG753

United in Yeovil

A Happy New Year from everyone at the Community Heritage Access Centre in Yeovil.

The first few days have already proven busy with Yeovil Town Football Club hosting Manchester United in the third round of the FA Cup and the visiting team staying in Bower Hinton near Martock.  On Sunday morning, players were meeting local people and signing autographs! This type of occasion is a useful reminder of the historical precedent of previous momentous football events, but also an intriguing contemporary collecting opportunity. We are grateful for local support, where new items like match day programmes, for example, can enhance existing collections for future generations.

Manchester United's momentous visit to Yeovil on 4th January 2015 is a reminder of the intriguing football history in the town. Petter's United were a rival to Yeovil Casuals but were later almalgated under the Yeovil Town Football Club Banner going on to beat Sunderland in the 1948-49 FA Cup Fourth Round.

Manchester United’s momentous visit to Yeovil on 4th January 2015 is a reminder of the intriguing football history in the town. Petter’s United were a rival to Yeovil Casuals but were later almalgated under the Yeovil Town Football Club Banner going on to beat Sunderland in the 1948-49 FA Cup Fourth Round.