Monthly Archives: February 2015

Banking on the Ledgers

This week has already proven busy, with many new items documented and accessioned at South Somerset District Council’s Community Heritage Access Centre, near Yeovil.

One of the highlights were seven, leather bound, Bank Ledgers. These did not look too appealing at first, especially with some of the covers showing time spent in a damp environment. However, each ledger provides another fascinating insight into the lives of people in Yeovil and South Somerset.

Indeed, the story of the ledgers themselves is rather intriguing, as they were found in a property in Wine Street, Yeovil and date from the 1870s to around 1916. The people referred to inside include reverends; builders; deceased estates; businessman and other Banks, including the well-known Stucky’s Bank, which had branches in Yeovil and South Petherton.

The fascinating insights are enhanced by the ledgers as another resource we can use to help answer enquiries, along with objects; documents; photographs like the 1961 aerial survey and the local Kelly’s Trade Directories.

The ledgers were conservation cleaned and examination made as to see which Bank they are from!

(Possible update later on  DSCN0933

The Bank Ledgers did not look very inviting!

But highlighted significant and local individuals and places.

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Programme ‘Pitched’ Perfectly

Returning to the theme of one of our previous blogs, we examined the impact of the FA Cup Tie between Yeovil Town Football Club and Manchester United on 4th January 2015.

At the time of writing, we showed an illustration of Petters United from the early 20th Century and stated how we would like any items related to the match on 4th January to start a collection, which would add to our selection of football items, but also be something for future generations to look back on.

We are pleased to say that one, significant item, has already become part of the collection at South Somerset District Council’s Community Heritage Centre. This is one of the official Matchday “Green and White” Magazines featuring details of both teams and the respective Captains and Managers and we are grateful to Yeovil Town Football Club for this donation.

This places a new parameter on the football collection by providing the latest update and once more, makes us re-evaulate existing documents in the light of fresh evidence – and specifically Yeovil Town’s previous meetings with Manchester United on a different pitch – where the result was 8-0 to Manchester United. Therefore, January’s result of 2-0 in the Premier League Team’s favour shows how far “The Glover’s” have come.

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The cover of the official Matchday Programme between Yeovil Town and Manchester United from Yeovil Town Football Club

Rotor into the Club

Yeovil is possibly best known for its football team, known as ‘The Glovers’ reflecting the town’s main industry for throughout the 19th and mid 20th centuries.

Next on the list would probably be helicopters and in the current form of AgustaWestland.

Westland celebrate 100 years in 2015 spanning the early Short seaplanes made under agreement to the latest Lynx ‘Hellcat’ Variant.

Another side to Westland employment are the many social clubs organised by the Company and by fellow employees. One of our volunteers is currently documenting a number of Yeovil badges and plaques, one of which is a Westland Motor Club. This serves as an intriguing contrast to the ‘high flying’ well-known side of the business and offers an insight into the continuing principles laid down by the founders of Westland, Ernest and Percival Petter; remembered in “Petter’s Way” just off South Street, Yeovil.

DSCN0908 An example of a Westland Motor Club metal plaque

Ever Youthful Donation

The latest object to be received at South Somerset District Council’s Community Heritage Access Centre is an exciting “Boys’ Brigade” Programme from 1913.

A telephone caller, completely out of the blue, asked if we would like “The Stoke Sub Hamdon Boys’ Brigade Coming of Age Programme” and we said yes! as this is within our Collecting Policy of Yeovil and South Somerset and enhances the existing Stoke Sub Hamdon items in the collection.

The Boys’ Brigade was founded in Glasgow on 4th October 1883 by Sir William Alexander Smith. From this one company formed in Scotland ‘the BB’ has grown into a world wide movement having worked with millions of children and young people for well over a century.

The Brigade was founded on Christian values and offered a combination of drills and activities under an image of an anchor and the motto “Sure and Stedfast.”

The Stoke Sub Hamdon Boys Brigade was founded 9 years after the first group in 1892 and the programme was produced by the Western Gazette of Yeovil to mark the Brigade’s 21st Birthday (or “Coming of Age”) Many of the activities are reflected in the programme with fascinating photographs and include: “cooking, football and “Tug of War” on a camp visit.” There is also a notable village connection in “of the original officers, only the Captain, R.N. Southcombe now remains.” This is almost certainly a connection to Southcombes the glove, gaiter & juvenile clothing      manufacturers in the village of Stoke Sub Hamdon.

There is also a print of Sir William Alexander Smith included inside the celebratory programme.

Stoke Boys 1760 Stoke Boys 3762

Stoke Boys 2761Stoke Boys 4763Stoke Boys 5764 1910 Kelly’s Directory of Somersetshire listing Southcombe Brothers Limited and some of the other Commercial Businesses at the time.