Tag Archives: Collections

Timely Reminder

The 2019 Celebrating Yeovil Calendar is now available at £6.00 each – with a new theme of uniting each photograph with an associated object from the CHAC Collection.

For more details – call (01935) 462886 or email

heritage.services@southsomerset.gov.ukFront Cover for Karen515

 

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Mystery to Me

 

IMG_3642 1Thank you to Yeovil Library for hosting us for our first ‘Mystery Photo Morning’ on Thursday 24th July 2018. With the help of our volunteer team, we showed a variety of images, the majority being of Yeovil in the 1960s.

Three in particular, remain something of a mystery, although one suggested location is Dodham Brook. Any help will be gratefully received and in turn the mystery to us – will not be a mystery to someone else! We also aim to check the link with the photographer.

We also discovered some memories of Pandora’s Discotheque, in Court Ash, Yeovil!

Outside the Tunnel290

 

Community Costume

South Somerset District Council Community Heritage Access Centre is an off-site store with Accredited Museum Status near Yeovil, open by appointment.

The collection comprises around 25,000 objects and 6,000 photographs. Objects range from a 4th Century mosaic pavement to one of the latest Yeovil Town Football Club programmes. Photographs span among the earliest stereoscopic views of Hendford, Yeovil from 1860 to a ‘Street by Street’ Survey completed in 1993.

The current Costume and Textile Collection has its origins in the collections belonging to the old Yeovil Museum and the Museum of South Somerset (1989-2011).

Some items were donated by (a) private collectors of costume (who often collected from outside the area (b) local individuals; families or organisations

After the introduction of a Collecting Policy in 1991, only items relating to Yeovil and South Somerset were to be accepted. This policy continues today.

The bulk of the collection consists of:

  • Women’s day and evening wear; wedding dresses; some men’s wear (civilian services) and infant wear including christening gowns.
  • Accessories such as hats; shoes; parasols; purses and gloves
  • Underwear and foundation garments
  • Dolls
  • Lace items and samples
  • Embroidered samplers.

There are significantly more women’s clothes than men’s; very few working clothes or children’s wear. The earliest items date back to the 18th Century.

The Gloving Collection. This forms an important part of the collection and consists not only of gloves, but also of equipment relating to the gloving industry and gloving design.

There are many examples of gloves manufactured in Yeovil and the surrounding area associated with such firms as Clothier and Giles; Ricketts and Southcombes of Stoke sub Hamdon.

There are long evening gloves of white kid; sheepskin mitts; golfing gloves to name but a few!

One of our eight volunteers is also helping us to conserve and document the costume collection. This involves going through the collection, box by box and removing each item from the old acid-free tissue; taking a condition photograph; noting any evident tears or stains and replacing the item in new acid free tissue.

For further information on the Community Heritage Access Centre, please contact us:South Somerset District Council, Community Heritage Access Centre, 7 Artillery Road, SSDC Lufton Depot, Lufton, Yeovil, Somerset, BA22 8RP. (01935) 462886. heritage.services@southsomerset.gov.uk     www.southsomersetheritage.org.uk

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Fabric style of dress 1820-1830. Not a toy – probably a piano doll (to stand on the top of a piano). Information provided by the West of England Costume Society.

We would be grateful for further information on this item.

What A Relief

We have enjoyed a busy month at South Somerset District Council’s Community Heritage Access Centre near Yeovil.

At the end of February, we hosted the Mid-Somerset Curators and Archivists Meeting with 16 members in attendance.

During the afternoon tours, one of the delegates’ favourite objects was the Relief Map of the south west of England. This was a gift from William Wyndham Esq, the founder of Yeovil’s first official museum in 1928. The relief map stretches from Hinton Charterhouse near Bath down to the Exe Estuary near Exmouth, Devon and across to Dorchester, Dorset. Of particular interest are the sites of historical interest marked on the map including Muchelney Abbey and the height of the major ranges of hills; The Quantocks; Mendips; Blackdowns and the Brendons.

We understand the large relief map was formerly in Hollands House, now part of Yeovil College, when Leonard Hayward was History Master. We would be grateful for any further information or memories related to this fascinating object in the CHAC Collection.

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Our Area – a close-up of the Relief Map showing the area around Yeovil. The Map was manufactured by George Philip & Son Ltd London – the scale is Horizontal – 1 inch to 1 mile and Vertical 1 inch to 800ft.

We are also holding a memory gathering morning related to the NHS and the hospital in Yeovil on Saturday 21st April 10.30am – 12.30pm. This is part of a project funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund to celebrate 70 years of the National Health Service.

Please contact (01935) 462886 for more details.

 

The problem of the Nankeen trousers

We have enjoyed a busy and involving week at South Somerset District Council’s Community Heritage Access Centre, (CHAC) near Yeovil.

We started out early on Monday as staff from the Somerset Archives arrived to collect 153 Local Council Ledgers for deposit in the Somerset Heritage Centre (SHC).

We had envisaged them needing most of the day to go through the ledgers as the SHC is closed on Mondays, allowing the staff to travel over to us. However, after only an hour all the ledgers were loaded up into their van and the paperwork was completed. The ledgers would then be checked back at the SHC. The Archivist was grateful to everyone for the considerable preparation work put in by CHAC staff and volunteers; particularly one volunteer which noted the details of each ledger on pink paper slips, placing these inside each front cover.

Volunteer help has also proven essential in the preparation of a Jane Austen-themed display as part of National Libraries Week. One of our costume volunteers suggested having images of costume in the CHAC Collection from the Jane Austen period (1775-1817) alongside quotes from the author, which mention these items of costume. This was a particularly enjoyable display to create because of the collaborative nature. Our volunteer wrote up the quotes and highlighted corresponding items from the collection. Staff then typed up these quotes into captions and scanned the relevant images of the costume.

The Nankeen trousers were particularly difficult to photograph as they are rather ‘bright’ white and made of a stout, cotton material. We initially tried to photograph them on a background of acid-free tissue. However, the camera did not seem to be able to focus on the monotone backing. Staff then suggested a black, plastizote sheet backdrop. This really proved effective as it provided a superb contrast to the white material.

We hope to have this display in Yeovil Library from Wednesday 11th October 2017.

Detail on the Nankeen Trousers

Nankeen trousers (1790-1820) Nankeen (Nankin) was a stout cotton, usually of brownish-yellow colour named after Nanking, its place of origin. It was sometimes used for footwear as well.

The Watsons, p.345 – Lord Osborne tells Emma Watson…”You should wear half-boots…Nothing sets off a neat ankle more than a half-boot; nankin galoshed with black looks very well..”

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Primary Function

We have enjoyed a busy and rewarding week at South Somerset District Council’s Community Heritage Access Centre, (CHAC) near Yeovil.

One of the highlights was an invitation from our District Council Colleagues to meet with a class from Huish Primary School at the SSDC Headquarters Brympton Way, Yeovil to explain about the different services within the council. Heritage Staff met with colleagues from Environmental Health; Planning; Finance and Elections to each provide a 10 minute presentation on what we do and how it helps the community.

Heritage Staff explained about CHAC and the objects and photographs in the collection and focussed on the gloving industry. Glove finger stretchers from the handling collection were used to explain the importance of checking the quality and strength of the stitches in the glove fingers and due to the handling nature of the objects, the children could test these out – rather than having their fingers stretched – as they initially imagined!

Staff also used the false teeth from what is now Penn Hill Dentist and the former Town Clerk’s wig. These caused a similar reaction to when last used in the Yeovil Library Horrible Histories event!

Staff completed the Heritage talk by showing a copy of a photograph of a Huish Primary School Class in 1924.

CHAC is also planning the next Photo Afternoon shortly!

 

 

CHAC ‘a’ Clooney

Ever wondered about the link between the Community Heritage Access Centre near Yeovil, Somerset and the marriage of George Clooney and Amal Alamuddin? To be honest, neither had we! However, we recently received a few (few thousand!) receipts related to Thorpes’ Chip Shop in Yeovil; one of which shows the purchase of a Bridal Gown & Veil, Bridesmaid Frock and Head Dress to order from Frederick Taylors The House of Quality on June 11, 1928 for £10.10.0.

Topical wedding link this week with Frederick Taylor's Store on the corner of King George Street and High Street

Topical wedding link this week with Frederick Taylor’s Store on the corner of King George Street and High Street

This is particularly interesting as the majority of receipts are for potatoes, fish, meat and oil. A few of the receipts provide another insight into the lives of the shop owners themselves.