Tag Archives: photographs

Going Swimmingly

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

One of the highlights was our recent Photo Afternoon on the subject of schools. During the 2-hour time slot, three people attended and the subject of swimming pools came up with memories of the Yeovil pool completed in 1963.

We had available a photograph album showing the construction of this pool around 1961, with many local landmarks, including Douglas Seaton’s white tower, in the background.

One of these images is reproduced below – showing the “North End of Site – 31st August 1961.”

We would be grateful to hear from anyone with photographs of this swimming pool – inside or out!

We also welcomed 17 members of the Mid-Somerset Curators and Archivists Group on Thursday – many for the first time. A report back on this great occasion in our next BLOG – including the Somerset Relief Map as one of the highlights!

Yeovil Swimming Pool Construction 1961“North end of Site 31 August 1961” Construction of Yeovil Swimming Pool

(C) South Somerset District Council, Community Heritage Access Centre, not to be reproduced without permission (01935) 462886




Fabric of the Community

DSCN5380 1We have enjoyed a busy and eventful week at South Somerset District Council’s Community Heritage Access Centre (CHAC), near Yeovil.

Highlights have included a talk on the new General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR) from a District Council Colleague for our CHAC Volunteers. We mainly handle names and addresses, but it was good to learn of the implications of the new policies on a personal and institutional level as well as in our own, daily lives.

On Thursday, we welcomed three people on our February Photograph Afternoon, where our theme was ‘School.’ We illustrated the theme with a selection of photographs including an album of Yeovil School, Mudford Road dated 1959, showing various school lessons and activities, like ‘Practical Chemistry’ and ‘The Head Prefect Addressing Assembly.’

We also shared a 1961 colour photograph album of the construction of the swimming pool in Felix Place as one visitor remembered competing in galas there. This also led to clarification of Yeovil’s first ‘swimming baths’ – which we confirmed was a smaller building to the side of the 1963 pool. One visitor recalled his father going to ‘The Baths’ for a morning bath with his bar of soap! – in the time before functioning bathrooms.

Our volunteer also continues to re-pack the costume collection. This involves looking at each costume box in turn; photographing each item within; making a note of any condition issues and re-packing with fresh acid-free tissue.

Staff and Volunteers aim to be at the Museum in Somerset Meeting at the Rural Life Museum, Glastonbury on Monday and are hosting the Mid-Somerset Archivists and Curators Group on Thursday – we aim to report back on how we get on!

Some further items from the CHAC Costume Collection.

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Manchester in Mind

Yeovil Football Team Possibly771With the historic FA Cup Tie between Yeovil Town Football Club and Manchester United tomorrow on Friday 26th January 2018, we have recently received a timely donation from a Yeovil source.

The copy of a black and white image shows a group photograph of a football team. The evidence of the kit and the football itself suggest this is early; perhaps even pre-dating our current earliest image of a Yeovil Football Team – The Yeovil Casuals from around 1905.

We would be grateful for any information, particularly if anyone recognises the location in the background – or any relatives in the team.

Interestingly, the gentleman on the far left has a medal of some kind pinned to his jumper and is holding a small cup or trophy and the gentleman on the far right is also holding a cup.

Please also let us know of any copyright claims.

The 2018 Yeovil Calendar is still available – now at £3.00 each!





A Game of Two Halves

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

With the prospect of Yeovil Town Football Club playing Manchester United in the fourth round of the FA-Cup, this highlighted a few items from the CHAC Collection.

Interestingly, our volunteers selected ‘Football’ as one of the first themes for our new display case and this prompted staff to find a programme when Yeovil Town previously played Manchester United in the 2014/15 Season.

The FA Cup tie also revealed a 1948 aerial image of the famous sloping pitch at Huish and photographs of Yeovil Town Supporters “Up frum Zummerset” when Yeovil Town played Manchester United in the 1948 Season. Yeovil Town had previously beaten Sunderland.

One of our recent donations was also a great connection. This is a photograph of Robbins Gloving Factory Ladies Football Team, we believe around the mid-1930s. ‘Tink’ Robbins Gloving Factory was in Alexandra Road, Yeovil and Tink Robbins is in the back row of the image. We are grateful for this donation, particularly as it contrasts markedly with the Robbins Gloving Factory workers group photograph.


The Robbins Gloving Factory Workers, believed to be outside the Factory in Alexandra Road, Yeovil.

Tink Robbins Glove Factory Football Team 1698

The Robbins Gloving Factory Ladies Football Team Group Photograph – note the attention to detail with the ‘Robin.’ Kelly’s Directory lists the spelling of the Company as “Robbin.”


Joining the Festivities

P3705 Plummer Roddis Christmas Display751 1

Image Courtesy of South Somerset District Council, Heritage Service.

Our December image comes from the 2018 Yeovil Calendar – we would be grateful to hear from anyone with memories of Plummer Roddis Ltd, King George Street, Yeovil.

Thank you to everyone that has helped and supported South Somerset District Council Community Heritage Access Centre in 2017.

Best wishes for Christmas time.



Dracula came from Keinton Mandeville

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

So far, we have loaned a set of display boards to our District Council planning colleagues, organised a Victorian-themed Half-Term Trail and enjoyed the company of a local Scout troop, earning their history badge – more on this in our next BLOG.

One of the recent highlights came in our talk with Keinton Mandeville Women’s Institute. Staff looked at two ‘self-made’ Keinton Mandeville men. The first was Oliver Chalker, a local quarry owner and known as the ‘Keinton Mandeville Strong Man’ – with some justification; as the photograph we have of Mr Chalker is believed to show him as a 91 year old possibly in the 1920s lifting a wooden wheel barrow laden with weights around 250kgs.

The second ‘self-made’ man was the more recognisable, Henry Irving; the great theatre actor, born in Keinton Mandeville in 1838. Henry’s father worked in the village for a drapery business. In 1842, the family moved to Bristol where there was more work available. Henry went on to become one of this country’s greatest stage actors at the Lyceum Theatre in London and appeared in many plays with the equally renowned Ellen Terry. However, the really striking element which came out of staff research for the talk was Irving’s connection to perhaps one of the greatest gothic novels of the late Victorian age.

Staff passed around Henry Irving’s portrait and then asked for reactions to the image. These included ‘brooding’ ‘mysterious’ and ‘like Oscar Wilde.’ Staff then explained that the connection was fitting, given the rather stormy, windswept night and the proximity to Halloween. One of the members then made the connection and said: “Dracula.”

Indeed this is the case as Henry Irving’s stage manager at the Lyceum Theatre was none other than Bram Stoker and it is said that Stoker based his now legendary character on Irving and so therefore (perhaps rather loosely!) we can say that Dracula came from Keinton Mandeville!

Staff also re-dressed the all-male balance by highlighting Lady Lucy Houston, the primary funder of the first ever flight over Mount Everest, achieved by two Westland Aircraft in April 1933, which was named (in her honour) as the Houston-Westland Expedition.

The 2018 Yeovil Calendar is now available from the Courtyard Café, Market Street, Yeovil – thank you!

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A set of Great Western Railway Buttons reflecting our Victorian-themed Half-Term Trail!


Crewkerne Community

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

One of the highlights was helping Crewkerne and District Museum with an exhibition on local travellers with a mention of Thomas Coryate, known as “The Odcombe Leg Stretcher.” We loaned a black umbrella; a purple parasol; a ladies pair of formal heeled shoes with a press stud material ankle piece and a button hook.

We received feedback that this really helped to complete the exhibition and therefore was useful for Crewkerne Museum and CHAC.

We also aim to be at the Super Saturday event in Yeovil Town Centre tomorrow with the Yeovil Calendar – so we look forward to meeting people there!

There is also a First World War and Willow event at Coates Willow near Stoke St Gregory tomorrow – Saturday 23rd September 2017.