Category Archives: heritage

Abingdon 100 years ago – June 1922

3rd June 1922

Last week, the local Saturday Cricket included an exciting and close match between Trinity College Triflers, Oxford, and Abingdon Town. Abingdon made 181, of which score Bradfield made 71 and Reade 66, and the College made 180, the last bat of the College team being bowled by the last ball of the match.

At the Abingdon Cattle Market on Monday, there was a short supply of beef, but there were 75 calves, the price for fat calves reaching £9 12s 6d. Fat lambs, of which a good number was penned, realised up to 12s, and sheep £6 10s. There was an adequate supply of fat and store pigs, and recent prices were maintained.

During the severe thunderstorm at Abingdon on Thursday last week, it was found that at Messrs Drew’s Saw Mills, the electric light switch plate had been fused, and the screw which fastened the plate to the switch was melted.

An interesting presentation took place at the Abingdon Police Station last week when Supt. W. Foster of Abingdon presented an easy chair and smoking requisites to two retiring members of the Force, viz. Inspector F. Webb of Wallingford and P.C. Goodman, the latter is retiring through ill health.

The Abingdon Town Council has reduced the general district rate by 8d in the £, viz., from 8s 6d to 7s 10d. The previous year the rate was reduced 6d in the £.

The Abingdon Pavlova Football Club were entertained at an excellent dinner by the Pavlova firm to mark the close of the most successful season. Mr Edgington, the indefatigable secretary, was presented with a clock, as a mark of esteem for his services to the club.

10th June 1922

The annual report of the Abingdon Free Library Committee has been issued for the first time since the war, and states that several improvements in the provision of literature and facilities to the public have been made. The lending portion of the library has had a significant addition in the number of ticket holders.

Whitsuntide was observed in the Abingdon Churches by early celebrations of the Holy Communion and festal services. The edifices, especially the altars, were appropriately adorned with vases of flowers. etc. The parochial clergy conducted the services.

The Guardians and the Mayor received a delegation of the Abingdon unemployed last week. Work has been found for a few and there are prospects of more relief work being organised almost immediately. The Labour Exchange returns last week were 169 men registered unemployed and 60 on short time. Only three women reported being unemployed, but 120 were on short time.

The newly formed Abingdon Lawn Tennis Club met Wantage on Thursday last week when the visitors won by 113 games to 63.

The Girls Club May Fair held at Abingdon, on the grounds of Alderman J. T. Morland, resulted in £72 being taken for admission, and the sale articles, etc.

The Freedom of the Borough of Abingdon was conferred on Thursday evening last week in the Council Chamber on Alderman John Thornhill Morland, J P., the oldest member of the Town Council of Abingdon, in recognition of prominent civic work in the Borough. The ceremony was performed by the Mayor of Abingdon (Councillor C. Rippon), and there was a large gathering, both civic and lay people desirous of associating themselves with the historic event. Amongst those present was the Earl of Abingdon (who proposed the toast of the health of Alderman Morland). The bells of St. Nioolas Church were rung on the occasion.

17th June 1922

At Tuesday’s Borough Police Court, the magistrates were Messr J. G. T. West, and J. Ricketts. The only business was an application for an extended license for the “Nags Head” Inn, The Bridge, on the occasion of the Fire Brigade demonstration.

In the recent Trinity College of Music examination, held at Oxford, John D. Godfrey, son of Councillor Godfrey and a pupil of Dr Dodds of Oxford, passed in organ playing.

The preacher at the weekly united Free Church service last week, held at the Primitive Methodist Chapel, was the Rev. Evan Newell of Longworth.

The annual meeting of the Abingdon Hospital Aid Scheme organisation was held on Thursday evening last week in the Roysse Boom, Abingdon. Mr C, C. Johnson presiding. In the twelve months the scheme had been in operation in the town the amount collected was £1,020. The Rev. G. B.Cronshaw, the Radcliffe Infirmary Treasurer, gave an interesting address on what the Infirmary had been able to achieve through the help given by the scheme.

The Abingdon Provident Society’s 78th annual meeting was held in the Roysse Room, Abingdon, on Wednesday evening last, Mr J. B. Wake presiding. In his annual report, the secretary (Mr G. Staniland) stated that the sick pay for the past year was £90 less than the contributions. The receipts from all sources, including dividends on war loans, consols, etc., realised over £563. Only one death had been lodged during the year. The total membership was nearly 350, and invested funds amounted to over £9,090. The quinquennial valuation for distribution of the surplus was now being obtained.

The Abingdon Baptist Sunday School Anniversary was held last Sunday, and the services were well attended. The special preacher on the occasion was Lieut-CoL J. Walkey, O.B.E., M.C.

24th June 1922

By the kindness of the Mayoress of Abingdon (Mrs Rippon) over 60 mothers belonging to the Babies’ Welfare League were entertained to tea on Thursday in last week at ” Springfields,” Abingdon. The mothers brought their babies and young children and a pleasant time was spent.

A very successful fete was held on Thursday afternoon in last week in the grounds of Stratton House, Abingdon, the residence of Lady Norman, in aid of the building fund of the new Church Hall completion. There were numerous attractions, competitions, concerts, etc., the success of the undertaking being financial help to the fund of over £l00. The Mayoress of Abingdon opened the fete, which ceremony the Vicar presided.

At St Helen’s Church, Abingdon, on Thursday afternoon in last week, the marriage of Mr William Jamas Prior, son of and Mrs J. E, Prior, of Harwell, and Miss Elsie Theodora Hooke, third daughter of Mr and Mrs W. H. Hooke, Park Crescent and Market Place, Abingdon, took place. The Vicar officiated, and the service was choral. The honeymoon is being spent at Shanklin, Isle of Wight.

Mark Lambourne, retired farmer of Cumnor, was summoned by the R.S.P.C.A for cruelty to a dog by shooting at it on May 27th. It appears that the dog belonging to Percy James Frewin, of Cumnor, was continually at the defendant’s house and broke through the window one night. On the Saturday, after sending it away several times, he shot at it. The owner of the dog said it was injured by the shots. Defendant had complained to him about the dog being on his premises and had threatened to shoot it. The Bench dismissed the case.

Thank you for the extracts to the Faringdon Advertiser and Vale of the White Horse Gazette on the British Newspaper Archive.

Adverts are brought to you with help from the Nork Berks Herald.

William Booth visits Abingdon


The other day I looked through the photo album Lesley Argyle left in the Trinity Church archives and found the picture of William Booth. He founded the Salvation Army and was visiting Abingdon.

I won’t be able to do the blog for a few days. Back about the 14th of June.

1953 – Coronation Year – Percy Holmes – Mayor

At the Monday Club this evening, Helen organised a quiz. She also showed some pictures from 1953, the year her Grandfather, Percy Holmes, was the Mayor of Abingdon. Helen intends to give the package of photos to the Town Archivist. They were curled up, and I weighed them down with jigsaw puzzles to make copies of a few of interest.

Preparation of an Ox Roast for the Coronation celebrations.

Mayor Percy Holmes, carving the Ox Roast outside the Queens Hotel.

Members of the Abingdon Council with the Mayor as he addresses the crowd using a 1950s PA.

Cooling off in the Abbey Meadows Open Air Pool – at a swimming gala.

This is probably the Welfare Food Campaign with an event at the Roysse Room; some well-nourished children with a bottle of something. The campaign entitled all infants and expectant mothers to free milk, orange juice and cod liver oil. Does anybody recognise themself?

Pictures are mainly stamped on the back by H.J. Milligan, but not all were stamped. I added the words on the front to show provenance. Thanks to Helen.

Abingdon 100 years ago – May 1922


6th May
A very successful rummage sale was held on Saturday afternoon last in the newly-built Church Rooms to aid the Abingdon Boy Scouts.

On Wednesday evening last week, the Hendred Black Crow Minstrels gave a creditable entertainment in the Corn Exchange to aid the new motor fire pump for the Abingdon Fire Brigade. A good audience much appreciated a lengthy programme.

The Abingdon Railway Station clock is still missing. The case against a man alleged of removing the clock on Easter Eve was dismissed last week at the Borough Court on insufficient evidence. The police are still making enquiries to know of the clock’s whereabouts.

13th May
The Mayor of Abingdon this week has represented the Abingdon Chamber of Trade at the National Chamber Trade annual conference at Margate.

The Abingdon Cricket Club is experiencing great difficulties getting an 11 to play this season’s cricket. One meeting had been held and another fixed for next week to reinstate the Club.

The Abingdon Free Churches commenced a series of united services last week, when the preacher was Mr Webber, of Oxford, and the service was held in the Primitive Methodist Chapel, Ock Street; there was a good attendance.

On Monday evening, a fire broke out at a cottage in the Abbey, Abingdon, tenanted by W. Hartwell, and considerable damage was done to the building and contents. The prompt action of Firemen Andrews, Challenor and Gibbens, assisted by the police, soon got the fire under control and prevented it from spreading in the thickly populated neighbourhood.

At the Cattle Market, the day’s heat was so severe that three of the pigs penned for sale had to be slaughtered in the market.

At the Abingdon Rural District Council meeting last week, the Inspector reported 32 cases of scarlet fever. Dr Sisam stated that the cause of the outbreak around Hinksey Hill was caused by milk supplied by a dairy which had become infected by the cowman, who had previously had members of his family ill. The cowman had stopped work, and the disease had abated. The doctor had seen the cows and the milking appliances and saw no reason for stopping the supply.

20th May
The Abingdon Cricket Club was fixed to play Oriel College, Oxford, on the home ground, on Saturday last, but the College could not play. However, a match was played between the Town club and the local Grammar School, the former making 82 for all the wickets and the school 112 for eight wickets.

The unemployment returns for last week by the Abingdon Labour Exchange were men 185, women 5, boys 2 – short time men 62, women 120, girls 4.

The Abingdon Baptist Church Women’s Society have subscribed £1 5s 6d and forwarded the sum to the Save the Children Fund (Russian Famine).

The statutory May Fair was held in the Bury on Saturday last. There were not as many paraphernalia as heretofore, the younger generation especially enjoyed themselves.

The Abingdon Borough bathing place is to be opened for this season on Sunday. Certain hours are free, others exclusive for ticket holders, and others for a fee.

The Abingdon Sub-Committee of the War Pensions Committee held their final meeting in the Roysse Room last week when the thanks of the meeting were given to Mr T. Skurray, the Chairman, and others. The members were afterwards entertained to tea by the Chairman.

At the Borough Police Court, Alfred Trigg, labourer,  of Thames Street, was summoned for assaulting Elizabeth Giles on Sunday, May. 7th. The complainant said she walked out with the defendant’s lodger, and when she was standing in the street, the defendant came and slapped her in the face. The defendant was fined 10s and bound over for 12 months. Elizabeth Giles and her daughter (the above complainant) were summoned for assaulting Emily Trigg, the Wife of the defendant in the previous case. Fined 10s each and bound over for 12 months.

27th May
The funeral took place at the Abingdon Cemetery on Wednesday afternoon last week of Mrs Langford, wife of Mr Stanley Langford, a partner in the firm of Messrs Langford and Sons, corn and seed merchants, Abingdon. The deceased died after a short illness following an operation at the early age of 37 years. The first portion of the burial service was said in St. Helen’s Church, when there was a large gathering of friends and sympathisers, and many beautiful floral tributes were sent.

Last week, the death occurred at Abingdon of an old inhabitant, viz, Matthew Townsend, of 63, West St. Helen Street, at 73 years. For over 60 years, he followed the occupation of a boat haulier on the river Thames, beginning at ten and only retiring about two years ago. In years past, he used to bring coal from Nuneaton to Benson.

The Abingdon Cricket and Football Club annual meeting was held last week. The Mayor presided, and the financial statement showed that accumulated deficits made £128 6s 2d, chiefly through the cricket section finance. It was decided to alter the name to “Abingdon Town Sports Club,” and a committee was formed to draw up rules for the different sections of the Club.

The River Thames must surely be infested with otters to an alarming extent. A few days ago, a full-grown specimen was found on the railway near Marcham Bridge by Radley platelayer with the forepart of its head smashed. It had undoubtedly been caught by a passing train and thrown clear.

Thank you for the extracts to the Faringdon Advertiser and Vale of the White Horse Gazette on the British Newspaper Archive.

Adverts are brought to you with help from the Nork Berks Herald.