Wednesday, 24 December 2014

A Snowy High Street, Guildford

This picture has appeared before on Guildford and District. It is a favourite and a fitting way to say thank you and Happy Christmas to readers and supporters of the blog.

Monday, 15 December 2014

Saturday, 15 November 2014

Braboeuf Manor, Guildford circa 1910

The Manor House was previously part of the Manors at Artington and Godalming and is first mentioned as being under the ownership of Alfred the Great. The Manor made its way into the Wight Family in 1559 where it remained in their ownership until 1914.The College of Law purchased the property in 1964 they still own it today.

Wednesday, 12 November 2014

Guildford Borough Council Civil Defence Duties - February 1942

This small card, which measures about 5" x 3" is a first for me. This was issued by Guildford Borough Council to members of the Civil Defence Duties. This is named - Frederick S Warner who resided at 40 Fenton Road (a road this Guildfordian has never heard of!) and is dated 26th February 1942. This individual was enrolled into the fire prevention team.

Tuesday, 11 November 2014

Philatelic Counter at Guildford Post Office on 21st October 1981

This was produced to celebrate the opening of the Head Post Office and the Philatelic Counter at Guildford on 21st October 1981. I still have my stamped, posted and delivered copy. 

The post office did look like this, although I notice that the post office has moved and now resides on the junction of where North Street meets the High Street, almost opposite where Thorps the wonderful bookshop used to be.

This forms part of my Around the World in Stamps and Postcards project

Friday, 10 October 2014

The Wedding of Miss Winifred Terry to Mr Grant Duncan at St Mary's Church Guildford ~ 10th October 1925

The following photographs and newspaper clippings were given to me for the purpose of sharing here, at Guildford and District.

The Wedding of  Miss Winifred Terry to Mr Grant Duncan at St Mary's Church Guildford. 
10th October 1925

The Bridal Party

The Bride and Groom

The Wedding Certificate
Courtesy of Ancestry - Surrey Collection

Sunday, 5 October 2014

Pub Bombings at Guildford - October 1974

The 5th October 2014 marks the anniversary of the Guildford Pub bombings in 1974. I was just five years old, but I do remember the fear and emotional turmoil of Guildford even at that young age. As I got older and started working in both Guildford and London, I grew up with the political instability involving the "Irish Situation" and the terrorist threat.

Taken by J Goucher 28th September 2014
Just opposite one of the sites where the bombings happened, and next to Guildford Library is a spot known as Quakers' Acre. There sits a memorial plaque to those that lost their lives that day.

The victims were two men from the military barracks at Pirbright, two female military personnel from the female barracks at Stoughton Guildford and a civilian, who lived out of the County. They are all commemorated on the plaque here. A further 65 people experienced physical injuries and of course live with the emotional scaring that will have surely followed from such an experience.

The first explosion occurred at the Horse and Groom public house in North Street. The second occurred at the Seven Stars public house a little after 9pm, with no causalities because it had already been evacuated after the first incident. The sites chosen because they were popular with the military personnel when allowed out of barracks.

Image courtesy of Get Surrey
I remember the damage at the Horse and Groom, of course being only 5 years old I had no concept of what a pub was, why there was this damage, but could sense there was a degree of sensitivity and anger around what had happened.

The bombings were believed to be the work of the IRA. Four individuals, given the name of the Guildford Four, comprising of three men and a women were arrested, tried and found guilty.

The verdict over turned 15 years later, in 1989 when it was established that there were severe issues with how the case had been conducted and how admissions of guilt were obtained by Surrey Police. Surrey Police were of course pressured into bringing the matter to a swift conclusion, and this pressure without a doubt affected the integrity of the investigation. The culprits of the bombing remain unpunished to this day.

Since then, several books have been published, copies of which reside in my Guildford Collection

  • Proved Innocent by Gerry Conlon
  • Stolen Years by Paul Hill
  • Trial and Error by Robert Kee

  • I remember the verdict being overturned, the admittance that there had been a severe miscarriage of justice and of course the publicity as each book was published, each telling a personal story.

    Whilst this is politically sensitive, for the families of those killed, for those (and their families) who were wrongfully imprisoned it is important that we acknowledge the historical event as it stands. We can, no matter how unpleasant something is simply ignore the fact that this event happened. The event is an integral part of the history of Guildford.

    Edited - Added the link to an hour long recording made by BBC Surrey about the Guildford bombings. <>

    The final Government report can be read at

    Links checked 26th November 2014

    Wednesday, 1 October 2014

    Old Houses - Farnham Road, Guildford Circa 1923

    This was a postal used postcard, with a postage date of 1923. The picture seems to date from earlier than that though. What do you think?

    Wednesday, 27 August 2014

    Photographer - W Shawcross, Spital Street, Guildford Circa 1880

    I purchased this Victorian card, which dates from circa 1880, purely because the photographer was from Guildford and I had never heard of Spital Street.

    Some research revealed that Spital Street was an abbreviation for Hospital Street, which referred to the ancient Leper hospital which had stood at the junction of Epsom and London Roads until the 1840's.

    It then became known as Upper High Street in 1901. In 1961, the road was formally included in the High Street and the buildings renumbered.

    Friday, 15 August 2014

    Rosemary Alley, Guildford Circa 1920

    This is such an unusual card. Rosemary Alley is, I believe located on the right hand side off the High Street. As you can see, a rather small passageway. When I was growing up the white building at the top of the picture was a cheese shop and the entrance to the alleyway was just by a well known bakers.

    Tuesday, 5 August 2014

    One Tree Hill, Guildford ~ Circa 1912

    Now this card is quite a curiosity. I have never heard of One Tree Hill. The card I purchased earlier this year was posted from Merrow. If  anyone has any ideas on the location of this card I would appreciate it if you would leave a comment.

    Friday, 18 July 2014

    Cow and Gate circa 1940

    Cow & Gate Glucose Tin from the circa 1940
    From Cow & Gate Ltd. Guildford England, Net weight of original contents 454 g. (1lb.)