The Old Market House
Posters of 1899

This postcard shows the old market house, Tring, shortly before it was demolished in 1900. It was published in the "Chadwick Series Tring." As the card has a divided back (for inland postage only) it was clearly printed several years after the demolition.

This investigation looks at the posters that can be seen on the end of the building to see if it can allow the photograph to be dated more accurately



Sale of Agricultural Stock

Behind the railings there is a notice board where the inscription is hidden by the bars - but little, if any, is lost behind the boy standing at the corner, or the corner post itself.

The poster is clearly for a major sale of live and dead stock at Creslow, a small village about six miles north of Aylesbury, Bucks.  It records the sale of 1?0 shorthorn bullocks, together with 120 fat Kent ewes, some lambs, implements and 10? tons of hay. The date is unreadable - although it is reasonable to assume that the month is "Sept.". The auctioneer appears to be "H?RT & Son" - presumably Hart & Son, of Leighton Buzzard, Beds.


Agricultural Shows

There is a large poster area with several posters and evidence of others pasted over and partly hidden.

There are two for agricultural shows, the most significant being a "Grand Agricultural Show" to be held at "Bletchley Park, Bletchley" (Bucks) on "Thursday 7th September". It included a "Scots Guards Band" and "Beautiful Park & Gardens", Below it there is another poster for the "?North? & Central Bucks Agricultural" which may be for the same show as it also has the "Scots Guards" and a "Beautiful Park & Gardens". Another poster records an Exhibition but no other details are readable.

It should be noted that in 1899 7th September was a Thursday.

There are four copies of a small poster and small parts of at least 3 other posters.



 Film Show at the Victoria Hall, Tring

The biggest poster is for a show in the "Victoria Hall", Akeman Street. The individual letters of the date are not clear but the overall shape is consistent with "Wednesday September 6th".

The show is put on by the "Walford Family & Co" - a touring theatre company. (A Google search shows that there are records for this company in the Somerset Records Office.)

The detailed program is unclear although the first word may be "Campanologists" (i.e. bell ringers). The final entry is for "Animated Pictures" using the "Cinematograph".

It would be interesting to know if this is the earliest film show in Tring. According to Cinemas of Hertfordshire the first ever public film show was given in Paris on 28th December 1895. A experimental private film show was held in Barnet on 10th January 1896, several weeks before the London public premiere opened on 21st February. Animated pictures were shown in Watford and Bushey in 1897.

The earliest Google reference I have of the Walford Family showing films was at Dorchester in 1903 - so this poster indicates they were doing so more than three years earlier.

All the evidence suggests that the photograph was taken in early September, 1899, several years before the postcard was printed.

Page created December 2008