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Newsletter 2010 - 3 Contents - Click to go to:-
Chairman's Report Editor's Statistics
A Blast from the Past: 3 Topical cards for today
Haresfield Farmer takes Drastic Action Recent Finds
Editor's musings Previous Newsletters
Chairman’s Report

The Annual Fair is nearly upon us. Roy and Geoff have worked very hard getting all the dealers and it should be another great day. Any help that you can give to the committee on the day will be greatly appreciated. After all, it is your club. Have you managed to put together an entry in the competition? Go on give it a go. There is a cash prize of £25 for the winner of each class, plus money for second and third. Cliff Maddock gave the first part of his talk to us on Local People and Places on Cigarette Cards. This was an in-depth study and we look forward to part two next year. Thank you Cliff. Later in May we had a visiting speaker, Chris Hollingham, with his vast collection of Scouting and Guiding. A very enthusiastic evening and as he didn’t charge for his expenses, we made a donation to him to be given to a scout or guide section of his choice. We welcome new member Daryl Povey and look forward to seeing him at our future meetings. We have had several members who have been ill recently and we wish them well and a speedy recovery. John Cahill, who has had a heart attack, is slowly on the mend and hopes to be able to come to the Club Fair. It was very nice to see Bryan Brinkley at Twyford after his spell in hospital. Geoff has had his last lot of chemo, and it was encouraging to see him back at the club. It was also pleasing to see Mike Lee after the sad loss of Peggy. We wish you all well. Please sort out some auction lots for October 28. See you at the Fair and good hunting for cards.



Editor's Statistics

Card competition winners:
Cigarette Card
Trade Card

JC = John Cahill, DD= Derek Davies,
CP = Coral Print, MT= Mike Tubb, JJ= Jenny Jerrum TT = Tim Twitchen

A Blast from the Past: 3

This month I have gone for a film, at which I remember even at my young age the cuddle in the surf causing my mother to tut in amazement. A little bit different to what one sees these days. From Here to Eternity is a 1953 drama film based on a novel of the same name by James Jones. It had a number of stars starring, but I think most of us remember it for Burt Lancaster and Deborah Kerr. I certainly couldn't remember Montgomery Clift, Frank Sinatra, Ernest Borgnine or Donna Reed. The film won eight Academy Awards out of thirteen nominations, cost $2.4million to make and took $30.5 million at the door. The card of Burt Lancaster was produced by Reveille Fan Club and that of Deborah Kerr was a USA cinema collectors card.


Topical cards for today

Three cards this month: Couldn't find a card for Clegg or Cameron so the last coalition leader it has to be! Also a card of an MP hanging on to his seat. Any suggestions who it could be?

Not an Icelandic volcano, but an Italian one which most of us will have heard of.



Haresfield Farmer takes Drastic Action

Haresfield Station in Gloucestershire was a small station, serving perhaps a couple of hundred people at the most and was situated on the Bristol to Gloucester line. In this picture the line and the platform on the left is the Midland Railway line running from Bristol to Gloucester and Derby with its attendant buildings. The approaching express is heading south.


It will be seen that there are two signals and a freight train over the wooden fence to the right of the picture. These were part of the Great Western Railway's line running south from Gloucester then east to Stroud and London. The GWR line ran parallel for about five miles, but had no station at Haresfield. There were thus four railway lines at this point owned by two different railway companies.

Another postcard, the rear of which is shown below, has a street view of Haresfield village with the local public house The Haresfield Beacon located next to the level crossing. The rear of this card with its 1/ 2d postage stamp, 2d railway stamp and written message inspire one to speculate on the events involved.


It is difficult to be concise about the events so I offer my theory as follows: C. Rickards of Haresfield was a local farmer and after a hot July day in the fields he went to the pub for a pint or so of cider. The time would have been 7.30 to 8.00pm. Whilst partaking of his refreshment he probably mentioned to the local landlord that he was running short of food for his pigs. The landlord may have suggested his brewery as a source of grain so the farmer purchased a postcard and a 1/ 2d postage stamp from the landlord and addressed it to “The Manager, Stroud Brewery, Stroud, Local” and wrote the following message "Have you any grains on hand to spare if so I could send early in the morning for them if you will wire me I will pay for wire. Yours C. Rickards, Haresfield". It must have been a real problem because Gloucestershire farmers were, and still are, not known for throwing their money about on high technology which at the time was the telegraph system (i.e. wire).

Next came the problem of getting the postcard as soon as possible to Stroud. The local post box had probably been emptied at 5.00 or 6.00pm at the latest, so there was only one option left. Farmer Rickards crossed the four lines over the level crossing and went to the Station Office. He explained his message was very urgent, so the station master accepted his postcard and for payment of 2d promised to deal with it expeditiously. Back to the pub went Farmer Rickards!

The station master affixed a green Midland Railway 2d stamp which was inscribed “Fee For The Conveyance Of A Single Post Letter By Railway”. This was in addition to the postage stamp already on the card. The 2d railway stamp was cancelled twice by diagonal strikes in purple, but the GPO postage stamp itself was untouched. The serial number 178668 indicates that the stamp was one of a batch of 6000 printed in October 1891. The late use (sixteen years later) of this railway letter stamp illustrates how few railway letters were sent from this station.

The last down train of the day to Stroud, Wallbridge, via Stonehouse and Dudbridge left at 7.41pm so the postcard was handed in too late to be carried on it. The first train in the morning in the same direction was at 8.10am arriving at Stroud at 8.45am. The decision was made to give it to the guard of the 8.55pm northbound train to Gloucester, the last train of the day leaving Haresfield Station. The postcard duly arrived at the recently opened Midland Railway station known as Eastgate where it was dispatched by road about half a mile to George Street GPO Sorting Office. The postcard was now in the GPO system as distinct from the railway system.

The 1/ 2d postage stamp was finally cancelled at Gloucester with a double ring name stamp timed and dated “5am / JY23 / 07” and put in a bag for Stroud mails. The bag was taken next door to Gloucester Central Station, which was operated by the GWR.

Some time after 6.00am the postcard was being conveyed again by train, this time southwards but taking a slightly different route for three miles before arriving on the four track section through Haresfield, where it travelled rapidly down the line behind the fence on the GWR train before going east towards Stroud.

The GPO Sorting Office in Stroud was next to the railway station and the card would have arrived at the brewery by first delivery at about 8.00am.

Haresfield Station was closed by Dr Beeching and there are only two high speed tracks now. The level crossing is a somewhat perilous foot crossing. Gloucester Eastgate Station has gone, as has Stonehouse Midland Station, Stroud Wallgate Station, the brewery and even the GPO Sorting Offices in both Stroud and George Street, Gloucester are no more.

The farming culture has changed, some may say not for the better, and spent grains from the brewery do not find their way to pigs food any more. It is amazing what you can postulate from one small item of postal history isn't it?

Tony Harden


Recent Finds

I was perusing eBay as I do (occasionally!!), when I came across a trade card that had been used as a postcard in London and had a 1/ 2d QV stamp. I consulted with our President about this and he managed to obtain for me some information about the stamp. It was first issued on 16 November 1876 and is plate number 14. It was replaced by a new 1/ 2d stamp in 1880. It is a shame that we cannot get a date of usage from the date stamp. I wonder how early it was used?


I purchase fairly regularly from a trade card seller in the United States and noticed she had a card for sale with the same picture as the London one. I purchased the card and remarked to Ruth, the seller about the card I had purchased from a dealer in London and lo and behold she found another example. I now have three cards virtually the same, just a change of shirt colour for the man on top of the hay cart and a dog in the field both on the London card.


I cannot imagine the odds of this happening. I will continue to look out for any more examples. If anyone else fancies a bit of research the card states 'copyrighted of J.H. Bufford's Sons'.


Editor's musings

What a year this is turning out to be for the club and indeed a number of it's members. I am leaving it up to Coral to produce the health report and I will report on some happier events.

We have had in May Cliff's talk that was postponed from January. I learnt a lot about local people and places the only shame being that Cliff had too much information to give to squeeze into one evening. I hope that Cliff can continue and maybe produce a new talk for next year.

Chris Hollingham certainly had enthusiasm for his Scouting and Guiding talk. On looking through his albums I saw such a number of cards that I had never seen before. I was rather proud that my winner in the trade card section of the single card competition was one card he hadn't got. Now comes the attempt to find him some more. I have already e-mailed to America to see if I can help.

Thank you to Geoff, Coral and Tony for help to complete this newsletter. I do have some articles promised for the next one, but am always happy to receive more. Surely I cannot be the only member who adds interesting cards to their collections? Do other members have favourite television programmes and/or films that they can write about and hopefully illustrate. And what about topical cards? Come on have a think and let me have the results. Enjoy this newsletter, the next one will be out in October.

Mike Tubb


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