Category Archives: History

Local history, pictures, stories.

Wanted: stories of First World War rescue at sea.

People on Devon’s south and north coasts are being asked to come forward with tales of lifesaving missions at sea during the First World War. Researchers at the Devon Remembers Heritage Project, based at Devon Heritage Centre in Exeter, want … Continue reading

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One hundred years ago – May 1917.

  The main theme this month is the state of the food supply. In his regular column for allotment holders, “Spadeworker” encourages the growing of carrots as the most important root crop; varieties such as Red Elephant, James Intermediate and … Continue reading

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One hundred years ago – April 1917.

On behalf of Miss Penhale, auctioneers Smyth-Richards, Stapleton and Fox are selling two lots of property: ‘Thornbury and Higher Thorne’,a farm of 140 acres with stone and slate buildings and a thatched cottage.  Two arable fields at Horestone Cross, comprising … Continue reading

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Bideford’s Newfoundland links & the Chope Collection.

Devon has strong historic links with the Canadian Province of Newfoundland dating back to the 16th Century, when boats from local ports sailed to the waters of Newfoundland to fish for cod. Initially men left Devon in April and returned … Continue reading

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One hundred years ago – March 2017.

There has been no break in the wintry conditions across the region. The seasonal rise in temperature usually seen during this month was only very slight. Frost and fog have been persistent and snow has fallen on several days – … Continue reading

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One hundred years ago – February 1917.

February 1917 saw several radical changes in the Bideford Gazette newspaper. The Great War headlines were still most depressing. There was a least one page in each issue devoted to news from the action across the world – one of … Continue reading

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One hundred years ago – December 1916/ January 2017.

The first three issues of the Gazette in December 1916 are full of seasonal cheer of all varieties. W.J. Ridge, Wine merchant of 70 High Street has two adverts – one for Old Scotch Whiskies including “Dew off the Highlands”, … Continue reading

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One hundred years ago – November 1916.

Several farms are advertised this month under the “To be let by Tender” columns. Lot 1, South Hill Farm, Little Torrington comprising 157 acres and all the usual farmhouse buildings and two workers’ cottages; Lot 2, Higher Cross Lawn, 11½ … Continue reading

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One hundred years ago – October 1916.

This month the newspaper is overwhelmed with news from the war. Several pages are given over to “reports from the Front”. All the villages without exception are announcing casualties, injuries and, sadly, deaths to their men who had been called … Continue reading

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One hundred years ago – September 1916.

On the front page of the 5th September edition is an advertisement for wooden 5-bar field gates, portable buildings, pigeon fanciers’ lofts and motor car houses. All are constructed in timber (creosoting is extra). The supplier is F. W. Barker … Continue reading

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One hundred years ago – August 1916.

Hay and Straw Harvest continues – 27 acres of corn in the ground to be sold from Stone Farm, Buckland Brewer, for owner Mr Grigg; 44 acres of corn and rape for Mr Dennis at Adjavin Farm on the outskirts … Continue reading

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HMS ‘Alliance’ visits Lundy.

During the month of April 1967, the submarine HMS ‘Alliance’ was operating in home waters in the South of England and for a day or two anchored off Lundy. One submariner, whose name is unknown, came ashore and probably spent … Continue reading

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Two Bideford-built schooners of the Nineteenth Century.

“Buzz” was contacted in June by Roger Banfield of Scilly seeking information on the schooner “Vivid”, built in Bideford in 1851 (see Shipping Notes 136, July edition). Mr. Banfield undertakes maritime history research for his own interest, and also in … Continue reading

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One hundred years ago – July 1916.

Hay and Straw Harvest.                           The 1916 crop is to be held for Army purposes. Under Defence of the Realm Regulations all hay, oat and wheat straw on the 1916 crop of England and Wales now standing in the field in … Continue reading

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One hundred years ago – June 1916.

War-time appeals continue. The Royal Navy appeal to the Bideford men with sea experience to join up for the Yacht Patrol Division in the Royal Navy. Seamen and firemen can be guaranteed £1-10s per week with 10 shillings food allowance … Continue reading

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