ArchiveInFive Artefacts No.2

What did the following all have in common in 1867?

Brewer.  Tax Collector.  Yeoman.  Blacksmith. Timber Merchant.  Confectioner.  Widow.  Carpet Warehouseman.  Civil Engineer.  Butcher.  Wine Merchant.  Postmaster.  Carriage Builder. Surgeon.  Grocer.  Spinster.  Ironmonger.  Professor of Music and Drawing.  Draper. Draper.  Tramway Secretary.  Carver and Guilder. Gas Manager.

They were all listed as shareholders in Clevedon Pier Company Shareholders book! Everyone loved the idea of a pier. Everyone loves the pier! It still needs your help:

The Model That Helped Save The Pier

When the Pier collapsed in 1970 the town of Clevedon pulled together to save it from total demolition.  This model was commissioned by Clevedonians, Tony and Carole Wring,  to show the Pier Public Inquiry the beauty and value of the Pier and it undoubtedly helped in the decision being made that the Pier should be saved.   Tony was, at that crucial time in the Pier’s history the Chairman of the Pier Preservation Trust. The model has now been donated to the Archive and is on permanent display at the North Somerset Offices, Castlewood, Clevedon.

Las Vegas one armed bandit.

Once part of a group of one armed bandits that graced the dance hall at the end of the pier in the 1960s. When the pier was closed in 1970, because of the collapsed span near the pierhead, all of these gaming machines were taken off and most found new homes elsewhere. This little beauty stayed hidden in the basement of the Tollhouse where it became rusty and crusty and even more loveable. When it came into the Archive it was found to contain several Victorian pennies – some showing Queen Victoria as girl with a bun and ribbon in her hair and others ….. well, not as a girl with a bun in her hair.

The Old Phone Intercom We believe that this wall mounted wooden-cased phone was used as one of a pair on the pier, for communication between the tollhouse and the pier head. The only wiring on this type of telephone was that between the handset and the box itself. This system was used from the 1870s onwards for telephones that were not on an exchange serviced by a common battery, ie, when each personal telephone had its own battery. The crank handle on the side would work a magneto inside the box, and this would ring a bell or activate a buzzer on the other phone. The person hearing the alert could then pick up the phone at the other end and find out what was wanted. This type of phone was very useful on the old railway systems, where for instance the stationmaster needed to contact the signalman regarding train services or changes in times, etc. Jane Lilly local historian thinks it likely this phone, from the pier, was repurposed for a similar use between the tollhouse and pierhead.

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