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This Month in Exeter – 1921

Page added 1st January for the newspapers January 1921

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Western Times



January 1921

Weather for last year

Although officially designated as a “half gale," the wind which blew over Exeter during Tuesday night seemed a full gale to those householders who were awake, anxiously listening to the heavy gusts, and wondering whether they would do any mischief to roofs, walls, and glass, for even the replacing of a few slates is a costly matter these days. Apparently, the material damage done in the city was not great. A couple of garden walls were practically demolished in St. Thomas, while reports are to hand of roofs and greenhouses being slightly damaged elsewhere. The rainfall for the 24 hours ended 10 o'clock yesterday morning was .44 inch registered at the Devon and Exeter Institution, bringing the total tor the month to 4.21 inches. During 1919 the fall has been 32.51 inches, which is about the average annual fall for the city. The earlier months the year were very wet, but, on the whole, the late spring and the summer months were dry and hot, although there was a spoil of broken weather about the beginning of September which was very disappointing to those who had to take their holidays at that time. Yesterday, generally speaking, was fine and colder, and one can only hope that are in for spell drier weather.
Exeter and Plymouth Gazette - Thursday 01 January 1920

John Angel at the Museum

Exonians will do well, to take advantage of the opportunity now afforded them of seeing work by Mr. John Angel, R. B. S.. which has been put in view, at the Royal Albert Memorial Museum, Exeter. Mr. Angel has been entrusted with the Exeter war memorial, the design for which has excited a good deal of controversy. The exhibits of Mr. Angel, in the Museum, consist of five statuettes in bronze. The clearness of expression and the natural curving of the limbs are features. "The Knot" depicts two boys pulling together, and this statuette conveys an idea of boyishness which cannot fail to appeal to the spectator. Among new exhibits lent by Mr. Arthur Radford, of Bradninch Manor, is a German travelling casket, dated 1536 and stamped with the maker's name, "Hunrich Boner of Augsburg," which contains a very peculiar lock on the inside of the lid. The ingenious maker fixed a number of bars, which, when the key is turned, move together and lock all round the four edges of the box. A companion to it can be found in the Victoria and Albert Museum, London. Another casket is of steel, inlaid with gold, with the heads of King Francis and his Queen, there is one of Charles 1st, an Italian jewel case of the time of James 1st, and a 15th century casket, on the lid of which are the remains of paintings. All are interesting and well worth a visit to the Museum.
Exeter and Plymouth Gazette - Thursday 01 January 1920

Big Exe Pike Taken Near Cowley Bridge

One of the largest, if to the largest, pikes taken this year was caught by Mr. J. Greenslade, of East John-street, Exeter, in the Exe. It was in fine condition, and turned the scales at 16lb. Mr. Greenslade experienced great difficulty in landing the fish, as the bank of the river was very steep and slippery, and he had to gaff the fish himself. The fish took a live bait just below the junction of the Creedy with the Exe. Mr. Greenslade on the same day had five other fish, varying in weight from 6lb. to 9lb…
…The Exeter Angling Association had arranged a roving pike fishing competion for Boxing-day. Only a few anglers braved the elements.  One enthusiastic angler went to Thorverton, but found the Exe in flood. The Exeter and the Tiverton canals were, however in good condition, but only one or two anglers were out. No fish were weighed in…
Western Times - Thursday 01 January 1920

Street Incidents at Exeter

Alarm was caused near Bedford-street, yesterday, by the off wheel of a pony trap suddenly coming off. The pony commenced to bolt, but the boy in charge, Ed. May, pluckily prevented it from proceeding far. P.S. Underhill re-fixed the wheel. The owner is Mr. Parker, dairyman, South-street. Another exciting incident happened at the end of Queen-street during the morning. While John Bonus, of Alphington, was loading a waggon with meal at the goods' siding, the horse, bolted and proceeded toward towards the Clock Tower, where it was stopped by a pedestrian. No damage was done.
Western Times - Thursday 01 January 1920


The City Coroner (Mr. W. Linford Brown) conducted, at Exeter Court-house, last evening, an inquiry into the death of Charles Routh, aged 70, a retired solicitor, of Fairpark House, Fairpark-road, Exeter. Dr. C. H. Lovely said he was going down Fore-street on Thursday morning about 11.30, when he saw deceased collapse. With assistance he took deceased into a shop, where he succumbed a few minutes later. Death was due to heart failure, caused by heart disease. The Coroner found that deceased died from natural causes, and expressed sympathy with his relatives.
Exeter and Plymouth Gazette - Saturday 03 January 1920


Exeter Man Sent to Prison

Yesterday Frederick May has a very poor opinion of the Labour Exchange.
He was before the Exeter City Bench yesterday, charged with sleeping out, and the charge sheet declared that he has neither home nor occupation. A constable heard him snoring in a shed in the railway yard at Queen-street in the early hours of the morning and brought him to the police station.
May frankly admitted the offence, but said he must sleep somewhere, and could not do it in the streets. He had money, and although he had walked miles looking for work, had been unable to find any.
Mr. P. Durden, from the Bench asked why he had not registered at the Labour Exchange.
Defendant said he understood that he could not obtain the donation because he had not served in the Army during the last war.
Mr. Burden : No, you won't get any donation, but you should register your name, and they are supposed to help find you a job.
“Yes, and lot of good that is," said defendant with contempt, adding, "When they were in North-street I registered my name, and was twelve montns before heard from them."
Chief Inspector Martin said defendant had been a frequent visitor to that Court, and as recently as March last was there for a similar offence. There had been many complaints about his sleeping out, and he seemed to sleep in the open more frequently then he did elsewhere.
The Bench decided to send him to prison for seven days, a decision which appeared to satisfy the defendant very well.
Western Times - Tuesday 04 January 1921


Owners of Firearms Must Obtain a Certificate

A case of importance to ex-soldiers and others desirous of keeping firearms as war trophies, was brought forward by the Chief Constable (Mr. A. F. Nicholson) at Exeter Police Court yesterday, when Mr. Tom Greenslade, of 18, Exwick hill, appeared to answer a summons for having in his possession for the past three months, a revolver, without holding a firearm certificate, contrary to the Act of 1920.
Mr. Nicholson said that when the Act was made, on September 1st last, its requirements were circulated extensively through out the country. It made the possession of firearms unlawful, except in certain cases of war trophies, provided the owner obtained a “dispensation" from the police. He had discovered that Mr. Greenslade had the revolver in question, and had not had a certificate. The defendant told him that he wished to keep the revolver as a war trophy, and he (the Chief Constable) was quite prepared to accept his statement. He felt bound to draw attention to the Act and to the liability of £50 fine or three months' imprisonment which contraveners incurred. H only asked the magistrates, in view of the circumstances of the case, to dismiss it as “case proven." The Bench—Messrs T. Bradley Rowe (in the chair) and A. T. Loram— agreed to this.
Western Times - Thursday 06 January 1921

Accidents in Exeter

Shortly before noon yesterday a live electric overhead wire of the tramway service at the top of Paris-street broke, but fortunately remained suspended at a height which obviated danger to traffic. The tramway officials were promptly notified, and within ten minutes the matter was righted, and the service resumed.
A collision between an unladen steam motor wagon and standard gas lamp in Topsham-road, at one o'clock yesterday, proved bad for both. The lamp was bowled over, and the motor vehicle slightly damaged. The latter, curiously enough, was the property of the Exeter Gas Company, and was being driven by Edward Callard, who, happily, escaped injury. The accident was caused the wagon skidding.
At about three o'clock yesterday, a man named Richard Green, of 29, Fore-street Heavitree, fell down in an epileptic fit in Eaton-place, cutting his chin. P.C. Carpenter rendered assistance, and conveyed the man to the Devon and Exeter Hospital, were Dr. Mills inserted two stitches in the wound. Green was afterwards able to proceed to his home.
Western Times - Saturday 10 January 1920

Exeter Works.



The Streets Committee of the Exeter Council will report, at a meeting on Tuesday next, that the Surveyor communicated the acceptance of tenders for making up Bonham-road to the Roads Department of the Ministry of Transport and inquired whether the cost of kerbing and channelling, i.e. £1,229, could, be included in the grant of £3,OOO in lieu of the surface of the Honiton-road, and had received a reply suggesting that, as it would be necessary to re-surface the Honiton-road next year, the kerbing and channelling of Bonhay-road be carried out under a further grant of £750 which the Department was prepared to make. The Committee resolved that this offer accepted.
The City Surveyor reported on a communication he had received from the divisional engineer of the Great Western Railway stating that the estimated cost of renewing Alphington-road railway bridge, if the existing pier was removed from the roadway, at £1,200. The Committee resolved to recommend that the City Council contribute the actual extra cost, not exceeding £l,200, incurred by the Great Western Railway Company by the removal of the existing pier when effecting the proposed renewal of the bridge, and that the method raising the amount be referred to the Financial Committee.
Exeter and Plymouth Gazette - Saturday 10 January 1920


The Semi-National Eisteddfod, to which many have been looking forward with great interest, takes place at the King's Hall, Exeter next week commencing on Monday evening and ending on Friday evening.  Details of the several sessions will be found in an advertisement. The programme is very attractive while the musical character of the event for this part of the country should be a big draw. An exhibition will be opened on Thursday at noon by Lady Florence Cecil. Season and other tickets can be obtained from guest’s at 1999, High Street, Exeter, and easy application is desirable. Good entries have been obtained for the various competitions, and an enjoyable week is anticipated.
Exeter and Plymouth Gazette - Friday 16 January 1920


Mutilated Body Found on the Railway Line


A shocking tragedy was reported from Alphington on Saturday, when the body of a middle-aged man, who had evidently been knocked down by a train, was found on the Great Western Railway near Marsh Barton. It was removed under the direction of P.S. Bambury to the Alphington Institute, and the Coroner was communicated with.
The body was subsequently identified that of Mr. Frank Cross, aged 55, a tailor, of 35. East Grove-road, Exeter, and an employee of Messrs. J. and G. Ross, tailors, of High-street, where he had worked for upwards of twenty years.
It is stated that he had suffered from pains in the head, and had been greatly depressed for a considerable time. Occasionally during fits of depression he had stayed home, but on Friday he was at work, and left to go home about seven o'clock in the evening. Shortly afterwards he went out, stating that he intended to take a walk. He never returned.
As the night advanced, and there was sign of him, his friends gave information to the police, and his description was circulated. Nothing further was heard about him until his body was picked up on the railway Saturday. On him was found a pocket book containing his name and address. Mr. Cross was an exceptionally steady man, and much sympathy will be extended to the widow and family.
It is probable that the inquest will held to-day.
Western Times - Monday 19 January 1920

Victoria Hall



The Victoria Hall, Exeter, came under the hammer, yesterday, at the Rougmont Hotel. Messrs. Herbert Fulford and Co., of Exeter, were the auctioneers, and they acted on behalf of the Hall Company. The property has a frontage on Queen-street of about 46 feet, and a ground area of about 13,000 super feet. The. greater part of the building was destroyed by fire on October 6th., 1919. It originally consisted in the front part of a spacious entrance vestibule, large board or cloak room, and lecture halt. 54ft 32ft., exclusive of an alcove about 24ft 10ft. The lecture hall, with two cloak rooms attached, was originally laid with a maple dancing floor, which had been taken up and stacked ready for relaying. The rear and main portion of the premises consisted of a large assembly hall, 112ft by 65ft., with an additional 15ft beyond the screen with two entrances and emergency exits, while a basement comprised cellars, kitchen, etc. The only parts left by the fire consisted of stone walls, foundations, and supports. The particulars of the sale stated:—"The recent fire upon the premises has deprived the locality of the only building in the district of anything like, its size for exhibitions, conferences, circuses, or public gatherings, and such a building is urgently required in the capital of the county. The front assembly rooms could be speedily reinstated and the main building re-constructed as a cinema, public hall, manufactory, pantechnicon, or for any purpose requiring spacious accommodation. The property abuts on the siding with landing stage of the London and South-Western Railway, and offers exceptional facilities for the receipt and dispatch of stage properties, horses, and heavy goods.” The solicitor for the vendors was Mr. W. H. Stone. 10, Gandy-street, Exeter, and the referee Mr. P. J. Kendall, of The Close, Exeter, barrister.
The hall was erected in 1868, after a public Company had been formed and the necessary capital subscribed. In 1880 an organ was erected in the large hall at a cost of about £2,000. The original cost of the whole building, together with the organ, was about £11,000. The. property was purchased not long since by a newly-formed company of Exonians for £3,750.
There was, at the auction, yesterday, a largo attendance, which included many influential gentlemen. Mr. Fulford said that, although the property was being offered in one lot, the back portion, which was practically demolished by fire, was well adapted for large stores. The front portion could easily be restored as a capital place for entertainment purposes. Another such valuable site could not be acquired in Exeter at present. The bidding was started at £3,000 by Mr. E Plummer. Mr. Harold Rowe increased the amount by a bid of £l,OOO. Subsequently bids were made by Messrs. Wilkeyson (Parnell Lang and Co.) and Westcott (Messrs. Austin and White). The property was eventually knocked down to the last-named for £4,600, on behalf of clients. Although the names were not divulged it is understood the property will pass into the hands of Messrs Rowe, Bros., and Co., Ltd., of Exeter and Bristol, glass, lead and oil merchants, and oil importers.
Exeter and Plymouth Gazette - Thursday 20 January 1921


There were no developments in connexion with the plumbers' strike Exeter, yesterday, both sides holding firm to their position. We understand inquiries as to the situation have been received , from the Ministry of Labour, and that, probably, representative of the Ministry will visit the city if the dispute is not soon settled. Several of the men on strike have obtained work in other parts of country at enhanced wages, and we were informed yesterday that work of a like character could be found for most of the men if they cared to leave the city.
Exeter and Plymouth Gazette - Thursday 22 January 1920



Exeter's pantomime “Aladdin"—entered its last week at the Theatre Royal last evening, and if there should be anybody in Devonshire who not yet seen it—the possibility seems improbable with the extraordinarily large "houses" Mr. Dunsford's production has drawn—he or she will be well-advised to snatch *at the last straw, and not let such a genuine treat pass beyond recall. This year's pantomime has been, in all respects, an excellent one, but it has commended itself principally by the writer of the original adaptation of the old story has been put. To feature a multitude of gags with local flavour, introduce lilting melodies with a weakness towards the jazz, to aim at originality on the rise of the curtain to the finale, and to generally make the production breathe an air of up-to-date frivolity can have been no easy accomplishment for the producer, who had to retain a very, very old story as the theme. It could b done, mind you, by simply allowing "Aladdin "—lamp and all—to pas ignominiously behind the veil of modernity, and to be lost in a maze of topical banter, but Mr. Dunsford had a broader conception, and is to be congratulated on retaining the parts of the story throughout a whole gamut of new ideas. Comprehensive reference has already been made in these columns to the admirable manner in which the artistes have responded to the calls made upon their histrionic, terpisichorean, and musical ability, and in this, the final notice it is only fair to say that the smooth working production has depended to a great extent upon whole-hearted work on the part of the men behind the scenes, whose task has been in no manner of means a sinecure. Let as hope “Aladdins” reception at Devonport, where it commences a fortnight's run next Monday, will be compatible with the pleasure it has given those who have visited the Theatre Royal since Boxing
Exeter and Plymouth Gazette - Tuesday 27 January 1920

Exeter's Rats.

In the course of his report to the Market and General Purposes Committee of the Exeter City Council on the results of the "rat week," held from December 29th to January 3rd, Mr. A. Bonham (Sanitary Inspector) says that a striking feature was that 72 of the 344 applications for baits were from householders in the poorest quarters of the city. The other applications included hotel and restaurant keepers, 17 farmers and gardeners, 10 butchers and meat stores, 4 offensive trades, 9 grocers, and 4 Council departments. Only in 81 instances have the returns asked for from applicants have been, made. Mr. Benham estimates that, owing to the effectiveness of the bait, 50 per cent of the baits taken should be the estimated number of rats destroyed, which would work out at 12,500. The following are samples of the general results, judging from the replies received : —"Since using the bait have neither seen nor heard any more rats"; “No sign of rats or mice since the bait was taken "; "Rats all gone" ; "Several mice found dead," etc.
In future, unless otherwise instructed, Mr. Bonham proposes to serve notices upon all persons who own or occupy rat-infested premises, requiring compliance with the Rats and Mice Destruction Act, 1919, and to issue poison bait and supervise its use upon payment by the persons concerned of all expenses incurred.
Exeter and Plymouth Gazette - Saturday 31 January 1920

TODAY'S WEDDING. TODAY'S WEDDING.Miss Mary Edith Gascoigne-Cecil (on left), second daughter of the Bishop of Exeter and Lady Florence Cecil, who will be married to-day at Hatfield to Capt. the Hon. Francis Manners son and heir of Lord Manners; and Miss Eve Gascoigne-Cecil (on right), who will be chief bridesmaid to her twin sister. (Blocks by The Western Morning News " Co.) 
Western Morning News - Saturday 29 January 1921


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