Old Photographs: Newtown

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Bradford on Avon, Wiltshire

Look at Newtown today

Click on the thumbnail pictures for a bigger view.

The Bell Inn, NewtownThe Bell Inn as it was in about 1960 complete with its 3-dimensional sign of a bell on a wrought iron bracket. It closed just a few years later and was converted into flats.

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Priory Barn, NewtownPriory Barn, seen from the southern, garden, side looks more medieval in this view than the street side with its buttresses and the 15th century windows of the cottage on the western end. The photograph was taken before 1938 when the Priory, the manor to which the barn belonged, was demolished.

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Newtown footbridge Newtown footbridgeA curiosity of Newtown before 1938 was a wooden footbridge that connected Priory Barn with the extensive grounds of The Priory that lay on the other side of Newtown.

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Masons' Arms pub in the 1890sThe Masons’ Arms public house in the 1890s with the publican, probably Frederick Rossiter, and his family. At that time the pub was selling beer and “invalid stout” from the brewery at Oakhill, Somerset despite there being a brewery in the same road. The two cannons on the roof of the Victorian extension were still there when it closed a few years ago, but then disappeared. the low gabled 17th century house beyond was replaced by a more modern house in the 20th century..

NewtownNewtown in the early 20th century, with a crowd of small boys who seem not to have seen a camera before. The roof of Trinity Secondary School can be seen over the wall on the right, which had been that of the rope and twine walk that has handed its name on.

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Newtown brewery
The remains of the former Wilkins’ Brewery and Maltings at the junction of Newtown and Wine Street. The brewery had closed about the time of the Great War and had been used as a builder’s yard and workshops, with a period of use by the Royal Enfield company for building motorcycles after World War 2 until the 1960s. The blocked-up window on the street belonged to a pottery and gallery. The complex was converted into offices and housing in the 1990s.

Steps to Barton Orchard, NewtownThe steps on the left lead down to the end of Church Street and to Barton Orchard. The tiny house on the corner was Amey Green’s sweet shop for many years, serving treats to the pupils of the nearby school. In the background is the former Seven Stars pub with a narrow little extension where is now a flower bed.

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NewtownThe western end of Newtown in the first decade of the 20th century, with the sloping Well Path and high wall of the Wilkins Brewery on the left. On the right, the lower houses with the two gables have been demolished.

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Trinity School demolitionPhotographed from high up on Tory, with the former Trinity Secondary School in Newtown undergoing demolition in the foreground in the 1980s. The school was built in 1896 as an enlargement of the old National School in Church Street and closed with the development of the all new St Laurence School.

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The Ropewalk under constructionThe Ropewalk retirement housing complex that replaced Trinity School under construction in 1987, with some of the roof timbers in place, from Tory on the hillside above. Beyond can be seen the Avon Rubber Co factories, which were still then in production. Also, on the right, is the ‘temporary’ library that was in St Margaret’s car park for years until the present one was built in 1990.

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