Thursday, 13 March 2008



Recently I read a murder mystery set in a house in Blockley High Street (see my review) in the Cotswolds. This is a view of the High Street at the turn of the nineteenth / twentieth century.

This is the back of the postcard - the handwriting is my Great Grandma Spencer's. So the shop with a cross over the chimney is the one where Sarah Tidmarsh (Bryony. Helen and Richard’s great, great grandmother) had her wedding cake made in 1843. (There was once a "bakehouse" on the High Street run by Joe Powell (later Duggans) was this the cake shop?)

Sarah was married to Henry Warden Lane at Chipping Campden Church on May 18th.

The quality of the photo on this postcard is so good that at great magnification one can see a basket on the cart at the far end of the High Street.

The Royal Oak, next door to the cake shop, was a beer, cider & porter house - managed by Frederick Taylor 1870-1920 and four of his sons also held the same license in succession followed by William Hodgkins during the 1930s, it was closed in 1955 and became a greengrocer's run by the Worthington's, later became an Antique shop – now it is a private dwelling. Note: 1901 census shows the Royal Oak being run by George Allen.

Here is a more up-to-date view from the same spot.

Blockley has a great little website.


  1. Scriptor, I am the great grandson of the Frederick Taylor mentioned on your Blog, who ran the Royal Oak Inn in Blockley, my cousin in Blockley John Malin was a member of the parish council for over 30 years, many as uncontested chair, he has been a volunteer tour guide at Snowshill Manor for over 20 years. Also a cofounder of the Blockley Antiquarian Society

    I am the same person who runs the web site (you mention) on Blockley Parish - new web page address is and I run the Parish Council web site - from Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. PS my grandfather, who was born in Blockley was a Steeplechase Jockey in Versailles for a number of years before coming back to Blockley

  2. was sarah tidmarsh from chipping campden?
    was she from the tidmarsh family in chipping campden?

  3. Sarah Tidmarsh (1813-1879) was from
    Naunton Beauchamp

    on May 18th 1843 she married Henry Warden Lane
    at Chipping Campden

    Louisa Sophia Spencer née Lane
    Charlotte Ann Lane
    (17th April 1852 - 27th September 1853)
    William Henry Lane (Uncle William)
    (b1854 d 1936)
    Mary Annie Shemmonds née Lane (Aunty Annie)
    (b1856 d1938)

    A few other children are thought to have died in early infancy.

    Sheep Street, Chipping Campden;
    Broadway - opposite the Bell Inn;
    Sheep Street, Chipping Campden


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