Ventnor Longshoremen

Ventnor Longshoremen, By Michael Freeman. The article includes a  photograph of Ventnor beach in June 1985 and a description of how things have changed over the years, and the talents and work of  longshoremen like including Jim and Fred Blake and the Spencer family. PDF of article available here: Ventnor Longshoremen

Avro Seaplane on Ventnor beach

Avro Seaplane on Ventnor beach, By Michael Freeman. The article describes the short local pleasure flights popular in the years after the First World War, and includes a photograph of an Avro 504L seaplane, a WW1 wooden trainer aircraft, beached at Ventnor on 17 Oct 1919. PDF of article available here: Avro Seaplane on Ventnor… read more »

Thomas Gibbs and Rock Cottage

Thomas Gibbs and Rock Cottage, by Michael Freeman. A description of Rock Cottage in Belgrave Road, described as a lodging house run by Thomas Gibbs and his wife, Jane, for almost 30 years following their marriage in 1867. The article includes photographs of Rock Cottage and of Thomas Gibbs and also mentions the Royal Marine… read more »

Society Monthly Meeting 29 September 2023

‘Passing the time on the Undercliff’: Speaker: Richard Smout This month’s Society meeting is on Friday 29th September 2023, when the speaker will be Richard Smout from the Isle of Wight Heritage Service, whose talk is about how our ancestors spent their leisure time, and the clues that can be found from archive sources. The… read more »

Flowers Brook Camping Site

Flowers Brook Camping Site, by Michael Freeman. A photo showing the camping site and Woody Bay in the 1950s introduces the article which describes the site and accommodation, and a visit there by a family from Tyrone in Northern Ireland. PDF of article available to read here: Flowers Brook Camping Site  

The Hann Twins

The Hann twins, Ethelreda and Sheila, were born in 1908, grandchildren of Henry Brown who ran the well-known Posting and Riding establishment in Pier Street, Ventnor. The article includes information about the Brown family and their Pier Street business with a photograph of the twins in their pram, a few weeks old, and a second… read more »

The Rex Cinema

The Rex Cinema, by Colin Beavis, describes something of the history of the Rex Cinema in Church Street, which opened in 1938 and was popular with the inhabitants of Ventnor, young and old alike, until it closed in 1980.  The artcle includes a photo of the outside of the cinema and one of the site… read more »

A Bull family photo

A Bull family photo. By Michael Freeman.  The photograph, likely dated between 1910 and 1914, pictures  a family on the rustic bridge at the bottom of the Ventnor Cascade. The Royal Navy sailor in the picture could be Thomas Bull, surrounded by his wife, mother and children; the family later emigrated to Australia. The article… read more »

When holiday coaches once crowded Ventnor’s streets

When holiday coaches once crowded Ventnor’s streets. By Michael Freeman. In the 1950s three coach companies operated in Ventnor – Randall’s based on the High Street, Crinage’s on Church Street and Nash’s on Pier Street. A photo shows one of Randall’s pre-war vehicles on a ‘Round the Island’ trip. The article mentions: Harry the Tout,… read more »