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Showing posts from May, 2022

Blandford Throwback Facts XV

  In 1874 , Londoner, John Lewis Marsh acquired the Kings’ Arms public house and then founded the adjacent Blandford Brewery. The Somerset & Dorset Railway announced it would introduce a new third class of travel in addition to its existing first and second class. In 1878 , Reverend Charles Henry Fynes-Clinton bought the Black Bear public house in Salisbury Street and converted it into the British Workmen Coffee Rooms. The building also housed the Temperance Hotel. Fynes-Clinton was largely responsible also for getting Blandford Church extended in 1895. He was Blandford’s rector from 1877-1913. In 1880 , Blandford station was using a horse for wagon shunting duties. In 1881 , a fire broke out in Shapwick making 80 residents homeless. It started on a shed‘s thatch roof at lunchtime with a strong wind blowing.  Blandford Workhouse was very much a family business. John Turner was the workhouse master, his wife, Mary was the matron and his daughter, Hannah was the school mistres

Highwaymen Skulduggery

  In the 1700s, travelling along Dorset’s roads was a precarious pastime. One day in September 1756, accompanied by his servant, an Oxford clergyman was to discover these perils at a cost. As he was making his way from Blandford towards Shaftesbury, the Reverend Collins was ordered to halt and ‘ stand & deliver’ by two mounted highwaymen. One spoke with a Welsh accent while the other had an olive-skinned Latin look about him. However, the two highwaymen presented a somewhat bizarre sight as one was riding an extremely tired old nag. As they were both holding a blunderbuss gun, the cautious clergyman reflected but then wisely decided to obey. The unfortunate ecclesiastic was then robbed of his horse, cloak and eight guineas. The highwayman, whose transport had been much improved, presented the Reverend Collins with his old nag enabling the unfortunate clergyman to continue on his way. Emboldened by their success, the two robbers decided to make their way to a public house in Pi