Archive for October 26th, 2012

Pontypool traders in the 1930s. Part 1.

October 26, 2012

One thing I’ve learned from writing this blog is that long distance memory can sometimes play funny tricks. When Roy Davies mentioned the cobbler’s shop in George Street I seemed to remember such a shop thereabouts, but after reading John Owen’s comment I very distinctly recall Sharp’s shop in Crane Street, just about opposite the lower entrance to the market. His mention of rabbit elastic reminded me of a few occasions when I went there to buy some to make a catapult. I also remember looking longingly at the airguns in the window and knowing that I’d never have enough money to buy one.

As I was thinking about this jogging of my memory, I remembered an old guidebook I have on Pontypool published in 1924 and which has a number of adverts by traders in the town. 1924 was the year the Welsh National Eisteddfod was held in Pontypool; it’s possible that it was the reason for the publication of the guidebook. The book is a small landscape format 50 page document and I was able to track it down quite quickly in my archives.

I thought that visitors to this blog might recall some of the traders, and, as their addresses are given in the adverts, there can be no doubt about where they were. There are several pages of notes about the history of Pontypool and a guide to places in or near the town. One interesting fact I noticed was that the population of Pontypool in 1921 was only 25,000.

Of course I don’t want to bore viewers with a great long list of the printed adverts, so I’ll publish them in three different posts. I know that some visitors to this blog are members of the families which ran these businesses. If there are any more I’d be glad to hear from them.

The front cover of the guide

First advert inside the cover

 

Page 1

 

Page 2

 

Page 3

 

Page 4

 

Page 5

 

Page 6

 

Page 7

Well, that’s all for this posting. I’m sorry that some of the adverts are not quite straight but it was difficult to scan them using a folded book. I’ll post part 2 in a day or two. Meanwhile if you have anything interesting to say about any of the above traders, please get in touch or leave a comment.