The Circus Came to Town

The Circus Camel in Rolle Street in 1953

In 1953 a circus came to Barnstaple and paraded through the town to Pottington where the big top was set up.  Here a camel in the parade is seen walking along Rolle Street.  Gill Madge’s nan took the photo and her Dad (Colin Newcombe) and her Uncle Den were allowed to walk alongside all the way to Pottington.

Thanks to Colin Newcombe and Gill Madge for this photograph.

Deep Snow in Pilton Street

Deep Snow in Pilton Street in 1924

This is an original pen and ink sketch of Pilton Street in deep snow by Bruce William Oliver of Barnstaple probably dating from the winter of 1923-24. Bruce Oliver was a prominent architect in Bideford and Barnstaple, who had a keen interest in local history and was closely involved in the North Devon Athenaeum. His collection includes several architectural notes on various places within North Devon as well as drawings and watercolours under the name Roland. There is also a collection of his photographs and slides within the Image Collection of the Athenaeum. He was Mayor of Barnstaple in 1931 and his portrait by an unknown artist hangs in the Guildhall in the centre of the town. He was born in 1883 and died in 1976.  This pen and ink sketch was presented to The Pilton Story by Roy Barnes from the estate of Phyllis Allen, Roy’s aunt.