May Day parade in Portsmouth when horses led the field not petrol engines
All today's photographs come from the collection of Barry Cox.
Three show horse-drawn vehicles that trundled around Portsmouth, and no doubt beyond, before the days when the combustion engine started to dominate our world.
The first was taken on May Day 1907 and I wonder if all these pictures were taken on that day.
• With their horses dressed and delivery wagons polished for the day, we see a parade of Portsea Island Mutual Co-operative vehicles parading through the streets of the city on May Day 1907.
Unfortunately I cannot recognise the road.
To the rear can be seen a wall advert for U Neal, butcher, but I can’t make out the street sign. If anyone does recognise the street, please let me know.
• I think I can safely say that the second photograph was taken on the same May Day and that the parade had ended up on Southsea Common.
I just wonder where all the horses were stabled at night?
The common looks a little rough compared to today.
• We know the third photo was taken before 1935 as that was the year Mr White joined forces with Mr Taylor to form Timothy Whites & Taylors. No apostrophes were ever used.
Mr White was a pharmacist and Mr Taylor ran a drug store.
Possibly taken in Broad Street, Old Portsmouth, the horse is dressed for the occasion.
• At last the combustion engine has arrived in the fourth picture where we see a collection of delivery vans lined up outside Handleys in Southsea.
At that time Handleys was the place to shop for the well-to-do of Southsea.
I don’t suppose for a minute the ladies would carry anything home.
This picture was taken between the wars of course as the store was burnt to the ground during the blitz of January 10, 1941.
On the left is Portland Road and when the area was reconstructed after the Second World War and Handleys was rebuilt, the junction with Osborne Road became a proper T-junction.
The final picture shows Handleys Corner burnt out after the blitz.