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Were You There? No.1

Published on: 12 Nov, 2015
Updated on: 16 Dec, 2015

By David Rose

Here’s the first of a new occasional series that features old photos of events and things going on in Guildford, and which your memories of and details would be most welcome.

It is partly inspired by the wonderful collection of images taken by the late Dave Salmon and now in the safe custody of rambling railwayman Geoff Burch.

Geoff has kindly given me permission to publish images Dave took in and around Guildford from the late 1950s up until he died earlier this year.

There are so many events as well as people he photographed, but unfortunately, he left few written details about who they are or when he photographed them.

We'd love to know the name of the majorette and the policeman. A great picture taken by the late Dave Salmon. Click to enlarge in a new window.

We’d love to know the name of the majorette and the policeman. A great picture taken by the late Dave Salmon. Click to enlarge in a new window.

We begin with what appears to be one of Guildford’s popular carnival processions through the town and usually to Stoke Park, often at the time of the Guildford Town Show that once took place in about September each year. They may date to the late 1960s or early 70s. Click on each image to enlarge in a new window.

Is this Guildford Sea Cadets band?

Is this Guildford Sea Cadets band?

These pictures were obviously taken in the Upper High Street. Does anyone recognise anyone in the procession or in the crowds on the pavement?

If so, please leave a reply in the box below.

Here are a few more images, believed to be from the same procession.

Which band - Salvation Army?

Which band – Salvation Army?

Who is featured here?

Who is featured here?

Can anyone name the man selling the balloons? All pictures copyright C Dave Salmon – Geoff Burch collection.

Can anyone name the man selling the balloons? All pictures copyright C Dave Salmon – Geoff Burch collection.

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test 10 Responses to Were You There? No.1

  1. Brian Holt Reply

    November 13, 2015 at 8:17 pm

    It would be nice to revive the Guildford Carnival again after all the years, these photos brought back many memories of the enjoyable evenings, when the town centre streets were always packed. Most towns and even villages have kept their carnivals going still.

  2. Dave Middleton Reply

    November 16, 2015 at 5:03 pm

    In the first picture, the sash that the “majorette” is wearing appears to say “Miss Guildford” or something similar, maybe there’s a list of former “Miss Guildford” winners somewhere that might help to identify her?

    I bet her feet were sore at the end of the march in those shoes!

    The Austin / BL 1100 car was registered on 1st January 1967 and looks pretty new in the photo, but of course it may have been well looked after.

    Incidentally, 1967 saw the issue of two registration letters, E and F due to the change of annual registration change from 1st January to 1st August.

    Interestingly, the pedestrian crossing in the picture is an “X-Way Crossing” a forerunner of the Pelican Crossing we have now.

    Instead of a green light for motorists, it had a white cross so as to distinguish it from regular traffic lights.

    This was discontinued quite quickly due to confusion amongst motorists and pressure from motoring organisations such as the AA and RAC and a standard green light was fitted instead.

    Wikipedia tells us that the first actual Pelican Crossing was installed in the UK in 1969, so the picture must date from around that time or shortly before.

  3. Dave Middleton Reply

    November 24, 2015 at 9:55 pm

    The link to this page has been circulated to the Surrey Police Retired Comrades Association – Fingers crossed someone will know who the Bobby is, or even be able to stand up and proclaim, “I’m Spartacus”.

  4. Jeff Hemmings Reply

    December 2, 2015 at 7:30 am

    I am that young, slim, former-apparition-of-myself police officer.

    I was stationed at Guildford following my initial posting from training in June 1967 and moved to Egham upon marriage in October 1968.

    Not unusually, I cannot remember the event, but note with interest, that I was the only person in the photograph who is in-step!

    I concur with other contacts of your newspaper that it would be wonderful to renew these community binding events and bring back tradition and colour to Guildford.

    I note with interest Dave Middleton’s comment’…..or even be able to stand up and proclaim, ‘I’m Spartacus’.

    Happily, at my advanced years I am currently experiencing excellent health, but Spartacus is a legion too far.

  5. Dave Middleton Reply

    December 4, 2015 at 1:50 pm

    It’s excellent that Jeff has been able to identify himself in the picture.

    Assuming the parade was a part of the County Show, his service dates at Guildford date the picture to May 1968. That is assuming the County Show took place in May that year, as it does nowadays.

    Now we just have to identify the majorette / Miss Guildford and of course the balloon man!

  6. Rob Sheppard Reply

    December 8, 2015 at 9:10 am

    The bus belonged to the Guildbury Players (now Guildburys Theatre Company) and the year was definitely 1967 because we’re clearly promoting our production in that year of Paint Your Wagon.

    Members clearly seen are Steve and Nick Pearne, David Farncombe, David Humphreys, Howard Attfield, Graham Long and Della Wilson.

    I might be in there somewhere as that was my first show with the group.

    Rob Sheppard the the chairman of the Guildburys Theatre Group.

  7. Dave Middleton Reply

    December 9, 2015 at 11:04 pm

    I can see that there’s “GP” on the car in front of the bus, presumably for “Guildbury Players”, but the bus has “Guildford Cornwall” on the front?

    I don’t see the connection to Paint Your Wagon?

    The large key on the windscreen doesn’t seem to connect to that show either. None of the costumes, apart from the “Cowboy” hat seem very Paint Your Wagon either?

    The Cornish rebellion of 1497 and the subsequent clash with the King’s forces at Guildford took place in June of that year, so maybe the bus is to do with that event.

    If it were being commemorated, it would make sense that it would be in June.

    Did the county show used to be held in June back then – assuming the parade is indeed to do with the county show?

  8. Graham Steer Reply

    July 24, 2017 at 10:46 pm

    Yes it was Guildford Sea Cadets’ band. I was the bugler at the back

  9. Robert Hicks Reply

    December 31, 2020 at 12:12 am

    I can see Jan Cowsky, Paul Cosha, Coxy and Smoothy Turner are in this picture, so this is definitely the Guildford Sea Cadet band. I would say around 1968-70.

  10. Aubrey Leahy Reply

    May 24, 2022 at 9:06 pm

    Definitely the Sea Cadets “SCC Queen Charlotte” band. Name appears on the cap bands. On October 21, 1958 we performed as a guard of honour in Trafalgar Square.

    The band that day however was from the Royal Marines. Between the end of the parades and an evening visit to the London Palladium we were free to roam.

    Since the cap bands identified us as mostly 14 years young sea cadets, prior to entering a pub we removed them. Nobody was fooled but neither did anyone refuse us service. Great day out.

    Ready Aye Ready.

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