News – Page 2

Lambley Historical Society

Fools and Horses, the Victorian Circus.

A previous talk by Ann Featherstone was so enjoyable she was invited again to our last meeting of 2017. Her subject this time was the Victorian Circus.

The origin of the circus came from an eighteenth century ex-cavalry officer, Philip Astley, who built a wooden riding school in London to display the abilities of his horses, proof of his expert training. This became so successful he built others in Paris and Ireland.

The Victorian Circus had many firm traditions. The performances took place in a 42ft diameter ring surrounded by a barrier called the Ring Fence. The horses and equestrians entered through the Ring Fence  Doors  with the Master of the Horse who was in control of the three hour non-stop performance. Interestingly, a stage was adjacent to, but separate from the Ring on which plays were performed. It was considered the circus world represented real life, the stage the world of imagination. In later years, acrobats and trapeze artists took part and most importantly the Clown. He was the comic high spot often perched on the Ring Fence eyeing and targeting vulnerable people in the audience. The Clown was the comic, the Ringmaster the straight- man, a foretaste of the double act of today’s comedians. The circus had its own rules and conventions. Children, often part of a circus family took part but were never the Clown. Women were popular, again often wives and mothers of circus folk.

Ann taught Drama at University. She always took her students to the world famous Tower Circus at Blackpool as an essential part of their studies. Another tradition?

This lively, amusing, enlightening evening was a fitting end to our 2017 programme.  The applause brought the house down!

Our first meeting of the year is on January 22nd at 7.30pm in the W.I. Hall in Lowdham. The AGM will be followed by the popular Social Evening with a Bring and Share buffet and possibly the Chairman’s Surprise Quiz.  New members are always welcome.

For more information contact Kay on 0115 9313646 or John on 0115 9313066 or visit our website


Monday 8th January

(Note the switch for this month from 1st Monday)

at 7.30pm

All welcome – Raffle & Refreshments


See the chiropodist on

Tuesday 23rd January from 8.30am to 11.30am,
in the Institute, Roe Lane, Woodborough.

Click above to visit the Hyde Barker website

Local Travel Agency Marks 70th Anniversary

Celebrations start at Southwell Travel Show

The seventh annual Southwell Travel Show takes place on Saturday 20 January 2018 at the Saracen’s Head Hotel in Southwell. The event – organised by Hyde Barker Travel of King Street, Southwell – is the first in a series of celebrations marking the travel company’s 70 years in business.

The story of Hyde Barker Travel started when Denzil and Peggy Hyde-Barker returned to England from India after WW2. The first holidays were organised from the front room of their house in Ravenshead just outside Mansfield, and so successful were they that a year later – in 1948 – Denzil and Peggy opened ‘Holiday Travel’ in Belvedere Street, Mansfield.  Son Michael Hyde-Barker joined the firm in 1960 and the company’s name changed to Hyde-Barker Travel; a name that became familiar across the East Midlands as more branches opened in the 1960s and 70s.

The travel industry went through many changes during the 1990s and 2000s, but the Southwell shop continued to thrive thanks to its focus on customer service.  In 2011 the Hyde-Barker family retired and passed ownership to Barbara Cray and John Lightwood, both of whom have decades of travel industry experience.

Barbara and John launched the first Southwell Travel Show in 2012 and each year the number of exhibiting travel companies and visitors have increased.

“In a couple of hours you can virtually travel the world, and talk to experts about your own holiday dreams, whether that is a cruise, a tailor-made trip of a lifetime or an escorted tour,” says Barbara.

This year’s range of 26 travel companies includes well-known operators such as Titan and Riviera, and smaller specialists like Serenity Holidays, Typically Italian and Inside Japan. Hyde Barker staff will be on hand throughout, and appointments are also available at the agency between 3pm-4pm for those who want to discuss specific holiday arrangements.

Entry to the Southwell Travel Show on 20 January is free, and all visitors are invited to take advantage of a £50 discount on any featured holiday booked by 27 February 2018.

See for details.