Giving Ryde's past to the future

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Opening Times

Opening Hours

Monday - Saturday
11am - 4pm

Also Sundays in

July & August

Ryde District Heritage Centre is entirely run by volunteers.

Stair Lift Facility

Mayor-Milburn-on-the-stairlift

The new stairlift officially opened on 23rd of May 2014 by Ryde’s Mayor at the time, Cllr Roi Milburn.
Ring the bell for help!

Easy Fund Raising Logo

The Royal Victoria Arcade

The Royal Victoria Arcade

The Royal Victoria Arcade - Victorian Timeline, the first 70 years of the Royal Victoria Arcade from the laying of the foundation stone to 1903

An etching of the original arcade frontage

1835 -May - Foundation Stone Ceremony
1836 - July - Opening Ceremony
1856 - July - Henry Knight buys the arcade for £3000
1856 - October - frontage altered
1857 - October - William Lacy the first Arcade photographer moves into a workshop in the basement
1862 -  March - Cornelius Jabez Hughes takes over Number 6 after Lacy's death, in November 1861
1864 -  Henry Knight's Fairy Fountain in the rotunda

An etching of the 1840s arcade interior

1880 - Henry patents tin opener and sells it to Crosse and Blackwell
1890 - Henry Knight goes bankrupt and hands over the arcade to his daughters
1895 - Death of Henry Knight
1903 - Arcade up for sale
2013-06-03T00:23:37+00:00
The Royal Victoria Arcade The Royal Victoria Arcade - Victorian Timeline, the first 70 years of the Royal Victoria Arcade from the laying of the foundation stone to 1903 1835 -May - Foundation Stone Ceremony 1836 - July - Opening Ceremony 1856 - July - Henry Knight buys the arcade for £3000 1856 - October - frontage altered 1857 - October - William Lacy the first Arcade photographer moves into a workshop in the basement 1862 -  March - Cornelius Jabez Hughes takes over Number 6 after Lacy's death, in November 1861 1864 -  Henry Knight's Fairy Fountain in the rotunda 1880 - Henry patents tin opener and sells it to Crosse and Blackwell 1890 - Henry Knight goes bankrupt and hands over the arcade to his daughters 1895 - Death of Henry Knight 1903 - Arcade up for sale

Original Logo

Original Logo

The original artwork for the logo was drawn by Lynne Phillips from a design on two shelters on Ryde Pier, and adapted by Depth.

Historic Ryde Society Logo

The original logo copyright Lynne Phillips

Cyril the Sea Serpent on Ryde Pier

 
2013-06-03T00:26:48+00:00
Original Logo The original artwork for the logo was drawn by Lynne Phillips from a design on two shelters on Ryde Pier, and adapted by Depth.  

Royal Ryde

Royal Ryde

Royal Ryde, the link to Queen Victoria.

The Duchess of Kent, mother of Queen Victoria, first brought her to stay at Norris Castle on the Isle of Wight in 1831. When it was decided to build the arcade in Ryde, Princess Victoria was asked whether she would agree to it being named for her. This is why, at the rear of the arcade, there is a window with a monogram PV - Princess Victoria.

The Princess Victoria Window Royal Victoria Arcade

The crest on the front of the arcade is that of Princess Victoria. A similar crest can be seen in Bath, much smaller and less colourful than the one in Ryde. The lion and the unicorn are also facing different directions.

Etching from 1874 of Crown Prince and Princess

 
2013-06-03T00:31:46+00:00
Royal Ryde Royal Ryde, the link to Queen Victoria. The Duchess of Kent, mother of Queen Victoria, first brought her to stay at Norris Castle on the Isle of Wight in 1831. When it was decided to build the arcade in Ryde, Princess Victoria was asked whether she would agree to it being named for her. This is why, at the rear of the arcade, there is a window with a monogram PV - Princess Victoria. The crest on the front of the arcade is that of Princess Victoria. A similar crest can be seen in Bath, much smaller and less colourful than the one in Ryde. The lion and the unicorn are also facing different directions.  

Royal visitors

Royal Visitors in Ryde


It is said that the Duchess of Kent first brought her daughter to the Isle of Wight so that she did not attend the coronation of her Uncle, William IV. On this, and subsequent occasions, they stayed at Norris Castle, in East Cowes.

It is also known that Victoria used rooms in The Royal Kent Hotel, now the Royal Squadron, on at least one occasion.

Etching of the Royal Kent Hotel, Union Street, Ryde
2013-06-03T00:40:11+00:00
Royal Visitors in Ryde It is said that the Duchess of Kent first brought her daughter to the Isle of Wight so that she did not attend the coronation of her Uncle, William IV. On this, and subsequent occasions, they stayed at Norris Castle, in East Cowes. It is also known that Victoria used rooms in The Royal Kent Hotel, now the Royal Squadron, on at least one occasion.

RYDE TREASURES

RYDE TREASURES


All images reproduced with permission of IW Heritage Service, to whom we are very grateful.

A gown worn by a recent Mayor of the Borough of Ryde.

Ryde Borough Mayor's Robe

Ryde Town Sergeant's Hat.

Ryde Town Sargent Top Hat

 
2013-06-03T00:47:20+00:00
RYDE TREASURES All images reproduced with permission of IW Heritage Service, to whom we are very grateful. A gown worn by a recent Mayor of the Borough of Ryde. Ryde Town Sergeant's Hat.  

Ryde Entertainment

Ryde Entertainment

Fine Art Exhibition at Ryde 1881

The inhabitants of 19th century Ryde enjoyed entertainment............... Bands played on the pier every evening, There were plays in the Theatre, concerts in the Town Hall, lectures and exhibitions in the Victoria Rooms and circuses on the Strand from the 1850s onwards. Local gentry also held balls and soirees in their homes - descriptions of which appeared in the local press the following week. Celebrities came from Paris and London to appear in Ryde - Mrs Jordan, Ellen Terry, Oscar Wilde, General Tom Thumb, The Christy Minstrels all appeared in Ryde following successful runs in London and over seas........Ryde was the place to be after London, Paris, New York! Hairdressers and other businessmen also followed the same route.
2013-06-03T00:57:12+00:00
Ryde Entertainment The inhabitants of 19th century Ryde enjoyed entertainment............... Bands played on the pier every evening, There were plays in the Theatre, concerts in the Town Hall, lectures and exhibitions in the Victoria Rooms and circuses on the Strand from the 1850s onwards. Local gentry also held balls and soirees in their homes - descriptions of which appeared in the local press the following week. Celebrities came from Paris and London to appear in Ryde - Mrs Jordan, Ellen Terry, Oscar Wilde, General Tom Thumb, The Christy Minstrels all appeared in Ryde following successful runs in London and over seas........Ryde was the place to be after London, Paris, New York! Hairdressers and other businessmen also followed the same route.

Railings

Railings

Cyril the sea Serpent on Ryde Pier

The railings on the pier were installed in 1895. It is believed the shelters were built at the same time, by Isaac Barton, a Mayor of Ryde, to a design by local architect Thomas Hellyer. Cyril the sea serpent is the guide for the Children's Page of the website.
2013-06-03T01:02:06+00:00
Railings The railings on the pier were installed in 1895. It is believed the shelters were built at the same time, by Isaac Barton, a Mayor of Ryde, to a design by local architect Thomas Hellyer. Cyril the sea serpent is the guide for the Children's Page of the website.

Local Newspapers

Local Newspapers

Ventilator Royals visit July 19 1873

Ryde and the Isle of Wight have a long history of local newspaper printing. The Isle of Wight Observer was begun in 1846, although not established until 1852.  It was printed at The Colonnade, Ryde by George and subsequently, Hannah Butler. From the first issue, Fashionable Lists were printed weekly to show residents and visitors who was in town. The Isle of Wight Times, Ventilator, Mercury, Isle of Wight Advertiser, and County Press followed at later dates. These newspapers, or images of them, can be consulted at the Isle of Wight County Record Office, Newport.

There are also newspapers with Isle of Wight articles which can be viewed on the British Library website British Newspapers Online
2013-06-03T01:04:32+00:00
Local Newspapers Ryde and the Isle of Wight have a long history of local newspaper printing. The Isle of Wight Observer was begun in 1846, although not established until 1852.  It was printed at The Colonnade, Ryde by George and subsequently, Hannah Butler. From the first issue, Fashionable Lists were printed weekly to show residents and visitors who was in town. The Isle of Wight Times, Ventilator, Mercury, Isle of Wight Advertiser, and County Press followed at later dates. These newspapers, or images of them, can be consulted at the Isle of Wight County Record Office, Newport. There are also newspapers with Isle of Wight articles which can be viewed on the British Library website British Newspapers Online

Historic Photographs

Historic Photographs

Young Boy by Matthews

Child photographed by Matthews
Child photographed by Matthews

Child on a horse Photographed by Knight

More  historic photographs appear in the  Galleries.

Child photographed by Knight
2013-06-02T23:28:06+00:00
Historic Photographs More  historic photographs appear in the  Galleries.

The Brigstocke China

The Brigstocke China

All images reproduced with permission of IW Heritage Service, to whom we are very grateful.

Brigstoke Terrace China Group front view

The Brigstocke China comprises pieces collected by the family over many years, reflecting catholic tastes.

Brigstoke Terrace China Group side view

Brigstoke Terrace China Group reverse view

Brigstoke Terrace China Hare

Brigstoke Terrace China Horse
2013-06-02T23:46:00+00:00
The Brigstocke China All images reproduced with permission of IW Heritage Service, to whom we are very grateful. The Brigstocke China comprises pieces collected by the family over many years, reflecting catholic tastes.
Contact Us
Tel: (00)44 01983 717435 Web: www.historicrydesociety.com eMail: admin@historicrydesociety.com

Isle of Wight Railway

The history of railways on the Isle of Wight is already the subject of numerous publications. Here we will give an insight into how it was regarded by the people of the time.

Notice the ghostly figure on the left of this photograph…………This image would have necessitated a long exposure, and the man in question obviously became bored and moved! No hard hats, either!

Ryde Pier Tramcar

Ryde Pier Tramcar

Isle of Wight Observer – July 23 1864

ISLE OF WIGHT RAILWAY

Everybody is anxious to know when the Railway is to be opened from Ryde to Shanklin; but none are more anxious on that head than the directors of the Company. The fact is that the contractor – whether he could help it or not we have no evidence to decide – has not kept faith; so that, instead of the opening being on the 1st of May, the earliest possible time will be the 1st of August. This procrastination is a serious loss to the Company and a great inconvenience to the public. However, we went over the head quarters of the line at Ryde on Thursday in company with Mr Bourne, the manager, who courteously gave us every information, and so far as that locality is concerned there is no reason why the line should not be opened at once. There were three powerful and splendid engines, named “Ryde”, “Sandown”, and “Shanklin” in readiness and only waiting for the order to start. The carriages are roomy, comfortable, well ventilated, and glazed with plate glass along the whole length on each side, so as to allow travellers a full view of the country on the journey. The luggage wagons combine all the modern improvements for loading and unloading. If the amount of traffic should correspond to the provision made for it in the rolling stock, it will be very considerable; and we entertain no doubt whatever on that head. The greatest precautions are taken against the possibility of accidents, not only by a most comprehensive yet simple code of rules for every class of servants, but by the adoption of the electric telegraph along the line, which will afford much additional accommodation to the vicinity of Brading, Sandown and Shanklin. The company propose to run eleven trains a day each way, starting from Ryde at 8am, and Shanklin at 8.30; and running so late as 7.20pm from Ryde and 8pm from Shanklin. There will be only two trains each way on Sundays. All the chief points as to the trains will be modified by experience; for instance, we suspect it will be found that the earliest trains must be from Shanklin, in order to save the early up trains to London, and the latest trains must be from Ryde to convey passengers by the late trains down from London. Passengers, newspapers, parcels, (especially of perishable commodities) by the early down trains from London will reach the Undercliff shortly after 1. The fares seem to us very reasonable, viz. Ryde to Shanklin, 1s 8d. first class, 1s. second class, 8d. third class; return first class 2s 6d, second class 2s 6d. The coach fare to Ventnor will be 1s each way; so that a return, second-class ticket to Ventnor, all charges included, will be only 4s, but of course, till the line be opened throughout there will only be sufficient coach service to meet the principal London up and down trains. The chief advantage, however, of the line will be in the saving of time: for instance, a person may leave Ryde at 5pm and go to Shanklin, where he may have two hours-and-a-half for business or pleasure and return by the 8pm train, and be home at 8.30pm. We are aware that this description is very tantalising, and our object is merely to afford all the information in our power, for the public are becoming exceedingly impatient; and, to allay such impatience so far as in our power, we may state that the contractor has 710 men on his books in order to complete the work speedily. To conclude: we have every reason to believe that, early in the ensuing week, the opening day will be announced, and the sooner the better.

1850s Railway news items

1860s Railway news

1870s Railway news

1880s Railway news

1890s Railway news

20th Century Railway news

Local Giving - Charity begins at home logo

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Upcoming Events
Nov
30
Thu
7:30 PM The Quiz! @ Yelf's Hotel
The Quiz! @ Yelf's Hotel
Nov 30 @ 7:30 PM – 9:30 PM
Raising funds for the Historic Centre! Doors open at 7.00 pm.
Dec
28
Thu
7:30 PM The Quiz! @ Yelf's Hotel
The Quiz! @ Yelf's Hotel
Dec 28 @ 7:30 PM – 9:30 PM
Raising funds for the Historic Centre! Doors open at 7.00 pm.
Jan
25
Thu
7:30 PM The Quiz! @ Yelf's Hotel
The Quiz! @ Yelf's Hotel
Jan 25 @ 7:30 PM – 9:30 PM
Raising funds for the Historic Centre! Doors open at 7.00 pm.
Feb
22
Thu
7:30 PM The Quiz! @ Yelf's Hotel
The Quiz! @ Yelf's Hotel
Feb 22 @ 7:30 PM – 9:30 PM
Raising funds for the Historic Centre! Doors open at 7.00 pm.
Mar
29
Thu
7:30 PM The Quiz! @ Yelf's Hotel
The Quiz! @ Yelf's Hotel
Mar 29 @ 7:30 PM – 9:30 PM
Raising funds for the Historic Centre! Doors open at 7.00 pm.
Apr
26
Thu
7:30 PM The Quiz! @ Yelf's Hotel
The Quiz! @ Yelf's Hotel
Apr 26 @ 7:30 PM – 9:30 PM
Raising funds for the Historic Centre! Doors open at 7.00 pm.
May
31
Thu
7:30 PM The Quiz! @ Yelf's Hotel
The Quiz! @ Yelf's Hotel
May 31 @ 7:30 PM – 9:30 PM
Raising funds for the Historic Centre! Doors open at 7.00 pm.
Jun
28
Thu
7:30 PM The Quiz! @ Yelf's Hotel
The Quiz! @ Yelf's Hotel
Jun 28 @ 7:30 PM – 9:30 PM
Raising funds for the Historic Centre! Doors open at 7.00 pm.
Centre Opening
HRH Prince Richard, Duke of Gloucester opened the first extension of Ryde District Heritage Centre on Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Andrew and Brian chat to HRH The Duke of Gloucester and the Lord Lieutenant

The logo was drawn by Lynne Phillips from a design on the two shelters on Ryde Pier, and digitised by Depth.

Historic Ryde Society Logo

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