Giving Ryde's past to the future

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Opening Times

Opening Hours

Monday - Saturday
11am - 4pm

As a mark of respect, the Museum will be closed on Monday, 21 January 2019, due to the funeral of Diana Wood, the founder of the Historic Ryde Society.

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!

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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.

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.  
Contact Us
Tel: (00)44 01983 717435 Web: www.historicrydesociety.com eMail: admin@historicrydesociety.com
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Progress.

Progress.

Hampshire Telegraph February 8 1813

To the Landholders of the Isle of Wight
I address you by a title which is common to us all, on a topic of common interest, whether we occupy ten, a hundred, or a thousand Acres. I mean the intended plan of introducing Turnpikes into our Island, against which I will offer the arguments, which have determined me to dissent.
Our insular situation precludes the application of the general principles of Turnpike Roads – the Island is no thoroughfare: it has not and cannot have internal manufactures, or trade beyond the mere transport of its surplus agricultural produce to the nearest shore: it has hitherto been free from all projects except the imaginary Pier of Ryde, and the ineffective state of this solitary speculation might give no useless hint to our Turnpike Schemes.
For seven months in the year our own Waggons only rumble in our Ruts, for the other five it is true our Roads are covered with the Carriages of the curious and gay, rattling in endless succession, and I much suspect that a Tax upon these Foreigners is counted as one of our resources: but the resource is precarious and temporary; the expense of Toll-gatherers and Toll-gates permanent.
It is now about 30 years, since our little spot emerged from its humbler and happier obscurity, to the sphere of Fashion, Taste and Wealth. Our unturnpiked Roads have conveyed our Summerlings into every cranny and corner of the place, until retirement has retired from our recesses, and privacy has been laid as bare as some of our Female Fashionable Visitants: until we are become the Inhabitants of one vast Vauxhall, parading and paraded in the roundabout of our Gardens, in endless display of the little Rock and Waterwork of our Scenery.
It is entirely within recollection when one Coach and four was the fashionable, the dashing, and the solitary equipage of Ryde, which can now sport its two daily Stages, and three separate and superb establishments of Coffee House, Tavern, and Hotel; from a hack Poney, a paltry Gig, with a ragged, breeched Boy behind, or a Chaise from Newport, bespoke by the messenger of the preceding week, we have started up into Post Chaises, and Sociables, with liveried and gold beaded drivers, and our Lacquey of the Gates, instead of bumping his bottom on the board of a springless Whiskey, places that delicate and unstable part on the genteeler cushion of a Saddle. Our shores are covered with Mansions: Ryde and Cowes have started into rapid opulence, Shanklin is converted into a Village of Villas. Taste embattles himself in his Castle, or squats in his Cottage: and the bowed and balconied window of the Marine of last year, is jostled from its prospect, by the upstart of this year, which must in its turn give way to its affronting successor, whose rudiments are perhaps already marked out on the sod before its door. – All these miracles have been performed without the Intervention of Turnpikes! What then is the necessity? Let me now say, why I think that they will produce litigation and hostility in a society where there exists at present an enviable scarcity of dispute.
1st. The Roads, of some Parishes of the Island, are in much better condition than those of others. The former Parishes will not very easily agree to Tax themselves for the negligence of the latter, or the smaller Parishes for the benefit of the larger.
2nd. As the Head-quarters of the Commissioners, must be at Newport, the attendance from distant Parishes, especially on disputed cases, will be very burthensome.
3rd. The allotments on the Roads will be matter of perpetual jealousy and discontent, especially in the first stated case – as between Parishes, the Roads of which are in different conditions.
4th. The spirit of discontent having once arisen, what is to prevent any individual from indicting any Public Road, which is got in the best repair for any sort of Carriage? An Inhabitant will understand not. – This source of expense and animosity will be endless.An Inhabiatant knows that the great line of Road removing from Cowes through Newport, Wootton Bridge, Ryde, St Helens, Brading and Shanklin to Bonchurch, and the Undercliff, is for the most part in excellent repair, and that where it is steep, narrow, or rough, the removal of these defects would laugh our puny purse to scorn, even when garnished with all the plunder of the Holiday makers; he knows too, that there are many Public Roads, which are in indifferent repair for Waggons, and impractical for a Carriage, what may he say? “If I was let alone, I would leave others alone, I would not annoy my neighbours of the next Parish, by forcing them to repair a road for me when I can pass by a more frequented way, although not so near, so convenient, or so pleasant; this I do for good neighbourhood, but sweep all the Roads of the Island into one bag, and my neighbourly feeling is at an end. I don’t like your general Rate, but if you will have that, I will have my Road.
There are numerous Roads to which this may be applied, Roads not deserted, but less frequented, which must always be used by the neighbourhood, and therefore cannot be shut up and I could name some, the conveyance by which I should prefer, but the repair of which would fall very heavy on the funds.
It may be said “Your whole argument amounts to this, you choose to have bad Roads”. The answer is “The Roads are full good enough for all purposes of internal communication, and the high road to our shores, for the most part excellent. The money and ill blood, which will be raised by a compulsory system, cannot be calculated, until that system is brought into action. There is no benefit adequate to all this turmoil, ‘Pray leave us alone.’
If I have said enough to induce you to resist, remember that “Prevention is better than Cure”. An early declaration and a firm moderate conduct may stop the application to Parliament, and that would save an ocean of expense. Advertise a Meeting of Persons disapproving the Turnpike Scheme; pass the necessary Resolutions, and subscribe, subscribe, subscribe; without this you do nothing, or without even calling a formal Meeting, and those who are inclined to join this opposition should make their sentiments known. It is a fact, that much real and respectable disinclination to this scheme exists. it only requires to be embodied, to be taken by the hand and brought forth, with that same consciouness of the right to act on our own opinions, which the promotors of the new scheme have to act on theirs. It is a fair subject for diversity of opinion, but until stronger arguments are abduced than I have hitherto appeared for the necessity of this innovation I shall not envy the Roads of the Continent  – there is no accounting for tastes, and as the Inhabitants of the inland parts of England are said to love stale fish, so shall I with insular perversity hope still to enjoy the jumbling and jolting of our
OLD RUTS
January 22 1813

 

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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.

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