A. J. PADGETT & SON (Leigh-on-Sea)
THE “HAVEN” SERIES
My favourite Canvey Island images are those that depict the old crossing area between Canvey Island and South Benfleet on the mainland. This is my favourite of those I possess. There is no printed date on this postcard, but someone has written in pencil, on the reverse side, the date May 1913. This may have been when the card was bought as I suspect the image is slightly older. What I love about this is the horse pulling the carriage laden with bales of hay as nothing says ‘Old’ quite like horse drawn transport. This is another real photographic postcard and thus sells these days for a higher price (£8 - £12 for this one I think).
As you can see they now have a road bridge which crosses at this exact same point. I have used this bridge so many times, more than I care to think about, but until I saw the postcards showing how it used to be I never realised just how hard it used to be to gain access to, and from Canvey Island.
Although you can obviously get postcards for all areas of the country, and the world for that matter, you will have to forgive me for the number of cards from Southend-on-Sea, Canvey Island, Shoeburyness and other areas of Essex, especially down in the bottom right corner of Essex, that appear on my webpage, as this is my county (Southend-on-Sea is my home town and where I have lived for most of my life). This is my area of topographical collecting and I do want to place examples of this type of postcard on the webpage as there are more 'view' postcards out there than any other type of issue. I also want to show you how these older postcards help in a study of local history and how collecting them can be made more of an active part of the hobby by getting out their and matching up 'then' and 'Now' images, like I sometimes do here on the webpage.
This image is from a later period to the postcard above and depicts what was then the only way to gain access to and from Canvey Island when the tide was in. Although rather grandly titled ‘The Ferry’ this was actually just a couple of little rowboats. The distance was little, but the tide current can be quite strong, and I suspect the rowers had a hard time of it at the turn of the tide. This photograph is taken from the Canvey Island side looking across at the slopes of South Benfleet.
PHQ STAMP CARD SET
Issued 7th November 2017
Ok, better late than never. I have finally received my Christmas 2017 stamp cards, as usual used on the front with the relevant stamp cancelled first day of issue with a special hand stamp. The Christmas set is a very large set with some expensive stamps, £1.40, £1.57 and £2.27. This means a used set, like mine here, is also very expensive, £60+. The stamps this year had two elements; a children’s competition entry element and a traditional Madonna and child element (thus the size of the set).
Anyway, here are the cards:
2nd CLASS – CHILDREN’S COMPETITION
Ref: PHQ 436 (1) 11.17
Design by Arwen Wilson, aged 9 years
MADONNA AND CHILD MINIATURE SHEET
Ref: PHQ 436 (13) 11.17
This sheet contains all eight of the Madonna and child stamps. Because of the size of the sheet it requires two cards to have the entire sheet attached and hand stamped. Here is the first of the two cards.
THE ART FILE
It’s Boxing Day, so we are still in the Christmas festivities period, and, in fact, Boxing Day is our families main get together day and we have presents still to give out, in fact more today than yesterday. So, one more related postcard for the season – and, who can resist penguins?
Also, there is a 'glitter' element to this design as well as all the gold areas are shiny gold printed.
ORLANDO DISNEY WORLD
My daughter used the company ‘FunkyPigeon.com’ to produce these two unique personal postcards for me for Christmas. These are the first postcards printed by this company that I have seen. I was aware that they did personal greetings cards but was unaware of the postcard offers that they clearly also do.
My daughter, like me and Jo, loves Walt Disney World and Universal Studios, in fact the whole of that Florida theme park area. This first combination postcard depicts either Jo and I, or us with our daughter at all four of the Disney parks:
Top left – Epcot – during the Food & Wine festival
Bottom Left – Hollywood Studios
Top Right – Animal Kingdom – here we are shown in Pandora, the new(ish) attraction area
Bottom Right – The Magic Kingdom – in front of Cinderella’s Castle
(My daughter was pleased she had included images from each of the Disney parks)
The Centre photograph shows us all, including my youngest son, in the Grand Floridian Hotel, just before eating at the ‘Victoria & Albert’ Restaurant.
MULTIVIEW – POSTCARD
This one has no title and depicts photographs from both Disney and Universal Studios, all taken this year on our holiday:
Top Left – Me and Groot at a ‘Meet & Greet’ in Hollywood Studios (Disney)
Top Centre – at the Mickey Mouse ‘Meet & Greet’, corny, but great and we have done this twice now (obviously Disney – in the Magic Kingdom)
Top Right – At the ‘Raptor Encounter’ experience in the Islands of Adventure, Universal theme park – this is really worth doing and tremendous fun
Bottom Left – the backs of me and my youngest son wearing our ‘Universal Horror Night 2017’ tee-shirts whilst in the queue for ‘The Shinning’ horror house
Bottom Centre – This is my favourite location in the Epcot Park, the rest area in Morocco
Bottom Right – The Animal Kingdom. This is an area in Africa where lots of cycle wheels have been hung up on a wall.
I love these cards, and I am glad to add something unique and personal to my collection. It is also nice to have examples from this company. I nearly always get something ‘Postcard’ related for Christmas, no surprise there, but these cards were a delightful surprise this year.
On Christmas Eve I finally got to see the new film; STAR WARS: THE LAST JEDI, with my daughter at our local Odeon cinema (they had a free poster for all seeing the film, very nice). So far, the only directly connected postcard I have seen is the Royal Mail one reproducing the stamp depicting the cute little creatures called ‘Porg’s’, who add a delightful comic tone to the film and are adorable things (December 2017 Blog 3). But, as the story is heavily related to the older Luke Skywalker I knew I wanted a postcard image of him to celebrate having seen the new film – and this one won.
I bought this card at a Memorabilia show at the NEC Birmingham about two years ago. I have always been able to obtain a wide range of postcards at these shows, although many are printed and published outside of any copyright rules.
So, is the film any good? Before going I had seen some reviews and had spoken with some people who had not enjoyed it, or thought it ‘so-so’. Personally, I disagree, I ‘Really’ enjoyed it, as did my daughter – we both rated it very highly and gave it high marks. I am already looking forward to seeing it again.
MERRY CHRISTMAS TO ONE AND ALL
Santa’s gold belt buckle is printed in shiny gold, the effect of which is far better than this scan captures. This is another postcard recently acquired, and one I have been saving up for today. Hopefully the large red clothed one has been and visited one and all. So, it just leaves me to say again, Merry Christmas to all our webpage viewers.
A nice postcard depicting part of the seafront area of my home town, or at least the area of it called Thorpe Bay, which is to the east of central Southend-on-Sea. The photograph has been artificially coloured, which makes some of the cloths being worn by the people look very bright indeed. The colours yellow and red always seem to be popular on these designs, I think it is because they catch the eye and make the postcards stand out. I liked the look of this one (probably those red and yellow colours!), but it was ‘actually’ the wooden shed like structure, bottom centre right, that caught my eye. It could have been surmised that it was some sort of telephone box except one can clearly be seen about fifteen feet away from it in the bottom right corner of the photograph. Fortunately, one of my wife’s uncles was a police officer in this area many years ago. Having discussed this with him, it is clear, that this was a police box. It was painted blue so what I think has happened here is that whoever painted the original negative of this photograph saw what they took to be a shed like structure and so, painted it brown, like a shed would be. This is a good example of a mistake being made which alters the reality of an image.
SOUTHEND-ON-SEA HOVERCRAFT H-004 Vera Ravine
Published on behalf of the
Ref: RSP 16532
A couple of years ago we took our cub scouts on a visit to the lifeboat station which is at the shore end of the Pier on the seafront at Southend. Whilst we were there the hovercraft depicted here was out on a call, but we were there when it returned, and we got to see it returning into the lifeboat station. The cubs loved this, and as a person fascinated by different forms of transport I also enjoyed the experience. There is also a lifeboat station at the far sea end of the pier, just over a mile away from the Hovercraft station end, and this has an attached RNLI shop and is from where I obtained this postcard for my collection.
HAVE A ROARSOME CHRISTMAS
This was another new Christmas design which I first saw just a couple of months ago. I have been quite impressed with the options for Christmas postcards which ‘paperchase’ have been selling this year. Although, I will admit that I never suspected to add a dinosaur one to my collection!
Christmas Tree Underground Stations design
This clever Christmas tree design appeared in branches of paperchase around the start of November (at least that is when I first started to see these). The idea here is that the underground stations listed are a pun on the words used for actual stations. Obviously, considering the design, these all have an xmas connection. So, you get ‘Santa Pauls’, Silent Knightsbridge and ‘Ho Ho Holborn’. Of course, some station names do not need to be changed, so you also get ‘Angel’, a station I use several times a year as I get off here for the ‘Stampex’ shows. This is a great postcard and it has a matching birthday design, which I will show in January on the webpages birthday date.
Top Left – THE BEACH, ALUM CHINE
Top Right – THE PIER APPROACH & BAY
Bottom Left – THE SQUARE & GARDENS
Bottom Right – THE CLIFFS & SANDS
Centre – THE BOURNEMOUTH BELLE TRAIN
THUNDER & CLAYDEN, BOURNEMOUTH
I bought this one because of the train depicted in the centre segment. It makes this postcard fit into a transport theme despite most of the card being topographical. The Bournemouth Belle train was obviously named over after the town and is therefore a perfect fit for this postcard.
THE ART FILE
Last year I placed a Christmas related postcard on every day in the lead up to the day itself. This year I have been more restrictive with my ‘Xmas’ cards. But, today and tomorrow I will be putting a couple on to make a festive lead into the holidays. This one is a new one I bought just a couple of months ago. This has a very nice ‘London – Christmas’ theme and all the gold printing is shiny, which makes this design much better than this simple scan implies.
REVERSE SIDE OF ABOVE POSTCARD
David has used this year’s 2nd Class Christmas Royal Mail stamp designed by a child. This has been cancelled with a special first day of issue hand stamp from Bethlehem in Wales. There is also a Milford Haven circular date stamp – both dated 7th November 2017 (Milford Haven being where David and Pat reside). I always look forward to receiving these cards as a lot of extra work goes into producing them and I am honoured that I get to receive one.
A HISTORY OF MAGIC EXHIBITION
THE BRITISH LIBRARY
20 October 2017 – 28 February 2018
We got to visit this excellent exhibition, in London, on the 20th December (2017). It was superb and if tickets are still available (unfortunately unlikely) I fully recommend trying to pay a visit. This is one of those perfect mergers of exhibition, exhibition book and exhibition postcard selection (the book is a brilliant representation of the items on display, and is well written and illustrated. It has a retail price of £30, but if you have an Asda Superstore near you check it out as I got my copy at half price – just £15, and this was the day before I attended the exhibition, where I would have had to pay full price!)
To coincide with the exhibition the British Library have opened a ‘Harry Potter’ shop within the premises. Here they have seventeen postcards on sale (75p each). They all depict items which are on display in the exhibition, although only one has a direct Harry Potter illustration. Displayed here are the postcards on sale:
DRAGON / SNAKE RING
The alchemical process, in R. Abrahami Eleazaris Uraltes
Chymisches Werck (Erfurt, 1735)
(Age-Old Chemical Work)
The exhibition is split up into sections which are titled as classes at Hogwarts School. One of these is Potions and Alchemy, from where this illustration comes. The illustration is from a manuscript book published in Germany in 1735 which alleged to be a translation of a lost manuscript allegedly found by a Nicolas Flamel in which was recorded the details of how to make a Philosophers Stone (it was interesting to find that Flamel was possibly a real person and that he was supposed to have found the secrets of the Philosophers Stone – the Harry Potter stories are often tied into legends and stories).
Depicted is a crowned dragon and a serpent forming a circle representing the unification of Primary Matter and the Universal Spirit, apparently essential in the creation of the stone.
Ulisse Aldrovandi, Serpentum et Draconium Historiae
(A History of Snakes and Dragons)
This book was on display and there are two different species of Dragons depicted, one of each page either side. This postcard depicts just one of the dragons (strangely they seem to have picked the least elaborate looking of the two – both are depicted in the exhibitions book). Aldrovani’s book was published after his death, and sixty years after he was asked to examine the body of a dragon found in Bologna in 1572. Ulisse Aldrovandi was a celebrated naturalist and the cousin of the Pope, and his writings and examination of the body lead to this book, with its illustrations.
(Splendour of the Sun)
This is a page from an illuminated manuscript about alchemy which is by an unknown author (although I liked the story that it is often attributed to – apparently in error – a Salomon Trismosin, who was a man who claimed to have used the Philosopher’s Stone to conquer old age). There is text written on the blue scroll coming from the bottle held by the man in the painting. This translates as “Let us ask the four elements of nature”.
Locopletissimi rerum naturalium thesauri accurate description et inconibus artificiosissimis expression, per universam physics historiam
(Amsterdam, 1734 – 1765)
Collage design by Craig Yamey at Museo Design
There were a number of designs on display which depicted snakes, as these animals are strongly connected to the books as the snake is the house animal for Slytherin House at Hogwarts. This postcard was on sale in the special ‘Harry Potter’ shop at the British Library and I think I remember seeing it in the exhibition, but it does not appear in the exhibition book (as far as I can see)
A VIEW OF THE HEAVENS
This is the cover of a boxed collection of 32 star charts, which were printed on cards. This was on display in the section about Astronomy and some of the cards were included in the display. Four of these cards were also reproduced on postcards and are depicted below
EGYPTIAN FORTUNE TELLING
The Old Egyptian Fortune-Teller’s Last Legacy
This image is from a pamphlet which alleged to have reproduced old Egyptian divination techniques. It was by an anonymous British writer. The pamphlet was cheaply made and sold to the middle-classes. Although only the one hand is shown here the pamphlet had another hand depicted on the opposite page (again this is shown in the exhibition book)
The male and female mandrake
In Kitab mawadd al-ilaj
(Baghdad, 14th century)
Mandrakes appear in the second Harry Potter book/film. This image here is from an Arabic book. The book was a version of books written in Greek by Pedanius Dioscorides. The exhibition book contains a number of images of mandrake plants and roots of which this one here is probably the oldest.
HELLEBORUS NIGER LEGI TIMUS
Basilius Besler, Hortus Eystettensis
This is from a large catalogue of plant pictures commissioned in 1611 by Johann Konrad von Gemmingen, Prince Bishop of Eichstatt. The pictures were of plants from the Bishop’s palace garden. The connection here is that Harry Potter forgot to add his syrup of hellebore to his ‘Draught of peace’ (this was just one example of how the library had managed to put on display some fascinating and historic items which they managed to connect to the Harry Potter stories – it also shows how much reference work J.K. Rowling put into the background aspects of the stories).
Unicorns, in Pierre Pomet, Histoire generale des Drogues, traitant des plantes, des animaux et des mineraux
Despite the fact, that this page depicts five different types of unicorn the writer, Pierre Pomet (a Parisian pharmacist and chief apothecary to King Louis XIV of France) did not confirm that they did exist. In his book he acknowledged that items sold as unicorn horns were the horns of a fish [whale] called a narwhal.
The snowy owl
In John James Audubon
‘THE BIRDS OF AMERICA’
(London, 1827 – 38)
I had always wanted to see this book because it is huge. These Snowy Owls are painted life-sized and the book is just over a metre long. It is also the most expensive book in the world as a copy sold in an auction in 2000 for an amazing $8.8 million (a record for any book at auction at the time). Other copies of this book have sold for even more since - $5.6 million (but this was an unbound collection) and £7, 321,250 in 2010. So, it was fantastic to actually see one of what is believed to be only 120 complete books in existence.
Clearly this Snowy Owl painting was chosen because of Harry’s pet owl, Hedwig.
Guy de la Garde
L’Histoire et description du Phoenix
This lovely hand coloured picture comes from a very small sized book which is devoted entirely to this fictional bird. Although only the image is depicted here there is text above and below this image on the page itself. The text reads as follows:
“A description of the Phoenix and its fortunate place of residence, of its long life, pure conversation, excellent beauty, diverse colours, and of its end and remarkable resurrection”. I thought this was a lovely little book.
Artwork by Jim Kay
This postcard depicts the Phoenix painting by Jim Kay, who has illustrated the first three books in the Harry Potter series. This is a study of the Phoenix by the artist. This is also the image that has been used for publicity and promotion of the exhibition and it appears on the guide brochure, advert card for
Book version, this postcard and the exhibition books cover. I think this is the best of the postcards on sale.
REVERSE SIDE OF ABOVE POSTCARD
This is the only postcard which has an official ‘J.K. ROWLING’S WIZARDING WORLD’ logo print on the reverse side and therefore the only card which is ‘actually’ officially linked to this exhibition. The other postcards above could remain on sale long after the exhibition closes as they have a standard reverse layout (as depicted above).
NON POSTCARD ITEM
As you left the exhibition there was a board upon which you could stick up a message card. There were three different cards available, all with a space for the person to write down something about their visit (small pencils were supplied for this purpose). The cards are plain backed and make no mention of the exhibition, but, I picked up one of each to save alongside my postcards and other related exhibition material. I depict all three here to show you what they look like. They were all postcard size.