Sunday, October 14, 2012

Update to the Gilbey Funeral at Bishops Stortford

A few years ago I acquired two photographs of a grand funeral procession and by carrying out some detailed research, using clues such as poster on the wall, and in windows, in the background was able to identify the place where one of the photographs was taken, and to date it to a very narrow period. While it has not yet been confirmed it seems very likely that the funeral was of Walter Gilbey, of Gilbey's Gin fame, in Bishops Stortford, in November 1914. For details of the interesting story behind the pictures see The Funeral, Bishops Stortford.

 At the time the location of the above picture was not known, although it shows the same hearse with the same floral arrangement on the top. Now David Brown, of Bishops Stortford writes: 
From the houses - particularly the small gable end you can see behind the house on the left, and the windows in the attic - it is pretty clear that the procession is in London Road just south of the junction with South Street (the Whitepost roundabout).  The procession is heading south along London Road and presumably would have turned right up Thorley Hill towards the cemetery
 I have also added a brief news report of the funeral, which took place on November 16th, from The Times and a portrait from the Illustrated London News.


  1. Is it not likely that the report of the funeral in Hertfordshire Mercury 21/11/1914 page 6 would contain further details? Anthony

  2. When I was originally working on these photographs there were no online references to local newspaper press reports online, but now that HALS have put their old miscellaneous items card index on line I see that there have a reference (but not a copy) to the article in the Hertfordshire Mercury you mention.
    I will make a note to check it next time I am in Hertford - but the critical thing (which may not be in the paper) is a picture of the Hearse - as the real problem is not to document Walter Gilbey's funeral, but to confirm that it is the funeral shown in the photographs.


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