Christmastime in the Dean (General)

by Jefff @, West London, Middlesex, Thursday, December 26, 2013, 20:36 (2156 days ago)

I've been scouring the Welsh Newspapers site hoping to find joyous reports of Foresters celebrating Christmas festivities, such as carol concerts and pantomimes. However despite my optimism it seems the newspapers were more interested in showing the darker side of life.... perhaps just reflecting the harsh truth that times were very hard for the majority especially during the winter months.
Here's a few of the articles I found, with a bias towards the more pleasant ones, I'll add more as I find them:

Cardiff Weekly Mail, 30 December 1882,
"COLEFORD.
The tenth Christmas show was held on Friday week, and the prizes were awarded in the evening. There were eight classes, and included turkeys, geese, ducks, fowls, apples (dessert), ditto (baking), pears and potatoes- In Class 1, Mrs. Garland of Stowe, took first prize for turkeys. Class 2, geese, Mrs Watkins of Millend, first; table of six ditto, Mrs Watkins was also awarded first; for cottagers, Mrs Watts, Berry Hill, first. Class 3, ducks, Mrs. Watkins, of Millend, first; and Class 4, Mrs. Townsend, of Mark, took first prize. Other prize-makers were Mrs. Miles, Stow; Mrs. Voyce, Whitehall; Mrs. Ebborn, Berry Hill; Mrs. Beard, Coxhuny; Mrs Teague, Trowgreen; Mrs. Vaughan, Cardwell; Mrs. Williams, Oakwood; Mrs Clements, Monk; Mr. H. Fox, Clearwell; Mrs. Townsend, Rock; Mrs Keedwell, St Briavel's; and Mrs Simms, Whitecliff, highly commended. In the fruit classes there were no exhibits worthy of notice. There was a large show of birds, and the poultry generally was of very superior quality. Messrs J.W. Boyce, J. Griffiths, and G. W. Bryant were the judges, and the duties of hon. Secretary were satisfactorily discharged by Mr. Bull."

http://welshnewspapers.llgc.org.uk/en/page/view/3372483/ART154/christmas%20coleford

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Cardiff Times, 13 January 1883,
"COLEFORD.
TUESDAY.— (Before Lieut.-Colonel Davies, Mr. Palmer, Dr. Batten, and Mr. Trotter.)—
Riotous Conduct.
— William Taylor, miner, of Clearwell, was fined 20s. for riotous conduct on the 23rd ult., at the Red Lion, Coleford. Assaults.—Eysom Yar- worth and William Merry, young colliers, of Clear- well, were charged with having, on the 23rd ult., assaulted James Baker, an engine-fitter, of Lane- end. Defendants were fined 20s. each and costs.— George Williams, a collier of Lvdbrook, was charged with assaulting Henrietta Powell, wife of Henry Powell, of the same place. Fined 10s. and costs. Trespassing in Pursuit of Game.—George Jones, of Hillersland, near Coleford, was charged with being in pursuit of game on Christmas Day, upon lands the property of the Crown. Ordered to pay costs.

http://welshnewspapers.llgc.org.uk/en/page/view/3372501/ART202/christmas%20coleford

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Monmouthshire Merlin, 29 December 1860,
"MONMOUTH.
CHRISTMAS AT THE WORKHOUSE. — The poor of this union were regaled on Christmas-day with roast beef and plum pudding, the result of a subscription raised, we believe, for the purpose. The master and matron- Mr. and Mrs. Rogers — contributed all in their power towards the comfort of the inmates on the occasion. In the evening a very nicely decorated Christmas tree was introduced, from the branches of which were suspended little articles of use and interest, which were distributed to the poor inmates, who were evidently much pleased with the manner in which the master and matron bad endeavoured to amuse them.
CHRISTMAS SHOW.- The festive season brought about the usual gay appearance in this town, the grocer's shops being very tastefully set out: while the butchers evidently strove hard to excel each other in their exhibitions of meat. The shops of Mr. W. Cowles, of Church-street, Mr. Webb, of Monnow-street, and in fact all were dressed very prettily with laurels, &c., and the show of meat was extremely good. Mr. William Watkins, of Monnow-street, exhibited a rare assortment of prime beasts. We must not omit to mention that the shops of Mr. Charles Farror, and Mr. Bowen, confectioners, were also tastefully adorned, especially Mr. Bowen's.in which was a fairy temple modelled out of wax. This structure was composed of six tiers or floors, the fairy being a very conspicuous object in the uppermost. The temple was certainly a novel specimen of confectionary art."

http://welshnewspapers.llgc.org.uk/en/page/view/3399359/ART44/christmas%20monmouth

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Illustrated Usk Observer & Raglan Herald, 19 December 1863,
"MONMOUTH.
DEATH FROM BURNING.— The poor old woman, Davis, whose accident we recorded last week, died on Thursday last, from the injuries she sustained.
VOLUNTEER SUPPER.-On Monday, Major King, formerly Captain of the 6th Monmouthshire, entertained the members of the corps at supper, at the King's Head Hotel. There was a numerous company, above 75, and the evening was most pleasantly spent.
CHRISTMAS HOLIDAYS.— The whole of the principal tradesmen of this town, intend closing their establishments the day after Christmas Day, to enable those in their employ, to visit their friends. The great Christmas Market will be held on Wednesday, the 23rd. [See advertisement.]"

http://welshnewspapers.llgc.org.uk/en/page/view/3080894/ART71/christmas%20monmouth


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