An hotel, omnibus, loiterers and ... a chicken!

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Where: Mayo, Ireland

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When: Unknown

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This delightful shot of an hotel in Westport, County Mayo is a great way to begin a week that promises to be a scorcher here in Ireland. The trees are offering plenty of shade for those who sit and await the departure of the omnibus to ...where? There is a lot of detail in the shot, not least the registration number of the 'bus together with the dress of the people standing about and the piles of leaves should help with the time of year if not the date?

Sometimes it seems that we could have a stand-alone album for our many 'charabanc' images. Or even for this particular 'bus, registration number IM 180, which has been confirmed to be in the service of the Midland Great Western Railway. Other inputs from Niall McAuley, sharon.corbet, sissonni, and Beachcomber help us refine the 50 year catalogue range to less than 5 years in the early 1910s. In this period, the nature of road traffic started to change. And, while it was the 'airbrush' rather than the internal-combustion engine that removed all the manure from a postcard variant of this image, the same cannot be said for the modern StreetView....


Photographer: Robert French

Collection: Lawrence Photograph Collection

Date: Catalogue range c.1865-1914. Certainly after 1908 (AA signage). Likely c.1911 -1914 (char-a-banc)

NLI Ref: L_ROY_11179

You can also view this image, and many thousands of others, on the NLI’s catalogue at catalogue.nli.ie

Info:

Owner: National Library of Ireland on The Commons
Source: Flickr Commons
Views: 18283
robertfrench williamlawrence lawrencecollection lawrencephotographicstudio glassnegative nationallibraryofireland hotel westport comayo ireland omnibus charabanc passengers loiterers loitering chicken nodog leaves commer countymayo northmall carrowbegriver railwayhotel charabancs midlandgwrailway cherrybounce lawrencephotographcollection

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  • profile

    B-59

    • 25/Jun/2018 08:00:55

    Street View 2017

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    Niall McAuley

    • 25/Jun/2018 08:19:32

    Here is IM 181 also in Westport, at the railway station: Bowling along in their motor

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    Niall McAuley

    • 25/Jun/2018 08:23:27

    In the archive, a rear view of todays bus, IM 180, at Leenane. On the back is painted Tourist Car Clifden Westport, so I imagine they are going to Clifden via Leenane.

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    Foxglove

    • 25/Jun/2018 08:57:12

    to a modern eye the piles of horse manure are more numerous than expected. So neatly gathered for collection, the chicken seems to be getting a god feed of grubs/flies.

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    sharon.corbet

    • 25/Jun/2018 09:08:59

    Both IM 180 and IM 181, along with IM 179 are in the 1915 Irish Motor Book as being Char-a-bancs owned by Midland G.W. Railway, Broadstone.

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    Niall McAuley

    • 25/Jun/2018 09:16:55

    Datewise, we found on some of those earlier shots that the Commer factory in Luton only opened in 1906, so we are 1906-1914 somewhere.

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    BeachcomberAustralia

    • 25/Jun/2018 09:28:34

    There is an earlier reverse view of the Station Hotel (no AA sign above the porch) with some auction posters on a tree - catalogue.nli.ie/Record/vtls000322053

  • profile

    Wendy:

    • 25/Jun/2018 09:35:16

    Great sleuthing; as ever!

  • profile

    Niall McAuley

    • 25/Jun/2018 09:36:47

    On the Leenane shot, i noted that the Motor Directory for 1911 only went as far as IM 173. (I can't access the directory online today, but I trust myself from 2 years ago :D) So 1911-1914.

  • profile

    BeachcomberAustralia

    • 25/Jun/2018 09:40:59

    "1908 – Due to the difficulty many motorists were having finding reasonable meals and accommodation while on the road, the AA introduces a new scheme to include “about one thousand of the leading hotels” in the next Members’ Handbook; and to indicate these appointed hotels by a newly designed sign." From - www.theaa.com/hotel-services/about-us/history

  • profile

    sissonni

    • 25/Jun/2018 10:15:10

    [https://www.flickr.com/photos/gnmcauley] www.lennonwylie.co.uk/images/IMD19141915/IMD1914088.jpg Here's the page from the 1914 directory also wayback machine for the 1911 directory web.archive.org/web/20170324050552/http://lurgan-ancestry...

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    CASSIDY PHOTOGRAPHY

    • 25/Jun/2018 10:16:26

    www.flickr.com/photos/nlireland/ "a week that promises to be a scorcher here in Ireland" Are you talking like 15˚C and rain?

  • profile

    Niall McAuley

    • 25/Jun/2018 13:03:15

    https://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected] Looking at that 1914 directory, I see that the IMs go up to 373 as of August 1914. If the 1911-12 directory was also published in the summer like the 14-15 one, these charabancs were registered in the second half of 1911.

  • profile

    Niall McAuley

    • 25/Jun/2018 13:21:02

    In this (earlier?) archive shot, the obscured pub sign Y'S right of the Hotel in this shot says NALLY, which must be Catherine McNally Spirit Merchant.

  • profile

    Niall McAuley

    • 25/Jun/2018 13:25:51

    The shop beyond the Hotel, last one before the junction with Castlebar St looks like a saddlery, and the sign might read R. O'Doherty (right at the limits of megazoom). The census shows one Micheal O'Donnell, Harness Maker.

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    Niall McAuley

    • 25/Jun/2018 13:32:45

    In todays streetview linked by [https://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]] above, the hotel is called Jeffer's Hotel, and in the 1911 census, the Head of Family is Patrick Jeffers. Also in the hotel for the census: Harman Willoughby Lance, an Electrical Engineer (!!)

  • profile

    Niall McAuley

    • 25/Jun/2018 13:40:41

    This looks like a photoshopped image from the same day as a postcard with all the poo edited out.

  • profile

    Niall McAuley

    • 25/Jun/2018 13:44:12

    Possible reverse postcard from same day?

  • profile

    sharon.corbet

    • 25/Jun/2018 15:43:53

    [https://www.flickr.com/photos/gnmcauley] As a possible confirmation of 1911 -1914, this article mentions that "The Midland Great Western Railway operated a similar motor charabanc service between Clifden and Westport from 1911; this also ceased operation after the 1916 season.

  • profile

    National Library of Ireland on The Commons

    • 25/Jun/2018 20:24:28

    https://www.flickr.com/photos/cassidyphotography That might be what we would normally expect but on this occasion we are experiencing temperatures between 23C up to 31C. We are sizzling here in Library Towers and may have to consider opening a window or two soon!

  • profile

    PerfectStills

    • 26/Jun/2018 16:06:57

    Fantastic Image and dialogue to go along with it. Thank you to everyone here, it is much appreciated!

  • profile

    Peter Dewhurst

    • 26/Jun/2018 21:42:45

    Now called Jeffers Hotel - street view: tinyurl.com/ybvuepu6

  • profile

    BeachcomberAustralia

    • 27/Jun/2018 00:06:14

    To further confuse things, earlier streetviews show a bit of recent history - 2009 - with flower boxes etc as the "Westport Antiques, Art & Collectables Centre" - goo.gl/maps/HbicaFjsY8k 2011 - sad, forlorn and for sale - goo.gl/maps/Y7wqJq17iUA2 I think the old-style "Jeffers' Hotel" sign was lurking behind the newer signs. Also at some point the triangular pediment above the porch has gone. The NIAH says "Closed, 2006. For sale, 2010. Now disused." And a bit of early history - "singularly large and noble establishment…built and furnished at the private expense of [Howe Peter Browne (1788-1845), second Marquess of Sligo]' (Parliamentary Gazetteer of Ireland 1846 III, 521)" From - www.buildingsofireland.ie/niah/search.jsp?type=record&...