Local BBC Sites

Page last updated at 17:21 GMT, Monday, 14 February 2011
Biddestone time capsule up for auction
Biddestone capsule to be auctioned off
The time capsule was discovered in a Biddestone cottage that had remained untouched for 40 years

A time capsule of photographs, press cuttings and documents of village life dating from 1917 is being put up for auction.

The collection was discovered during a house clearance at a cottage in the village of Biddestone.

The cottage, formerly the village post office until it closed in 1962, had remained untouched for over 40 years.

"There were cobwebs from floor to ceiling," said auctioneer Richard Edmonds.

"But it is a staggering look back at local history - there are pics of local school children dating to 1924 and we have a press cutting of Mrs Smith from 1971 enjoying a cuppa at a district post office party where she was the oldest guest at 88."

The lot also includes a postcard dated to 1917 showing the Green and the pub, a village shot turned into a Christmas card from the 1950s and one of a gentleman working in a bicycle shed next to the post office believed to be from the 1930s.

"When we were clearing the house and garage - we peered through the undergrowth and there was another door," said Richard.

Auctioneer Richard Edmonds
A tree had to be cut down that was blocking a door

"We had to literally cut down a tree that was blocking the entrance to the outbuilding and your mind starts racing about what you're going to find."

It was here that the auctioneer discovered the original Biddestone post office sign that can be seen in many of the images.

"It's very unusual to find a property completely untouched these days, with no mod cons and very, very basic," said Richard.

"And it's incredible how this has all survived."

Due to be auctioned on Saturday, 19 February the collection of photos and other ephemera is expected to make several hundred pounds.

"Chippenham Museum expressed an interest before we got involved," said Richard.

"And it is remarkable, so it should be of interest to any local historians."

Titanic letter sells for 55,000
18 Apr 10 |  England
Elvis' family film fails to sell
16 Jan 10 |  Wiltshire



Sign in

BBC navigation

Copyright © 2017 BBC. The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.

Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific