We have two views within Midsomer Norton High Street, looking in opposite directions over a common area.
The first Photo dates from the early 1900's, and features what I first thought was a hotel on the left, but in 1995 I went looking for this location, at the time the only way being to walk the town looking for a roofline that matched. This was as a part of a commissioned series of photos for a magazine showing 'then and now' photos.
I found the location and just to check, I called in at the toy shop, to ask if the property had at any time been a hotel. The manager in her office had a similar old print to mine and was able to fill me in a little on the history. Angel was not a hotel, but a firm of boot or shoemakers.
1995 view of the same street
15 years has elapsed and I am back in 2010.
Visiting the same scene again 15 years later I had expected a lot of changes, but many of the shops were the same, perhaps the names had changed in some cases but the functions were the same, so Rainbows Toys and Games was now the Entertainer, and next door Ladbrokes the bookmakers were still in residence.
Which brings me to the second photograph of the same street.
I think this was originally a postcard, and has a part of a date stamp 09, so I think we can assume this was taken in or prior to 1909, although the size you have this on the page its difficult to make out, you may just be able to see at the end of the street on the right the Angel board from the old image above.
Moving forward to 1995, and its easier to see the Rainbow Toys and Ladbrooks shops at the far end.
So by 1995 it has changed from a butchers to a shoe shop
Revisiting 15 years later, August 2010, the same shoe shop firm are in residence, and on the right hand side of the street few major changes have occurred. Had I photographed the opposite side the situation would have been completely different in that opposite the toy shop there is now a new supermarket with car park in front, I can't remember what was there in 1995.
The change that has occurred in the 100 years in time, the top photograph seems large while the lower one does not seem as great, although they are of the same street and at the same time. This is a common theme with now and then photos while one image may seem like a new world another just yards away may seem as if it has skipped the time completely.
If you want to explore this street further now, click on the Google Aerial photo link and click on the little orange man and drag it to the High Street by the car park and explore from there with street view.
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