Tuesday, 7 December 2010

Zodiac, Weston-Super-Mare

There are all sorts of Victorian treasures to spot above ground level in Weston-Super-Mare, but I'm a little baffled by this one. Above a shop in West Street are Aries and Taurus, illustrated with appropriate reliefs; to either end the banners state that the building dates from 'A.D. 1869'.

I haven't found any information about this facade, so have no idea why the signs of the zodiac; why those particular signs; or who chose them. If anyone has any ideas, I'd love to learn more!


Philip Wilkinson said...

What was the shop? Are those butchers' tools, and if so, was it owned by a butcher who choose these signs of the zodiac simply because his job was chopping up sheep (or rams) and cattle?

CarolineLD said...

Oh, that would make sense. I must try to find an old trade directory.

finney said...

Looks like No 28 West street which in the 1920,s was the Cogle bros, In 1943 the business was sold by auction.
Telephone directory for 1948 give Reynolds Ltd (somerset),
I have a photo but it does not show the mouldings above

Unknown said...

The shop is Number 13 . Not 28 , how do I know ? , we rent it , and are keen to find its history , I too thought butcher , but where the Taurus and Aries come from ?

CarolineLD said...

If you do find out more, I'd love to know!

Unknown said...

I used to live there in the late 80's /early 90's. 11a West Street. I was told it was an old slaughterhouse, but have not been able to confirm that or find any other info on it.
There was a large grey tiled fireplace in the lounge, with leaping stags in relief. Each room had a smaller fireplace. The dining room had a large wooden mantle over the fire, and the tiny kitchen had a trap door that was over the passage way between the shops.
In the attics I found copious amounts of soot, along with some very old travelling chests, magazines & newspapers from early 1900's to 1930ish.
Behind the flat were some very low old buildings that are hidden from view from the roads.
Whether or not you believe in ghosts (I don't), there were some very strange goings on there. Objects moved, taps turned on full in the middle of the night, strange noises. I once came home from work to find a 10" high perfect mound of pine needles in the middle of the lounge, 3 months after Christmas!
The owner at that time also owned what was the antique shop below.