Wiltshire newspapers | British Newspaper Archive


Hot Off The Press – New Titles This Week

This week at The Archive we are delighted to welcome two brand new Wiltshire newspapers to our regional holdings, as we have added 112,971 brand new pages to our collection in all, with updates to our newspapers from across England, Wales and Scotland.

So read on to discover more about our duo of new Wiltshire newspapers, and also to learn which of our existing titles have been updated. Meanwhile, this week also marks 110 years since the National Union of Women’s Suffrage Societies’ pilgrimage of 50,000 women to Hyde Park in order to demand the vote, which you can learn more about through our new pages.

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The first of our new Wiltshire newspapers this week is the Wiltshire County Mirror, which was first published in 1833 but relaunched on 10 February 1852, incorporating ‘the Salisbury & Wiltshire Herald, and General Advertiser for Wilts, Hants, Dorset, and the West of England.’ Published in the medieval cathedral city of Salisbury every Tuesday at the cost of five pence, the Wiltshire County Mirror promised to ‘exhibit the events and topics of the day with due regard to their national importance and local interest,’ whilst combining ‘the general features of a London weekly journal and the particular objects of a local newspaper.’

True to its dual aims, the Wiltshire County Mirror featured the latest local news from the likes of the Salisbury County Petty Sessions, Salisbury cathedral, the Salisbury Choral Society, the Salisbury Cheese Market, and the Basingstoke and Salisbury Railway, alongside national and international news. The eight pages of the Wiltshire newspaper were also filled with special interest features, covering ‘contemporary literature and politics,’ poetry, ‘music and the arts,’ ‘sporting intelligence,’ and ‘diocesan and ecclesiastical intelligence.’

By the 1880s the Wiltshire County Mirror had reduced its price to two pence, and it was known as a Conservative paper which circulated ‘through Salisbury and district.’ By 1911 the newspaper had been incorporated into the newly formed Wiltshire News.

The second of our new Wiltshire newspapers this week is the Wiltshire Telegraph, which was founded in the market town of Devizes in 1877. This title was also a Conservative one, and circulated in ‘Devizes and the county.’

Appearing every Saturday at the cost of just one halfpenny, the Wiltshire Telegraph was formed of four pages and printed a combination of national and international news, although the title’s main focus was on local news. To this end, the Wiltshire Telegraph published the latest from the Devizes Borough Petty Sessions, the Wiltshire Quarter Sessions and the Chippenham County Petty Sessions, as well as from nearby towns and villages, like Melksham, Corsham and Manningford Abbots. Like the Wiltshire County Mirror, the newspaper also published notices of births, marriages, and deaths.

That’s it from our duo of new Wiltshire newspapers this week, but from Abergale to Atherstone, from Hamilton to Huddersfield, from Stockport to Stratford-upon-Avon, we have updated fourteen of our existing titles from across England, Wales and Scotland. Highlights this week include the over 42,000 brand new pages that we have added to the Newmarket Journal, whilst we have added over 25,000 brand new pages to the Stratford-upon-Avon Herald, whilst over 19,000 brand new pages have joined the Huddersfield Daily Examiner.

Meanwhile, we have updated two of our Scottish titles this week, namely the West Lothian Courier and the Hamilton Advertiser, whilst new pages join one of our Welsh titles, the Abergele & Pensarn Visitor.

The Great Suffrage Pilgrimage – July 1913

On 26 July 1913 50,000 women gathered in Hyde Park to rally in the name of women’s suffrage. This non-violent protest was the culmination of the Great Pilgrimage of women, who marched to London from across England and Wales, from as far away as Carlisle and Newcastle. The pilgrimage was organised by the National Union of Women’s Suffrage Societies.

New pages added this week to the Stratford-upon-Avon Herald reveal attitudes towards the pilgrimage, which started on 18 June 1913. A month later, on 18 July 1913, the newspaper describes how:

All along the routes taken by the pilgrims many thousands of people have turned out to see them, and, with a few exceptions, they have received a friendly greeting. In some cases misguided persons have failed to realise the distinction between the non-militants and the window-smashing, church-burning, property-destroying suffragists, and this ignorance, coupled with the behaviour of the hooligans, has caused a certain amount of hostility. Very calmly and pluckily, however, the women have faced the crowds, and it is significant that where they have been able to secure a hearing they have commanded attention and respect.

Indeed, the Stratford-upon-Avon Herald is overwhelmingly supportive of the peaceful pilgrimage, which it favours over the violent demonstrative tactics of the suffragettes, writing how ‘the militant section has been put in its proper place in relation to the movement.’ The newspaper notes, furthermore, how the ‘scheme’ was ‘attracting widespread attention and making a very tangible impression.’

The Stratford-upon-Avon Herald ends its piece by stating:

Not only has the Pilgrimage helped to demonstrate the sincerity and conviction of the pilgrims; it has enabled the public to hear at first hand an emphatic repudiation of militancy.

On 1 August 1913 the Stratford-upon-Avon Herald was reporting on the culmination of the pilgrimage, which it described as ‘the imposing demonstration in Hyde Park on Saturday.’

However, the peaceful rally did witness some ‘rowdy scenes,’ the Stratford-upon-Avon Herald describing how:

It is regrettable for the sake of our national reputation for fair play and freedom of speech that in a few centres hooligans should have visited the sins of the militants upon the non-militants. ‘By faith, not by force,’ the suffragist pilgrims seek to obtain the vote. They are peaceful and law-abiding, and put to shame those individuals who demonstrated their love of law and order by howling down inoffensive women. Whatever views we may hold about women’s suffrage we cannot help condemning such behaviours.

The Hyde Park rally saw 78 speakers address the crowds from nineteen different platforms, one for each federation of the National Union of Women’s Suffrage Societies.

Illustrated London News | 2 August 1913

In the end, the Stratford-upon-Avon Herald reflected that the pilgrimage and the subsequent rally were a success, concluding how:

The Pilgrims claim that while militancy is detested the country is favourable to the removal of the sex barrier in regard to the franchise. Be that as it may the Pilgrimage and demonstration have afforded a timely reminder of the fact that the bulk of the women suffragists are constitutionalists, who protest on principle against violence, and senseless destruction of property.

Find out more about the struggle for the vote in our special collection of suffrage newspapers, and much more besides, in the pages of our newspaper Archive today.

New Titles
TitleYears Added
Wiltshire County Mirror1852-1874, 1876-1877, 1889, 1893
Wiltshire Telegraph1879, 1889, 1901-1916
Updated Titles

This week we have updated fourteen of our existing titles.

You can learn more about each of the titles we add to every week by clicking on their names. On each paper’s title page, you can read a FREE sample issue, learn more about our current holdings, and our plans for digitisation.

TitleYears Added
Abergele & Pensarn Visitor1883, 1885-1886, 1891-1892
Atherstone News and Herald1892
Birmingham Journal1831
East Kent Gazette1899, 1901, 1907, 1909, 1911
Hamilton Advertiser1877-1878, 1880-1881, 1883
Haverhill Echo1962
Huddersfield Daily Examiner1882, 1939, 1959, 1964, 1968, 1973
Kensington News and West London Times1872, 1877-1878, 1880-1881, 1883, 1943, 1945
Middlesex County Times1876
Newmarket Journal1929-1942, 1945-1949, 1956-1959, 1961-1965, 1967-1975, 1979-1981
Southern Weekly News1889
Stockport County Express1942
Stratford-upon-Avon Herald1873, 1885, 1890, 1899-1910, 1912-1916, 1935, 1939, 1945, 1951-1962, 1970, 1981-1983, 1987-1988
West Lothian Courier1877-1878, 1880-1881

You can keep up to date with all the latest additions by visiting the recently added page.  You can even look ahead to see what we’re going to add tomorrow.


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