Churches of Britain and Ireland


Solved - Archive

Adare, Co. Limerick, the ruins of the Franciscan Friary. Margaret Toffolo's painting of a church was identified by Phil Draper. Link.

Aldeburgh Moot Hall, Suffolk. Identified by Paul Norman - thank you Paul. Julie Reading thought it might be a church on account of the apparent cross at the far end of the roof.

Alderley Edge, Cheshire, St. Philip. Original entry in as follows - "This excellent pencil sketch belongs to Martyn Smith, and he is understandably keen to identify the location. My only suggestions are that it looks Victorian rather than medieval, and that the gate looks more central/southern England than northern England. Can you identify it?" My appreciation to both Phil Draper and Greg Mishevski for providing the identification.

Alston. Ian Thirlwell had an old family photo he wanted identified. The sign next to the path says "Ladies Only", and the shop window awning has "J. Dawson", plus some other indeterminate text on it. May possibly be in Cumbria, as another photo from the same collection showed Alston church. Several correspondents came up with the same answer - it's Alston Town Hall.

Altrincham, St. Margaret's Church. This has now been identified by Martha Appleberry as St. Margaret in Altrincham, Greater Manchester (Cheshire as was). From an old postcard in Steve Bulman's Collection. Link1. Link2.

Ambleside, the short-lived first Mater Amabilis (R.C.). Another from Judy Flynn's Collection, this was identified by the indefatigable Phil Draper, who advises that the church was built in 1934. However, it suffered from structural problems, and was re-built after the war, opening in 1952. At least some of the older church survives in the present-day church - compare the main window and the panels below it with the present building here. This page on the same website has an interesting history, as well as photos of an earlier tin church.

Ambleside, Cumbria, St. Anne. A well-travelled engraving entitled Church Near Ambleside now resides in a Christchurch (New Zealand) Art Gallery. Judy Flynn has advised that it is the former church of St. Anne, later re-built, and offers this in support - link (scroll down to the photo of a window in the present church). Although evidently the same building as in the engraving, either the window or the engraving has been reflected side-to-side - note the windows in the engraving has the extra lower window at the left, and the window has the extra lower window at the right. The re-built church (1812) was made redundant in 1940, and is now in residential use.

Arbroath, St. Margaret. Although Brian Curtis's postcard is labelled as St. Margaret, the location was unknown, until solved by Greg Mishevski and Janet Gimber. On Keptie Street, it opened in 1879 as St. Margaret's Chapel of Ease. In 1990 it merged with Ladyloan St. Columba and took its current name of Arbroath WestKirk. This photo can be usefully compared with the postcard. Both Greg and Janet have supplied a number of links as follows - link1, link2, Grade B listed.Arksey - see Sprotbrough below.

Ashburton, Devon, St. Andrew. Identified by the indefatigable Janet Gimber from an old postcard with no identification clues.

Ashton Hayes (prior to 2004, it was plain Ashton), St. John the Evangelist. This old postcard from Reg Dosell's Collection was identified by Bill Davison. Compare with the photo on this link - when did it lose the small pinnacles on the tower?

Askham, St. Peter, Cumbria. Another church from Ian Thirlwell, this one in a very pretty location, identified by Simon Edwards.

Astley Church - postmarked Manchester. From an old postcard in Steve Bulman's Collection. Thanks to Alan Nixon for his probable identification of this as St. Stephen, Astley, Greater Manchester. It was burnt down 18th June 1961, and replaced by another nearby.

Bacup, St. Saviour's School at New Line. An old postcard in Steve Bulman's Collection, identified by Colin Waters. Link (scroll down the page).

Bagshot, Surrey, St. Anne, An old postcard from Reg Dosell's Collection, "Reigate" had been hand-written on the back. Thanks to Janet Gimber for discovering the real location. Link.

Baldock, St. Mary. Ian Lewis sent in a scan of an old postcard, which he thought might possibly be in Hertfordshire. I thought this one might take quite a while to identify, but both Garry Barr and Janet Gimber have advised that it is St. Mary in Baldock, which is indeed in Herts. Link (see the Picture Gallery).

Ballydonoghue, Co. Kerry, St. Teresa. Cathy Umbers, on behalf of a friend, was hoping to get an identification for a church in County Kerry, probably near Lixnaw (though it definitely isn't Luxnaw church itself). Although they obtained the identification though other sources, I'm glad to be able to include the solution here.

Barking, Suffolk. Long on the website as "another view" of Coddenham Church, Judy Flynn pointed out that it was nothing of the kind. Moving it to the Unknown page elicited rapid responses from Simon Davies and Judy herself, who both identified it as St. Mary, Barking.

Barnham Church. No postmark. A close-up of the church. From an old postcard in Steve Bulman's Collection. Thanks to Noel Walley for identifying this as St. Mary the Virgin at Barnham in West Sussex.

Barton, St. Lawrence. An old postcard without any clues, from Reg Dosell's Collection, and identified by Janet Gimber.

Belvoir: An old postcard with the unhelpful title "Distant View Of Church". A close-up. The card has "Belvoir" hand-written in pencil on the back, but no other inscriptions or postmarks. Aidan Thomson has identified this as All Saints, Knipton. This photo confirms the identification.

Bexley (Greater London). This grade II listed building was (understandably) suspected of being a church. It stands in Bexley (Greater London) and is close to the A2 at 177 TQ 472 742. © Dave Westrap. I'm grateful to Charles Amis and Janet Gimber for advising that despite it being known locally as Chapel House, it has never been a church. The spire was added to a cottage to make the view from the then new Danson House more interesting - this was in the 1770's. The view was obstructed in the 1960's when the A2 was made a dual carriageway. There's even a large stone in the garden which can be mistaken for a tombstone, but is in fact a cover for a well.

Birkenhead, Christ Church. An old postcard from Steve Bulman's Collection. This one caused much discussion, and was finally solved by Phil Draper. It was posted to an address on Anglesey, stamped (though not franked) in the reign of Edward VII (1901-1910). Simon Davies had suggested St. Paul, on Vicarage Gate, Kensington, London, which was damaged during the war, and demolished, but I'd been unable to find any corroborative photos. Brian Curtis had been looking at Old Maps, and deduced that the only way to get a view similar to the postcard would be by looking SSE along Palace Gardens Terrace. Using Google Earth to get a modern view along that road showed that the houses (which look Victorian), didn't have gardens - which the view in the postcard shows. In addition, Brian had found an old illustration here - Plate "19c"- it seemed more ornate than the church in the postcard - examine the spire, and note also the small turret to the left, not apparent in the postcard view. Janet Gimber had also been digging, and found a view of the church looking along Palace Gardens Terrace - proof positive that the postcard is not of St. Paul. Select image 55475 from this page. Phil offered up as proof the following links - link1, link2, link3.

Bodelwyddan, Denbighshire, St. Margaret. James Holdcroft had two unidentified churches in old family photographs. Both probably dating from the 1930's. Identified by Simon Davies and Bill Davison. See also Bridlington Priory below.

Bognor Regis, St. Mary Magdalene at South Bersted. My thanks to Phil Draper for the identification. Simon Davies had suggested an East Sussex location, so wasn't far off the mark. From Steve Bulman's Collection. Link1. Link2.

Boldre, Hants, St. John the Baptist. John Bowdler has some old postcards without any indications of the location. Phil Draper identified John's unknown no. 1.

Bolton, Christ's Church at Harwood. An old postcard, from Reg Dosell's Collection - clearly labelled "Harwood". I was unable to determine which of the numerous Harwood's it is. Thanks to Janet Gimber for the identification.

Bonchurch, Isle of Wight. A small church, not seen in its entirety. Probably from around 1932. From the Colin Waters Collection. Thanks to Bill Davison who has identified it.

Bowers Gifford, Essex, St. Margaret of Antioch. Original entry as follows - "John James has an old family photo, and the people in the photo all lived in Monmouthshire, in the Abertillery/Llanhilleth area. Can you identify the church?" My appreciation to Greg Mishevski and Brian Curtis for the identification, and for not being misled by the Welsh clue!

Bray, Co. Wicklow. This one is clearly labelled Church of the Holy Redeemer, Bray. I thought this was probably the Bray in County Wicklow, since it has a church of the same name, though different appearance. This link says the church was given a new facade sometime in the 20th century. And Janet Gimber has confirmed that this is the correct identification.

Bridlington, Priory Church of St. Mary. A family photo belonging to James Holdcroft, probably taken in the 1930's, and identified by Janet Gimber. Link1. Link2.

Boughton, Northamptonshire, Hawking Tower. Jim Huling had sent in a photo of a building. He wasn't sure if it was a church, and his suspicions were confirmed by Bill Davison. It's an C18 folly in the grounds of Boughton Park. Link.

Brecon Cathedral. This sketch of a church has recently come into Bob Sendall's possession. Aidan Thompson has advised that it is Brecon Cathedral, although the artist has taken some liberties in his interpretation. Link.

Bristol, Holy Trinity at Hotwells. Another of Ian Lewis's war memorial ceremonies, this unknown was identified by Phil Draper as a ceremony on 7 Oct. 1923 showing the unveiling of the Memorial Windows, later destroyed (along with the rest of the church interior) during the blitz. The church was subsequently re-built within the same walls.

Broadstairs, "St. Peter's Church, from the Broadstairs Road" was obviously in Kent. Indeed, Colin Waters, whose collection this old (1865) engraving is in, added further that it was in the Isle of Thanet, but where exactly? Thanks to Thomas Curtis who identified it as St. Peter-in-Thanet, at Broadstairs.

Broadway, Hertfordshire, St. John the Evangelist. Solved by Janet Gimber, here's the original entry - "The first, a rather grand interior, is of St. John's Church, Broadway. There doesn't seem to be a St. John's in either the Worcestershire or Somerset Broadway. There's also a Broadway in Co. Wexford. There are no other clues on the postcard". TL 016 065. Postcard  from Judy Flynn's Collection. Grade II listed - link.

Bromham, Wiltshire, St. Nicholas, on High Street. Another old postcard from Steve Bulman's Collection, this one has the caption deleted as part of the postcard itself. Identified by Greg Mishevski and Simon Davies. Grade I listed - link.

Buckfast Abbey, Devon - Bernard Franklin was looking for the location of a large church he has a photo of, and Simon Davies rapidly supplied it! Simon also ID'd this postcard, from Brian Curtis's collection.

Buckland in the Moor, Devon, St. Peter. Colin MacDermott had asked for help in identifying a church in a photo taken by his father in 1951. At the time he was living in Swindon, but his work took him across the south-west of England. Thanks to Phil Draper for the identification. Link.

Burford, Shropshire, St. Mary. Identified by Phil Draper, he says that the photo on the postcard (from Judy Flynn's Collection) must have been taken at quite an early date, as the  church was enlarged and re-built in 1889. Compare with here and here.

Burnham-on-Sea, St. Andrew. From an old postcard in Steve Bulman's Collection, this was identified by Garry Barr, who advises that the tower leans quite noticeably.

Canwick, Lincolnshire, All Saints. This old postcard is from Reg Dosell's Collection, and from some slight clues, was thought to  possibly be in Yorkshire. However, Janet Gimber has shown that it is of Canwick Church. This link shows some minor changes over the years.

Cassington, Oxfordshire, St. Peter. My appreciation to Brian Curtis and Greg Mishevski for identifying the church. Original entry follows - Andy Davidson is researching for a book on the history of the "Carry On" films. One of them has an aerial shot of a church and is interested in being able to place it. If it's stock footage, then it could be anywhere. If it was taken especially for the film, then it's likely to be in Berkshire, or nearby. Can you help?

Chudleigh, Devon, St. Martin & St. Mary. An un-posted postcard, this one provided no clues at all, and had languished in the Unknown section for several years. Janet Gimber has identified it as Chudleigh church, and provided this link to a photo taken from a similar angle. For additional proof, see Google Earth for the relationship between the church and the field walls. From Steve Bulman's Collection.

Coalville, Leicestershire. Allegedly of Ashby-de-la-Zouch, this old postcard from Reg Dosell's Collection is in fact of Mount St. Bernard Abbey at Coalville. Thanks to Bill Davison for the identification. Link.

Cockington, Devon, St. George and St. Mary. Rescued from destruction by Ian Lewis, these three photos had no clues at all to their location. Janet Gimber has identified  1 and 3 as St. Wyllow, Lanteglos-by-Fowey, Cornwall, and 2 as Cockington.

Colliers Wood, Greater London, Christ Church: An unknown of long-standing, from an old postcard, Steve Bulman's Collection. A church with an unusual spire - and the sender has written this - "I daresay you recognize the old church, although they have omitted to print the name....". Although originally identified as St. Augustine in Dudley, it certainly wasn't that, since a photo has now been sent in, and it can be seen on the Dudley page. Thanks are due to Garry Barr for providing the final identification, and this confirmatory Link.

Colne, Lancashire, St. Bartholomew. An old postcard from Steve Bulman's Collection (franked 1904) was identified by Janet Gimber.

Corseyard Farm and Dairy, near Gatheouse of Fleet, Dumfries & Galloway. John Bowdler had sent in some photos (1, 2) of a possible church, probably in the Dumfries & Galloway area. Even if it isn't a church, it's certainly an interesting building! Both Janet Gimber and Bill Davison have advised that it's a model dairy farm, dating from 1911-1914, and known locally as the "coo palace". Bill gives a reference in John R. Hume's book "Dumfries and Galloway - an Illustrated Architectural Guide". See also "Highlight 4" on this link.

Crayford, Kent. Standing behind the Baptist Church is this building. TQ 511 748. © Dave Westrap. Janet Gimber has established that it is currently the church hall, but has further found references (1, 2) that it was an earlier Baptist Chapel.

Crosby Garrett, Cumbria. Peter Amsden's Unknown church, probably in south Cumbria or North Yorkshire has been identified by Peter Marshall as Crosby Garret in Cumbria, St. Andrew.

Dawlish, St. Gregory. From Judy Flynn's Collection, it was identified by Phil Draper and Greg Mishevski.

Dębno Podhalańskie, Poland, St Michael Archangelís Church. Janet Gimber had suggested that this old postcard (from Steve Bulman's Collection) had the appearance of an Eastern European church, and Phil Draper proved her right with his identification. Link1. Link2.

Deddington, Oxfordshire, St. Peter and St. Paul. Another view. Jim Huling had taken photos of a church in the 1970's, and wondered if anyone could identify it. Thanks to Brian Curtis for the identification.

Desertmartin, Co. Londonderry, St. Patrick. Johnny and Dot McDonough from the U.S. were visiting Ireland earlier this year, but didn't take a note of where their photos were taken. Another view. Both © Dot McDonough. Thanks to Alistair McCartney for the identification, and the following link.

Devizes, St. James. An old unlabelled engraving from Christopher Skottowe's Collection. Simon Davies had pointed out the resemblance of the tower to St. Mary at Westwood, Wilts. But the body of the church is different - this could of course have been artistic licence. This link shows the present-day church.
Phil Draper has identified it as St. James in Devizes. The similarity of St. James' tower, and that of St. Mary in Westwood is remarkable.

Devonport, Devon, St. Michael, on Albert Road, Stoke. A clearly labelled postcard, from Judy Flynn's Collection, but where exactly was this Stoke? Simon Davies, Greg Mishevski, and Janet Gimber all identified it as the one at Stoke in Devonport. They have all also advised that, according to their website, it has been demolished, and replaced by a smaller church. See also here, which says the demolition was to happen soon - the page is dated February 2007.

Donegal Town. This distinctive Irish Church shouldn't be too hard to place. The postcard title is "St. Patrick's Church, Donegal", but is this Donegal town? The postcard is unused. Thanks to Janet Gimber for confirming that it is indeed in Donegal town. From an old postcard, Steve Bulman's Collection.

Dunterton, Devon, All Saints. Gerry Porter wanted this church in south-west England identified. Taken in 1998, it has distinctive large pinnacles, and looked to me to be in the Cornish tradition. Janet Gimber identified it, and to salve my pride, explained that it was almost on the border with Cornwall!

East Keal, Lincolnshire, St. Helen. Identified by Janet Gimber. From Reg Dosell's old postcard collection.

Eastchurch, Kent. Michael Foot had sent in 4 sketches to see if anyone could identify where they were drawn. All were made in the 1890's by his gg-grandfather, who lived in London. Thanks go to Janet Gimber who identified this one.

Ecclesall, Sheffield, All Saints. Bill Scriven's brother has a painting of a church interior, but didn't know the location. The small window high up to the right of the chancel arch is unusual, as are the niches between to lancets just above the altar. Assuming these aren't there by artistic license they should  be helpful. Identified by Phil Draper.

Ermington, Devon, St. Peter & St. Paul. Ken Clements asked for this church to be identified. Since he wrote in, he has identified it himself, and thanks also to Bill Davison and Simon Davies who also reached the same conclusion.

Everton, Bedfordshire, St. Mary. This postcard (From Reg Dosell's Collection) is helpfully labelled "Everton Church" - but which Everton (my road atlas lists Everton's in Hampshire, Merseyside and Nottinghamshire), and which church? Garry Barr has kindly emailed to identify this church, which looks rather different to what it is on the postcard. Compare with this link. He has also advised of this link which explains that the church tower was largely destroyed by lightning in 1974. It was decided to shorten the tower when re-building.

Eydon, Northamptonshire, St. Nicholas - identified by Janet Gimber. From an old postcard in Steve Bulman's Collection.

Farmington, Gloucestershire. Artist Jack Schuller from New Mexico had used this church in several paintings, but couldn't remember where it was. It was taken in the late 1970's. A friend of his managed to identify it as Farmington.

Finningham, St. Bartholomew. Elizabeth bought this picture of a church, believing it to be in West Suffolk, but it proved not to be the church it was advertised as. Thanks are due to Janet Gimber for her marathon efforts - this one wasn't easy, as some of the porch details have changed since the postcard photo was taken. Link.

Fordwich, Kent. Another postcard view - a church with a distinctive spire, and possibly of flint - maybe East Anglia? Rick Williams has suggested Worth in East Sussex, and he has supplied a photo, from a different angle to the mystery church. At first glance, the spires certainly look similar. However, as pointed out by Janet Gimber, the spire is in line with the central axis of the church, and the mystery church has the spire off to one side. Another problem is with the small features just above the base of the spire in the mystery church, absent from Worth, and another possible problem is the windows just below the base of the spire, which (assuming the usual pattern), are absent from the mystery church. Any other suggestions? Thanks to John Vigar for putting this one to bed. It's St. Mary the Virgin at Fordwich in Kent. There's already another old postcard available on the Kent page, and despite the different viewpoints, it clearly is the same church.

Fosdyke, Lincolnshire, All Saints. This marvellous old postcard (from Reg Dosell's Collection) had to be heavily processed. Showing Fosdyke Old Church, it bears some resemblance to Fosdyke Fen Church, as shown here, but quite apart from the vanished tower, other details don't match - so where is it? Janet Gimber has made a good argument for it being All Saints, Fosdyke, but a previous incarnation. She quotes Genuki which states that the church was re-built in 1871, and an old source which describes the pre-1871 building - built in 1756 (no photo unfortunately) - which seems to match the old postcard. Can any Lincolnshire expert confirm this scenario?? Thanks to Garry Barr for confirming that it is indeed All Saints as Janet suspected, and for supplying this link, which has the same photo. Garry advises that the gent in the top hat was the vicar, the Rev. Basil Beridge, who largely paid for the re-building of the church following a fire in 1871. The postcard shows the pre-1871 church.

Foston, Leicestershire, St. Bartholomew, on Barley Lane. This old postcard view is from Helen Cullum's collection. Identified by Greg Mishevski, who also advises of the following additional information - link. Grade II* listed.

Fotheringhay, Northants, St. Mary. Originally thought to be perhaps in the Maghull area (Lancs.), this drawing of a church once belonged to an ancestor of Ken Edwards. Aidan Thomson said that the building, and the situation on the ground with the river, bore a great similarity to Fotheringhay in Northamptonshire. Further work by Janet Gimber means that this identification is now a certainty. The drawing is thought to be about 180 years old.

Frinton, Essex, St. Mary the Virgin. A photo taken by John Bowdler some years ago, but he had no record of where it is. Thanks to Janet Gimber and Simon Davies for identifying it.

Gloucester Cathedral, a monument to Benjamin Bayliss, a city Alderman, from John Bowdler's Collection. Identified by Janet Gimber and John Parker, who both found different evidence.

Gloucester, St. Paul. "Another war memorial from Ian Lewis. The gothic lettering at the lower right corner may provide a clue to someone!". This was identified by Ted Cribley.

Grain, Isle of Grain, Kent, St. James. An unlabelled sketch drawn by an ancestor of Michael Foot in the 1890's. It has a small text addition mentioning repairs in 1815, when the church warden was a John Smith. Simon Davies has identified it as St. James. He says it was "drawn before the awful west tower of 1904 was built. In 1815, the aisles were removed and the nave patched up with brick buttresses". I can only find one later photo showing it as it appeared in 1955.

Gretton, Gloucestershire, Christ Church. Robin Harrison in Canada was trying to identify this church. The text "J. Burton, Birmingham" is printed at the bottom. A rather handsome church - and thanks to Mark Turbott for identifying it.

Gulval, Cornwall, St. Gulval on Posses Lane. "Helen Howes has an old family photograph, showing Isabella Gee in a churchyard. She lived in Oxford, though of course the photo may not be of there." My appreciation to Greg Mishevski for the identification, who also advises that the spelling of the Saint has been at various times Gudwal, Gulval and Gulwal. Link. Grade II* listed - link.

Harbledown, Kent, St. Nicholas' Hospital Chapel. From John Bowdler's Collection, the postcard of a column and its superb capital was identified by Simon Davies.

Harlaxton, Lincolnshire. Richard Higgins had taken a photo of St. Mary & St. Peter, but omitted to make a note of its location. Janet Gimber has identified it as Harlaxton.

Harlington, Bedfordshire, St. Mary the Virgin. Ian Mead has a number of glass negatives, from around 1900, taken by a great-Uncle who lived in the Luton area. This one was identified by Janet Gimber. Link.

Hastings, East Sussex, All Saints. An old photo belonging to Geoffrey Tucker. There were no clues whatsoever, but the church itself has some features worth noting - the angled buttresses to the squat tower, and what seems to be a turret on top of the tower, probably allowing access to the roof. Note also the doorway, with tall recess above, and the arched and square windows above that. Simon Davies identified it, noting that the photo shows it as it was before a restoration, so the modern view has some differences - see here.

Hawarden, St. Deiniol. What appears to be a grand house is St. Deiniol's Library; the church is at the right hand edge. From John Bowdler's collection, and identified by Bill Davison.

Hawes, NYorks. Robin O'Neill was looking for help in identifying the location of the graveyard in this old photo. He knows a relative is buried there, but doesn't know the exact location. It might be somewhere near Kirkby Stephen or Brough in Cumbria, but might be in the larger area of Lancashire, Cumbria or Durham. This graveyard has been identified as the Methodist Cemetery at Hawes.

Hawkley, Hampshire, Priors Dean Church - dedication lost. An old postcard from John Bowdler's Collection, it was identified by Greg Mishevski. The church stands about a mile from Hawkley village. SU 727 295. Link. Grade II* listed - link.

Hawkshead, Cumbria. D. Smith had a photo of a church he wanted identified. Thanks to Ian Lewis for naming it as Hawkshead Church, Cumbria.

Heckington, Lincolnshire. Another example of an incorrectly labelled postcard, Reg Dosell's old postcard clearly says Quarrington Church near Seaford. I could only find two Quarrington's, one in Durham (Quarrington Hill) and one in Lincolnshire, which is near Sleaford, not Seaford. Assuming it is this Quarrington, which church is it? According to the OS map, it only has one church, but there is already an entry for Quarrington, Lincolnshire. on the website, and the two churches are clearly different. Janet Gimber's detective work has paid off again - she has identified it as Heckington, St. Andrew.

Heston, Greater London, St. Leonard (interior view only). Thanks to Janet Gimber for the identification. From an old postcard in Steve Bulman's Collection. Link.

This unused postcard is titled "Forest Church, Horsham" and hand-written on the back is "Sussex". There is a Horsham in the current county of West Sussex, but also ones in Worcestershire and in Norfolk. Can you identify this church, and give it a Saint? Janet Gimber has confirmed that this is indeed the one in West Sussex, but hadn't been able to find a dedication. Thanks to Janet, and to Dan Gregory for identifying it as St. John at Doomsday Green.

Horsington, Lincolnshire, All Saints. An old postcard from Reg Dosell's Collection. Although originally thought to be one of several Holbeach's,  Janet Gimber has shown that it is in fact of Horsington. Note the changes to the building's appearance (compare with this link), particularly the windows in the tower.

Horton, Dorset, St. Wolfrida - an interior view from an old postcard in Judy Flynn's Collection, previously in the Unknown section, and identified by Simon Davies. Link. Grade I listed.

Hubberholme, NYorks. David Read is keen find a name for this church, photographed in 1971. Probably in the Yorkshire Dales, or the neighbouring areas of Cumbria, David thinks that it might possibly have an altar brought from an Oxford College. Additional photos are available on the North Yorkshire page.

Huntington (now part of York), All Saints. From an old postcard in Reg Dosell's Collection, identified by Garry Barr.

Hursley, Hampshire, All Saints. This postcard (from Reg Dosell's Collection) is clearly marked as Horsley Church, but I was unable to connect it to any of the several Horsley's around the country. Both Bill Davison and Janet Gimber have shown that it is of All Saints, Hursley. This link shows the church as re-built by John Keble, but the spire was removed and other changes made in 1959. A modern photo shows it looking more like the church it was before the Keble work was carried out.

Icklingham, Suffolk, St. James.  Thanks go to Rik Powell for identifying Jim Huling's photo. It was suspected to be in SE England or East Anglia, and so it proved to be. Link.

Kettering, NortHampshire. A church with a handsome spire, but no identification clues. The indefatigable Janet Gimber has identified this church as St. Peter & St. Paul, Kettering. From Steve Bulman's Collection.

Kilby, Leicestershire, St. Mary Magdalene. This interior old postcard view is from Helen Cullum's collection, and was identified by Greg Mishevski. He also provides this link, which has a number of interior views.

Jeff Holmes had been looking for help in identifying a church from un-labelled photos of 25 years or so ago (photos © Jim Huling). He managed to solve this one himself - it's St. Andrew at Kimbolton, in Cambridgeshire. Link.

King's Lynn, St. Nicholas. An old postcard from Steve Bulman's Collection, identified by Simon Davies, Brian Curtis, and Janet Gimber.

Kingsley, Staffordshire, St. Werburgh. This old postcard is from Reg Dosell's Collection, and was identified by Phil Draper.

Lanteglos-by-Fowey, Cornwall, St. Wyllow. Rescued from destruction by Ian Lewis, these three photos had no clues at all to their location. Janet Gimber has identified  1 and 3 as St. Wyllow, and 2 as Cockington, Devon.

Lanteglos-by-Fowey, Cornwall, . From John Bowdler's Collection - an old postcard shows lovely carved pews. Identified by "Stiffleaf", who has many more photos of the church on Flickr.

Leigh, Wesleyan Church. This old postcard is unused, so there is no indication of which of the several Leighs this might be. From an old postcard in Steve Bulman's Collection.  Thanks to Alan Nixon again for identifying this as the now demolished King Street Methodist Church in Leigh, Greater Manchester. The site was re-used for the Kingsleigh Methodist Church.

Leigh Delamere, Wilts. Thanks to Michael Royalton-Kisch has identifying this church as St. Margaret at Leigh Delamere in Wiltshire. Original entry read as follows - "This old church postcard had nothing to indicate the name of the church, but someone has written on the back "This is our church St. Margaret". Unfortunately it was never posted. Can you place St. Margaret?"

Lenham, Kent, St. Mary. John Bowdler has some old postcards without any indications of the location. Simon Davies has identified no. 4. He advises that a very similar photo appears in the West Kent & Weald edition of Pevsner. He further advises that the barn has since been demolished.

Lewtrenchard, Devon. Carol believed this 2002 photo to be a St. Peter in SW England. It has an eagle lectern, and a carved wooden pulpit, with paintings of Saints. Thanks to Phil Draper for the ID.

Little Stanmore. This old postcard is of Whitchurch, but which one? Janet Gimber has located this church at Little Stanmore, Greater London - the church is St. Lawrence Whitchurch.

Llandaff Cathedral, severely damaged following a fire caused by bombing. This photo shows Canadian Gary Martin's grandfather, who was stationed in England for five years during WWII, and later spent a little time on the continent after D-Day. Thanks to Tim Hollinghurst for identifying it.

Llansteffan, Carmarthenshire, St. Stephen. Previously in the "Unknown section, this old postcard from Reg Dosell's Collection was identified by Janet Gimber and Garry Barr.

Long Ashton, Somerset, All Saints, on Church Lane. From an old postcard (labelled Ashton Church) in Steve Bulman's Collection, identified by Janet Gimber and Tony Preston.

Longleys, Perth & Kinross, Kinloch Mausoleum (1861). Previously in the "Unknown" section, what was assumed to be a church was identified as the mausoleum by Simon Davies, Greg Mishevski, and Brian Curtis. Two further views - 1, 2. All © Kevin Price (2012). Link. Grade B listed - link, which also says that the mausoleum stands on the site of St. Mary's Chapel.

Lower Darwen, Lancashire. An old postcard of Blackamoor Church. Janet Gimber has located a Blackamoor being part of Blackburn. Such limited information we've been able to find suggests that this is St. James, Lower Darwen, which was demolished in 1969. My appreciation to Pauline Hodkinson for confirming these details, and also for sending in the date of its consecration - 15 March 1829.

Lutton, St. Peter. Thanks to Nigel Brooks for identifying this as the Northamptonshire Lutton.

Maesteg, St. David. Thanks to Janet Gimber for positively identifying this church as being in Maesteg, on Talbot St. However, she was less than 100% certain of the dedication, and it was tentatively identified as St. David.
One-time resident Geoff Thomas has confirmed that the church is St. David, and the large building to the right is the former Miner's Institute. He has also advised that the Maesteg Council web-site has an identical photo, and dates it to 1880. Heavily processed to produce a reasonable image, this postcard was posted in 1905. From the Bulman Collection.

Market Drayton, Shrops., St. Mary. A Victorian watercolour belonging to Geoff Upton. Phil Draper suggested St. Mary in Market Drayton. Compare with the photo here. And Janet Gimber has provided a link to a photo of the church in its surroundings - some of the buildings in the painting are still identifiable today, making the identification certain.

Marylebone, Greater London, the Roman Catholic Church of St. James, on George Street. Another film location query from Greg Mishevski - this one from the film "I'll Never Forget What's 'isname". A still can be seen here, on the third row, behind Orson Welles. The other identified locations for this film are in London and Cambridge, but this looks like a London scene.

Meerbrook, Staffordshire, St. Matthew. From an old postcard in Reg Dosell's Collection, this was identified by Bill Davison, despite the misleading "Sturton" written on the back.

Middleton, Essex, All Saints on Rectory Road. This postcard (franked 1905), is from Judy Flynn's Collection, and is of Middleton Church. Brian Curtis, Simon Davies, Janet Gimber and Greg Mishevski all rapidly identified it, providing the following information and links. A photo of the church in 1895 (with less greenery), a drawing from the 1940's. The spire was subsequently removed in the 1950's, when other restoration work was carried out (link, see page 5, para 4). Church Plans On-line says that an application for a grant was made in 1951, so the spire was perhaps removed in the early 1950's. A modern photo. Link. Grade I listed - link.

Minster (Sheppey), Kent, the Minster Church. Michael Foot had sent in 4 sketches to see if anyone could identify where they were drawn. All were made in the 1890's by his gg-grandfather, who lived in London. Thanks go to Janet Gimber and Bill Davison who identified this one. Aided by this initial clue, Michael identified this one himself. It is the gatheouse for the same abbey.

Minsteracres, Northumberland, St. Elizabeth (R.C.). Thought by Peter to possibly be a Worcestershire church, my appreciation to John Parker for the identification, who also advised of the following link (which, wrongly, says Co. Durham). © Peter Morgan.

Morecambe, St. John the Divine on St. John's Road, from John Bowdler's Postcard Collection. Thanks to John Parker for the identification.

Mytton Church, Lancashire. Janet Gimber has identified this church as All Hallows, Mitton, Lancashire. Thank you Janet! From an old postcard in Steve Bulman's Collection. Link.

Nayland, Suffolk, St. James. Another old postcard from Judy Flynn's Collection, this one is of an interior, and identified on the postcard as Hayland Church. Neither Judy or I could find a place-name of Hayland, so I thought that this may be yet another mis-labelled card. In fact so it proved to be - both Greg Mishevski and Simon Davies identified it as St. James on Church Lane at Nayland, which is Grade I listed - link. Link.

Newchurch-in-Pendle, Lancashire, St. Mary. A postcard view of a church and graveyard, idetified by Bryan McCahey. Link1. Link2.

Observatory, Cape Town, South Africa, St. Michael. An old postcard from Judy Flynn's Collection of St. Michael's Church, Observatory. I was fairly sure this was the suburb of Capetown, which has a St. Michael's Church, though the photo on their website implies that (if the identification was correct) that the church has been extensively modified since the postcard was printed - however, note the buttressing. If I'd dug further into their website, as Janet Gimber did, I would have seen that the church was modified in 1904/5.

Orcheston, Wilts, St. Mary. Janet Gimber identified this church from Reg Dosell's postcard collection. Link.

Oughtershaw, NYorks. Thought to possibly be a church (undoubtedly looking like one), Bill McKenzie took this photo in "Upper Wharfedale" in NYorks. Bill Davison has advised that it's not a church, but a school, reputedly designed by John Ruskin. Also referred to in some sources as Oughtergill School. SD 870 815.

Over, Cheshire, St. Chad. Mike Dodd has an old family photograph of a church which he thought might be in Cheshire, possibly near Winsford. Aidan Thomson thinks that this is probably St. Chad at Over, near Winsford. This photo is indeed very similar, and I think this identification is almost certainly correct. Nigel Brooks has confirmed that it is indeed St. Chad, and provided this link.

Oxford. Brian Curtis (thanks Brian) has identified the building on this old postcard, which had to be rather heavily processed to obtain a reasonable image. It's not a church, but the tower of Magdalen College in Oxford, from St. John's quad.

Paris, France, St. Etienne du Mont. An old postcard from Jan Bradley's collection has the title of St. Stephen on the Hill. It didn't look British, and so it proved. Identification by Brian Curtis, to whom my appreciation.

Pembroke, St. Michael and All Angels. From Reg Dosell's Collection, this postcard is by a Pembroke photographer, and was identified by Janet Gimber, She advises that it was largely re-built in 1835 and again in 1887. It seems likely that the postcard photograph was taken before 1887. Link1. Link2.

Penmon Priory, Anglesey - an ancient cross, from an old postcard in Steve Bulman's Collection, and identified by Janet Gimber.

Pennington Church - but which one of the several candidates? From an old postcard in Steve Bulman's Collection.
Although previously identified as the Pennington near Leigh in Greater Manchester, Andrew Ross has subsequently pointed out the similarity of construction to St. Mark's at Pennington near Lymington in Hampshire. Although taken from a different angle, I'm convinced that this identification is correct.

Pirton, Herts. An old postcard showing Great Offley church (Reg Dosell's collection) has been shown by Janet Gimber to be of Pirton, St. Mary the Virgin.

Prestwick, South Ayrshire, St. Cuthbert (1837) on Monkton Road (Monkton and Prestwick Parish Church). Another postcard from Judy Flynn's collection. Original entry as follows - "The next is clearly labelled as "Monkton", but there are many Monkton's in the UK, and even more where Monkton is part of the place-name". Rapidly identified by Janet Gimber, Simon Davies, and Greg Mishevski. Greg also advises that this was New Life Christian Fellowship in 2004. Both Simon and Greg suggest that there have been changes to the body of the church. Link.

Quorn, Leicestershire, Church of St. Bartholomew and Farnham Chapel on Church Lane. Richard Marriott was seeking help with the identification of a church on an old photo. Thought to possibly be in the Midlands, Greg Mishevski identified it, and supplied the following links - link1, link2, link3.

Redbourn, Herts, St. Mary. Another ID by Simon Davies, this glass negative, from around 1900, was taken by a great-Uncle of Ian Mead. Link.

Reydon, Suffolk. This old postcard from Geoff Watt's Collection is allegedly of Raydon Church. However, I've been to Raydon Church in Suffolk (photo on the website), and it looks nothing like the postcard, nor could I find another Raydon. Doubting my own sanity for a moment, I did manage to find photos on the wider web, which confirm that I had indeed been to Raydon (relief!!), so this appears to be another example of a wrongly named postcard. But where is it?? Janet Gimber has identified it as a small typo - in fact it's Reydon Church, also in Suffolk. Thank you Janet!

Ringstead(?) Church. The text on the postcard isn't clear, but Ringstead is probably right. As above, of the several candidates, which one is it? The postmark offers no help as it is unreadable. Many thanks to James Fielding for confirming that this is the Ringstead in Norfolk. The church is therefore St. Andrew. From an old postcard in Steve Bulman's Collection. Link.

Rode, Somerset, St. Lawrence. This postcard, from Brian Curtis's collection, was sent to an address in Bath, and has a part postmark for "OAD". An old spelling for Rode is Road. Phil Draper has suggested that the old spelling may have fallen out of favour in reaction to an infamous murder which was committed there. Greg Mishevski, who also identified the church, has supplied the following links - 1, 2, 3. Grade I listed - link.

Rolvenden, Kent, St. Mary. Another war memorial ceremony from Ian Lewis's Collection, identified by Simon Davies.

Romsey Abbey, Hampshire. John Bowdler has some old postcards without any indications of the location. Phil Draper has identified no. 7.

Rugby, Warwickshire, Holy Trinity. Barney Tyrwhitt-Drake wanted to put a name to the church in an old photo taken by a family member in 1865. Thanks to Phil Draper for the ID. He advises that this was a Scott church, and was demolished despite a long campaign for its preservation.

St. Andrews, Fife, Holy Trinity Church. Susie Larsen has an untitled old postcard in her collection, and requested an identification for this interior view. My appreciation to Phil Draper for supplying it!

St. Gennys, Cornwall, St. Genesius. Another postcard from Judy Flynn's Collection, of St. Gemy's Church. Judy suspected this could be the church in St. Genesius/St. Gennys in Cornwall, at SX 148 971. Certainly the lie of the land is similar, but the tower must have had major alterations. Simon Davies, Greg Mishevski, and Janet Gimber have all confirmed that Judy was right, and advised that the top stage of the tower is a 20th century addition. Some links - 1, 2, 3, 4. None date the tower addition any more closely, but happily, Greg found it mentioned on the British Listed Buildings entry (Grade I listed), where it says the work was carried out in 1910.

St. Germans, Cornwall. Where is St. German's church? The only clue is that the postcard was posted, possibly from Horsham, to an address in Petersfield. This distinctive church shouldn't be too difficult to place. Janet Gimber has pointed out that it's St. Germanus' church in St. Germans in Cornwall. From an old postcard (franked 1907), Bulman Collection.

St. John, Cornwall, St. John. From John Bowdler's Collection, it was identified by Simon Davies.

St. Margaret at Cliffe, St. Margaret of Antioch, Kent. The postcard was written from Cragg End in 1907, and perhaps posted from Oakworth (the frank is unclear). There is an Oakworth in West Yorkshire. In fact this church is St. Margaret of Antioch at St. Margaret's at Cliffe, in Kent. Thanks to Michael Bourne for identifying it. From an old postcard in Steve Bulman's Collection. Another view, from John Bowdler's collection, and identified by Janet Gimber. Link.

St. Mary Bourne, Hants, St. Peter. David Naylor was looking for a name for this church, and also solved it himself. Link. Grade I listed.

Shellingford, Oxfordshire, St. Faith. Labelled as Stamford in the Vale, both Janet Gimber and Garry Barr has identified this old postcard from Reg Dosell's Collection. Link.

Shildon, St. John, County Durham. This old postcard (posted in 1908), is from Andrew McGarrigle's Collection. The building to the right of the church has a sign reading "York City and County Banking Ltd." There were no other clues, but Tony Preston advised that the YCCB ultimately became the property of the HSBC bank, and he put me in touch with Sara Kinsey, archivist at the HSBC. She identified it as Shildon, which allowed me to find the appended link, which named the church as St. John. My thanks to Tony and Sara for their help! Link.

Shirley Church. From the postmark (Birmingham), this is probably the Shirley neat Solihull, but can you identify it?
This has been identified (thanks to John Clements) as St. James the Great. There are some small differences between the postcard and the photo on the church website (see the tower pinnacles, for example), but there are enough similarities to make the identification certain. From an old postcard in Steve Bulman's Collection.

Shoreham, Kent, the porch of St. Peter and St. Paul - an excellent identification by Simon Davies.

Sittingbourne, St. Michael. A postcard from Judy Flynn's collection of St. Michael in "S. Bourne", has been shown by Simon Davies, Greg Mishevski and Janet Gimber to be of St. Michael in Sittingbourne, Kent.

South Brewham, Somerset. St. John the Baptist. Another of Judy Flynn's postcard, here's the original entry - "Bruham is a puzzler. There's no such place-name as far as I can find, and I've ruled out the simple transposition Burham, and the similar sounding Brougham and Bruan". Solved by Janet Gimber, Simon Davies, and Greg Mishevski. Link. Grade II* listed.

South Molton, Devon, St. Mary Magdalene (Church interior). This photo is taken from the better of a pair of stereo photos dating from about 1860-1880. From Alan Finn's Collection, and identified by Phil Draper.

Southampton, Chapel in Hollybrook Cemetery. One of John Bowdler's old postcards, identified by Janet Gimber.

Sprotborough. Although this old postcard (from Kevin Gordon's Collection) is clearly marked "Arksey Church", it bears no similarity to Arksey church in South Yorkshire, and neither he nor I could find another Arksey. That indefatigueable detective Janet Gimber has identified the church as Sprotbrough in South Yorkshire, so this is a faulty postcard.

Staunton, Gloucestershire, St. James. Although previously listed against Ledbury, this old postcard, from Reg Dosell's Collection, is clearly not St. Michael & All Angels. Although the card doesn't have a printed identification on it, Ledbury is hand-written on the back. Thanks to Phil Draper for the identification.

Stoke Newington, Greater London. One of Judy Flynn's postcards - labelled as St. John the Evangelist and Queen's Road. From the publisher on the back (Hickox & Son, Finsbury Park (London)), Judy thinks that this is the demolished church of St. John which stood on Gloucester Drive and Queen's Drive, Stoke Newington, now replaced by a modern church, visible on Google Earth here. Certainly the boundary wall looks similar. Can you confirm Judy's suspicions? Brian Curtis suspects the identification is sound, and has supplied links to the following evidence - description (the central tower which it mentions must be hidden by the gable end), maps on show that the situation of the church at the junction of the two roads is identical, and the information that the Queen's Road was changed to Queen's Drive after WWII. Janet Gimber concurs, and has drawn my attention to the Google Earth aerial view, and old maps, which leaves no doubt.

Stoke Poges, Buckinghamshire. Christopher Skottowe has an old postcard of a church, which he thought was perhaps in Hampshire (from the use of flint facings). It has no textual clues at all. Thanks to Bill Davison for the identification of Stoke Poges.

Sutton, Surrey, St. Nicholas. Labelled only as Sutton Parish Church, I (wrongly) thought this postcard (from Reg Dosell's Collection) would be fairly easy to identify. Initially "solved" as Boldmere Church (which admittedly looks very similar), thanks are due to Pete Knight for finally unravelling this mystery.

Sutton Courtenay, Oxfordshire, All Saints. Peter Wenham had a photo of a village scene. Apart from guessing that it is probably in the southern half of England, there were no obvious clues to pinpoint it - though Peter had sent in other named photos from Suffolk and Devon. Thanks to Simon Davies for the identification.

Taunton, St. James. A postcard from Jan Bradley's Collection, identified by Simon Davies.

Temple Balsall, West Midlands, St. Mary. John Bowdler had some old postcards without any indications of the location, and 3 has been identified by Bill Davison and Phil Draper.

Thorpe, Surrey, St. Mary. An old postcard from Reg Dosell's Collection, identified by Greg Mishevski.

Thurlestone, Devon. Tanya Rundle wanted help in identifying this church, which she thought was probably in the Salcombe (Devon) area. She was right, as Janet Gimber has identified it as Thurlestone, Devon, All Saints.

Titchfield, Hampshire, St. Peter. Another old postcard from Judy Flynn, it was solved by Janet Gimber. Compare with the other entry on the website - here (© David Packman at Note the unfortunate dormer windows on the vestry(?). When was was this done?

Tur Langton, St. Andrew. An old postcard from Reg Dosell's Collection had no clues to its identity. Thanks to Janet Gimber for naming it!!

Stoke Church. There are dozens of places either called Stoke, or Stoke something. Which is this one? Janet Gimber has placed this church at Stoke in Devon, St. Nectan. From an old postcard in Steve Bulman's Collection. Link1. Link2.

The postcard of Stebbings Church had been on the website for rather a long time, listed under Stebbing, Essex. The Rev. Tim Goodbody, of Stebbing, has been in touch to say that this isn't his church. I listed it under Stebbing rather than Stebbings because I couldn't find any trace of a Stebbings place-name in the UK, and under Essex, because I could find only one Stebbing. We have Sue Hedger to thank for solving this mystery - it is in fact Stubbings, in Berkshire (St. James the Less). Sue says she isn't aware of a name change, so the error has to be lain at the door of the postcard manufacturer for getting it wrong! From an old postcard in Steve Bulman's Collection. Link1. Link2 (See photos under "Remembrance Sunday").

Thorpe-on-the-Hill, Lincolnshire, the former John Hunt Memorial Wesleyan Chapel (1910) on Fosse Lane. Another postcard from Judy Flynn's collection. This one has a hand-written "Thorpe Chapel" on the back, and was identified by Simon Davies and Janet Gimber, and Greg Mishevski. Greg advises that it was named in honour of John Hunt, the Methodist Missionary to Fiji. It closed in 1997, and is now a private residence. Flickr has a modern view.

Weare Giffard, Devon, Holy Trinity. Roger Hopkins found a box of Victorian negatives, and the only clue to the whereabouts of the photos was one negative labelled "Moortown Church". Despite his searches through the numerous Moortown's in Britain and Ireland, he'd been unable to identify the church, and despite much effort by other keen church detectives, its identity remained undiscovered for a long time. Greg Mishevski finally solved the mystery, though the other two negatives from the same box appear not to be from the same church (see main section above).

Weem, Perthshire. George Duchow has a family film clip made in Scotland in 1967. There is a church at 1 minute 32 seconds into the clip, which can be viewed on Youtube here. Can you advise the location? My appreciation to Greg Mishevski for the identification. The church was built as St. David's Episcopal Church in 1875, and acquired by the CoS in 1918 as the new parish church. Link1. Link2.

Weobley, Herefordshire, St. Peter and St. Paul. A photo from Bill McKenzie, who had omitted to record where he took it (and we've all done it!). Thanks to Bill Davison for identifying it.

West Bromwich. This old postcard (from Judy Flynn's collection) of a now demolished church in West Bromwich has been identified as Carters Green Wesleyan Methodist Church by Greg Mishevski, Janet Gimber and Brian Curtis. Genuki lists registers for 1864 - 1948.

Westgate-on-Sea, St. James (interior view). Michael Selwood found a loose photo in a second hand book he'd bought. Church interior are always difficult to identify, and Simon Davies is to be congratulated for this one! See here for confirmation. 

Westham, East Sussex, St. Mary. Nick Benning had asked for help in identifying a village scene from the family album. The church is only partially seen, but it is fairly distinctive - note the massive diagonal  buttresses on the squat tower. Thanks again to Janet Gimber for her identification.

This postcard is of St. Mary's church, Wilby, but which Wilby? The design of the church looks fairly distinctive. ACNY lists 3 Wilby's - Norfolk, Suffolk, and another which must be Northamptonshire. Norfolk can be discounted, but the other two are both listed as St. Mary. From a postcard in Reg Dosell's collection. My appreciation to Janet Gimber for positively identifying this as the Northants Wilby.

Winterbourne, Gloucestershire. Susan Sinclair believed it was in the Frampton Cotterell area. Janet Gimber has identified it as the Ebenezer Chapel at Winterbourne, on York Gardens and Court Road (just a mile or two from Frampton Cotterell). Janet advises that it is in a parlous condition. © Susan Sinclair.

Wych Cross, East Sussex. At first glance this church looks a bit like Whippingham on the Isle of Wight, but it isn't. Diana Bond had asked for help in identifying it. Paul Smith has advised that Wych Cross Church, which was dedicated to St. Richard de Wych, although never consecrated, was built in 1866 and demolished in 1975.

Yeadon, West Yorkshire - now shown to Colin Waters' satisfaction that it has never been a church. The original entry follows - "Unusually, we know where this building is - it's on Miry Lane, Yeadon, West Yorkshire. Colin has made enquiries locally, and all the information he can find is that it used to be a mill. But it looks so much like a church that there may be more to it. Colin has seen a map of ca. 1803 which shows two chapels in the vicinity, but it isn't clear enough to confirm whether either is the mill. © Colin Waters Collection (2010). Brian Curtis has written to say that he's been examining the 1851 map on, where the woollen mill and two chapels are shown distinctly. Brian suggests that the mill was always just that, and the churchy looking tower may have been to accommodate a pumping engine (or perhaps water tanks), with the ecclesiastical appearance intended to make the building blend in."




04 March 2023

© Steve Bulman

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