Spot­light on Welsh cas­tles at the next Car­marthen an­tiques and flea mar­ket

Western Mail - - BUSINESS -

A MUCH-SOUGHTAFTER col­lec­tion of 19th-cen­tury pho­tographs of Welsh cas­tles is to be sold at the next Car­marthen an­tiques and flea mar­ket on Sun­day, May 21.

The images were taken by Charles Smith Allen, a highly re­garded Pem­brokeshire pho­tog­ra­pher and one of the Al­lens of Tenby. The stu­dio, The Ex­cel­sior Stu­dio, later re-named The Camp­bell Stu­dio, was opened in 1890 by Harry Mor­timer Allen. As well as be­ing the place to visit for por­trai­ture, the stu­dio quickly de­vel­oped quite a name for its post­cards of Tenby and the sur­round­ing area.

Charles Smith Allen was also re­spon­si­ble for pub­lish­ing one of the first guide books of Tenby, Allen’s Guide to Tenby, writ­ten by Fanny Price Gwynne. Il­lus­trated with C Smith Allen’s pho­tographs, it also in­cluded 28 pages of lo­cal ad­ver­tise­ments. Allen’s book un­doubt­edly con­trib­uted a great deal to the record­ing of the his­tory of Tenby and it’s pos­si­ble to buy the book to this day.

Allen’s in­ge­nu­ity didn’t stop there. He also pro­duced large-scale al­bums of pho­tographs of Welsh cas­tles and ec­cle­si­as­ti­cal build­ings. These pho­tographs were most un­usual as they were con­sid­er­ably larger than most pho­tographs be­ing printed at the time, mea­sur­ing 15 inches by 10 inches (38.1cm by 25.4cm.)

A num­ber of these pho­tographs will be sold at the next mar­ket on Car­marthen Show­ground. Pic­tured above is Allen’s im­age of Pem­broke Cas­tle, but this is just one of the se­ries, which ex­tends from Caerphilly to St Davids. Priced at £25 each, the pho­tographs, each of which is in a smart C Smith Allen mount, are ex­cel­lent value for money.

The mar­ket is one of the big­gest events of its kind in all of Wales, and as well as lots of ceram­ics you’ll find many rare and un­usual dec­o­ra­tive pieces and fur­ni­ture. It’s also the place to shop for mil­i­tary items, toys and agri­cul­tural and gar­den­ing pieces, as well as vin­tage clothes. There is also al­ways an abun­dance of retro fur­ni­ture and items per­fect for up-cycling.

The mar­ket is open be­tween 10am and 4pm and ad­mis­sion is £4 for adults, with ac­com­pa­nied chil­dren free of charge. Well-be­haved dogs on a lead are wel­come too.

Fur­ther mar­kets are be­ing held on Sun­day, June 18, Sun­day, Au­gust 6 (date change from pre­vi­ously ad­ver­tised) Sun­day, Septem­ber 10, Sun­day, Oc­to­ber 29, Sun­day, Novem­ber 26 and Thurs­day, De­cem­ber 28.

For more in­for­ma­tion, visit or call 01267 236569. All in­door pitches must be pre-booked, while out­door pitches will be avail­able on the day with set-up at 7.30am. Fol­low­ing us on Twit­ter @TowyEvents and like our Face­book Page

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