General postcards

Our collection holds a number of postcards by various publishers, some of which have been used for illustration within the website. Having decided to feature GWR postcards it seemed logical to also include a page for these other similar items.

A potted history of British postcards

In 1870 the Post Office started selling plain cards with a pre-printed ½d stamp, the address would be written on one side of the card and the message on the other. From September 1894, the Post Office accepted postcards published by others and several manufacturers started to produce picture cards. These early cards were generally 4¾"x3½" in size (called 'Court' size) and, as only the address was allowed to be written on the plain back, messages were written in the space (often left for that purpose) around the picture on the front. In 1899 a standard size of 5½”x3½”, already in use in other countries, was adopted in Britain. In 1902 the Post Office changed its rules and allowed both message and address to be written on the back so postcard manufacturers began to issue cards with a line drawn down the middle of the back to show where the message and address should be written.

The standard charge for posting a card remained at ½d until June 1918 when it was increased to 1d. This was raised to 1½d in early 1921 but was quickly reduced to 1d again in 1922. In 1926 the Post Office revised the sizes of postcard that were allowed to a minimum of 4"x2¾" up to a maximum of 5⅞"x4¼", but postcards larger than that became more common later in the century and postal charges were gradually increased.

The Causeway, Abingdon
The Causeway, Abingdon
Postcard by unknown publisher
The Causeway, Abingdon
The Causeway, Abingdon
Franked 'Abingdon 19 March 1905'
Culham Station
Culham Station
Postcard published by Leach's Printers of Abingdon
Culham Station
Culham Station
Franked 'Abingdon 28 October 1904'
Nuneham Park, Oxon. Front from Park
Nuneham Park, Oxon. Front from Park
Unused postcard published by Taunt's Photographs circa 1907. 2193
Nuneham, Lock Cottage and Bridge
Nuneham, Lock Cottage and Bridge
Unused postcard published by Savage, Carfax Oxford
Clifton Hampden Bridge & Church
Clifton Hampden Bridge & Church
Unused postcard, image circa 1910, unknown publisher. 6954
The Bridge and Tollhouse, Clifton Hampden
The Bridge and Tollhouse, Clifton Hampden
Unused postcard circa 1930/40, unknown publisher
Clifton Hampden, bridge and tollhouse
Clifton Hampden, bridge and tollhouse
Unused postcard circa 1960, published by J.Salmon Ltd. (ref. 2-35-02-20)
River Thames by Culham Lock
R. Thames by Culham Lock
Unused postcard by Judges Ltd. of Hastings. 6223
G.W.R. Experimental Stream-lined Heavy Oil Rail Car
G.W.R. Experimental Stream-lined Heavy Oil Rail Car
Published by Valentine's of Dundee from 1934. 5860
G.W.R. Experimental Stream-lined Heavy Oil Rail Car
G.W.R. Experimental Stream-lined Heavy Oil Rail Car
Stamp missing, but franked 'Oxford 23 November 1936'
Maiden Castle, Dorset : Air-View from the East
Maiden Castle, Dorset : Air-View from the East
Postcard by unknown publisher, photo by Major G.W.G.Allen circa 1932
G.W.R. 4-6-0 4-Cyl. No. 4073. 'Caerphilly Castle'
G.W.R. 4-6-0 4-Cyl. No. 4073. "Caerphilly Castle"
Published by The Locomotive Publishing Co. Ltd., London
G.W.R. 4-6-0 4-Cyl. No. 4073. 'Caerphilly Castle'
G.W.R. 4-6-0 4-Cyl. No. 4073. "Caerphilly Castle"
Overprinted with promotional text by the G.W.R. circa 1927
Berkshire Aviation Tours, C.S.Kent
Berkshire Aviation Tours, C.S.Kent
Unknown publisher, mid 1920s
Berkshire Aviation Tours, C.S.Kent
Berkshire Aviation Tours, C.S.Kent
Details of two flights during March 1926 recorded on back
Berkshire Aviation Tours, Lionel L.Leleu
Berkshire Aviation Tours, Lionel L.Leleu
Unknown publisher, mid 1920s
Berkshire
Berkshire Aviation Tours, R.M.Stirling
Unknown publisher, mid 1920s
Berkshire Aviation Tours, R.M.Stirling
Berkshire Aviation Tours, R.M.Stirling
Details of an aerobatic flight on May 15th 1927 recorded on back