Postcards update: locating the circus train

The Vaughan Postcard Collection now has over 500 images researched, placed and loaded onto the Know Your Place website, and our volunteers are continuing to make steady progress through their chosen fields of Bristolian interest. Recent batches to be sent out to the volunteers include postcards of the city docks, of the Avon Gorge and its railways, and another of shipping up and down the River Avon.

Yet whilst we can accurately pinpoint many of the postcards, some are less easy to locate. Take for instance the postcard here, of Marshall & Ernest Hill Entertainers of Bristol. On the reverse of the postcard there is a pencilled comment, suggesting that the photograph shows the circus family at their yard in Bedminster. But Hill’s Showyard was, at the time the photograph was taken (about 1910), in the old sawmill previously known as Organ’s Yard, off Regent Road; the image is clearly not of an old sawmill in Bedminster.

So where was this picture taken? Several suggestions have been made, the most common being that it shows Durdham Downs, near the water tower. The buildings in the far distance (far right of the postcard), and the grazing sheep, suggest otherwise. Can anyone tell us where this circus train was parked in 1910?43207-22-6-005