Allan Blackburn column

Allan Blackburn.
Allan Blackburn.
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Last week I talked about postcards, as I was looking forward to my holidays and once again it’s been one of those amazing coincidences.

Someone heard me doing my valuations spot on Radio Lancashire this week and asked me to go and value a postcard collection. What’s the chance of that?

Well, I was absolutely stunned by what I saw. It was the most exquisite, amazing, jaw dropping collection of postcards I have ever seen.

There were two collections on display at Accrington Library for me to view. The first was a set of silk postcards from WWI.

These beautifully detailed, textured cards were sent back to this country from France by soldiers sending letters, notes and romantic poems back to their wives and sweethearts, mainly at Christmas. There were 140 in the collection and they were all in mint condition.

The second collection took my breath away.

They were from the same era (about 1912–1914) and were all picture postcards of the local area. Card upon card of Accrington, Burnley and Blackburn, with original photos of how the towns looked then.

Everyone who visited the library was fascinated seeing how the towns had changed over the years. The cards depicted roads, monuments, land marks, theatres and cars. It was like a complete history lesson.

There were 200 cards in this collection all in pristine condition.

Someone had obviously looked after this collection extremely well as they were immaculate. The pictures weren’t faded, the corners weren’t curled. They were obviously someone’s pride and joy and it gave me great pleasure to be able to value these cards at £6,000.

It would be incredibly remiss of me to talk about postcards without mentioning the funny and saucy cards which are still the most popular to collectors.

These bawdy cartoons will always be associated with the British seaside holiday. Produced by Bamforths in Holmfirth, Yorkshire, the Benny Hill type humour, often featuring large buxom ladies with weedy hen pecked husbands was a direct reaction against the dull Depression and war years.

Whichever field you choose, you are certain to have a great deal of fun reminiscing about happier, less complicated times and exploring the world of holiday memorabilia.