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Back in Time 1967: Can you solve mystery of White Hart statue?

A view of Exchange Street from the High Street end and how it looks today 47 years on with the Waterside Theatre in the background

A view of Exchange Street from the High Street end and how it looks today 47 years on with the Waterside Theatre in the background

  • by Aylesbury historian Karl Vaughan
 

In 1967 Aylesbury was experiencing some immense changes.

The Inner Ring Road scheme was well underway and soon it would transform Exchange Street into a dual carriageway.

This is looking from the High Street end. On the left a woman and child are about to cross over the entrance to Highbridge Walk. This little thoroughfare is quite ancient as it predates everything around it. Originally it was a footpath leading from the Hale Leys to Walton, cutting across beautiful meadows.

The twin-bayed building beyond the woman and child was home to the Ideal Benefit Society. They moved across the street when their premises were demolished.

Further along we can see a familiar building which was then the Electricity Board showrooms. The site is now the landscaped area in front of Waterside Theatre.

On the opposite side of the street is the White Hart Hotel. Above its entrance is the fine statue of a white hart that was once above the entrance of the original hotel in Market Square. Some attempt was made to replicate this statue for the present White Hart but it falls short by quite a long way.

It doesn’t have the same presence as the original. There are rumours that this old statue still survives locally. Where could it be?

 

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