Local History

Most people agree that it’s fascinating to see what their surroundings used to look like and to learn about local people of the past.

We are happy to receive any information, stories or photos which will  make this page a source of information which has possibly not been seen by the general public before.

Come and see us in the Parish Council Office if you wish to contribute an item for this page.  We are particularly interested to hear family stories and accounts of noteable people & events.

SS Empress Queen


Empress Queen Anchor Info Board

Spithead Hotel  1880 – 1989

Bembridge Fort

Between 1862 and 1867, Bembridge Fort, on Bembridge Down just south of the village was built, at a cost of £49,000 – a lot of money in those days. It was built to counter the possible French Invasion by Napoleon III, but in the end no invasion came.

Yellowsands Hotel, Whitecliff  These two photos show the old Yellowsands Hotel at Whitecliff Bay.  It was built in 1885 and enjoyed a fine reputation.  In the 1920’s the top floor was removed and was known by Bembridge School members as the ‘Old House’

St. Luke’s Chapel

Rare photo of the chapel just after completion.   Image shows the road to Lane End shortly after the building of the Churchyard extension and chapel.  The house in the background is ‘Fairhaven’ where the  Ellis family lived.  Note the hurdles in the foreground.  These housed sheep used to graze the grass.

Fire Station, High Street

One of the many uses of 7 High Street.

Bembridge Water Tower

This photograph shows a water tower once sited by the Windmill.  We know little about this structure or when it was demolished and why.  Do you know anything?

Yeats Butchers

Yeats had the butchers shop situated in the High St. prior to it being taken over by Mr Jordan in 1848.  Also on view is the village constable.

Crab & Lobster Public House