How will this suit

Carlisle Cathedral
Published by Valentine’s

To: Miss N. Huntington, Coffee Tavern, Market Hall, Carlisle
Postmark: CARLISLE 2 | 6pm | 3 October 1903

Another early 20th century card sent with the sole purpose of adding to a collection.  In these years at the start of the 1900s postcard collecting was a craze and this was the heyday of the medium.  This card is published by one of the biggest names in postcards: Valentine’s.  Their business began in 1825 in Dundee and they got into postcards in about 1896.  With overseas arms as far flung as Jamaica and New York they were at the forefront of the worldwide postcard boom until they were absorbed into Waddington’s in 1963.

An interesting note about this card comes in the address – to Miss N. Huntington at the Coffee Tavern, Market Hall.  Visitors to Carlisle nowadays are spoilt for choice when it comes to where to get a boost of caffeine – from the national chains (Costa, have four outlets in the city centre) to the indies, with relative newbies Bruce & Luke’s up against the 155 year old stalwart John Watt & Son.  The latter’s Bank Street shop which is still open today was there when this card was sent over 115 years ago.

More recently, the Cathedral, shown here before the addition of the Lorimer Gates, has opened a new café in the grounds, the start of another chapter in their 900 year history. From a design by London architects Feilden Fowles, the new building sits in the footprint of the medieval cloister, long since demolished. Clad in sandstone from nearby Locharbriggs, it affords spectacular views of the Cathedral from the west side and its rising arches sit beautifully alongside the ancient buildings of the Cathedral Close.