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Colchester Oyster Feast

A new temporary display celebrates 170 years of this famous Colchester event through its illustrated souvenir programmes.

Oyster Feast Programme 1935


Hollytrees Museum, Colchester

Date and Time

28 March 2015 to November 2015


The Colchester Oyster Fishery has been harvesting oysters for centuries. The tradition of the modern Oyster Feast began in 1845 when it was hosted by the Colchester Mayor, Henry Wolton. It is now held by the Mayor of Colchester in the Moot hall every October.

The illustrated toast lists and programmes on display in this exhibition provide a colourful and humorous illustration of Colchester through its historical characters and events.  The programmes span 125 years, the earliest on display dates from 1890.
Many of the souvenir programmes were designed and created by Gurney Benham, owner and editor of the Essex County Standard Newspaper and Mayor of Colchester three times. 


The display will be on until November, 2015