Alton Honours The Opies World Famous Folklorists Authors - The Directory Group

ALTON HONOURS THE OPIES - WORLD FAMOUS FOLKLORISTS & AUTHORS

ALTON HONOURS THE OPIES - WORLD FAMOUS FOLKLORISTS & AUTHORS

On Saturday 17th November, the Deputy Town Mayor officially unveiled a Blue Heritage Plaque in honour of Peter and Iona Opie at their former Alton residence, 100 High Street Alton (currently Downie & Gadban Solicitors.)

The Opies are world renowned folklorists, who applied modern research techniques to children's literature, as summarised in their studies The Oxford Dictionary of Nursery Rhymes (1951) and The Lore and Language of Schoolchildren (1959). Peter & Iona Opie were also noted anthologists, and assembled large collections of childrens literature, toys, and games.

The Opies lived at 100 High Street between 1949 and 1959, during which time they authored their first acknowledged masterpiece, a great achievement in the field which is still a reference book in teacher training worldwide. The unveiling of the Blue Heritage Plaque was timed to mark the centenary of Peter Opie’s birth.

The Town Council welcomed James and Robert Opie, the sons of Peter and Iona at the unveiling where they cut the celebration cake in honour of their parents. James and Robert Opie were overjoyed that the Town Council were recognising their parents’ achievements with the plaque and confirmed that Alton was the first town to do so.

Deputy Town Mayor, Councillor Allan Chick said: “I would like to thank the building owners, the Executors of Peter John Roper Bathurst deceased and the current occupiers, Downie and Gadban Solicitors for granting the Town Council permission to display the heritage plaque.

The Directory Group covers the following areas within Hampshire and West Sussex: Petersfield, Clanfield, Hayling Island, Cowplain, Waterlooville, Denmead, Purbrook, Widley, Farlington, Cosham, Drayton, Havant, Rowlands Castle, Emsworth, Southbourne, Westbourne, Bosham, Portsmouth, Alton, Alresford, Bentley, Four Marks and Meon Valley