This image of the Cloth Hall in Newbury was taken in 1897 before the restoration work began. The photograph was originally produced in black and white and then hand painted to create a coloured image. The image shows how dilapidated the Cloth Hall had become by the end of the 1800s. Several windows were broken and there were places where the stucco had come away leaving exposed brick work. Shortly after this image was taken a fund raising appeal began to restore the Cloth Hall. This fund was successful and in 1902 the restored Cloth Hall was dedicated as a memorial to Queen Victoria who had died in 1901. In 1904 the Cloth Hall became the site for Newbury Museum and is now the home of West Berkshire Museum.
The fossils of West Berkshire show us clearly that the countryside was once an ocean.