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Walter Lambert's ‘Popularity’ - A vast painting depicting the Music Hall Stars of the early 1900s

Walter Lambert's vast canvas ‘Popularity’ Held at the Museum of London. - Reproduction Courtesy the Museum of London - Photograph kindly processed by Peter Cannon

Above - Walter Lambert's vast canvas ‘Popularity’ Held at the Museum of London. - Reproduction Courtesy the Museum of London - Photograph and Key kindly processed and transcribed by Peter Cannon, Great Grandson of Bella and Bijou who are the couple dead center of the Painting arm in arm, he in a top hat and she in a white and floral hat, Bella and Bijou were the original owners of the painting and for whom it is thought it was originally painted. Bijou subsequently joined The Grand Order of Water Rats and hung the popularity painting at the Vaudeville club in June 1908 just after he brought it back from a viewing in America. The painting remained at the Vaudeville club until Bijou's death in 1914 but then the Water Rats sold the painting some weeks after he died for £140 to a Frank Harwood which is how the painting came to leave the family.

 

The Key to the Popularity Painting which shows just who is portrayed in the work - Courtesy Peter Cannon

Key to people featured in the painting

1 Paul Cinquevalli - 2 Dan Kelly - 3 Griff - 4 Allen and Hart - 5 Tom Morris - 6 T. Morris - 7 Harry Nation - 8 S. Ethardo - 9 Tom Vine - 10 Bros, Donaldson - 11 Bros, Donaldson - 12 Willie Benn - 13 Richie Tom - 14 James Riley - 15 Arthur Harland - 16 Albert Rollinson - 17 Joe Gee (Burnells) - 18 The late Pat Feeney - 19 Jimmie Campbell - 20 Albert and Edmunds - 21 Pimple - 22 Dan Leno - 23 Nellie Willson - 24 Arthur Forrest - 25 Nellie Richards - 26 John Lawson - 27 Horace White - 28 Tom Collins - 29 Lilly English - 30 George Booker - 31 Fred Griffiths - 32 Albert Le Fre - 33 Joe Griffiths - 34 Harry Champion - 35 Harry Anderson - 36 Harry Blacke (2 B's) - 37 Bob Leonard - 38 Jack Camp - 39 Ford and Hanson - 40 Fred Millis - 41 Hanson - 42 Capt. Slingsby - 43 Tom McKay - 44 Sisters Levy - 45 Sisters Levy - 46 The late Mrs. Florador - 47 Florador - 48 Harry Lauder - 49 Paul Courtenay - 50 Frank Coyne - 51 Tom Wootwell - 52 Nat Clifford - 53 Dutch Daly - 54 Reid Pinaud - 55 Chirgwin - 56 Walter Stockwell - 57 Two Harvey boys - 58 Two Harvey boys - 59 Rumbo Austin - 60 Charles Tempest - 61 Johnny Dane - 62 Arthur Pearl - 63 Jack Rowley - 64 Bros. Passmore - 65 Bros. Passmore - 66 The late Bessie Bellwood - 67 Harry Lester - 68 Charlie Edwards - 69 Con Fredericks - 70 Charles Morton, Esq. - 71 Marie Loftus - 72 Cissie Loftus - 73 Tom Branford - 74 Charlie Clark - 75 Tom Costello - 76 Clarke (Clarke and Glennie) - 77 Gus Garrick - 78 Jock Bennett - 79 Charlie Martell - 80 Herbert Darnley - 81 Geo. Le Brunn - 82 Little Ganty - 83 Vene Clements - 84 Carrie Laurie - 85 Marie Kendall - 86 Daisy James - 87 Percy Delevine - 88 Harry Delevine - 89 Lottie Lennox - 90 Vosper - 91 Billie Barlow - 92 George Grey - 93 Musical Korries - 94 The late Bessie Wentworth - 95 Miss Korrie - 96 Sam Glenroy - 97 Charlie Fraser - 98 Jeff Vendome - 99 Mrs. Charlie Fraser - 100 Grell Charlie Fraser - 101 Alice Maydue - 102 Jerry Driscoll - 103 Bob Allinson - 104 Dean Tribune - 105 Jean Seul - 106 Ernest Rees - 107 Douglas Stuart - 108 Walter Norman - 109 Edna Cragge - 110 Ida Heath - 111 F. Avling - 112 H. Harris - 113 Fish and Warren - 114 Fish and Warren - 115 The late Jolly John Nash - 116 The late Geo. Leybourne - 117 Will Evens - 118 May Henderson - 119 Tom Maxwell - 120 Virginia Francis - 121 The late Charles Laurie - 122 Jack Lambert - 123 The late Ada Lundberg - 124 Tom Holmes - 125 Kate Paradise - 126 Wilkie Bard - 127 M'Chalk - 128 The late Charles Godfrey - 129 Jack Selbini - 130 James Norrie - 131 Charlie Cornish - 132 Fred Russell - 133 Florrie Ford - 134 Bransby Williams - 135 J. W. Cragg - 136 Alexandra Dagmar - 137 The late Tom White - 138 Lieut. Travis - 139 Cliff Ryland - 140 Barney Armstrong - 141 Charlie Alexander - 142 Harry Randall - 143 Herbert Campbell - 144 The late Tom O'Brien - 145 Jack Collinson - 146 G. W. Hunter - 147 Vento - 148 Eddy Hanlon - 149 Bob Hanlon - 150 Teddy Bale - 151 George Lashwood - 152 Harriet Vernon - 153 Jennie Valmore - 154 Harry Gee - 155 Harry Pleon - 156 Harry Freeman - 157 Tom Leamore - 158 Charles Seel - 159 Sam Poluski - 160 Ada Cerito - 161 Tom Bass - 162 Frank Folioy - 163 Will Poliski - 164 George Mozart - 165 Paul Martinetti - 166 Alec Hurley - 167 Pat Raffety - 168 Arthur Lennard - 169 Alice Lloyd - 170 Eugene Stratton - 171 George Robey - 172 Jimmie Hall - 173 Bill Horne - 174 George Le Clercq - 175 Chris Horne - 176 Charlie Fontaine - 177 Lydia Dreams - 178 Jessie Preston - 179 Georgina Preston - 180 H. Missouri - 181 J. Sothern - 182 Will Oliver - 183 Fred Mc' Naughton - 184 Tom Mc' Naughton - 185 Joe Elvin - 186 Jack Lotto - 187 Wal Pink - 188 Miss Bella - Bella and Bijou - 189 Mr Bijou - Bella and Bijou - 190 Kate Carney - 191 James Fawn - 192 Marie Lloyd - 193 T. E. Dunville - 194 Katie Lawrence - 195 Vesta Victoria - 196 Mr. Leamy - 197 Ara and Vora - 198 Ara and Vora - 199 Fannie Leslie - 200 J. O' Gorman - 201 Michael Nolan - 202 Joe Tennyson - 203 Horace Wheatley - 204 Walter Munroe - 205 Johnny Dwyer - 206 Pat Carey - 207 Harry Ford - 208 Vesta Tilley - 209 The late Bessie Bonehill - 210 R. G. Knowles - 211 Arthur Lloyd - 212 Charles Coborn - 213 Gus Elen - 214 Jenny Hill - 215 Peggy Pryde - 216 Albert Chevalier - 217 Arthur Rigby - 218 Papa Brown - 219 Little Tich - 220 Carrie Lorrie' Juveniles - 221 Carrie Lorrie' Juveniles - 222 Character - 223 Mr. Smith's Dog - 224 Dandy George's Dog Rosie - 225 T. Beck - 226 Walter Lambert's Late Wife - 227 Child of Walter Lambert - 228 Child of Walter Lambert - 229 Child of Walter Lambert - 230 Will Crackles - 231 Jack Rich

Bella Bijou

Above - Portraits of Bella & Bijou - Courtesy Peter Cannon, Great Grandson of Bella & Bijou who were the original owners of Walter Lambert's
Popularity Painting for whom it is thought it was originally painted.

 

The extract below is from 'REMINISCENCES OF THE ‘LLOYD / KING’ THEATRE FAMILIES
by HARRY POWELL LLOYD (Arthur Lloyd's grandson) (12 December 1979)
Transcribed and Edited by Norman King Lloyd

Early in the 1900’s, Walter Lambert painted a vast canvas which he called ‘Popularity’. Lambert, himself a music-hall artist, had a female impersonation act and called himself for this purpose, Lydia Dreams. This painting, measuring thirteen-feet in length and five-feet, six-inches in height, is of no great value as a work of art, but as a record of the great days of the British Music hall, it has a place in social history. It shows 231 figures, many of them instantly recognisable to any lover of the old ‘halls’; all the figures are named in a numbered key. Arthur Lloyd is seen in the lower right-hand corner of the picture talking to Charlie Coburn (The Man Who Broke the Bank at Monte Carlo). Arthur Lloyd is being offered a bunch of violets by the artist’s wife who is dressed as a flower-girl while he himself is dressed in morning-coat and wearing a top hat. Most of the other artists in the picture are dressed in their stage costumes and the scene is one of the places known as ‘Poverty Corner’ where the unemployed pro’s met to swap stories and to see their agents, whose offices were in or near the Waterloo Road. There were several other… (unintelligible text) to old Waterloo Bridge… not the present bridge but Rennie’s bridge which was replaced in the 1920’s by the new Waterloo Bridge. The houses also disappeared in the late 1950’s when all the South Bank alterations were made. From where Grandfather Lloyd stands in the picture he could be looking across the road to the opposite corner of the ‘Old Vic’ which still stands there in spite of many narrow escapes of destruction which have included improvement plans, financial stringency’s and Hitler’s bombers. Arthur Lloyd would not have had any reason to think that his grandson would one day be performing on that stage.

 

 

Bella & Bijou Arthur Lloyd