For many of the older generation the word "market" swill no doubt spark memories of the bustling market in Kingsland Square.

There have been markets in Southampton since the Middle Ages and probably well before that – a far cry from the current Friday stalls in Above Bar or even the German market at Christmas.

The Kingsland Square market dates from 1881 and there were objections from local residents when it became clear that work being done in the square was in preparation for it being the site of a market.

The consensus was that there were enough problems in the St Mary’s area without deliberately attracting pickpockets and other ne’er do wells.

Nevertheless, the plans went ahead and soon the busy market boasted a Punch and Judy Show, a dentist who charged sixpence to pull a tooth, racing tipsters and an escapologist.

By 1926 it was so successful that the corporation decided to adopt it and the stallholders had to pay ten shillings (50p).

At its height the market spilled over into the surrounding streets but by the 1980s shopping habits were changing. Even the council moving the market into a designated area with a permanent roof couldn’t challenge the lure of the supermarkets.

Fortunately, in 1980, a group of children from Mount Pleasant Middle School were given a photographic project. They had to take and print photos of the market and then write text for each photo.

The resulting small book is a celebration, not only of the market, but also of the vibrant and diverse community of the time.

The photos are of the stalls but also of the stallholders, the merchandise, the customers and the street.

The writing has the directness and freshness that only a child can bring to topics that most adults take for granted and there are also unexpected little bits of history.

Tarlochen Singh, while describing a customer at the fruit stall, comments: “The lady is holding a one pound note.”

Daljit Theheem, after dutifully listing the different kinds of beans and lentils available on the bean stall, concludes: “The beans I like are the beans on toast with a fried egg.”

Anne-Marie Geddes writes about the “trendy man’s” stall and finishes by describing the “trendy man” and his wife.

“They both have got long hair and he has a beard which makes him looks like Jesus.”

Corinne Davidson describes the “All Sorts” stall: “There are useful things like hooks, washing lines and pegs.”

I suspect she could have happily substituted the word ‘boring’ for ‘useful’ because the pictures of cats and dogs, books, games and toy cars obviously interested her far more.

None of the children found anything puzzling about one stall being called the “Drug Store” and, of course, all it stocked were harmless toiletries and household cleaning products.

Some of the items on sale showed that what people buy has changed in forty years, as well as where they buy it. One stall sold only curtain fabric and very few of us make our own curtains now.

The meat stall was selling pig’s hearts and kidneys; cuts which many of us would be too squeamish to eat these days.

Inevitably the prices have changed too; one photo shows a lovely looking bouquet marked 50p.

The butcher was selling lamb chops at 80p a pound but as Tarlochen noticed, the price of the meat sometimes went up and sometimes came down. He decided that they wrote it on a blackboard so that they could change it easily.

The council finally closed down the market in the 1990s although it still survives in a very truncated form.

So where are you now Angelo Colucci, Corinne Davidson, Anne-Marie Geddes, Jashvir Kela, Walati Roath, Sarwet Shaheen, Tarlochen Singh and Daljit Theheem?

Trendy Man aka Hippy Dave would love to know how you all got on.

Ally Hayes is a tour guide with .