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15-17 Suffolk Road
15 Suffolk Road (formerly 4, Suffolk Road)
This shop has accommodated many different trades over the last 150 years. In 1871 Nathaniel G. Poulston ran his hairdressing business at this property. He had moved by 1881 and George W Jones changed the trade to a greengrocers.
In the 1890s Charles A. Ballinger was here with his poultry business, then from 1901 to 1908 Mr C.E. Elston was here as a shoemaker.
In the mid 1920s Mrs Nellie Reavenall took over the shop and turned it into a newsagents. She later sold it to Charles William Brendecke who was here from about 1929 to 1948. In December 1929 there was an explosion in the shop that blew out the front window and set fire to the stock, including some of the Christmas toys and the newspapers. It was caused by a burst oil stove that was used to warm the shop. Fortunately no-one was hurt and Mr Brendecke managed to extinguish the fire quite quickly with help from a neighbour but it must have been quite a shocking experience.
By 1950 the Cheltenham Refrigeration Company is listed at this address - shortly after they relocated next door to new number 13. (The street numbering changed sometime in the early 1930s.)
In 1955 this shop was home to a wardrobe dealer called Mrs E. Jones. She was only here for a few years and then the shop became the Post Office, run by Mrs R.M. Warwick in 1961 and by Mrs D.E. Pegler in 1968. In the 1970s the Post Office relocated to 10 Great Norwood Street.
17 Montpellier Road (formerly 3, Suffolk Road)
This shop was occupied in 1871 by Mr T. Loveridge, a Boot & Shoemaker but the following year Orlando and Ann Harding were here. Orlando Harding advertised his business as "The People's Cheap Tailor" and in addition to his trading activities he was a local Methodist preacher. In 1888 he was a member of the Cheltenham Early Closing Association which supported the "Wednesday Five O'clock Movement" who's aims were to close early for the benefit of the shop workers. They implored the public to co-operate by not shopping after 5 pm on Wednesdays. Mr Harding died here aged 65 on 20th October 1896 but his wife Ann continued at the property until at least 1917 and died in 1931.
A complete change came about by 1926 when Victor Dymond took over as a fishmonger. This company were here until around 1940 and by 1950 William Shinn has opened the first of a series of greengrocery shops at this location. In the early 1950s he was succeeded by Herbert S Scott and then by 1955 by Mr Eric. C. Eaton. In 1961 this was a fruiterers run by M.J. Briscoe, by 1963 it was Dore, Fruiterers, and from 1968 until at least 1975 this became V.I. & L.M. Robbins, Fruiterers.
Until 2016 both premises were a decorative plasterwork and decorating show-room called Centrepiece.
Researcher: Stuart Manton (Nov 2016)
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