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50 Suffolk Road (formerly Clevedon House)
Formerly known as both Clevedon House and Suffolk Studio, in 1891 this property was occupied by William Shelley Branch, a photographer. By 1897 this had changed to a picture frame maker by the name of William Hyett, who also found employment at about the turn of the 20th century as a postman. His son Louis later joined the business.
The business was continued, under the name Suffolk Studio, by Mr J.W. Hack, a photographer and frame maker. John Walters Hack was born in Charlton Kings in 1881 and later lived in Upper Norwood Street. At the outbreak of the Great War many Cheltenham men who signed up for active service chose to have their photographs taken in uniform at Suffolk Studios, before leaving for France. John Hack himself enlisted as a private in the 2nd/5th Battalion of the Gloucestershire Regiment in 1916 and tragically died from wounds sustained, aged 37, on 29th April 1918. He is buried in the small churchyard at Berguette in the Pas de Calais. (With thanks to the Cheltenham & Gloucester Branch of the Western Front Association)
By 1918 Miss Florence Rogers was advertising her millinery business at this address. She was related to Mr Broome Rogers, who owned the ironmongers next door, at number 52 Suffolk Road, and whose wife Rosina died at Clevedon House in 1921. The Rogers' were still here in 1926.
In 1927 the trade changed again when Thomas Nelson Hill set up his jewellery and watchmaking business at these premises. He was here until about 1938 when Mr Percival Roach, with his wife Ann, relocated their grocery shop and post office business into this property from number 48 Suffolk Road next door.
By 1945 Mrs R.M. Warwick had taken over the shop as a stationer and also continued to run the post office, although the Roaches still lived over the shop. In 1947 a new company called Commercial Steel Works, which manufactured metal garages, sheds and agricultural buildings traded from these premises. They seem to have survived for just about 2 years. Mrs Warwick continued to run the post office during this time, until at least 1957, but by 1961 Ann Roach had converted the shop into a cafe.
Researcher: Stuart Manton (July 2016)
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