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118, High Street

This shop stands forward in line with Nos. 119 to 123. They were not affected by the Jermyn’s fire of 1897, and have not been redeveloped like Nos. 115 to 117.

c1822 – 1852 (James Burch)

James Burch, a tailor and woollen draper, was listed at High Street (no number) in Pigot’s directory for 1822/3. He also ran a savings bank. Born in Lynn in 1778, he married Ursula Collett, and it appears that they may have had at least five children, all born in Lynn:-

1) James (b. 10/10/1809). 2) John – see below – (b. 06/03/1813 – m. Jane Kitchen Brindle – d. 1890, aged 77). 3) Elkanah, a cork cutter (b. c1814 – m. Ann in 1845). 4) Ursula (b. 26/05/1815 – d. 1859, aged 44). 5) Michael, a tailor (b. c1816 – m. Elizabeth – d. 1863, aged about 47).

James is listed in the directories until 1850 (Slater), and was living on the premises in 1851 with Ursula, who was registered blind, and their children John and Ursula. James’ niece Jane Kitchen Brindle (b. 28/11/1824 at Bourton-on-the-Water, Gloucestershire) was staying with them.

James Burch died in January 1852, aged 74, and Ursula died the following year.

1852 – c1879 (John Burch)

John Burch had been working as assistant to his father and took over when he died in 1852.

In 1861, John is recorded as a woollen draper, tailor and secretary of the savings bank.

John’s cousin Jane Kitchen Brindle stayed here for at least 25 years as his housekeeper. Then in 1876, they married.

In 1881, they were still living at 118, High Street but his occupation was given as secretary of savings bank, and the tailoring business was under the name of Burch & Wilkin (see below). The Lynn Savings Bank had been listed at 118, High Street in White’s Directory of 1854 but had moved to St. James Street by 1875, where it was open on Mondays only, from 11am to 1pm.

John Burch died in 1890, aged 77, and his widow Jane was living in Valingers Road in 1891.

Jane Burch left Lynn and moved to Leamington (now Royal Leamington Spa), Warwickshire, sharing a house with her spinster sister Ann Kitchen Brindle (b. 06/06/1827 in Bourton-on-the-Water). Their parents were Robert Brindle (b. c1806 – d. 1843/4) and Ann Kitchen (b. c1806). Robert was a slater and plasterer and married Ann at Bourton on the Water on 19th November 1821. Robert and Ann had seven children:-

1) Sarah Kitchen (b. 1823 – d. 18/06/1842, aged 19). 2) Jane Kitchen (b. 28/11/1824 – m. John Burch – d. 1915/6, aged 91). 3) Ann Kitchen (b. 1827 – d. 1823, aged 95). 4) Esther Kitchen (b. 05/04/1830 – m. Henry Burden in 1854 – d. 1883, aged 53). 5) William Kitchen (b. 11/03/1832). 6) Robert Kitchen (b. 07/10/1834). 7) George Kitchen, a stonemason (b. 29/01/1838 – m. Ann Maria Scarsbrook on 24/03/1866 – d. 16/04/1916, aged 78).

Jane Burch died in 1915/6, aged 91, and Ann Brindle died in 1922/3, aged 95.

 c1879 – 1890 (Burch & Wilkin)

In 1879, the tailor’s business is listed in the Post Office Directory under the name of Burch & Wilkin. This was a partnership between John Burch and Walter Wilkin. There is evidence to suggest that Walter ran the shop while John concentrated on the savings bank business.

1890 – c1916 (Walter Wagstaff Wilkin)

Following the death of John Burch in 1890, the shop was taken over by his partner, Walter Wagstaff Wilkin, a tailor from Lynn. He was living here at No. 118 with his wife, Mary, and their five children in 1891.

Walter’s father was William Wagstaff Wilkin, born in Norwich in about 1816. He is first listed in the directories for Lynn in 1846 (Kelly) when he was the publican at the Queen’s Arms at 15, London Road. He was only there for about a year before he established his own tailoring business in London Road. He had moved the business to Railway Road by 1868 (Harrod).

William Wilkin married Hannah Shafto (b. c1817 in Castle Acre) in St. Margaret’s church in Lynn on 4th October 1838. They had four children, all born in Lynn:-

1) William (b. 1840 – m. Eleanor Preston – d. c1910). 2) Agatha (b. c1844/5 – d. 1867/8, aged 22). 3) George (b. 1846/7 – d. 1867, aged 20). 4) Walter Wagstaff (b. 1849 – m. Mary Ann Baxter in 1877 – d. 1907, aged 58).

William Wilkin died on 11th March 1875, aged 60, and Hannah died in 1880/1, aged 71.

Walter appears to have taken over the Railway Road business after his father’s death, but then to have gone into partnership with John Burch. He and Mary Ann were living at No. 54, Railway Road in 1881, and moved here in 1890.

Walter Wilkin ran the shop until his death in 1907, aged 58. Mary Ann continued the business and her son George became the manager.

By 1920, the shop had closed and Mary Ann died that year, in London, aged 69.

 c1920 (Edward George Flowerday)

Edward George Flowerday, a tailor, was here in 1922 (Kelly). Born on 27th January 1878 in Lynn, his parents were Edward Flowerday (b. 04/02/1843 in Sutton, Norfolk) and Mary Sophia Harvey (b. c1842 in Stalham, Norfolk). Edward and Mary married in 1869 and had ten children, all but the first being born in Lynn:-

1) Amelia Sophia (b. 1870/1 in Swaffham – m. Arthur Wheatley in 1894 and George A. Fletcher in 1916 – d. 1947, aged 76). 2) Victoria Elizabeth (b. 1872 – d. 1886, aged 13). 3) Alice Mary (b. 1874 – d. 1890, aged 16). 4) Sarah Ann (b. 1876 – d. 1887, aged 11). 5) Edward George (b. 1878 – d. 1915, aged 71). 6) Edith Harvey (b. 07/071879 – d. 27/05/1905, aged 25). 7) Albert Ernest (b. 21/05/1881 – m. Amy Deardon Wood in 1908). 8) Robert Cooke (1883 – 1883). 9) Martha Beatrice (b. 14/08/1884 – m. Wallace William Crisp in 1907 – d. 1971, aged 87). 10) Robert Cooke (1887 – 1887).

Edward snr. was a carpenter and worked in Swaffham for a while (c1871) before coming to Lynn. His son Edward George had established his own tailoring business by the age of 23 when he was working from his parents’ home in All Saints Street (1901).

Edward George Flowerday married Elizabeth Sarah Smithbone (b. 1878/9 in Lynn) at All Saints Church in Lynn on 21st July 1903. They had two children, both born in Gaywood:-

1) Edward Arthur, a clergyman (b. 1904). 2) John Selwyn (b. 1908).

It is not known how long Edward Flowerday had his business here, but it may have been for only a year or two. The only directory entry is for 1922, and he had vacated the premises by June the following year.

Edward George Flowerday died in York on 28th January 1966, aged 88.

 1923 – 1927 (Leslie Matthew Lane) (Myra Dorothy Lane)

Leslie M. Lane ‘The Boot King’ placed a large advertisement in the Lynn Advertiser on 29th June 1923 announcing that he was opening here the following day. Leslie Lane was hardly the major retailer that his advertisement suggested but rather a small market trader who had moved from Chatteris to Lynn and had then taken this shop. He was here for just three years and the business was not a success.

Born in Birmingham in 1890, Leslie Lane commenced trading as a general dealer and market trader in about 1911. He served in the Army from 12th October 1914 until being discharged as medically unfit on 1st January 1917. For the remainder of the war he worked in a Birmingham motor works. After the war he went into partnership to manufacture fire lighters but sold his share within a year, moving to Chatteris to work as a market salesman.

He started selling at Lynn market in 1921 and later moved to the town, selling at several markets in the local area. He married Myra Dorothy King (b. 1902 in Leicester) in Lynn in 1921 and they moved into a house in Gaywood which they named ‘Myra Lodge’.

Leslie had entered into a contract with Mr. Alf Rose of Leicester who supplied him with boots and shoes but had a dispute with him which led to a writ being served on him for £545.

On 13th June 1927, Leslie entered into a deed of assignment with his wife, following which she owned and ran the market business and he was employed by her as manager. He was adjudicated bankrupt on 15th July, 1927, by consent.

Leslie Lane died in 1948, aged 58.

 1927 – 1933 (No Records)

No directory records or advertisements have been found indicating occupiers of No. 118 between 1927 and 1933.

1933 – c1940 (Cecil Oxby) (Elsie Oxby)

Cecil Oxby and his wife Elsie opened a gift shop here in July 1933, having moved the business from 39, St. James Street. In the directories between 1934 and 1939, the shop is described as an art needlework depot. It is not clear whether this was Elsie’s business – her name appears in the later directories.

Cecil was born in Louth, Lincolnshire on 24th September 1897. He came from a long line of Oxbys that can be traced back to the 16th Century who lived and worked as labourers in or near Heighington, a village about four miles southeast of Lincoln. His father was Richard Oxby (b. 15/07/1871 in Heighington – d. 1946, aged 74) who worked as a policeman in Louth before moving to Lynn where he worked for the RSPCA. Richard married Alice Wilkinson (b. 1876 – d. 1955, aged 88). Cecil was their only child.

Cecil married Elizabeth Victoria Bridge on 9th July 1921 but she died later that year, aged 33. He married Elsie Violet Kenny on 20th August 1924.

 c1951 – c1957 (Frank Ebling)

Frank Ebling’s fancy goods shop was listed in the directories for 1951, 1954 and 1957. He was born in King’s Lynn on 15th June, 1896. His father was Thomas Ebling (b. c1860 in Culverthorpe, Lincs.), an engine driver for the M & GN railway. Thomas married Elvina Lewsley (b. c1856 in Kirton, Lincs.) in 1884, and they had seven children, the first five born in Peterborough and the two youngest in Lynn:-

1) Walter (b. 1885 – d. 1963, aged 77). 2) Sidney (b. 1886/7). 3) Kate Evelina (b. 1890/1). 4) Bertie (b. 1891/2). 5) Annie (b. 1893). 6) Frank (b. 1896 – m. Emma Cletheroe in 1921 – d. 1982, aged about 86). 7) John (b. 1898).

Frank Ebling died in 1982, aged 85.

1960 (Not Listed)

No business is listed here in 1960 (Kelly).

1963 (R.A.P Rentals)

The television rental company R.A.P. opened a branch here in January 1963. They had other

Local branches in March and Wisbech.

1966 (Gibbard Television – Eastern- Ltd.)

Gibbard Television had taken over the business here by 1966 (Kelly).

1970/1 (Sydney Atkinson Ltd.)

The TV rental company of Sydney Atkinson was here in 1970/1 (Yates).

1973 (Loyds)

Loyds television rental company were here in 1973 (Kelly).

2007 (Sue Ryder Care)