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35 High Street.

No. 35 is one shop away from the New Conduit Street corner. This was a double-fronted shop that was deceptively large although the domestic accommodation was small. There were three rooms above the ground floor shop and a basement kitchen.

c1822 – 1895 (James Pond) (Charles Pond)

Pigot’s directory for 1822/3 lists James Pond as an umbrella maker with a High Street address (no number).

James Pond is listed in White’s directory for 1836 as a silversmith, jeweller and umbrella maker, and his address was here at No. 35.

In 1841, he was living here with his wife Charlotte (née Youels). They had eight children:-

1) Charlotte (b. c1826 – d. 1846). 2) Mary Ann (b. c1827 – m. chemist Thomas Kirkham on 25/12/1852 – d. 1912, aged 84). 3) Caroline Emily (b. c1830 – d. 1880/1, aged 50). 4) Charles (b. c1832 – d. 1895, aged 62). 5) George William, a grocer and wine & spirit merchant, and mayor of Chippenham in 1881 (b. c1834 – m. Mary Ann Ruscoe in 1865 – d. 1915, aged 81). 6) Edward John (b. c1837 – m. Harriet Ruscoe in 1864). 7) Henry (b. c1840 – d. 1857/8). 8)  Emma (b. 1842 – d. 1898, aged 57).

Charlotte’s elder sister Mary Ann (was staying with them. Another daughter,

James is included in the Nine Counties directory for 1846 and the family were living here in 1851, along with Charlotte’s sister, Mary Ann (b. c1795 in Kenninghall, Norfolk – d. January 1860, aged 66).

James had been born in Suffolk in about 1799 and came to Lynn prior to 1822. He died in early 1861, before that year’s census, when Charlotte was recorded as living here with her unmarried daughters Caroline, 30, and Emma, 19, and her son Charles, 28. Charles was a working jeweller and took over the business.

In 1871, Charles Pond was living here with his sister Caroline, an umbrella maker. Both were unmarried. Their mother Charlotte was running a boarding house in Hunstanton, and Emma was staying there, too. Caroline Emily Pond died c1880/81 at the age of 50, and her mother Charlotte, now aged 84, moved in with Charles and was recorded as head of the household. She died the following year. Charles was still here in 1891, with Emma, who worked as his assistant in the shop. Charles died in 1895, aged 62, and Emma died in 1898, aged 57.

The Ponds appear to have occupied both No. 35 and No. 36 for some time during the period 1868 – 1898. In the 1871 census and the directory for 1879 they were listed at both numbers. In Kelly’s for 1896, Emma is listed at No. 36.

1895 (Mrs. Spurr)

The only reference to Mrs. Spurr, a fruiterer and greengrocer, is in a notice placed in the Lynn Advertiser by Harry Noble Sharp in 1895, stating that he was taking over the business from Mrs. Spurr.

1895 – (Harry Noble Sharp)

Harry Noble Sharp, a fruiterer and greengrocer, took over the premises in 1895. He advertised in the Lynn Advertiser in January 1895:-


N. SHARP – English and Foreign Fruiterer. Hot-house Grapes and Garden Cress Fresh Daily. TINNED FRUITS & PRESERVES ALWAYS IN STOCK. Wreaths, Crosses, Bouquets, Sprays and Cut Flowers on the Shortest Notice. H. N. SHARP, 35 HIGH STREET, Two doors from Conduit Street. KING’S LYNN. N.B. Customers waited on daily.’

Harry Sharp was born in Reading in 1869 but had connections with King’s Lynn through his mother Caroline, who was born in the town in about 1838.

Harry’s parents were Granville Sharp and Caroline Knock. Granville, born c1830 in Woolwich, Kent, worked as a silk warehouseman alongside 70 other men at London’s Old Change in 1851. Granville married Harriet Brown in the City of London in 1853 but he had become a widower by 1861, at which date he was working as a draper in Reading, employing an assistant from Lynn, Elizabeth Mary Rosling. In 1865, Granville married Caroline Knock in London.

Caroline (b. c1836 in Lynn) was the daughter of Joseph Knock (b. c1807 in Little Fransham, Norfolk) and Elizabeth (b. c1811 in Lynn) who were living in Bainbridge Yard in Lynn in 1841. Joseph was a labourer at that date but both he and Elizabeth were working as pawnbroker’s agents in 1851 from premises at 26, New Conduit Street. They maintained very close contact with their daughter Caroline and their grandchildren, one of whom, Lilla Mary Sharp, was staying with them at census time in 1871.

Granville Sharp, meanwhile, had secured a good job as secretary to the Cornish Mining Company and the family were living in Camden Road, Islington. He and Caroline had eight children:-

1) Lilla Mary (b. 1862 – m. Frederick Rashley in 1900 – d. 1932, aged 69). 2) Walter Joseph (b. 1865). 3) Emilie Frances (b. 1866/7). 3) Elizabeth Florence (b. 1868 – m, William Smithdale at King’s Lynn in 1896 – d. 1961, aged 92). 5) Harry Noble (b. 1869 – m. Constance Elizabeth Evans in 1891 – d. 1940, aged 72). 6) Adeline Eliza (b. 1872 – m. Lionel G. Clough in 1912 – d. 1940, aged 68). 7) Charles Edward (b. 1875). 8) Stanley (b. 1877).

Elizabeth Florence Sharp married the son of the well-known Norwich iron founder, engineer and millwright, Thomas Smithdale.

Caroline moved back to Lynn to support her parents and their pawnbroking business. She was with them in 1881 but may just have been visiting. She probably came to take over the business just before her mother, Elizabeth Knock, died in 1884, aged 72. Her father, Joseph, died in 1890, aged 84. In 1891, the census records Caroline as the head of the family and as running the pawnbroking business in New Conduit Street. Granville had not joined her by that date but was with her in Lynn by 1901 when, aged 71, he was not listed as having any occupation. In 1911, the census states that he was being ‘kept by wife’. Their daughter Adeline had not married and was with them in Lynn. Granville died in 1914, aged 84. Caroline continued to work as a pawnbroker until her death in 1922/3, aged 85.

Harry Sharp was sent away to a private school, Framlingham College in Suffolk, where he is recorded in the 1881 census, aged 11. It is debateable whether this education helped Harry to forge a successful career, because he commenced as a pawnbroker’s assistant and ended up as a miner.

In 1891, Harry, who had been working in his mother’s pawnbroking business, married Constance Elizabeth Evans in Merthyr Tydfil, Wales. The family then moved to Lynn and Harry opened his fruit and vegetable business here in 1895. This did not last very long and by 1901 he was working as a tobacconist at 53, Norfolk Street, the business being listed in Constance’s name in Kelly’s directory for 1900. Harry and Constance had five children, all except their eldest being born in Lynn:-

1) Granville Spencer (b. 1892 in Merthyr Tydfil – m. Alice S. Joy in 1917 – d. 1972). 2) Stanley Horace (b. 1897 – m. Elizabeth Richards in 1917 – d. 1949, aged 52). 3) Constance Primrose (b. 1899 – m. Frederick A. Wilson in 1941). 4) Edward Barrett (b. 1902 – d. 1964, aged 61). 5) Frederick William – known as William – (b. 1904). In Kelly’s directory for 1904, Harry is listed as a tobacconist, at 136, Norfolk Street, but the family moved to Merthyr Tydfil soon after then and Constance died there in 1906, at the age of 42. In 1911, Harry was working as a miner in the Six Bells colliery close to where he lived with his young family in the village of Aberbeeg. Harry died in 1940, at the age of 72.

c1897 – c1902 (Lucy Eleanor Peacock)

Miss Lucy Eleanor Peacock, a milliner, was her in April, 1897, when she advertised for a young lady assistant. She was listed here in Kelly’s directory for 1900 and was here on census night, 1901.

Lucy Parker was born in Lynn in 1867. She was self employed and had an assistant living with her at No. 35.

Lucy was the daughter of John Samuel Peacock (b. c1836), a Norfolk Street pork butcher, who had come from Harpley to Lynn where he married Mary Ann Young (b. c1835) in 1862. She was the daughter of James Young, a Lynn sawyer. John and Mary Peacock had four children:-

1) Lucy Eleanor (b. 1867). 2) Agnes Emma (b. 1868/9). 3) Lilian Ada (b. 1869/70). 4) Golder Bennet (b. 1877).

Lucy does not seem to have stayed here very long because the premises were advertised to let on 10th January, 1902:-

‘DOUBLE-Fronted Shop, centre of High street, 3 rooms above, kitchens underground; £35, – Apply, 35 High street, Lynn.’

She may have left Lynn to go and work in London.

c1902 – c1934 (Ellen Mary Suggett)

Miss Ellen Mary Suggett, a milliner, was listed here for the first time in Kelly’s directory for 1904 but may have taken occupation of the premises a year or two earlier, moving from No. 99, High Street. Her business was listed in the directories for 30 years – from 1896 up to and including 1930.

Ellen was one of the ten children of John Dix Suggett (b. c1842 – m. Ellen Worsley in 1865 – d. 1908, aged 66) and his wife Ellen Wolsey (b. c1843 – d. 1928, aged 85). They had married in King’s Lynn.

John Dix Suggett was the son of Matthew Suggett (b. c1818 in Kettlestone, Norfolk – d. 1876, aged 58) and Susannah Haverson (b. c1813 in West Newton, Norfolk – d. 1886, aged 74), who had married in Lynn in 1842. Matthew worked as a Customs Officer, boarding and inspecting the cargoes of ships entering the port of Lynn. Susannah was committed to the Ipswich Lunatic Asylum and he had to bring up the children on his own for several years. He and Susannah had four children:-

1) John Dix. 2) Dix – see No. 105, High Street (b. 1843). 3) Ann Maria (b. 1845/6 – m. William Henry Roberts in 1879). 4) Samuel (b. 1852 – m. Mary Anne Langford in 1877 – d. 1918, aged 65).

The youngest son Samuel  became a commission agent but was admitted to Hellesdon Hospital, Norwich as a certified lunatic and died there in 1918, aged 65.

Mary Anne was the daughter of Albert F. Langford (b. c1829), the Norfolk Street chemist, and brother to Emmerson Langford (b. c1867), who ran a tobacconist’s shop in Blackfriars Road and an ironmongery in Norfolk Street).

The nine children of John Dix and Ellen Suggett who survived infancy were:-

1) Ellen Mary (b. 1866 – d. 1954, aged 87 in Kent). 2) Kathleen Martha (b. 1868 – d. 1955 in Lynn, aged 87). 3) Fanny Louise (b. c1870 – d. 1852/3 in Kent, aged 83). 4) John William (b. 1890). 5) Alfred (b. 1874 – d. 1941, aged 67). 6) Charles Matthew (b. 1876 – d. 1953, aged 77 in Lynn). 7) Ada Marian, a nursery governess  (b. 1878 – d. 1949, aged 71 in Lynn). 8) Walter (b. 1880 – d. 1949, aged 68 in Lynn). 9) Frank Edward (b. 1882).

None of the four girls married and Ellen appears to have run a millinery business that thrived for over three decades and which gave employment at various times to her siblings, Kathleen and Fanny.

The year 1891 provides the first reference to Ellen working, when both she and Fanny were recorded as milliners in the census. They were at home with their parents in Valingers Road, aged 24 and 21 respectively. It is not known whether they were working on their own account or for another milliner in the town. By 1896, Ellen had established her own business at 99, High Street, moving here in about 1904.

The 1901 census catches Ellen and Kathleen visiting William Pheasant, a schoolmaster, and his wife Charlotte, an assistant schoolmistress at their home in Swaffham. It may well be that this was a business call by the two sisters. In 1911 at census time Ellen was recorded as head of the household at 310, High Street, Rochester and she may have had a branch of the business in Kent. Staying with her were her sister Fanny, working for her as a milliner, and their brother Walter, a clerk to a chartered accountant. Also there was a young milliner’s assistant. There is every reason to suppose that Ellen had property and business interests in Rochester because both she and Fanny died in Kent in the 1950’s. However, the millinery business at No. 35 continued for several years, being listed until 1930. It is possible that Kathleen managed the business in Lynn when Ellen was away – she died in the town in 1955.

c1934 – c1960s (The London Central Meat Co. Ltd.)

The London Central Meat Co. Ltd., had opened a branch here by 1934/5 when they were listed in Kelly’s directory. In February 1935 they applied for permission to alter the premises. The company had been established in about 1884 and had branches all over the country.

For over 30 years, until his death on 20th May, 1933, the Managing Director of the firm was Herbert Lea. Born in Church Gresley in Derbyshire in about 1863, Herbert was the son of William (b. c1818) and Mary (b. c1825) Lea. William was a coal miner from Linton in Derbyshire and Mary came from Measham in Leicestershire. Many of the male inhabitants of Church Gresley in the second half of the 19th Century were either miners or potters. In 1871, the Leas’ eldest son William was working as a slip-maker in a pottery, as was his younger brother George. Herbert went into the mines after leaving school but by 1891 he had become a butcher’s assistant, and within ten years was the General Manager of the London Central Meat Company Limited.

In 1914, the company went into voluntary liquidation and the business was transferred to ‘The New London Central Meat Company Limited’.

By 1951, a second branch had opened on Lynn’s High Street, at No. 122.

Both branches were listed in Kelly’s directory for 1954 but by 1960 had been taken over by Baxters (Butchers) limited.

c1937 (London, Midland & Scottish Railway Company.

The agency office of the London, Midland & Scottish Railway Company was here in 1937.

c1965 – c1973 (Baxters (Butchers) Limited)

The London Central Meat Co. Ltd. became Baxters (Butchers) Ltd., in the 1960s.