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42, High Street.

c1830 – 1842 (James Burlingham)

Listed here in 1830 (Pigot) was James Burlingham, a tea dealer.

James Burlingham was born in Shropham, Norfolk in about 1797, and married Hannah Cooper (b. c1796 in Livermere, Suffolk) on 23rd June, 1828 at St. James’ church in Bury St. Edmunds. James and Hannah had two sons, both born in Lynn:-

1) Samuel James, a stationer (b. 29/04/1831 – m. Sarah Buck in 1858 – d. 1870, aged 39). 2) Joseph John, a tobacconist (b. 27/07/1834 – m. Ann / Annie Smith in 1872 – d. 1892, aged 57).

The listings for James Burlingham continue in 1836 (White) and 1839 (Pigot) but by 1846 (Kelly) he had moved to 14, Norfolk Street, and he advertised from there on 29th April, 1848:-

‘J. BURLINGHAM, begs particularly at this Season of the Year to call the attention of the Inhabitants of Lynn and its Neighbourhood, to his ANTI-CORROSIVE PAINT, which for Economy and Durability far surpasses any other. Specimens may be seen at his residence, 14, Norfolk Street. Foreign and British Wines and Spirits. J.B. particularly recommends his Marsala, at 24s. per dozen.’

James had moved from High Street by 1842/3, and was at the Norfolk Street address in 1851. By 1861 he was running a grocery and wine merchant’s shop in Broad Street. Soon after that date, he had retired and was living in Suffolk, where Hannah died in 1864, and he died in 1867, aged 70.

1842 – c1861 (John Jackson)

John Jackson manufactured baby linen, and ladies’ underclothing and stays. The business grew in size until it employed about 150 females at a manufactory in King Street in 1861.

John Jackson was born in Sunderland in about 1816 and he was working as a draper in Pontefract, Yorkshire in 1841, where he was living with his wife Ann (b. c1810 in Crowland Lincolnshire). John and Ann had five children, the last four born in Lynn:-

1) Thomas Ashby (b. 1841 in Pontefract). 2) John (b. 1843). 3) Joseph (b. c1844 – d. 1847, aged 4) Alfred James (b. 1848). 5) Ann Louisa (b. 1851/2 – m. Joseph Reece Workman in 1884 – see No. 18 – d. 1893, aged 41).

The first references to John Jackson establishing his business in Lynn are in advertisements. The following was placed in the Lynn Advertiser on 16th May, 1841:-

‘NEWS for the SEASON!!! JNO. JACKSON’S Ready-Made Baby Linen and Juvenile Depot, 42, HIGH STREET, LYNN, is acknowledged by all who visit it, to be the most interesting, useful, and economical establishment in the county of Norfolk, to which the attention of Ladies is respectfully invited, it being now replete with every description of material suitable for the present season – in Frocks, Pelisses, Cloaks, and Hoods, Boys’ Dresses etc., etc. In short, every article that is required for children from the Lawn Shirt, the Flannel Wrapper, the Monthly Gown, etc., up to the dress for the young lady and gentleman to 10 years of age.

Ladies’ Dressing Gowns, Night Dresses, Linen etc. Also an almost endless variety of style and quality in Night Caps.

The attention of Gentlemen is also requested to his very magnificent assortment of Stocks, surpassing, by far, any assortment ever seen in Norfolk, both for magnitude and style. Linen and Long Cloth Shirts, Collars, and Fronts, which are exceedingly popular from the superiority of fitting.

All the above, with every article connected with the trade, is manufactured under his own and that of Mrs. J’s superintendence, are confidently recommended as to character of the work, which is done in a very superior manner.


J.J. is also manufacturer  of a very superior make of Stays for young ladies which require no lacing, in 5 sizes.

42, HIGH STREET, LYNN. 16th May, 1841.’                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               

The wording indicates that Mrs. Jackson was very much involved in the business alongside her husband. In another advertisement, on 11th April, 1842, John Jackson announced that he taken advantage of the general economic situation to purchase stock at reduced prices:-

‘JOHN JACKSON respectfully announces to the inhabitants of Lynn and its vicinity, that the above establishment was opened yesterday with a Stock which he has just purchased in London, Manchester, Leicester, and other Markets, and owing to the general distress of those districts, he has been enabled to make purchases on the most advantageous terms by cash payments.’

He was listed here in both Kelly’s directory for 1846 and Slater’s for 1850.

John Jackson’s business expanded into a major underwear manufactory at 19, King Street, Lynn, where he had moved by 1863. His entry in Harrod’s directory for that year reads:-

‘John Jackson, manufacturer of baby linen and ladies’ under clothing, King Street. Sole proprietors of Worsdell’s Great American remedy for bowel complaints, the blackberry and brandy carminative, also manufacturer of blacking, unrivalled pomade, par excellence.’

In the 1861 census, his entry reads:-

‘Manufacturer of under clothing, employing about 150 females. Local Methodist Preacher.’

The business was listed as ‘John Jackson & Sons’ in Kelly’s directory for 1875, and Thomas was now working in the family business.

Ann Jackson died in 1879, aged 70, and John moved to Leamington Spa. He married Mary Hannah Fishwick in 1883. He died on 22nd April, 1892, aged 76.

 1856 – 1892 (James Winearls Dennes) (Dennes & Co.)

James Winearls Dennes, a draper and silk mercer, was listed here in successive trade directories from 1863 (Harrod) to 1890 (White), but had started in business in Lynn at No. 92, High Street, at an earlier date – probably about 1852. For about ten years, between 1864 and 1874, his brother William Cullen Dennes (see No. 43, High Street) joined him in a partnership, Dennes & Co., and the two shops (42 & 43) were combined into one. More details of Dennes & Co., may be found at No. 43.

Born in Walpole St. Peter in about 1826, James Dennes probably served an apprenticeship in Lynn before opening his own shop at No. 92, High Street. He placed an advertisement in the Lynn Advertiser on 16th April, 1853 (see No. 92, High Street) and had an entry in White’s directory for 1854.

Moving from No. 92 to No. 42 in 1856, he placed the following notice in the Lynn Advertiser on 19th April that year:-

‘Baby Linen, Mantle Warehouse, & General Hosiery Establishment. 42, HIGH STREET, LYNN.

W. DENNES has the pleasure of soliciting the attention of the public to his carefully selected useful and fashionable goods in every department of his establishment.

Ready-made Linen for Ladies and Gentlemen, and orders received and executed on the shortest notice.

Agent for Ford’s universal approved Eureka Shirts.

Travelling Trunks and Carpet Bags always on hand.’

James Dennes married Elizabeth Boyce Kerkham in 1856. She had been born in Terrington in about 1829, the daughter of farmer Francis Kerkham (b. c1789 in Sutton St. Edmunds, Lincolnshire) and his wife Ann.

James and Elizabeth Dennes did not have any children.

The business flourished and Dennes & Co. were regular advertisers in the local newspapers. However, James and William appear to have retained a degree of independence within the partnership. William was the business traveller for them both (see No. 43), while several advertisements refer to James as Mr. Dennes at No. 42. In January, 1872, the Lynn Advertiser carried this notice:-

‘Mr. Hay, dental surgeon of Post Office Street, Norwich may be consulted, on Tuesday January 9th, 1872 at Mr. Dennes’s, 42, High Street.’

This was a regular monthly arrangement, with Mr. Hay visiting on market days.

Dennes & Co., were the sole agent for a number of patented sewing machines (see also No. 43). On 24th August, 1872, they advertised the following makes at prices from £2 12s 6d:-

‘Wheeler & Wilson, Willcox & Gibbs, Grover & Baker, Weir, Singer, Weed, Newton Wilson & Co., Thomas, &c.’

In August 1874, the partnership of Dennes & Co., was dissolved and James advertised a sale of their stock, and in Kelly’s Directory of 1875, James is listed as running the two premises Nos. 42 & 43, High Street. On 20th May, 1876, he advertised:-

‘Jackets & Mantles in the newest designs, A variety of Skirts and Costumes, Fancy Dresses, Black Silk, Portmanteaus, Carpet bags, Gentlemen’s and Juveniles, Clothing, Family Mourning, Sewing Machines. 42, High Street.’

James is listed at 42 & 43 in the Post office directory of 1879, but in the same edition, Edmund Creed Rowe, a fruiterer is listed at No. 43.

In a notice placed in the Lynn Advertiser on 19th March, 1892, J. W. Dennes announced that he had sold his house and shop and was selling off his stock.

James and Elizabeth Dennes moved from here to North Everard Street, where they were in 1901. Elizabeth died in 1903, aged 74, and James died in 1911/12, aged 86.

1892 – 1903 (J. H. Reddie & Sons)

In June 1892, J. H. Reddie & Sons moved their music business here from No. 89, where a longer account of their family history is given.

The family members who moved here were: Josiah Henry (aged 70), Emma (aged 61), and four of their children, all single; Josiah Ferdinand (aged 40), George Flanders (aged 38), Sarah Emma (aged 36), and Henry Percy (aged 22). Emma died in 1893 aged 64, and George died in 1899 aged 45.

The business continued as before in all departments, including sales of instruments and sheet music, tuning and repairs and in music lessons. On 13th January, 1894, the following advertisement appeared in the Lynn Advertiser:-

‘J. H. REDDIE & SONS, 42, High Street, King’s Lynn, Music-sellers, by Special Warrant, to H. R. H. the PRINCESS of WALES. TUNING DEPARTMENT. Messrs. REDDIE have the honour of tuning the pianofortes at Sandringham House, and supply pianofortes there when required. They are also similarly honoured by H. R. H. the Princess Louise, Duchess of Fife, and the principal families of West Norfolk.  TUNING SINGLY OR BY THE YEAR.  REPAIRS – Pianofortes, American Organs and Harmoniums thoroughly restored in tone, touch and appearance, at moderate charges. MUSICAL TUITION – Lessons given as usual. Sixteen of Messrs. Reddie’s pupils have successfully passed their examinations in the Senior Division of the Royal Academy of Music. Terms on application.’

Reddie & Sons were ticket agents for entertainment events in the town, and also organised both regular and special concerts (see advertisement above right – Lynn Advertiser 17th October, 1902). One of the events in October, 1902 was advertised in the Lynn Advertiser:-

‘ST. JAMES HALL KING’S LYNN. FOR FIVE NIGHTS and ONE MATINEE ONLY. IMPORTANT and ATTRACTIVE VISIT of the ANGLO AMERICAN ANIMATED ELECTRIC DISSOLVING PICTURES. The Sight of a Lifetime. 10,000 Entirely New Subjects. 10,000 Never before Seen in this Town. The most Unique and Attractive Entertainment in the World. PATRIOTIC PICTURES. COMIC & MAGIC SUBJECTS. SPORTING & CRICKET PICTURES. Supported by a GRAND VAUDEVILLE COMPANY of Talented Artistes.’

Reddies could provide electric lighting for any venue, including marquees, through their own portable engine and dynamo.

Josiah Henry Reddie fell ill and (Josiah) Ferdinand and (Henry) Percy decided to sell the business to Scott & Son in January, 1903. In a notice published in the Lynn Advertiser for 9th January, 1903, they announced:-

‘Messrs. REDDIE & SONS Beg to inform their customers and the public generally that, owing to the illness of the senior partner, they have disposed of their business as a going concern to Messrs. Scott & Son, the well-known House Furnishers, and in gratefully thanking their friends for the favours liberally bestowed for so many years, beg to assure them of Messrs. Scott’s ability to carry on the business as satisfactorily as heretofore.’

Josiah Henry died in 1905 at the age of 83.

1903 – c1912 (Scott & Son)

On taking over the premises and business of Reddie & Sons, Scott & Son placed the following notice in the Lynn Advertiser:-

‘MESSRS. SCOTT & SON Beg to announce that they have purchased and will carry on the well-known Musical Instrument and Tuning Business of Messrs. J. H. REDDIE & SONS. They have the pleasure in announcing that they have secured the services of Mr. Dey, the well-known and proficient tuner, who has been with Messrs. Reddie & Sons for the past three years. Both Mr. F. and Mr. P. Reddie will assist for a time. Mr. F. Reddie will continue to give lessons in Music as usual, at 42, High Street. Messrs. SCOTT & SON trust to receive the support of the public.’

Scott & Son (see Nos. 91 to 97 and No. 89), continued to run a music shop at this address for about ten years, before absorbing it into their main furniture store, across the street at Nos. 91 to 97 (the notice, right, appeared in the Lynn Advertiser on 8th June, 1912).

David Smales Dey (b. 1880 in Islington, London), transferred from Reddies to Scotts as a piano tuner.

David Dey’s grandparents were Henry (b. c1817 in Ide, near Exeter in Devon – d. 1894, aged 77) and Harriet (b. c 1817 in Chigwell, Essex). Henry was a carpenter and moved from Devon to St. Pancras in London in about 1842. Their third son, David’s father George, was born in St. Pancras in 1851 and became a piano tuner after leaving school. George married Harriet Barnard (b. c 1855 in St. Pancras) in 1875 and they had five children, all born in Islington:-

1) Thomas Henry (b. 1876 – m. Edith Maddison in 1900 – d. 1932, aged 55). 2) Frederick George (b. 1878/9 – m. Julia Blake in 1906). 3) David Smales (b. 1880 – m. Mildred L. Little in 1912 – d. 1930, aged 50). 4) Gertrude Maria (b. 1882). 5) Archibald Harvey (b. 1884).

David was educated at the Haberdashers’ School and apprenticed with Messrs. J. & J. Hopkinson of London. He arrived in Lynn in about 1900, aged 20, and was boarding with Robert and Elizabeth Mendham in Union Street, in 1901. David Dey became one of Scott & Son’s most trusted members of staff, managing the music department for several years.

During the First World War, David Dey served in Mesopotamia. After the war he set up his own business at Nos. 11 & 12, Railway Road, Lynn. He was a member of the Norfolk Yeomanry and won many prizes for shooting. For a time he was captain of the Lynn hockey team.

David Dey married Mildred L. Little in 1912 and they had one son, Geoffrey David (b. 1913 – m. Annie Storey in 1936 – d. 1984). David died in 1930, aged 50. After his death, his widow Mildred kept the business going and their son Geoffrey took it on, in partnership for a time with Sydney G. Horner.

c1912 – c1954 (Hipps Ltd.)

Hipps Ltd., clothiers, took a lease of the premises from Scott & Son for several years.

Founded in Leeds by Lewis Goodman, a Jewish immigrant born in Russia in about 1848, with his son Lyla (Lazarus), Hipps became one of the biggest clothing manufacturers and retailers in the country.

After moving to England, Lewis Goodman worked as tailor in Birmingham, where he was lodging in 1871. He moved to Leeds where he established a flourishing drapery business. His wife Betsy was born in Poland in about 1852. Lewis took his son Lyla on as a partner and the latter became a prominent member of the Leeds Wholesale Clothiers’ Association and Vice-Chairman of the Northern Clothing Manufacturers’ Association.

By 1914, Hipps had a chain of seventy shops across the country. Lewis Goodman died on 16th January, 1920, leaving a personal estate valued at nearly £40,000.

Lyla married Natalie Rayman in 1912, and took the business from strength to strength.

In 1931 it was reformed as Hipps (1931) Ltd., and the following year had 100 shops, placing it fourth in the ranking of multiple tailors. Its headquarters was at the Hipsley Works, Grace Street, Leeds, with a workforce of 1,100. The company retailed its own brand under the name of ‘Hipsley’ clothes. A serious fire at the factory in 1940 led to the acquisition of the Balm Road Mills in Hunslet..

In 1960, Headrow Clothes bought Hipps but made an agreement that they should continue to trade independently and that Headrow clothes should not be retailed via Hipps’ shops. In 1962, Headrow was swallowed up by GUS, and Hipps ceased trading in the early 1970s.

One time manager of Hipps’ Lynn branch was Mr. George Herbert Gyton (b. Liverpool in1874) who died at 90, High Street in July 1937, aged 63.

 1960 – c1972 (International Tea Co’s Stores Ltd.)

International Stores opened a branch here on 3rd November, 1960. Gwen Berryman, the actress behind the voice of Doris Archer in the long-running BBC radio drama, performed the opening ceremony and signed photocards.

There was another branch of International at No. 103, High Street, which had been there since about 1904 (see entry for No. 103 for more information about International Stores). That one closed in 1956 when Martin’s Bank redeveloped No. 103.

A serious fire occurred at the premises on 13th June, 1968. The Lynn News & Advertiser the following day reported:-

‘LYNN STORE LOSES £12,000 – £15,000 WORTH OF FOOD IN BIG FIRE, between £12,000 and £15,000 worth of food was severely damaged or destroyed and the building extensively damaged yesterday morning in a fire at the International Stores, at 42, High Street, Lynn. The fire was brought under control after about an hour, but firemen were at the premises for the rest of the morning clearing the water and debris. The store manager, Mr. P. H. Risebrow, was told of the fire at about 7.15am. He went to the scene, and from then on he worked at clearing the debris. “It was lucky there was not an inferno, but all the doors and windows were locked, so the fire was contained.” He said. Firemen were called out at 6.50am with a 999 call telling them that Boots (The Chemists) Ltd., next door, was on fire.’

International Stores were taken over in 1972 and the branch here closed. Further details of the company will be found at No. 103, High Street.

1973 (Vacant)

At the time that Kelly’s Directory for 1973 went to press, there were no occupiers of No. 42.

2005 – 2010 (British Home Stores) (BHS)

The premises were redeveloped in 2005 when British Home Stores (BHS) opened a store here embracing the old site of Littlewoods at Nos. 39 – 41 and taking in No. 42 as well.

BHS was founded in 1928 by American entrepreneurs, who wanted to create a chain of stores in the Woolworths style but with a higher value ticket price and a wider range of goods. The price was limited originally to one shilling but later increased to five shillings.

Their first store was at Brixton.  Further branches followed, each with a cafeteria and a grocery department. The company went public in the early 1930s and after WWII it grew until there were nearly 100 stores in the 1960s.

In 1986, BHS merged with Habitat and Mothercare to form Storehouse plc, and it was shortly after this that the branding changed to BHS (or Bhs) in place of British Home Stores.

Sir Philip Green bought BHS from Storehouse in May 2002, before also acquiring the Arcadia Group, which also included Topshop, Burtons, Evans, Dorothy Perkins and Wallis.

The chain struggled against stiff competition and in 2010 ten of the stores, including the King’s Lynn branch, were sold to Primark

Following further losses over a number of years, Sir Philip Green sold BHS for £1 in March, 2015 and the new owners, Retail Acquisitions Ltd., reverted to the use of the name British Home Stores. A number of stores closed during the following year, including several in city centres. Then in April, 2016 the chain collapsed into administration, leading to the closure of 164 shops, and the loss of 11,000 jobs. It also left a £571m pensions deficit.  The owner of Retail Acquisitions Ltd., was Dominic Chappell, a British businessman and former racing driver, who has been declared bankrupt three times. The collapse of the company and, particularly, the huge pensions deficit, has led to criticism of both Sir Philip Green and Dominic Chappell and both have been the subject of investigations by the pensions regulator.

2010 (Primark)

Following the takeover of the store by the clothing chain Primark in 2010, the premises were completely refurbished and given a new frontage. The new store opened on 31st March 2011.

Primark was founded by Arthur Ryan in Mary Street, Dublin in 1969, under the name of Penneys. Within two years it had expanded into the UK with a large Belfast store in the city centre, followed by three out-of-town stores in England.

Primark offers ‘trendy fashions at very low prices’.

Arthur Ryan retired as chief executive in 2009, but stayed on as chairman.