Mystery photos of Brighton and Hove

Where was this tobacconist shop?

By David Ransom

Harry Pedley was born c.1864, the son of Charles Pedley, a railway labourer. Harry was a boiler maker by trade who worked on the construction of Tower Bridge (c.1884). He later worked in Peru and Chile.

He retired (by choice) at the age of 50. He was also the owner of tobacconist shops in Brighton including one at 203 Preston Road (1913-1914) and also the shop illustrated here, at number 32 (road not known). Harry's wife Harriet Mary (nee Kennard) was apparently the first woman to walk across Tower Bridge. If anyone can tell me where this shop was please post a comment below.

Photo:Harry Pedley's shop

Harry Pedley's shop

From the private collection of David Ransom

Photo:Detail of shop reflection - does this help?

Detail of shop reflection - does this help?

From the private collection of David Ransom

This page was added on 02/08/2008.
Comments about this page

No one has said anything yet. I haven't the faintest idea either, so I too am dying to know. The almost level ground combined with the few glazed wall tiles and the roof reflected in the shop window suggests it could be somewhere like Prestonville Road, near Seven Dials. What also got me thinking was the advert for Turf Cigarettes. As a side issue, how many small boys remember collecting the sporting pictures that were actually part of the insides of those packets?

By Roy Grant (10/08/2008)

I hadn't really studied the reflections before - so here is a close up - hope it helps. One more thing - my description above does not really make it clear that Harry Pedley owned the tobacconist shops after he retired, not before, so that would date the photograph after 1913.

By David Ransom (11/08/2008)

I think from looking at the reflections and the detailing on either side of the signage that it's on Duke Street but I can't work out for definite - or which shop it is!

By James Sawyer (12/08/2008)

I have to agree with Roy on this one. There seems to be nothing in directories or elsewhere that would place this in Brighton, unless it was a very ephemeral business.
This is only a hunch but it may be worth someone looking at the premises now there. In 1911 a Mrs Helena Chambers had a Confectioners at 32, Prestonville Road. By 1915 it was listed to Dickens. It is possible that sometime between 1911 and 1915 there may have been another change of hands.

By Andy Grant (15/08/2008)

Dating the picture:
Was it obligatory that a firm should say they were "Licenced to sell tobacco" as written over the door jam? If so, what year did this legislation come in?

By Roy Grant (15/08/2008)

I think it may be West Street. between an alley way and a cinema.

By j tonks (19/08/2008)

When I moved up to the top of Albion Hill, the shop next door to me had the board saying I forget initial but Colman "Licenced to sell tobacco" you used to see that on all tobacconist.

By Patrick Kite (08/01/2009)

If you're already a registered user of this site, please login using the form on the left-hand side of this page.