56 Station Street

Kirkby Gold Centre

Kirkby Gold Centre is currently at 56 Station Street. They have been there since at least June 2015. However, in April 2011, the premises were empty and there was a “To Let” sign on the building.

Kirkby Gold Centre at 56 Station Street in August 2023
This photo shows Kirkby Gold Centre at 56 Station Street in 2016. The photo is from Annesley OC Heritage Extra Facebook page

Salvation Army Care and Share Shop

From at least June to August 2009, the premises housed the Salvation Army Care and Share Shop. In a comment on Facebook, Donna Lancashire noted that her mother worked there.

In October 2008, the premises may have been empty, the shutters were down, but there was a “Let By” notice on the building.

F & S Garments Ltd

I am grateful to Gfxautos Fox for noting on Kirkby Living Memory Facebook Group that they ran a workwear business from this shop from 2009 to 2011. They supplied personalised, embroidered garments to nursing homes, bars, clubs, garages, restaurants and many other businesses. Initially, I was surprised that I had not come across this business in the Google archives. However, it may mean that it was only in operation between when Google photographed the street, that is in August 2009 and April 2011.

Howis Bakery

In 1941, Wilfred Howis, a baker, was at 56 Station Street. Howis Bakery appears on Jacques’ List of Station Street retailers circa 1920-1940. However, it is depicted as next-door-but-one to Wilbourn’s and on the same premises as Modernway Library.

Entry from 1941 Kelly’s Directory


In between Howis and Wilbourn’s is a property called Bancroft which I have not yet identified.

Edwin Marriott

In 1928, Edwin Marriott, the butcher, was at 56 Station Street. However, by 1941, they had moved to number 44.

Entry from 1928 Kelly’s Directory
Entry from 1941 Kelly’s Directory

Memories of Shops between Hutton’s and Wilbourn’s

Edith Searson, in her book(let) “I Also Remember“, walked from Hutton’s to Wilbourn’s, that is between 50 and 60 Station Street, and noted, “we pass several smaller shops. As some of them have a ‘new look’ and also some have changed the commodities they sell, I cannot be quite sure of their individual positions, but I do remember several of the names“.

Mrs Waites’ Greengrocer

Edith Searson mentions a greengrocer’s shop run by Mrs Waites. However, I wonder if this was in this terrace at all and if she was perhaps referring to the greengrocer’s business at 64 Station Street. Edith Searson notes that a relative Billy Glover helped in the shop. But, this did not go on for long as he died while still a young man.

Wool Shop

Edith Searson also mentions a wool shop owned by Edith Jones and Ethel Chilton. Ethel Chilton’s husband had a chiropody practice. In the 1980s, the wool shop was still running as Bernice Wools.

This advert for Chilton’s Wool Shop at 56 Station Street appeared in a programme for a 1959 performance by Mowlands Choir at Festival Hall

Memories of the Wool Shop

A number of contributors on Facebook recalled the wool shop fondly. Steph Barks referred to it as a knitting shop. She noted that two old ladies ran it. She could not recall their names but she used to go their with her mum. June Barbara Brown responded that she remembered it well and always got her wool there noting, “they would put so much away for you and you would buy what you wanted for say a week then go back and collect the rest or what you needed. Used to do a lot of knitting back in the day.” Both Steph and June agreed that “the ladies who owned it were lovely“. Heather Mulholland also recalled that they would put wool aside for you. She noted that “they would ask for your name and house number. All put aside wool was stored under the house number so it was easier to find.” She also recalled knitted up samples in the windows.

Sweets for Children

Anne Orwin used to go with her mother and grandmother to collect their wool and she recalled always being given a chewy mint sweet. Judith Wells used to go to Chilton’s with her mother who got all her wool from there. She recalled that they used to put “black jack sweets in the bottom of the bag“. Ann McGarry also recalled that they “always put a sweet in with your wool purchase“. She considered it a “lovely thing to do“.


Isabel Timmins recalled that the wool shop was next-door to Wilbourns and that there was a chiropodist at the back. She noted that her auntie used to take her to the chiropodist in the early sixties. Geoffrey Whetton also recalled the chiropodist, noting “Mr Chilton was the chiropodist. He was one of my dad’s Wednesday customers. There were a few customers my dad visited on a Wednesday because their businesses made it impossible for them to get to the shop. I used to go with him because Mr Chilton had a spaniel called Monty that I played with. This was circa 1960.


Several contributors on Facebook recalled Bernice who ran the wool shop in the eighties. Barbara Wooding thought her surname was Davenport or Devenport but was not sure. Judith Wells recalled her as Bernice McDonald who “was Akela at 3rd Kirkby cubs. She lived on Highfield Avenue before she got married. She had two daughters.

Residents of 56 Station Street

The Waltons

In 1939, Ernest R and Carrie Watson were recorded as living at 56-60 Station Street with their two sons Edward (b1920) and Eric (b1921). There is also one closed record and I wonder if this refers to John Walton. Ernest was the manager of a grocers, wine and spirits. Edward and Eric were both articled clerks to chartered accountants.

The Chiltons

In 1939, Clement and Ethel Chilton were living at 52 Station Street. He was described as working in the stockroom and packing department of “Boot“. I am not sure if this might refer to Boots or a boot shop. It does not specifically mention chiropody. He was also a Sergeant in the Special Constabulary. She was listed as a confectioner, fruit and grocer.

The Haslams

In 1921, Thomas H and Eliza Haslam were living at 56 Station Street. He was described as a butcher. She was described as an assistant. Although the name of the butcher has been transcribed as J H Hailam, I presume it should be T H Haslam. The Haslams were also there in both 1901 and 1911. Thomas Haslam is listed as a butcher in the 1899 Kelly’s Directory.

Entry in 1899 Kelly’s Directory

Leave a Reply