Now, at 7-11 Station Street, there are three hairdressers/salons. The first, at number 7 is the hairdressers/salon, Millionwaves. This is followed by Kirkby Ashfield Nails and Beauty at number 9. Then, at number 11, is Andrew’s barber shop. Those businesses have been there together since 2017. Millionwaves appeared sometime between 2011 and 2015. Before that, the property was occupied by another hair stylist, Chris’s/Christopher Waynes. From 2011-2015, number 9 was occupied by P & K Pet Supplies and before that it was the estate agent Location. Andrew’s barber shop has been at number 11 since 1996.
I am grateful to Selina Brown for noting on Kirkby Living Memory Facebook Group that Millionwaves had previously been John’s Hair Fashions. She worked there as a “Saturday girl“. She recalled that, “Chris ran the mens barbers upstairs and I remember there was Lisa and Carol downstairs with John. That was late 90s I think“. She also thought that Carol was now running Millionwaves and this was kindly confirmed by Sharon Mills. A number of other contributors recalled working here. Annabel Darch referred to it as Mr John’s. She worked there in the early nineties with Melissa, Karen and Chris.
In 1941 and 1942, number 7 was the premises for tobacconist Harry Dyson Fox and next to him at number 9 was a ladies’ outfitters run by Mrs M H Fox.
Initially, I wondered if one married couple were running two businesses. In 1939, Harry and Maud Fox were living at number 7 so this is possible. Interestingly, they are both described as hairdressers and there is a Fox G/L (gents and ladies?) Hairdressing on Jacques’ List of Station Street retailers circa 1920-1940.
In 1928, both the tobacconist and ladies outfitters businesses were in existence but Harry Dyson Fox also had a confectioners at number 5 where Fred Maltby, the photographer, was later based.
Mrs M H Fox is listed as a ladies wear retailer on Jacques’ List of Station Street retailers circa 1920-1940.
On Jacques’ List of Station Street retailers circa 1920-1940, between Fox G/L Hairdressing and Fox M H Ladies Wear, there is Dale Cafe. I have not come across mention of this although Gertrude Dale ran a confectioner’s at 15 Station Street.
Recollecting Mrs Fox the Milliner
In her book(let) “I Also Remember“, Edith Searson noted that Mrs Fox’s Millinery business was in quite a large shop. This was because she sold things other than millinery and fancy drapery. Upstairs, Marie and May made hats. Edith Searson notes that Matthew Henry Fox and his brother kept bees and so sold honey. But, she did not name the brother, did not mention Harry Dyson Fox nor the relationship between Matthew Henry and Mrs Fox. However, the fact that she was referred to as Mrs M H Fox could imply she and Matthew Henry were married.
On balance, I don’t think that the milliner Mrs Fox was Harry Dyson Fox’s wife. His wife was Maud Mary Fox and she was variously described as a hairdresser or an assistant in a tobacconist business. They lived at 7 Station Street from at least 1911 to 1939. Matthew Henry Fox was a hosiery worker. His wife, Lucy Ann, was described as a fancy draper and milliner. No-one lived at 9 Station Street. Matthew Henry and Lucy Ann lived at various addresses in Kirkby including Diamond Avenue and Byron Street.
Were Harry Dyson Fox and Matthew Henry Fox Related?
Although the couples shared a surname, I was not able to find a relationship between them. I was fairly confident that Harry Dyson and Matthew Henry were not brothers. Harry Dyson was born on 2 April 1884 in Ackworth in Yorkshire. In 1901, he was working as a hairdresser’s assistant to William George Ward in Spalding. Harry Dyson’s father, William H Fox, was a school teacher who, in 1891, was working in Pontefract. In 1911, he was retired and living with Harry and Maud in Station Street. Matthew Henry was 14 years older having been born in Kirkby in 1872. His father was John Fox, also a hosiery worker.
I am grateful to Janine Vardy, Harry Dyson Fox’s great granddaughter. for confirming that the two sets of Foxes were not in fact related.
Harry Dyson and Maude Mary Fox’s Great Granddaughter
I am grateful to Janine Vardy for posting on Kirkby Living Memory Facebook Group that Harry Dyson Fox, and his wife Maude Mary, were her great grandparents. She confirmed that they lived at number 7 and that they were both hairdressers. She noted that Maude ran 7 Station Street as a ladies’ hairdressers while next door Harry ran the shop as a tobacconist and barbers.
Janine also noted that when Harry became sick, they rented the next door shop to a photographer. She identified this next door shop as number 9 but I wonder if it was in fact number 5 and the photographer was Fred Maltby. I a, grateful to Janine for checking with her mother and confirming that it was Fred Maltby that they rented the property to.
Harry Fox Was a Conscientious Objector in World War 1
During the first world war, Harry Dyson, as a Christadelphian, was the only conscientious objector that received an exemption from Kirkby Tribunal.
Janine Vardy explained it as follows, “I asked Mum Janette Vardy about the Christadelphian faith. Harry’s grandfather was a Congregational Minister and religion had always been an important part of family life. Mum remembers Harry reading from the Family Bible every morning and night and the family had to listen. Mum thinks it was Harry’s wife Maud, who was a devout Christadelphian and this would be be where the religion came from. Maud fell out with my grandad, Alexander and his brother, Dyson, when they went off to WW2. My grandad went off to India at the outbreak of war when my mum was only a few months old. She didn’t get to meet him until she was 6. Maud only forgave the brothers when Dyson was blown up at Dunkirk and came home with an eye and a leg missing. He returned to 7 Station Street with his wife Gwen, who was living in London. Mum tells the story of how Gwen was in the bath at their house in London and the side of the house was blown off in an air raid. Both went to 7 Station Street to recover. Mum can’t remember anything more than you have already covered about Harry being a conscientious objector.”
7-11 Station Street in the 1970s
In the photo from the early 1970s, it seems that number 7 was already a hairdressers called John Hair Fashions and number 9 was Thomas Welch and Son. This firm continued to trade into the 1980s at least as they were included on the window spotting notice from that era. I couldn’t quite make out what was at number 11 but there seems to be a red barber’s pole outside. I am grateful to Lesley Bignell on the Kirkby Living Memory Facebook Group for confirming that this shop was the gents’ hairdressers, G W Whetton. She noted that the photo must have been taken after 1970 as previously his shop had been on Lowmoor Road.
Remembering Thomas Welch and Son
Christina Rowe, on Kirkby Living Memory Facebook Group, noted having worked at Thomas Welch and Son, “we sold everything men’s woman’s children’s cloths shoes etc cannot remember anything they didn’t sell “. Anita Baldwin also recalled working here for a few months after leaving school and before going on to train as a nurse. She also recalled having had a Saturday job at John’s hairdresser’s.
Remembering Geoff Whetton
A number of contributors on Kirkby Living Memory Facebook Group recalled that hairdresser Geoff Whetton had been at 11 Station Street before it became Andrew’s barber shop. Stephen Keightley noted he had been there a few years ago and “he told me… to go home and tell my dad to cut some off then go back lol true that I was only about 14“. I asked if his hair had been particularly long. He replied, “not really just a bit to long for my parents i always had what they call short back and sides haircut tbh“.
I am grateful to Annabel Darch for noting in the discussion on Kirkby Living Memory Facebook Group that, at one time, Blockbuster were located between Mr John’s and the barbers, that is at 9 Station Street. She also worked at John’s hairdressers which she referred to as Mr John’s.
Earlier Photo Pre-1969
In 1942, number 11 was the shop of a draper Arthur Smith. He also appears on Jacques’ List of Station Street retailers circa 1920-1940. Ethel Searson, in her book(let) “I Also Remember” recalls him although she appears to have misremembered the order of shops. She remembers his kindness to her during the first world war by supplying boxes of food to send to her brother who was serving in the trenches, see Chapter 9. He himself applied to Kirkby Tribunal for an exemption from military service during the war.
In both 1911 and 1901, Arthur Smith and his family were living at 13 Station Street. This makes me think the premises on Station Street may have been renumbered between 1911 and 1921.
Residents of 7-11 Station Street
In 1939, Harry Dyson and Maud Mary Fox were living at 7 Station Street. Leslie G and Doreen M Wilkinson were with them. He was described as a tractor driver. No-one was listed at 9 or 11 Station Street.
Harry Dyson and Maud Mary Fox were also at number 7 in 1921. Their three children, Doreen Maud (b1912), Alexander Duncan (b1913) and Harry Dyson (b1916), were also there. Again, no-one was listed at 9 or 11 Station Street.
Again, Harry Dyson and Maud Mary Fox were at number 7 in 1911. I am unsure why the apparent change in numbering which affected others did not seem to affect them. With them were William Henry Fox, Harry’s father, and Wilmot Ida Fox, his sister. Again, there was no-one at 9 Station Street but coal miner hewer Thomas Williams and his wife Mary were at number 11 with their two stepchildren Dorothy Hickling (b1895) and Donald Hickling (b1897), Dorothy was described as a tailoress and Donald as a pony driver at colliery below ground.
In 1901, coal miner hewer Robert Linford Morley was living at 7 Station Street with his wife Elizabeth and their children Fanny (b1881), Mabel Ellen (b1883), Eliza (b1885), John Clarance (b1890) and Kate (b1892). The eldest three daughters all worked as hosiery factory hands. Another coal miner hewer, Samuel Dobbs lived at number 9 with his wife Bessy and their children Charles (b1878), Samuel (b1882), Bessy (b1885), Albert (b1887), Eliza Ann (b1892), Harriett (b1895) and James (b1899). Charles and Samuel were both also coal miner hewers and Albert was a colliery banksman. They younger Bessy was engaged in hosiery work. Benjamin Miller and his family, who we have encountered at 1 Station Street were living here in 1911.