Author Archives: buildingourpast

The Electromobile Garage in Mayfair

The Electromobile Garage lies hidden behind the grand façades of Mayfair, in the guise of NCP Carrington Street. The building may have little architectural presence on the street front, but it played a fascinating role in the early motoring history of … Continue reading

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The Niagara Garage, Westminster

One of the most unusual garages in early 20th-century London was the Niagara Garage on York Street (now Petty France) in Westminster. This had been built as a panorama, and later used as an ice-skating rink. The building, described rather … Continue reading

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The Story of Dunn’s the Hatter

Introduction Dunn & Co. was the most recognisable chain of men’s hatters throughout the first three-quarters of the 20th century. By the late 1920s it was also a men’s outfitters. A failure to keep up with changing fashions – which … Continue reading

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The Story of “Easiephit”

“Easiephit” shoe shops closed decades ago, but traces of the house style can still be spotted. The inverted commas were an integral part of the name displayed on shops between the wars. The “Easiephit” brand of footwear was manufactured and … Continue reading

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A Spotter’s Guide to Traditional Chemists’ Shops

The Mortar and Pestle The mortar and pestle has been used by apothecaries, chemists and druggists for centuries to grind medicinal powders. It remains one of the chemist’s favourite symbols, depicted on shop signs to proclaim the nature of the … Continue reading

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Charles Morrison’s Diary, September 1864

Thursday 1st I was pretty busy today. It was very stormy. Friday 2nd Very little doing. Saturday 3rd I was for a good while with Christina in Mr Russell’s. Mr & Mrs Russell being away at Callenish. Sunday 4th In … Continue reading

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Charles Morrison’s Diary, 15 to 31 August 1864

Monday 15th August I had breakfast with Mr McMorland. Sir James & Lady Matheson away. Not much doing. I went home with Christina. Tuesday 16th August I called on Mrs Nicolson to see if she would let part of her house and … Continue reading

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