quite grand building which today comprises Nos 80,
80a and 80b High Street was built by Joseph Berry
Edwards as Southwold's first purpose-built bank, a
fact which is remembered in the name of the passageway
which runs through to Victoria Street on its left
hand side - 'Bank Alley'. James Maggs records
that the first brick was laid by Mr Edwards on July
24 1832 and the second laid by Maggs himself. By the
1st July the following year it was ready for business.
Joseph Edwards was widowed in 1841 but married the
Vicar of Reydon's daughter (his deceased wife's sister-in-law)
the following year and the couple moved to Saxmundham
Bank that same year. The Southwold bank agency was
taken over by Mr T W Thompson, a town Bailiff. However,
it seems to have closed soon after and the building
began a new life as the home and practice of a succession
of surgeons. The first of these was Mr Miles Willis
Rudland, who arrived in 1843 and whose surname is
reflected in the current name: 'Rutland House'. Rudland's
affairs were soon in trouble, however, and Maggs records
his insolvency in 1847 with rental liabilities of
£274. His effects are sold and he moves to Wangford.
Other surgeons followed as tenants. At some date before
1896, it became Southwold Post Office.
Joseph Berry Edwards - Bank Agent
Mr T W Thompson - Bank Agent (M)
Mr Miles Willis Rudland - Surgeon.
Declared insolvent in 1847 (M) and is followed by
Eaton Womack Moore - House Agent
and Auctioneer. (K1896). It is clear from the photograph
(right) that he is also running a post office. Indeed,
in the 1881 Census, Eaton Moore and his family (then
in the Market
Place) is described as 'Grocer, Draper, Auctioneer
and Sub-postmaster). He is mayor of Southwold between
1899 and 1902.