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No 8 Victoria Street

1882 approx
James J Clarke - Baker
James Clarke moves to this address and starts his business. He is documented as trading from this address in 1895 (SPM 1895) and 1896. (K 1896). According to his advert (right) he uses locally ground flour from the Smith & Girling roller mill in Station Road.


James J Clarke - Baker
At this time he also takes over No 35 High Street (where the Balti House is today.) But some time in the next year or so James dies and his widow, Jane Clarke, continues to run both bakeries, keeping the High Street business going until 1924. However, she evidently disposes of the Victoria Street branch in 1908. (K1908)

Benjamin Newson - Baker
Benjamin and his wife Alice take over the Victoria Street bakery from Jane Clarke and run it for the next 30-40 years, building it into one of the two largest enterprises on the Street. One of the secrets of their success is their pony and trap which enables them to broaden their market beyond Southwold to the outlying villages, including Walberswick which they serve by transporting pony and trap across the Blyth on the chain link ferry every day. The couple's first child (Benjamin junior, known as 'Bennie') is born this year.

Note: Ernest Dean Newson of No 3 South Green, also a baker and confectioner, is a first cousin of Ben. However, Robert George Newson of No 43 Marlborough Road, also a baker and confectioner, asserts in his advertising that he was no relation!)


Benjamin Newson - Baker. Ben and Alice's second child, Winifred is born in 1911.
Benjamin Newson - Baker
Benjamin Newson - Baker

Benjamin Newson - Baker
From 1944, when the pontoon ferry sinks, the younger members of the family continue the Walberswick delivery round using a hand cart. Every day Bennie and Winnie, now in their thirties, push their cart over the Common, following the route of the old railway line, across the Bailey Bridge and down into Walberswick village. To read a 1957 news cutting about the siblings' delivery service, click here.


Benjamin Newson - Baker
.After their father dies in 1957 aged 78, the baking business comes to an end as does the hand cart delivery service. However, Winnie and her younger sister, Audrey, decide to run No 8 as a sweet shop. They sell home-made sweets at 4 for a penny from a tray at the corner of the shop which becomes popularly known as 'Penny Newson's'.Winnie purchases No 24 Field Stile Road as her home in 1950 but continues to help in the shop until her death in 1969.




The premises become residential - Known as 'The Old Bakehouse'



Do you have any memories or records about this address? Can you correct any of our information or fill in any of our blanks? If so, please email Barry Tolfree
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BSD - Bernard Segrave-Daly
BCS = Bygones & Characters of Southwold by Barrett Jenkins
C = Census
CP = Cinema Programme 1958
CSP = Coronation Souvenir Programme 1953
G = Gales Trade Directory
GRO = General Register Office
K = Kelly's Directory
LM = Local memory
M = James Maggs' Southwold Diary 1818-1876
MCG = Methodist Church Guide 1930
NA = National Archives
PP = Pantomime Programme 1933
PLR = Petrol Licence Records

POD = Post Office Directory
PPP = Pier Pavilion Programme 1924, 1926
RCE = Rotary Club Exhibition 1969
SCM = Southwold Catholic Magazine 1923
SCTG = Southwold Corporation Tourist Guide
SER = Southwold Electoral Register
SFP = Southwold Scouts Fete Programme 1947
SG = Southwold Guide
SGCH = Southwold Golf Club Handbook
SLHR = Southwold Local History Recorder 1980s 1990s (Mrs R. McDermot)
SMHS = Southwold Museum & Historical Society

SN = Southwold & Neighbourhood 1903
SPM = Southwold Parish Magazine 1895 -1954
SR = Southwold Recorder 1927, 1932, 1934, 1935
SRB = Southwold Rate Book
SRT = Southwold Railway Timetable 1915
SSAS = Southwold Sea Angling Society Handbook 1909
SST = Southwold Summer Theatre Programmes
SSW = Southwold Shopping Week Programme, June/July 1922
STG = Southwold Town Guide 1930
SVL = Southwold Visitors List 1907, 1930
SVCP = Southwold Victory Celebration Programme 1946
SWCG = Southwold Wesleyan Church Guide

TTR = 'The Town Revisited' - Portraits of Southwold by Stephen Wolfenden 2000
TTT = ''To The Town' - Portraits of Southwold by Stephen Wolfenden 1988
W = White’s History, Gazetteer and Directory of Suffolk 1874

Note on dates
Unless otherwise stated, dates given do not indicate the years in which the business started or finished but those for which there is firm evidence that it was trading at this address. Sources in brackets; key at bottom of page.

An advert in Southwold Parish Magazine of 1895. Click the image to enlarge.

No 8 as it is today. Known as 'The Old Bakehouse', the house has retained the wide architrave which probably indicates the former courtyard entrance where the Newson pony and cart gained access. Above and to the left of the entrance, the London & Lancashire Insurance Company Firemark, (below) reassuring firecrews that Newson's were covered - a prudent precaution for a baker.

Bennie and Winnie Newson still delivering to Walberswick with the handcart in the 1950s

From the diary of Jessie Browton in the Southwold Museum archive..

Copyright Southwold Museum

To see this picture enlarged and read a news cutting about the Newsons, click the mage.