1 VIRGINIA 6D
CHURCHMAN'S BEST VIRGINIA 7D
CHURCHMAN'S BEST TURKISH 8D
This fine display
cabinet would once have stood on a tobacconist's counter, rich in cast,
gold-on black, relief lettering shaped varnished wood and glass. The types of product are labelled on
the edges of the four shelves. The National Archives website gives a
good summary of Churchman's tobacco company in
Ipswich starting from a modest tallow-chandling business to become a
major employer in the town:-
firm of W.A. and A.C. Churchman
was founded in Ipswich by William Churchman in 1790, beginning as a
small pipe tobacco manufacturer with a shop at Hyde Park Corner [this
is the name given to the
junction of Westgate Street and Crown Street].
In 1888 William Alfred (later Sir William) and Arthur Charles Churchman
(later Lord Woodbridge and a director of the British American Tobacco
Company from 1904 to 1923), grandsons of the founder, succeeded their
father, Henry, in the business. It was from them that the Company
derived its title. At that time output was mainly shag, snuff and
tobacco. By 1890 the Company was also making 'white cigarettes', and
six years later installed one of the first cigarette-making machines,
producing 20,000 cigarettes an hour; the famous 'Churchman's No. 1'
brand dates from this period. In 1891 Churchmans opened a new factory
in Portman Road, Ipswich. In 1890 James Buchanan Duke of North Carolina
merged his family tobacco business, W. Duke Sons & Co., with
of the largest American manufacturers to form the American Tobacco
Company, which by 1901 had amassed capital to the equivalent of
£150 million sterling. An aggressive assault was launched on
British cigarette market, Duke making no secret of his authority to
spend up to £6 million of American Tobacco Company money on
acquisition of British and European tobacco companies. To counter this
threat, W.D. & H.O. Wills, John Player & Sons, Lambert
Butler, Hignett Brothers (with their associated firms) and Stephen
Mitchell & Son, with six other firms, joined forces to found
Imperial Tobacco Company (of Great Britain and Ireland) Ltd in 1901.
The following year Churchmans joined the new company. Churchmans'
Portman Road factory was extended several times during the inter-war
years. From at least as early as 1918 to at least as late as 1944 they
also had a small branch in Norwich, of which very little documentation
appears to have survived. In 1961 W.A. & A.C.
Churchman amalgamated with Lambert & Butler and Edwards, Ringer
& Bigg, to become first Churchman, Lambert & Ringer,
renamed Churchmans in 1965. By now production was concentrated on the
manufacturing of cigars, and in August 1966 Churchmans acquired the
firm of Herbert Merchant, the main UK agents for the Dutch cigar
producers Henri Wintermans. With a work force of over 1,000, the
Ipswich factory produced more than 1,000,000 cigars a day. But in 1972
the company ceased to be a separate brand of Imperial Tobacco; the
cigar business was integrated with John Player & Sons, and the
tobacco interests with Ogdens of Liverpool. Finally, in May 1992, in
order to streamline operations, the parent company moved all production
to Bristol, and Churchmans closed with the loss of over four hundred
IPSWICH PATIENTS – Sundays, 2.30 P.M.
PASS MUST BE OBTAINED FROM PUBLIC HEALTH DEPT.
COUNTY PATIENTS –
(Sundays, 2.30 P.M.
PASS CAN BE
OBTAINED FROM THE LODGE KEEPER
ALL ENQUIRIES TO BE MADE AT THE LODGE.
This sign-board comes
from an isolation hospital sited near to the buildings opposite St
Clements Hospital in Foxhall
Road, still known to many as 'The
Home'. Another isolation hospital was situated outside the town a mile
or two further up the road on the edge of woods at Foxhall (not to be
confused with "Ipswich Sanatorium", later Foxhall Hospital, situated
close to the present-day speedway track). This one is labelled 'Hospital (Infectious diseases)' on our 1930 Map
Salute Cannon / Truncheons
This set of miniature salute cannon (mounted along the top edge of the
sign) was made by the inmates of Ipswich prison to fire a salute at the
coronation of Queen Victoria on 28 June 1838. The italic, drop-shadow, serif lettering – rather murky
in this photograph – reads:
theme of law enforcement, the Ipswich Museum has
a collection of cudgels and truncheons many of which bear lettering.
These require more research; of particular interest is the lettering
running in a spiral down the length of the example second
nicely-placed original (?) card sign reads:
50 YARDS TO LEFT
To the right is a framed
sign displaying a refined taste in choice of font (note the sweeping
kerns on the letters 'R' and 'Q'), colour and layout:
downward pointing hand with its white shirt cuff
and suit sleeve is particularly satisfying. The Second World War in
particular is well represented in the 'Ipswich at War' gallery.
TO CARRY THEIR GAS
MASKS WHEN ENTERING
seem to think that 'A.R.P.' stands for 'Auxilliary Reserve Police' or
something similar. In September 1935, the British prime minister,
Stanley Baldwin, published a circular entitled Air Raid Precautions,
inviting local authorities to make plans to protect their people in
event of a war. Some towns responded by arranging the building of
public air raid shelters. These shelters were built of brick with roofs
of reinforced concrete. However, some local authorities ignored the
circular and in April 1937 the government decided to create an Air Raid
Wardens' Service and during the next year recruited around 200,000
volunteers. Apart from the official issue shelters for individual
households (those lucky enough to have a garden in which to install
it), public shelters were built in Ipswich as it was a target for Nazi
bombing raids. The Ipswich Museum displays some fascinating maps
created by German intelligence, based on pre-war Ordnance Survey maps
of Britain with targets (engineering/munitions works, docks telephone
exchanges etc.) clearly marked. These were seized by British
intelligence at the end of the war. Fortunately for the war effort the
bombers' aim was not accurate however, this meant that stray bombs fell
on housing and other civilian buildings in the town and surrounding
area. Two notable mass air-raid shelters existed at (a) Clifford Road
School and Stoke Hall Vaults.
(a) The shelter was built beneath the school playground during the
first three months of the war, and was unusually robust compared to
other public provisions. This was partly due to the efforts
of the controversial local MP, Richard Stokes, who campaigned for
massive public air-raid shelters to be built by excavating under the
hill of Alexandra Park. Perhaps the local authority felt they had to
offer the Clifford Road facility in order to put the MP off his
'ambitious' Alexandra Park pet project. There were thirteen separate
entrance during the war, to acomodate different years and classes.
After the war, the shelter was sealed up and largely
forgotten. It was re-discovered in 1989, when workmen
excavating a small pond for the school found one of the original
entrances. To everyone's surprise the tunnels were in first
class condition and a museum was created which includes a section of
London Underground train carraige. This is still open to the public by
(b) In 1740 Thomas Cartwright, winemerchant, built Stoke Hall
– roughly where Stoke Hall Road now stands. In 1747 he excavated beneath the hall a vast
series of wine cellars on
three levels, 18 in all and a total of 180 feet in length. The house
itself later decayed and was pulled down in 1915, but the cellars
remained and still exist in the 21st century. They are Listed (Grade 2)
buildings. The 2nd level was rendered during World War II for use as an
air raid shelter. Having no idea as to their origin, people began
making up tales about these underground workings. A tunnel was said to
lead from there to the 'folly' called Freston
on the banks of the Orwell. Probably built between 1550-1560 by Edmund
Latymer, this red bricked six-storey building was perhaps a 'standing'
or look-out tower of some kind.
Below is a selection of wartime lettering examples.
The penultimate example is a poster showing a prisoner-of-war camp
displayed with weapons in a glass cabinet:
REMEMBER THOSE FOR
IS NO HOLIDAY.
Hippodrome stood at the top of St Peter's Street which is now occupied
by the chartered accountant Ensor's block (they are custodians of a
unique collection of ephemera relating to the theatre). It reopened in
1940 to provide entertainment for the troops and local people worn down
by bombing raids and rationing.
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Historic Lettering site: Borin Van Loon
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