Off licences, the traditional 'corner shops' which
served the local community
with groceries and sold alcohol as a side-line, have reflected the
of a local brewer and distributor in the town. Just as in Southwold,
the dominant force is Adnams, so Ipswich has been until recently
dominated by Tolly Cobbold.
The Cliff Quay Brewery has had a chequered history and was still
in a limited way (also offering brewery museum tours) until 2002. Tolly
themselves had a poor reputation in the fifties and sixties and during
clearances of impoverished housing in the town - notably around Civic
- many parlour-type ale-houses were demolished. Some say this was no
loss to the
Suffolk Road Stores, 32a Tuddenham
Certain corner shops and pubs still carry the Tolly
(above in 2001) in brown lettering and
border against white faces Tuddenham Avenue; its counterpart cartouche
The all over
of the brickwork and distinct pointing encourages the eye to believe
that this is a wall sign
in ceramic tiling. The host of hand-painted and home-made signs below
only highlight the formality of the Tolly signs above.
By 2014 the shop is no more (although a central sign is still in
place), converted into a dwelling. Fortunately the corner Tolly signs
have been left. The white and cream painted brickwork bore the Tolly
sign for years until the walls were repointed causing a 'crazed' look
to the sign.
While we're here let's include the former Samuel F. Shanks' bakery and
shop (possibly a former sub-Post Office by the look of it?) nearby at 7
The Tuddenham Avenue bakery was opened in 1945 by Samuel Shanks and
continued by his sons, Grenville and Rodney. Branches were opened in
Queensway, St Johns Road, Norwich Road, Bramford Lane, Penshurst Road,
and in Hamilton Road, Felixstowe. This bakery finally closed in April
2004, but the yellow-gold lettering still stands proud of the side wall
in 2014. See our Wherstead red brick
page for an 1883 map of the brickyard which once stood on this site.
Prospect House, 38b Christchurch Street
(rear: visible from Cemetery Road)
Above is a lost piece of Tolly lettering which someone
has sought to obliterate
with whitewash (now washing down the wall).
executed long before the drainage pipe at top left was
was clearly a rear advertisement for a long-disappeared grocer at the
of Cemetery Road, fronting Christchurch Street. The dark capitals could
have been placed on a white rectangle, then overpainted in pale blue,
it might have been that the colours were the other way around.
Above: the view in 2014 from Cemetery Road; the sign from a sloping
ramp behind the three storied building.
Below: the former corner shop at 38 Christchurch Street which has the
'Prospect House' sign on its back wall (Cemetery Road on this
photograph goes off ot the right). This former
shop is just opposite Santiago Villas.
Cobbold lettering remains intact (albeit often painted the same colour
as the surrounding brickwork) on The Emperor
in Norwich Road, the Ferry Boat Inn in Old Felixstowe,
the Rampant Horse and The Bull former pub in Needham
Market, and the Shoulder of Mutton former pub in Hadleigh. Vestigial Cobbold lettering can be
seen on The
Globe and The Rose Hotel in Ipswich.
Peatling & Cawdron, Bramford Road
The letterer's art is nowhere so well demonstrated as in the
of the former off licence 238 Bramford Road, at
the corner with Richmond
Once Peatling and Cawdron, later Victoria Wine, this business in
2010 was a grocery
The front gable spanning both the shop front and the house next door
has been sympathetically retouched in white, we think, but the
blue-grey drop shadow has been left untouched.
The whole shaping of brickwork, roof and moulded frame
seem to have been
designed for the lettering high above the street level:
A tricky navigation of the apex of the upper triangle
the word 'Wines', having the 'N' as its fulcrum (the word followed by a
large comma), is shadowed by the centralised curving word 'Bottled'
a delightful 'And' featuring long elliptical tales from the 'N'.
ALES AND STOUT'
See also the Pubs & Off-licences
page and the Tolly Cobbold House & Brewery pages.
Please email any comments and contributions by clicking here.
throughout the Ipswich
Historic Lettering site: Borin Van Loon
No reproduction of text or images without express written permission