This website doesn't usually include ephemera. At a time when
carrier bags are getting a bad press for using up non-renewable
resources and poisoning the environment, let's be proud that we haven't
thrown these bags away...
1. 2. 3.
1. Anglia Cameras
traded for many years from 15-15a St Matthews
courtesy The Ipswich Society
Above: the closed shop, 2014; 15-19 St Mathews Street, 1997
2. See our Martin & Newby
page for this very lettered company and store.
3. The national nostalgia-fest retail chain that was Past Times
itself with more than one branch in some towns; it had a long,
gruelling death as a result of the global
meltdown in 2007-8. The Ipswich branch was at 19 Butter Market.
4. A newspaper once existed in Ipswich called The Evening Star,
but it started life in 1885 as The
Star Of The East. Although its vintage is perhaps the turn of
the twenty-first century, this promotional bag evokes a time when the
Star arrived through the
letter-box every weekday afternoon with the
green-'un on Saturdays, featuring the football results. Part of the EastAnglian Daily Times stable of
publications, it was printed and published from rather fine buildings
in Carr Street, opposite the original Co-operative
store; there were demolished to make way for the misbegotten 'Carr
Precint' which had that tumbleweed feel to it for the public and for
those brave, unhappy shopkeepers who tried to make a go of it there. It
is now a discount-shop. The move to new offices in Lower Brook Street
followed, but printing onsite eventually ceased and, in 2015, the
business left the site.
5. and 6. Ah... British
was the national chain at the mercy of asset-strippers; the Ipswich
branch in Butter Market (formerly in the Art Deco building on the
corner of Tavern Street and Tower Street) closed in 2016 (example no. 6
comes from this later period). The company
was founded in 1928
by a group of U.S. entrepreneurs to emulate the success of Woolworth's.
It had a total of 163 stores mainly located in high streets or shopping
centres by the time of its closure, as well as 74 international stores
across 18 separate territories. So many people lost their jobs. Thanks
to Bev Bowery for unearthing the 1960s BHS bag (example no. 5). The
company, from 1960 to the 1970s, used the 'Prova' trade mark on their
clothing. Perhaps more famously, all Marks & Spencer garments were
trademarked 'St Michael'. Just as Woolworth's branded goods 'Winfield'
(the middle name of Frank W. Woolworth, 1852-1919, the American
entrepreneur who founded the F. W. Woolworth Company), so Tesco had
'Delamare', Littlewoods had 'Keynote'.
('GREYFRIARS, IPSWICH tel. 55642'). Another one from Bev Bowery's
archive. Abacus was a fashion shop in the ill-fated Greyfriars Shopping Centre. This paper
bag for a wedding dress, 1975, has a suitable graphic design for the
date and is a remarkable piece of retail archaeology – we can't imagine
that there are many of these surviving.
8. The Ipswich branch of Jones
Bootmaker (trading as 'A. Jones & sons') in Butter Market
took over the former Alderton's shoe shop after the disastrous fire
which started in Hughes Electrical and swept
through the Booksale remainders shop and the shoe shop in 1992
(stopping short of The Ancient House).
In 1857 Alfred and Emma Jones opened a footwear shop in Bayswater,
London. Jones was a pioneer in the installation of electric lighting in
retail premises. Nine of their eleven sons became apprentices and
subsequently store owners, trading as A. Jones and sons. A company
innovation was the supply of ready-made shoes in three widths. Trading
as Jones Bootmaker from 1996, the company went through a long string of
being bought and sold by hedge funds and investment groups. The Ipswich
branch closed in August 2017; there were seventy-two
shops still operating elsewhere in Britain in 2018.
9. Oh dear. Unthinkable a decade ago, the Debenhams (founded 1778)
chain of department stores went into administration in November 2020
and finally closed the following year – the victim of speculation,
asset-stripping and mismanagement. (See our Charles Street page for the evolution of
As determined recyclers/reusers of bags, who knows, we might
have an old Woolworths bag in the understairs cupboard or up in the
loft... Or even The Ancient House bookshop, Hatchards. If any browsers
of this website have examples of trade bags branded with lost
please use the link below to contact us.
See also our Cornhill page for a
printed paper bag from Footman's of Waterloo House ('The Store of East
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