Southern Branches H-O

Southern Branches H-O  

A Lennards list of branches totalling 250 from 1931 has been incorporated onto the Southern A-Z of branches. Where Lennards ceased trading a note beside the entry ‘Not Listed in 1931′ has been added if no note exists the branch has been continuously trading for the company.Lennards also began trading extensively in what was once considered Northern Territories, competing against their old partners the Leeds based Public Benefit Boot Company. I have also entered ‘Listed in 1931′ against each branch mentioned on the list. This presents a good inventory of branches under the Lennard banner.

Leicester Cheapside branch by the clock tower 1905

A major project has been to not only establish ‘Then and now’ views of where and when the company traded but also to try and capture as many branches as possible particularly the early branches. In this way we can get some idea of the thinking behind the company strategy. By doing this there have been many surprises both on the Southern side-Lennards, and the Northern Side in the finding of ‘gems’. Using five main sources to populate the website are:

My own photos, our own collection of postcard views, Google Inc. Street views  British Newspaper Archive and Geograph Uk.

Up to circa 1910 and in some cases beyond to 1919 the cross over from Public Benefit Boot company to Lennards Ltd had not been completely achieved regarding the Southern territory branches; originally trading under the common title of Public Benefit Boot Company.

All Public Benefit Boot Company and Lennards Ltd staff names from all sources have been also listed in the five sections of the Surnames and shareholders lists


George Street, 1929 listed in 1931

Halesworth, not listed in 1931

19 Quay Street, 1907


Staffordshire Sentinel Oct 1879 A depraved WOMAN.—Catherine Wheatley, Chell street, was charged with stealing a pair of boots to the value, of 10s. 9d., the property of ..Messrs. Leonard and Wright, proprietors of the People’s Benefit Boot and Shoe establishment, Piccadilly, on Saturday. The Chief Constable .explained that she was first of all given into custody on a charge of stealing  stick of celery from the shop of Mr. Titley, but on examining her basket the police found a pair of boots in it, and some bills belonging to the establishment. The boots had some broken string attached them, as they had been jerked from a nail. Information was given to the manager of the shop, who identified them as the property of his employers, which had been stolen from the shop door. Subsequently Inspector Wall went to the woman’s house, and found it in the most shocking state of wretchedness. Upstairs there was furniture, the only things in the room being two mattresses, and downstairs a solitary chair only could be seen, notwithstanding that her husband had been in full time work as a bricklayer.—Mr. Ward, the manager, having given evidence of identification, the woman pleaded guilty to the charge, and was sent to gaol for two months.

Hanley 60 Piccadilly, 1880-1881

Staffordshire Sentinel March 1913 ‘Termination of Tenancy sale’ the company are trading from their shop at 49-51 Stafford Street.

5 East gate Street Coventry telegraph 27 March 1958 


Uxbridge Gazette June 1926 BOOT SHOP BURGLARY.—The boot and shoe shop in College-road, recently taken over by Messrs. Lennards from Mr. W. A. Roper, was entered by burglars between Saturday night and Monday morning They took nine pairs of ladies’ shoes, all of which bore the name of the firm of Lennards. The shop is only two doors from the Maison Grosvenor hairdressing establishment, which, as reported elsewhere, was burgled a few days previously. As in the case of the Maison Grosvenor, the burglars entered from the rear of the premises. gaining access by removing a pane of glass from a window by cutting away the putty

Uxbridge and West Drayton gazette October 1926 WOMAN’S CLOTHING. Harrow Tradesman Convicted. At the Middlesex Sessions, Henry Douglas Lilley (38), engineer, 44, Rutland-road, Harrow, pleaded guilt, to breaking and entering the shop of Ralph George Harland, trading as Messrs Somerton, Harrow, and stealing therein four dresses and other articles, on August 29th, and between May 29th and 31st at Harrow, breaking and entering the shop of Lennards, Ltd., and stealing 5s. 6d. and other articles. Mr. Arthur Bryan, who appeared for the prosecutor, said it was a curious case. Prisoner was a shopkeeper in the district. carrying on business at the College Radio Stores. At midnight on August 29th police officers were keeping observation on Messrs. Somerton’s premises when they saw the accused leave his shop and enter the premises of Messrs. Somerton, College-parade. The police entered the shop and found him hiding. They called for him to surrender, and he jumped over the balustrade. An electric torch was found on him, and he was wearing gloves. On arrest he said, “Can’t this be settled up ? I don’t know what I have been doing these last few months.” Mr. Bryan added that when searched the key with which he entered the shop was found, and underneath his men’s clothing he was found to be wearing a pair of corsets, a pair of lady’s silk stockings. a petticoat and four pairs of knickers. Articles to the value of £8 which had been stolen were to be found in his possession, and later when the police went to the prisoner’s shop they found more of Messrs. Somerton’s goods, and shoes taken from Lennard’s. Ltd. Det.-Sgt. Manning said that the accused served in the Royal Dragoons up to 1913. He was recalled in 1914 and served with the colours up to 1919. leaving with the rank of corporal. He obtained employment at Park Royal, and later at Taylor Walker, brewers. He was appointed isn1922 civilian instructor to the R.A.F., as appointment he held until 1925, when he opened the business of a wireless dealer at Harrow, a business he was carrying on at the time of his arrest. The officer said that Messrs. Somerton had lost property valued at £200, and the firm suspected an employee. Following on the firms complaint to the police, observation was kept on the premises for the first time co August 29th, and resulted in the prisoner’s arrest. The prisoner served as a special constable. Sir Montagu Sharpe:” Was he wearing  the corsets under his waistcoat” ?—Yes. “how did he wear the petticoat” ? (Sir Montagu was mindful that the man was wearing trousers.) ‘ The detective officer was unable to say how he got the petticoat to fit inside his trousers. _ Sir Montagu deduced, amid laughter, that it was one of today’s very short petticoats. Sir Montagu : “He was not masquerading as a woman” ? The detective replied that he couldn’t as he had a moustache. (Laughter.) Sir Montagu asked bow he came possessed of a key to ht the door of Messrs. Somerton’s shop. The police officer replied that the man was an engineer. He told them that he found the key. The Court were inclined to the view that the man was not mentally sound, and Dr. Watson, of Brierton, agreed  he was not normal, but he was not mentally deficient.  Sir Montagu, remarking that it was a sad case, he ordered the accused twelve months in the second division. 

3 College Parade, 1929 listed in 1931 & 1935

Harrow Observer July 1949 Adv. for saleswomen to work in the shop College Road Harrow

Hastings, not listed in 1931

24 Norman Road, 1916 (Hastings Library)  1918 mentioned up to 1922

E G Marsh  Manager of 24 Norman Road Hastings in 1918

Headington, Not listed in 1931

London Road, 1929


12 -13 St.Peters’ Street 1902 a Franchise under Sarah Hathaway a Boot & shoe seller

12 St Peters Street, 1905, 1912-1929 listed in 1931 still trading at this address in 1960 Herefordshire Council

Robert Leonard Brewer Manager of 12-13 St. Peters’ Street Hereford 1901 consult surnames A-D

High Shields Added from 1931 list

49 Green street listed in 1931

Honiton Devon

William George Colmer Manager of Lower Parade branch in the district of Honiton Devon 1910-11 consult surnames A-D

Huddersfield Added from 1931 list

13-15 King street Lennards corner listed in 1931

15 Cross Church Street, 1936-1964

17 Cross Church street listed in 1931

Hull Added from 1931 list

13 & 15 King Edward Street Lennards Corner listed in 1931 & 1935

283 Holderness Road listed in 1931 & 1941

36 Market Place Lennards Corner listed in 1931 & 1935

12 Charles Street listed in 1931 & 1935

119 Newland Avenue listed in 1931 & 1935

Hulme, See Manchester

HYDE added from 1931 list

49 Market street listed in 1931

Ilfracombe, 1897

Exeter & Plymouth Gazette Ilfracombe Jan 1897 an account from  January 1897 Colin Stewart manager Ilfracombe girl accused of theft. CHARGE OF FALSE PRETENCE AT ILFRACOMBE. Petty Sessions Eliza Joslin, 17 yearn of age a domestic servant of Fortescue Hotel, was charged with obtaining by false pretences from Colin Stewart on January 11th three pairs of boots and two pairs of slippers of the value of £1.4s.6d the property the Public Benefit Boot Company, with intent to defraud. Defendant, who pleaded not guilty was defended by Mr. A.F Seddon. . Mr. Colin Stewart, manager of the Public benefit Boot Company, said that on Monday 11th defendant came and asked’ tor some boots for miss Weedon of High Street , Knowing that to be an old established house, he consented to let the defendant have them.The transaction was entered into the approval book and an assistant passed the boots over to her.Albert Ridge assistant also gave evidence, and added that the defendant said would pay tor the defendant said she would pay for the boots and slippers when she came back.Miss Weedon owner of the Fortescue Hotel said defendant worked for her for seven months and found her very honest, she left through illness. I confirm I did not send her to the Public Benefit Boot company shop for boots.The girl told P.C. Pike she had not sold the boots and intended to return the boots on Tuesday by a Mrs Pugsley. After much pleading from her representative, Mr seddon the bench dismissed the case on the belief that she had become guilty of falsehoods and gave her the benefit of the doubt

Ilfracombe, 12a High Street, 1902-1906, 1909

Ilfracombe, 16 High Street, 1911-1929 listed in 1931 & 1940

Charles Henry Bruce Patterson Born c1884 at Barnstaple, Devon, son of Henry Patterson. He married Florence Dendle in 1907 and they had a son Peter J B  born 1916. In 1911 he managed the company’s premises at 16 High Street, Ilfracombe, Devon

Albert Ridge Assistant at Ilfracombe branch 1897 consult newspaper report in surnames P-S

Colin Stewart manager 1897 see felony case above


11th March 1978


East Anglian Daily Times Dec 1908 BOOT SHOP MANAGERS AT VARIANCE. James Patch, manager of the Public benefit Boot Company’s shop. Carr Street, was summoned by Ernest Edward Turner, manager of Messrs. Cash and Co.’s boot shop. Upper brook Street, for assaulting him, on November 28th.— Mr. A. S. Leighton prosecuted, and Mr G. C. Vores appeared on behalf of the defendant. Mr. Leighton briefly outlined the case. The prosecutor was manager for Messrs. Cash and Co. It appeared that six or seven weeks ago a customer of Cash’s had a pair of boots on approbation, and sent her son with the boots and a letter. By mistake the boy delivered the boots and the letter at the Public benefit Boot Company’s shop in Carr Street. The defendant received the boots and kept them for six weeks, when the boy called again, and he delivered them up. The prosecutor then went to defendant’s shop and demanded the reason why he had kept the boots, knowing, he must have done, that they were the property of Cash and Co. lost his temper, and pushed prosecutor out of the shop in very violent manner. His hat came off, and he nearly fell down in the street. Arthur Pollard, son of parents living Bramford Lane, stated that about seven weeks ago his mother sent him with a pair of boots and a letter to take to Cash and Co.’s shop in Upper Brook Street. By he mistake delivered both the boots and the letter to the Public Benefit Co. s shop. Defendant was in the shop at the time, and opened the letter, saying it would be all right. The prosecutor then went into the box, and stated that last Monday the boy brought back the boots, and told him they had been returned in error to the Public benefit Company, and that they had retained them for six weeks. Under the circumstances he went to see Mr. Patch, and asked him why he had kept the boots. He replied that the boots had been there for about six weeks. There was no note with thorn, and did not know who they belonged to. Prosecutor then said he could bring the lady who wrote the note forward to prove it. and he should report him (Mr Patch) to headquarters. Defendant then lost his temper, and catching hold of him by the back thrust him ont of the shop. nearly fell to the pavement, and his hat came off.The case was lengthy with accuser and defendant both in denial and the case was dismissed as it was a point in question as to friendly rivalry overstepping the line

7th April 1886 Evening Star  12, St.Matthews’ Ipswich W.Closs

Journal 25th April 1888 P.B. in Ipswich, removal to opposite the existing Branch a franchise arrangement W. Closs

Ipswich Evening Star 10th July 1903 New branch bought 11, Carr Street, from International Boot Company all stock to be sold on the 11th July.

Ipswich, 11 Carr Street, (cnr Little Colman St). On the opposite Side of this Corner the East Anglian Times Print works were built in 1887 and demolished in 1966

Lennards Corner 11 Carr street listed in 1931

Bertie George King  Born 1890 at Yarmouth, Norfolk, at the age of 21 he was working as a retail boot shop assistant at the company’s premises at 11 Carr Street, Ipswich, Suffolk.

Frederick Patch Born 1876 at Bristol, Gloucestershire. He married Emily Tooke in 1905 and they had a daughter Dorothy Violet E born 1907 at Ipswich, Suffolk, He worked as a boot shop assistant in 1901 and was still there in 1907 

James Patch manager of 11 Carr Street Ipswich branch prosecuted by another boot shop manager consult surnames P-S and newspaper report 1908 above

Islington, Not listed in 1931 See London 

ISLE OF MAN Not listed in 1931

Isle of Man times  22 Duke  Street Douglas  this branch also enacted repairs July 1894 This branch and the later one at 52 Strand are Franchise shops operated by MR & Mrs Farrington

Branch at 52 Strand  Street Douglas in 1899 see letter below

1900 he is selling locally made boots in his branch on the Strand manf’d by the Isle of Man Boot & Shoe Manf’g Co.Ltd.,

Isle of Man Times Oct 1900  IMPORTANT NOTICE. GREAT GENUINE SALE OF BOOTS & SHOES Commences TO-DAY, for 28 days at THE PUBLIC BENEFIT BOOT STORES, 52. Strand-street, Douglas. J. T. FARRINGTON. See our Windows

Isle of Man times Feb 1899 Footgear. A DEALER’S OPINION To the Editor,— I read with much pleasure in today’s “Daily Times your article on the new local industry. How much has been said, and so well known is your interest in any effort put forward to improve our local industries, that no apology is needed from me for making use, with your consent, of your columns to express my opinion on the new venture. As I understand the matter, the new Company been formed b y a few patriotic gentlemen with a view to improving the existing state of affairs in connection with our local industries. That there are too few of such industries, unfortunately, we have all to admit, and therefore, as citizens, having in view the “greatest good to the largest number.” it is our duty to support any industry introduced with the object of improving, the existing condition of our younger working classes. Will you allow me, therefore, as a practical man, to congratulate the Isle of Man Boot Manufacturing Company on the start they have made in this direction. I have had the pleasure of inspecting samples of their work, and, on behalf of our firm, have placed on order with them for such lines as are suitable for our customers. The bulk have been delivered, and I must honestly confess that I am agreeably surprised at the manner in which their work has been turned out. Knowing’ something of the difficulties to be contended with in manufacturing goods suitable for our local requirements, in consequence of our isolated position from the mainland, I know some thing of the difficulties which had to be surmounted. However, after a careful and critical examination of the boots manufactured by the new Company, I congratulate them upon the success they have attained. The goods are all solid leather ; they are well finished, and are, I consider, thoroughly good value, and will compare very favourably with similar productions from the leading boot manufacturing centres in England. I hope sufficient support will be given to the directors in their new enterprise, so that they may enlarge their operations, and thus make an opening for employment for our girls and youths, and in other large towns. This, however, can only be done by the public supporting such an industry. I should like it to be thoroughly understood that my remarks are made without any personal object in view, but with a view to encouraging a deserving new local industry. I wish them all the success- they deserve. Public Benefit Boot Company, 52, Strand-st., Douglas, January 30th, 1899. J. T. FARRINGTON.

Isaac Bostock Born 1860 at Stockport and in the 1890’s and early 1900’s he managed a company boot shop at Douglas on the Isle of Man. In 1911 he was listed as a managing director and retail boot dealer in Stockport. More info consult surnames A-D

Isles of Scilly Not listed in 1931

Cornishman March 1898 Spring sale in ST. Mary’s  Town Hall Pub Ben. Boot stores

Isles of Scilly Cornishman 15th Sept & 8th Oct.  1898 Autumn sale Town Hall St. Mary’s

Jarrow Added from 1931 list

82 Ormonde Road ‘Elite Buildings’ listed in 1931 also 1934-38 Kellys

 J.Lindsay Jarrow Express July 1916  JARROW MEN AT THE FRONT. We have received the  following from Sergt. J. Lindsay, D.L.I., B.E.F., whose home is at 25, Lord Street interesting account of Jarrow men at the front and of Mr Telfer of Public Benefit Boot company consult surnames I-O

Jersey Not listed in 1931

Independent & Daily Telegraph 15 Jan 1898 GUERNSEY NEWS. (From the Guernsey Evening Press Jan. 10.) Daring Highway Robbery What might be termed the height of impudence took place at the Public benefit Boot Stores, in the Bordage, on Saturday evening last. It appears that the proprietor, Mr. Bloomberg, was standing in his doorway at about 8 o’clock, when suddenly a man came up and taking a pair of boots, which were on show outside the shop, made off. The proprietor noticing this, followed the thief; but another person, no doubt an accomplice, struck Mr. Bloomberg a hard blow in the face, knocking him down, thereby giving time to the thief to escape; but that was not so, as PCs. Roberts and Burley were near by; at the time. Both were arrested and locked up. We are informed that one man is named Daly and the other is a Frenchman. They will be brought before the Court on Thursday next. Great praise is, however, due to Constable Ogier, of the Catel parish, for having given information to the police, he having witnessed the chase. 

Kentish Town Fortess Road See London 

Kettering added from 1931 list

56-57 high street listed in 1909, 1924 & 1931 Kellys

4 & 6 high street 1931 Kellys & 1939

Keynsham, See Bristol

Kilmersdon, Not listed in 1931

High Street, 1902

King’s Lynn,

Thomas Foster Manager:  Norwich Mercury 4th July 1885 disturbance in Kings Lynn High Street Thomas Foster of Pub Benefit Shop in the High Street Kings Lynn assisted a policeman by blowing his whistle robustly summoning lots of help. The assailant was handcuffed and transported to the Police station in a wheel barrow. The case was quite long and the assailant was a fisherman called Twaits with him and the policeman fighting on the floor. Twaits bit into the policeman’s thumb causing blood to spurt out. Twaits also threatened Thomas foster for ‘blowing the whistle’ to summon help

Eastern Evening News Sept 1895 Mary Ann Ellmer (28), of Austen Street. was charged on remand with stealing three dress shirts, the property of Samuel Best, draper, Norfolk Street; and one pair of shoes, the property of Alfred Smith, of the Public Benefit Boot Company, Norfolk Street. She was sent to prison for fourteen days each case. 

Eastern Daily Press Dec 1907 Frederick Smith, of the Public Benefit Boot Company. Norfolk Street, was summoned for obstructing the footway on December 5th. Police-constable Haigh stated a box was standing practically in the centre of the pavement in front of defendants shop, People had to go round it on to the road. The box remained there for over two hours, although defendant was asked to remove it. Upon further pressure he reluctantly removed it into the passage _ Police-sergeant Boliston said scores of people were obstructed by the box. It was left to be taken away by the railway company. Defendant said he unpacked the box as soon as it was delivered, and asked the drayman to call for the empty case. He promised to do so, but did not return as quickly as usual. promising to put 2s & 6d in the poor box defendant escaped a conviction

Walter Hampson Born 1876 at Leicester, son of Ebenezer Hampson. In 1911 he managed the company’s premises at 19-20 High Street, Kings Lynn, Norfolk. consul Surnames E-H for full biographical details

Alfred Smith senior 1883 Alfred senior managed the Public Benefit Boot Co premises at 4 North Street, Kings Lynn. Two sons, Frederick and Walter Henry, assisted their father, working for some years as boot salesmen Consult Surnames P-S for full biographical details

Frederick Smith Consult Surnames P-S for full biographical details

Walter Henry Smith 1900 assistant at the company premises managed by his father at 4, North Street &  138 Norfolk Street, Kings Lynn.In 1911 he operated as a boot factor from the premises at 359 Cleethorpes Road, Grimsby   Consult Surnames P-S for full biographical details

Eastern Evening News Sept 1895 Mary Ann Ellmer (28), of Austen Street. was charged on remand with stealing……

Eastern Daily Press Dec 1907 Frederick Smith, of the Public Benefit Boot Company. Norfolk Street, was summoned for obstructing the footway on December 5th….. See cases above for full details and consult P-S surnames for biographical details

137-138 Norfolk Street, 1883

King’s Lynn, 4 North Street, 1883 close to the Dock Hotel 

Kings Lynn Lincolnshire Echo shop thefts Kings Lynn 23 09 1895

King’s Lynn, 19-20 High Street, 1911-1920 Lennards Lt., boot and shoe makers had opened a branch at No. 20. They later expanded into No. 19, where they are listed in the directories from 1934 to 1951. In Kelly’s directories from 1954 to 1973 they are listed at No. 20.

20 High Street occupied by the company right up to 1974

76 high street still trading in 1990 Norfolk County Council

38 high Street 1937 Kellys

Kingstown, Galway IRE, Not listed in 1931 See also Dublin

Kingstown is now known as Dun Laoghaire, which is on the coast about 9 miles from the centre of Dublin, to the South. In 1922 (Irish civil war period)  town and county names began to change to take away references to Royalty.Queenstown is now Cobh; Maryborough is now Portlaoise; Kings County is now Co. Offaly; Queens Country is now Co Laois. Information kindly supplied by Ciaran Rowsome from Dublin originally but now lives close to Dun Laoghaire. Happily, time is a good healer and our UK Queen Elizabeth is nowadays, very popular in Ireland. 

Freemans Journal April 1897 An article By R Downes manager of the Public Benefit Boot company in Kingstown heading a petition to end the severe disruption outside their business premises by the installation of an electric tram system. With roads being dug up and tons of rubble and stone left for days on end. causing hardship and huge disruption to al the businesses along the proposed route. Mr Downes has written a long appeal of complaint.

Evening Herald Dublin Dec 1901 PUBLIC BENEFIT BOOT CO. NEW BRANCH  7 South GT George’s street KINGSTOWN is now open Boots, Shoes, slippers at Wholesale prices Greatest value in the city also at 18 North earl Street & 37 Capel Street

Irish Independent April 1905 Margaret Kenny, who completed a term of imprisonment on Monday, was yesterday sentenced to another two months on a charge of stealing a pair of boots. valued at 4s. lld., from the branch shop of the Public Benefit Boot Company, 7 South  Great George Street Kingstown

Kingswood, see Bristol

Landport, See Portsmouth 


Cornish and Devon Post March 1900 Corner of Westgate and Broad Street numbers 17 & 19 Cornwall and Devon Post informs on 17th March an application to erect 12 lamps 7 feet high was accepted. 7th April New frontage being installed. June 1900 there is evidence of the Branch trading.

Cornish and Devon post June 1902 Albert William swain was fined for leaving his pony and trap unattended at Lewence he was fined 1 shilling and costs. He was the delivery driver

Cornish and Devon Post Dec 1902 …..Passing on, the more mature, who, Micawber-like, are practical enough to keep an “I.O.U. on the future, can find necessary and stout protectors of the feet from the wintry weather at the Benefit Boot Company’s branch shop, a building which has considerably improved that corner, and which has sustained the title of Pro Bono PubliZo.  This is an extract from a tour of the shops at Xmas

Cornish & Devon Post Aug 1905 LAMP-FIXING, Councillor Trood asked if the Council intended taking any action regard to a lamp fixed by the Public Benefit Boot Company outside their shop corner. No official answer was given. Councillor Treleaven enquired if it was necessary for an application to be made to the Town Council by a person who intended fixing a lamp outside a shop or private residence. The Town Clerk replied that if the lamp were fixed over eight feet high, unless it obstructed the passage of the highway the Council could not interfere

Cornish & Devon Post Dec 1904 Stealing Boots at Launceston Tramp Sent to Prison, William Stephens, a tramp, was charged at Launceston, before the Mayor (Mr. T. B. Hender) and Mr. W. Hare, on Wednesday, with stealing a pair of boots value 12s. 6d. from the Public Benefit Boot Company’s branch shop at Launceston on the 29th ult. Supt. Nicholls gave evidence that about six in the evening of the 29th he saw prisoner just below the Public Benefit Boot Company’s branch shop going towards Bodmin Road. He had something bulky under his coat, and when asked by witness what it was he replied; A pair of boots,” and took out the boots produced. Subsequently the boots were identified by the manager of the Co.’s shop, and defendant admitted the theft. Walter Herbert Morrish, manager of the only Public Benefit Boot Company ‘s shop at Launceston, gave evidence, and prisoner, who elected to be dealt with summarily, pleaded guilty. Supt. Nicholls stated that this was not the only pair of boots prisoner had taken, but in another case the owner saw prisoner take the boots and took them away. Prisoner had only come out of the Union that day. Prisoner said he could not obtain work and wanted a pair of boots. The Mayor, in inflicting one month’s imprisonment with hard labour, remarked on the temptation offered to men of this class by the exposure of goods for sale outside shops. The Superintendent promised to convey the Mayor’s remarks to the tradesmen of the town. 

Cornish and Devon Post July 1911 A fairly large pane of plate glass was smashed at the shop of the Public Benefit Boot Co. on Wednesday, by a motor car backing into it.

Broad Street, 1902-1929   

Launceston 19 Broad Street, Lennards Corner listed in 1931 & 1935 & 1940. This branch continued trading as Lennards  up to 1988 when it closed with the loss of many jobs

Ledbury Hertfordshire

John Thomas Bray Born 1851 in Leigh, Gloucestershire, it is thought he managed the Public Benefit Boot Co branch at Penryn in 1898 and from 1901 to at least 1913 he managed the boot shop at 19 The Homend, Ledbury, Herefordshire. consult surnames A-D

William John Bray Born 1884 at Ledbury, Herefordshire, He managed the boot and shoe retailing business in Ledbury for some years. Consult surnames A-D


Leeds Repair factory Lady Pit Lane Beeston 1947 & 1949



Consult ‘The First Ten Years’ 1875 & 1885′ a ‘potted history’ of how the Northern and Southern territories began. Much of Lennards early history is in this document and we take the story of the development of the Southern territory beyond 1885 here.

Leicester Chronicle April 1876 Alleged Theft. — John Willson was charged with stealing 8s. 6d., the property of his masters, Messrs. Walker, Kempson, and Brown. — Inspector Wilkinson said on Saturday afternoon he received the prisoner into custody from Mr. Brown, and charged him with obtaining 8s. 6d. by means of false pretences, but he made no reply. At the station he charged him with stealing the money, when he said he intended giving it back to Mr. Lennard, the manager. On examining the prisoner he found 8s 6d. wrapped in paper upon him, and also a book with bets in it and some sporting papers. Samuel Lennard, manager, said the prisoner was an apprentice in the employ of  the            prosecutors. On Saturday morning the  witness entered the amounts to be paid to the hands in the pay-book, and sent it to the cashier. After the paying was over the clerk pointed out an item of 8s 6d against the name of Pitts, which was not in witness’s writing. The clerk told witness that the prisoner had received the 8s 6d saying that he had been sent by the witness to receive it for Pitts. George Howe, clerk, said on Saturday morning he received the pay-book from the last witness. The prisoner came to him and said Mr. Lennard had omitted to enter Maria Pitts’ money, and asked the witness to enter it. Witness, having some other books in his hands, asked the prisoner to enter it himself, which he did. Witness afterwards paid the 8s 6d to prisoner on behalf of Pitts. Maria Pitts said she was in the employ of the prosecutors, but she did not do any work last week. She had not seen the prisoner, and did not authorise him to receive money on her behalf. —Three weeks imprisonment with hard labour.

Leicester Chronicle March 1877 Alleged Wholesale Boot Robbery. — Henry Pearson and William Knott were charged on remand with stealing 80 pairs of boots, value £9, the property of Messrs. Wright and Leonard. Mr. Leonard said he was a shoe manufacturer, and carried on business in partnership with Mr. T. Wright, in Junior-street. The box containing 80 pairs of boots now produced, was the property of the firm. There should be 105 pairs in the box. He saw them safe on the premises on the morning of Tuesday week, the 27th  They were brought to the warehouse and left in the lobby He did not miss them until the next morning, when be was informed that they had been stolen.. He knew Pearson, who a fortnight ago came and asked for work. On the morning of the 27th he met Pearson on the stairs, when he again made application for employment He saw the box safe afterwards. Then he saw Pearson and another man whom he believed to be Knott. Pearson was carrying a box on his back. The box was similar to the one produced. Pearson let go of the box, and it fell on the ground. Both the men than picked np the box, and carried it down Olive Hill. The prisoners were committed to trial at the qtr sessions. The story is lengthy and I have tried to show the gist of it.

Leicester Journal Aug 1881 Robert E. Hargreaves was charged with stealing a pair of boots, the property of Ruth Ball, between the 6th  inst. The boots were safe in the shop of the Public Benefit Boot Company on Saturday, But were not sold. On Monday the prisoner offered the boots for sale at 2s. 6d. to Thomas Wainer general dealer, Bedford Street. The latter gave prisoner 2d, and told him to call for the remainder at night. He did so, but in the meantime Wainer had communicated with the police, and the prisoner was given into the custody of Detective Crisp, the boots being given up at the same time. In reply to the charge prisoner said the boots had been sent to him from London by his aunt. Crisp made inquiries, found out to whom the boots belonged, and again charged prisoner with stealing the boots, when he replied “I never did.”Prisoner said he did not take the boots with felonious intent. He knew that his mother would pay for them.—Sentenced to one month’s hard labour. 

Leicester Chronicle July 1884 The Extensive Theft of Heel Lifts.— Joseph Green (12) and J. W. Coleman (13) were again placed m the dock charged with stealing 50lbs. of heel lifts, value £2 5s. the property of their employers, Messrs. Billson and Pick, shoe manufacturers, Spinner-Street, and Thomas Spencer, shoemaker, Vauxhall-Street, was charged with feloniously receiving the same knowing them to have been stolen.— Mr. J. B. Fowler again appeared for the prosecution, and Mr. J. T. Hincks for Spencer.— The case was fully investigated last Friday, but in consequence of a statement of Mr. Fowler to the effect that there would be further charges preferred against Spencer, the case was adjourned until to day.— Spencer was now charged with having in his possession 35lbs heel lifts, the property of  Messrs. Lennard and Wright, shoe manufacturers, Asylum- street, and 88 lbs.of heel lifts belonging to Messrs. West and Blackwell. It will be remembered that a large quantity of lifts were taken from Spencer’s premises for the purpose of identification by Messrs Billson and Pick. When this firm had selected all the lifts belonging to them, there was a quantity left over, which constituted the present charge— Mr. Lennard was called, and stated that on Friday last he was shown a quantity of lifts by the police. He identified a portion, 35 lbs. in weight, which belonged to his firm. Amongst the lot he found 27 partly built heels, which they always kept in their own factory, but single lifts they gave out to men to work up. No one had any right to have partly built heels belonging to them in their possession. The case continued

Belgrave Gate

Leicester Chronicle 21st February 1885 Pub Ben at 15 Belgrave gate

Leicester, 11-13 Belgrave Gate, 1886-1888

Leicester Chronicle March 1889 Lennards Brothers won 2nd Prize at the Melbourne Exhibition of 1888.


Leicester, 3 Welford Place, (works), 1893- Leicester Chronicle Sale of 3 Welford Place 3-09-1899 owned by Lennard Brothers who removed to Bristol as Lennards Ltd

Leicester, 85 Asylum Street, 1903-1916

Other addresses

Leicester, 6 Church Gate, 1895-1906

Leicester Mercury June 1905 Grand central Branch now open, Lennards Corner, 2 Cheapside, 1905-1929 listed in 1931 & 1950

Leicester, 109 Belgrave Road, 1911-1914

Cold Newton (Leicester )

3 Belvoir Road Coalville 1928 Kellys



Leicester 1898 Sam Lennard Talk on Boots and Shoes

Leicester Leicester House, Lee Circle, Leicester LE1 9EC in 1984

Samuel Briers Born 1868 at Leicester. Samuel commenced working as a clerk before taking over the management of the Lennard Bros warehouse in Leicester, later serving as managing director. In February 1919 consult surnames A-D

Thomas Henry Briers Born 1901 at Leicester, son of Samuel BRIERS, 1951 was a director of Lennards Bros. Consult surnames A-D

John Cashmore Born 1855 at Stone, Staffordshire. He worked as a boot maker and in the 1890s and early 1900s he was a foreman and manager of the Lennards’ shoe manufacturing operations at Blaby, Leicestershire. consult surnames A-D

George Thornell Dudley Born 1859 at Willenhall, Staffordshire, son of Christopher Dudley. 1881 he was operating as a boot factor in Leicester. In 1890 he married Anne Hewson and he died at Leicester in 1901 aged

Thomas Hatton Born 1876 Manchester. Thomas was involved in boot and shoe manufacturing. He was a director of Lennard Bros Limited in Leicester 1903-09

Frederick Hunt    Belper News 6th September 1918 Pte Frederick Hunt lived at the Butts Belper died of severe gunshot wounds he was a former employee of the company. Good photo and write up giving further details. He worked as a manager at The Lennards premises of 109 Belgrave Road Leicester 1911-1914

Robert Hyslop Born 1859 at Leicester. He was a boot factor, neighbour, business associate and brother-in-law of Samuel Lennard. His wife Louisa died in 1918 aged 51 and the following year he married Clara Orton in Leicester. He was a shareholder in Lennards Brothers, and a director of Freeman, Hardy and Willis for many years. He died 26 November 1938 at Bournemouth aged 79.

Samuel Lennard Born 5 June 1851 at Leicester, son of Frederick Lennard and his wife Mary Gant. In 1889 he married Annie Eliza Wood, daughter of Alderman Edward Wood, JP. Their children included Eveline Anne Lennard 1890, Edward Wood Lennard 1892, Kathleen Mary Lennard 1893 and Samuel Frederick Lennard 1894. He was chairman of Lennard Bros Ltd, member of London Cordwainers’ Guild, president of the National Boot and Shoe Manufacturers’ Federation from 1896 to 1899. He was elected Alderman in 1891 and Justice of the Peace for the borough of Leicester in 1895. In November 1900, he was elected Mayor of Leicester and died suddenly on 14 September 1901 at Kirby Muxloe, Leicestershire, aged 50, a few weeks before completing his term of office as mayor. Both of his sons were killed in action during World War One.

Thomas Lilley consult surnames I-O

George Herbert Viccars Born 1858 at Leicester, son of Thomas Viccars, woollen merchant, and his wife Catherine. In 1890 at Leicester he married ‘the girl next door’ Alice Maud Baines and their children included Catherine Mary 1891, Reginald   1895 and Marjorie Warner  1899. George worked as a commercial clerk and manager with Leicester manufacturers. He was a business colleague of the Lennard brothers and was a shareholder when Lennards Ltd was incorporated in 1896.

Robert James Walker Born 1854 at Leicester, youngest son of Robert Walker, a prominent hosiery manufacturer, and his wife Elizabeth Roberts. Robert Jr and his brothers Theodore  and William Ralph  continued in the family business  of Robert Walker & Sons.For full story consult surnames T -Z

William Henry Walker Born 1819 at Bradmore, Nottinghamshire, he married Anne Jane Brewin in 1846 at Leicester. By 1871 he had built an extensive business manufacturing boots and hosiery in Leicester and at that time employed 1,200 people. He was a shareholder and director of Lennard Bros and died in 1905 aged 86.

Alfred John Ward Born abt 1879 at Leicester, son of Samuel Charles Ward, shoe warehouseman and boot factor, and his wife Caroline Lennard. In 1911 he worked as a boot repairer and dealer with Lennard Bros in Leicester.

Florence Emma Ward 
Born 1881 at Leicester, brother to Alfred Ward above. At the age of 19 she worked as a machinist in the Lennard Bros shoe manufacturing business.

Samuel Charles Ward Born around 1850 at Leicester, son of Samuel Ward He worked in the Leicester shoe warehousing business of Lennard Bros and in 1911 he operated as a boot factor in Sheffield. Three of his sons, Alfred, Samuel and Frank, followed him into the boot trade, operating as boot repairers and dealers. Frank followed him to Sheffield as a boot repairer consult surnames T-Z

Tennyson Whitehead Born 1870 at Saddleworth, Yorkshire, the son of Samuel Whitehead, woollen finisher, and his wife Jane Roberts. From 1891 until his death in 1905 at the age of 35 he worked as a nightwatchman, warehouseman and packer for Lennards Brothers, boot manufacturers, Leicester, trading as the Public Benefit Boot Co. consult T-Z surnames

Leigh added from 1931 list

16 bradshawgate listed in 1931

Lennards Ltd Headquarters Bristol  Queens Road/Park Place (The Triangle) opened 1896 and destroyed by incendiaries in May 1940/41

Leyton, Walthamstow see London

Leytonstone, London

Lincoln Added from 1931 list

303a high Street listed in 1931 & 1949

Liskeard Cornwall

Market Street, 1902-1919 Franchise Kellys 

 20 Fore Street, 1906-1929 listed in 1931

James Henry Dingle Born c1834 at Liskeard, with his son John, he managed the company’s premises at 20 Fore Street, Liskeard, trading as James Henry Dingle & Son, Boot Makers. He died at Liskeard in 4 April 1915 aged 81 and his widow Rebecca died there 24 January 1919 aged 85. Consult surnames A- D

John Samuel Dingle Born 1861 at Liskeard, Cornwall, son of James Henry DINGLE, boot maker, and his wife Rebecca DAVEY. With his father, he carried on the boot dealership at 20 Fore Street, Liskeard consult surnames A-D



441 Stanley Road, 1907 Kelly’s Lancashire

323 Stanley Road Bootle 1917 & 1929  & 1935 Liverpool Echo

226 Grange Road Birkenhead 1939

181- 183 London Road 1935 Copes directory & newspapers

Llanelli,  Carmarthenshire,

19 Cowell Street, 1909, 1914-1920

11 Stepney street 1926 & listed in 1931


London, & Suburbs  Early branches established at or before 1901 Acton, Chiswick, Croydon, Hammersmith, (Uxbridge Rd & also Edgeware Road) Islington, Kensington, Kilburn, Kingston, Peckham, Plumstead, Sutton, Watford, Woolwich. Mile End Road.  

Series of small ads by Public Benefit Boot Company in the early days.

Freemans Journal December 1892 Wanted smart energetic young lady apprentices small salary to commence. 19a Wexford Street

Freemans Journal Aug 1892 Ad for a lady apprentice in the sales Dept.. P.B.Boot Co.43 Lower Camden Street

Acton Added from 1931 List

31 Horn Lane listed in 1931

Beckenham Added from 1931 List

13, Cedars Parade High street listed in 1931 & 1935

Barking Added from 1931 List

44 Ripple Road listed in 1931

Barnet including Finchley, Burnt Oak


Hendon & Finchley Times Feb 1903  MIDLAND RAILWAY EMPLOYEES CONVICTED OF STEALING SHOES. the Edgware Petty Sessions, on Wednesday, before Mr. J. K. Lilley (in the chair), Mr. A. Dunlop,                    Alfred Parkins, train examiner, of 12, Midland Brent-terrace, Cricklewood ; Thomas Cheshire, train examiner, of 13, Midland Brent terrace, Cricklewood ; Frederick Ellwood, train oiler, of 18. New- Brent-street, Hendon; and John Shepherd, train oiler, of 9, Belle Vue-terrace, Hendon, were charged with being concerned together in stealing, on the 13th inst., from a railway van on the Midland Railway, Brent Sidings, eleven pairs of ladies’ shoes, value £5 10s.. the property of the Midland Railway Company.—The shoes were destined for  Leicester. Mr. FIude prosecuted on behalf of the Midland Railway Company, and Mr. Jacobs appeared for Parkins, Cheshire, and Ellwood. John Moffatt, police-sergeant in the employ of the Midland Railway, stated that 3.15 a.m. on the 13th inst., he was on duty at Brent Sidings, accompanied by P.C. Dyer, keeping special observation on a van. He saw the four prisoners approach the van, and one of them opened the sliding door. saw Parkins and Ellwood enter the van; Cheshire then closed the door. Shepherd got under the couplings the opposite side of the van. Seizing the opportunity they swooped on the four men and PC Dyer gave corroborative evidence. the men were found guilty.

In a further charge Parkins and Cheshire were accused of collaborating in stealing and receiving from a van o the Midland railway four pairs of shoes value 14s. destined for Hull.The four pairs were later recovered from their homes. Samuel Marshall a receiver in the employ of the Public Benefit Boot Company, Hull,(Prospect Street)  said that the case of boots from Messrs. Martin should have contained 359 pairs of a particular kind of boots, but only 355 arrived. The boots produced, corresponded with those that did not arrive. The prisoners elected to be dealt with summarily, and pleaded not guilty. It was stated that Cheshire had been in the employ of the Company since 1891 was made a full examiner in 1896. and his average wages of late had been £1 9s 10d a week. Parkins had been employed since 1888, and became full examiner in 1891. His average wages during the last three months was £1 9s 6d a week. The Chairman said it was only on account of the good character which they understood the prisoners had borne hitherto, that they consented to deal with the case there. If they were sent to the Sessions the disgrace and punishment would perhaps be heavier. They felt, however, it was necessary that they should pass such sentences that would deter others from committing a like offence. Parkins and Cheshire would be sentenced to six weeks’ imprisonment on the first offence, and six weeks on the second, the sentences to run concurrently. The other prisoners. Ell wood and Shepherd, would go to prison for six weeks.

Burnt Oak in Borough of Barnet

Hendon and Finchley Times Sept 1937 adv seeking sales ladies experienced on Handbags gloves etc. for Lennards (Handbags) Ltd 12 Watling Avenue Burnt Oak. Branch opened November/December 1935


Hendon & Finchley Times 9th January  1923. New Branch opening 113  Golders Green Road 

Hendon & Finchley times January 1923 Temple Fortune:  New branch opening  9 St George’s Parade  Temple Fortune shoe warehouse situated on the Finchley road between Golders green &  Henley’s corner


4 The Broadway, High Street 1901 1911-1929 lIsted in 1931. The only branch the company had was 4 The Broadway which was in the High Street. 

Bromley, 46-52 High Street, 1913- 1937

In 1934 the High street was renumbered and 46-52 became 67-69 after number 4 Broadway was absorbed into number 3.

Battersea Began as Public Benefit Boot

5 York Road, 1910-1929 Listed in 1931

Camberwell, Not listed in 1931

3 Church Street, 1910-1919

Camberwell, 331 Old Kent Road, 1915

Old Kent Road, 331, 1911-1919

Catford (Forrest Hill)

9 St. Georges’ Parade Hendon & Finchley Times 9th February 1923

Chiswick, Not Listed in 1931

Middlesex & Surrey express July 1901 P.B.B.Co. wrote to the Highways dept of Chiswick council to have a tree removed opposite their branch at 110 High Road. Whilst the request was refused it does prove the shop was occupied by them in 1901

West London Observer JULY 1902  ALLEGED THEFTS IN THE HIGH ROAD. Mary Ann William., laundress, of 83. Peter street, Westminster, was charged on remand at the West London Police-court on Monday. with stealing one pair of canvas shoes from outside 110, High-road, Chiswick, value Is. 6id., the property of the Public Benefit Boot Company, and, further, with stealing, on June 21st, sixteen yards of dress material, value 6s. 4d., the property of Wm. Soper, of 326, High-road. Hy. Jones, manager to the boot company, said he saw the prisoner standing outside the shop. and shortly afterwards his boy told him that the woman had stolen some boots. He accosted her, and when he asked her for the boots, she closed her arms, and said she had not got them. He eventually forced her arms, but could not find the boots. A boy named Fredk. Wyatt, deposed to seeing the prisoner take the boots from a basket and put them into her apron and walk away. There was no other woman present. The manager said that the alleged larceny was also witnessed by a neighbour, but be was unable to attend. Detective Howard said the boots had not been found. He also added that it would be impossible for the bar to tell whether the prisoner was accompanied by another woman, because it was night, and the street was crowded. After hearing the evidence in support of the second charge. Mr. Rose committed the prisoner, who denied the charges, for trial.

110 High Road, 1901-1919

102 High Road,1901- 1907

Clapham Junction

London Clapham Junction. Love the Charabanc type coach

Watford Herts 20-22 St Johns’ Wood Not listed in 1931

These premises were occupied from the 1880’s & the Watford Examiner 4th July 1891 leased 20 & 22 St. John’s Road only 3 minutes walk from Clapham Junction station, Lavender Hill and St.Johns Hill SW. St Johns’ wood begins at  the corner of St John’s Hill and lavender Hill is close by

South London Press Sept 1890 ADAMS ARE THE BOOTS BEST ON EARTH Camberwell Bead, 64, Atlantic Bead, Brixton, Junction, 18, Fitsjohn Promenade, South Hampstead.  The Public Benefit Co., 22, St. John’s Road, Clapham 

In the same newspaper 1891 Public benefit occupy  20 & 22 St. Johns ‘Road along with  a chemist. Information gathered from the following advert. CLAPHAM JUNCTION. S.W. By order of the Trustees.—The Business Premises, Nos. and 22, St. John’s-road.a busy and improving thoroughfare, occupied respectively Mr. Luxmore, chemist, and the Public Benefit Boot Company. Let on repairing lease for a term of which years are at the very inadequate rental per annum. Held for a term of which 52 years are unexpired, at a ground-rent of £16 per annum. Messes. Humbert, son, & flint are instructed to OFFER the above sound LEASEHOLD INVESTMENT by AUCTION

South London Press 25th July 1891  complaint of undercharging ground rents by owners Watford Observer 4th July 1891 22 St.Johns’ wood has a lease for 33 years at a fixed rent of £95 per annum 

Junction, 3 Lavender Hill, 1901-1929 listed in 1931 & 1935 

Croydon, some info supplied by Surrey history centre

Croydon Guardian & surrey County Gazette Dec 1904 A WORD TO TRADESMEN. William Korff (21) and Victor Dare 0101, both of no home, were charged with being concerned together in stealing from the outside of 17, -High-street, two pairs of boots, value 11s. 10d the property of the Public Benefit Boot Company. William Knight, groom and gardener, said that he saw the the two men cut the boots down from the front of the shop and put them under their jackets. He informed a policeman of the fact—P.C. 257 W stated that he received information from the last witness and followed prisoners to Beech House road. where he took them in custody. Each had a pair of boots under his coat, and Dare said, -We took them from -outside the shop. We’re hard up and have had some trouble. The Chairman said the Bench thought it a case in which a little more care should be exercised In exposing goods for sale; it was placing temptation in the way of needy persons. Prisoners were sentenced to one month’s hard labour each, and Mr. Knight was thanked for his conduct

17 High Street, 1901-1929, Listed in 1931 and continues up to WW2 Croydon Library

72 North End 1955 Croydon library 

84 High Street 1967 Croydon Library


West Surrey times  Dec 1893 MORTONS’ PUBLIC BENEFIT BOOT STORES, (Full page column) adv selling 40,000 pairs of boots and shoes every week for cash. Public Benefit B.Co. used Mortons in other places too. This is what they did franchise out or sell directly through an established trader 20 Spital Street Guildford

6 Market Street, 1900 (Surrey History Centre) shared the branch with a confectioner but is also listed in 1911-1929, 1930 &  listed in 1931 & 1939 & 1944 (Newspapers) 

10-12 Market Street 1961 Surrey history centre

repairs shop at Onslow Street 1961 Surrey history centre

Hammersmith Began as Public Benefit Boot

London evening Standard Sept 1900 WEST LONDON. George Turner, 36, whose address was not known, was brought up, on remand, charged with stealing a pair of boots by means of a trick. — On Saturday morning, the 8th inst., the Prisoner was seen standing outside a boot shop in Goldhawk-road, Shepherd’s-bush, by Detective Wisker, who did not recognise him as an inhabitant of the locality, and kept observation on his movements. The Prisoner went into the shop and inquired for a pair of boots which he represented had been left to be stretched. He failed there, and was seen by the detective to enter nine different shops asking in each for a pair of boots. At the last shop belonging to the Public Benefit Boot Company, in King-street, Hammersmith, a pair of boots which had been left to be stretched were handed to him by the manager who supposed that they were his property. He was stopped by the detective as he was about to enter a pawnbroker’s shop, and said he was glad he was caught as he had been walking about the streets for three nights. — Detective Wisker said he had been unable to obtain any information about the Accused as he refused to give any address. — The Prisoner told the Magistrate that he would not let his people know of his position for the world. He had never been in custody before.— Mr. Rose said the Prisoner had gone about in a very ingenious way. It was a case of obtaining goods by false pretences. He committed him for 21 days, with hard labour

West London Observer June 1927 STAFF OUTING.—On June 19th, the managers and staff of Lennards, Ltd., together with the London factory staff , held their annual outing, Box Hill being the place chosen. ‘The party left Hammersmith Broadway in three charabancs about 100 strong)at 1.30, and after a delightful ride, arrived at Box hill about 11 o’clock, when full justice was done to a substantial lunch, followed at 5 o’clock by tea. After exploring this well-known beauty spot for a considerable time, the party returned to the Broadway About 9 o’clock. Great credit is due to Mr. Spokes, the London inspector, and also to the committee for their arranging a perfect day’s enjoyment.

Hammersmith, 37 1/2 King Street, 1896-1899

Hammersmith 121 Uxbridge Road, Shepherds Bush 1898-1911

Hammersmith 26 & 26a King Street, 1901-1924 continues to 1928 Hammersmith & Fulham Archives

Hammersmith 174 Uxbridge Road, 1901-1929 Listed in 1931 continues to 1940 Hammersmith & Fulham Archives

119 king Street 1939-40 Hammersmith & Fulham Archives

Hayes 2 Station Parade listed in 1935

Uxbridge Gazette 23rd July 1937 Claude Dampier on Friday night presented to Mr. E. C. Surridge. manager of Messrs. Lennards, 41 Station Road, Hayes, his trophy as winner of the Hayes Gala Week Window Dressing Competition. Between them is Billy Carlisle (whom I assume actually produced the winning window but it was presented to the manager mr Surridge?) There is a photo in the newspaper

Uxbridge & W.Drayton Gazette Oct 1948 Adv. Senior sales lady at Lennards shop 41 Station Road Hayes

Offer of an attractive tin filled with various boot associated items fo 1/-

Edgware Road Paddington Began as Public Benefit Boot  offer opposite contained One box, pure bristle brush, velvet pad, sponge, tin polish, metal shoe horn and a button hook 

London, 360 Edgware Road, 1901-1929 Listed in 1931 

London 125 Edgware Road, 1901-1929 Listed in 1931 & 1935


Islington Gazette May 1894 The birch. Henry Patient, aged 15, errand-boy, of Dagmar-terrace, was charged on Tuesday, at the Clerkenwell Police-court, with stealing from the shop, 106, Upper-street, two dozen pairs of mohair laces, value 2s., and 12s. in money, the property of the Public Benefit Boot Company, Limited. Patient was in the employment of the prosecutors and did not turn up to his work on Monday, and the property mentioned in the charge and the money were missed from the shop. Patient was arrested on suspicion, and, when charged, admitted stealing the laces. Mr. Bros ordered the prisoner to receive three strokes with the birch rod

Islington Gazette Dec 1910 Interesting appraisal of council rating driving away businesses. ASSESSMENTS IN ISLINGTON. Your corrcspondcnt. Mr. Lye, is entitled to sympathy in his struggles for fair treatment at the hands of the Islington rating authorities, who have forced him to the Court Appeal, it is impossible for any tradesman in Upper-street now to pay rates incurred on £140 rating. Rentals and ratings of this character are of the past and gone for ever. The electric trams Islington councillors were so anxious to run through the borough, have cleared the inhabitants, especially the class who supported these fine shops. It is remarkable the Islington Assessment Committee, seeing the terrible condition shops have fallen into in this thoroughfare, court further disaster by not endeavouring to induce what few tradesmen are left to remain. They have had long and ample experience. For instance, I may mention No. 145 and 144, Upper street. The Public Benefit Boot Company had to close these premises entirely because the Islington Committee would not reduce the heavy assessment placed upon their premises. The result is nothing has been received from the property for many years. The loss to the ratepayers must have been very considerable.

Islington Gazette June 1893 OPENING JUNE 10TH  OUR FIRST LONDON CONCERN England’s Chief Manufacturing  Retailers, TRIPLE GOLD MEDALISTS. PUBLIC BENEFIT BOOT COMPANY Have Opened a London Concern, 106, UPPER-STREET, ISLINGTON. To Sell what are in Value and Variety “MARVELLOUS MASTERPIECES” BOOMERS BOOTS AND SHOES. Gentlemen’s only at One Price. Behold the “Boomers” View the Window WINDOW! PUBLIC BENEFIT BOOT COMPANY, 106, Upper-st., Islington

1901-1906   145-148 Upper Street,

138 New North Road/Essex Road corner it stood opposite a Public House (Three Brewers Pub) which still stands today in 2020. The dating of the image in circulation is circa 1890-1900 and is definitely before 1904. This part of Essex Road suffered serious war damage and the row of shops on the left, including the boot store, were demolished after the war and replaced by a terrace set further back, with a narrow service road.

Islington, 30 Islington High Street, 1919

Kensington, Not listed in 1931 Began as Public Benefit Boot

102 High Street, Notting Hill Gate W, 1900-1911

Kentish Town,

London Kentish Town 4 Fortess road, The lads are posing normal practice for a new store opening

Kensington Post Aug 1944  SEQUEL TO JOY RIDE Alleged Deserter Sent To Prison John Stone (21) alleged deserter from the Hussars since June last, was  fined a total of £lO and sentenced to six weeks’ imprisonment on charges of taking and, driving away a car belonging to’ Mr. Cyril France garage proprietor, at Burne Street. Marylebone,  misusing the motor fuel in, the car. driving without a licence and without third party insurance cover; and stealing ladies’ underwear worth nearly £l7, from Lennards Ltd, 160 Kentish Town Road

4 Fortess Road, 1906-1919

160 Kentish town Road found (1944)Public Benefit opened a branch at number 4 Fortess Road circa 1900.Wonderful image of the branch with staff posing for the camera on store opening.

Kilburn Began as Public Benefit Boot

Kilburn Times April 1902  CHEEKY LITTLE BOOT THIEVES.–Lily Hipwell, aged 11. of Netherwood-street, Kilburn, and Grace Palmer, aged 11, of Palmerston-road, Kilburn, were charged with being concerned , together in stealing a pair of boots value 4s 11d, belonging to the Public Benefit Boot Company, of 106 a, High-road, Kilburn; and two other pairs of boots, value 5s 11d, the property of Charles Hinde, of 191, High-road, Kilburn. Palmer, it was alleged, went into the shop of the first-named prosecutor and asked them to change a pair of shoes for a pair like those her aunt had had ; if they would not change them she was to ask for the money back. The assistant sent her for her aunt and then searched the books, but could not find any boots of the kind described had been sold for several days. On going outside the shop  he discovered that the pair of shoes that had been brought to him had been stolen from the rack. Shortly after Hipwell went into a pawn brokers shop in the High Road and asked another customer to pledge the shoes for her. She said her mother had been out of work and she wanted to pledge the shoes to pay the rent. Mr Kennedy described them as a pair of naughty thieves and sent them to a remand home for a week.

Kilburn Times July 1905 A petition was raised to gather local ratepayers support for electric trams to travel from Cricklewood to Marble Arch in more comfort and at a cost of one penny. Whereas the current situation meant it cost 2d to travel from Kilburn to Marble arch. Lennards Ltd was one of the signatories and they along with many, many more began to put up a good argument for the trams These Represent over 150 Shops, House-agents, and Banks in the High Road, Kilburn.  A FEW of the Kilburn Tradesmen think the trams will carry their customers to Edgware Road, but those who have signed do not fear competition, and have faith in their own ability and the value they give the public. They further consider that the trams will be the means of filling the empty houses and opening up the district to the North of Kilburn for building purposes, and that thousands of people will pour into Kilburn from the outlying districts and shop with the firms who give value

106a High Road, 1901-1938 listed in 1931 & 1935

Fulham Not listed in 1931

Fulham 246 North End Road, 1901

Fulham 90 Parson’s Green Lane, 1911

Fulham 339 North End Road, 1924


307 Mare Street, 1910-1938 listed in 1931 & 1935

Kingsland, Middlesex,

50 High Street, 1915-1929 listed in 1931 & 1935


Norwood News Dec 1942 Blitz Casualty Took Drink to Relieve Pain: Theft Charge A spine Injury sustained when he was a boy was made permanent when he was bombed out and buried in debris; this sent him to drink, ” and the more I drank the less pain I had.” This was the explanation of a Streatham man, Vivian William Tapp (aged 58), Amesbury-avenue, when charged at Wimbledon on Monday on his own confession with stealing £180, the money of his employers—he was manager of Messrs. Lennards, Ltd., branch at Morden. The total deficiency was said to be £227. Being given a good character, he was bound over for twelve months on probation

Paddington, Not listed in 1931

407 Harrow Road, 1911-1924

Peckham, Surrey Not listed in 1931 Began as Public Benefit Boot

32 Rye Lane, 1901-1905, 1924  

Penge, Surrey,

Norwood News 1919 Penge, 90-92 Beckenham Road  1911-1929-listed in 1931 & 1938 Maidstone Library & 1939 newspapers 

Pimlico, Middlesex Not listed in 1931

45 Wilton Road, 1915-1924

Plumstead, Kent

Kentish independent May 1900 Thomas Osborne, 53, labourer, of no fixed home, was charged with stealing from outside the shop 67a, High Street. Plumstead, two pairs of boots, value 13s , the property of the Public Benefit Boot Company. that afternoon.—Police constable Elliston, 237 R said that at half-past twelve o’clock that day he was off duty and in plain clothes, when he saw the prisoner take two pairs of tan boots from outside the prosecutor’s shop. He dropped one of them and walked away with the remainder. Witness went after him and stopped him, and he said he had bought the three boots off a  man for 5s 6d . One of the boots had a sale ticket attached to it. —The prisoner said he had bought the boots as stated, but of course he was guilty of their being found in his possession, and asked to be sent for trial—The police asked for a remand, as the prisoner was an ” expiree. Three months hard labour and had served about thirty years of his life in penal servitude

Kentish Independent Oct 1906  SHOP PILFERING. MONTH FOR A PLUMSTEAD MAN. Shop pilfering was the cause of a Plumstead man’s appearance before Mr. Baggalley at Woolwich Police Court on Tuesday. His name was given as Charles Cook, 27, labourer, of 98, Mabyn Road, Plumstead, and he was charged with stealing two Pairs of gents’ boots, value 9s. 11d., from 67a, High Street, Plumstead, the shop of Messrs. Lennard and Co., ltd., queen’s Road, Bristol. William Sheppard said he was the manager for the Public Benefit Boot Company —the name under which the company traded—and the two pairs of boots produced were valued at 92 9d.  He heard a noise outside the shop, and on going ‘ to the door, he saw a pair of boots on the ground, near where the prisoner stood, and a moment later he saw Cook drop, the second pair. Cook bolted, and witness ran after him and caught him, giving him into custody. The boots, which hung in front of the shop, had been cut down. Prisoner said he was under the influence of drink at the time, but the witness said he did not appear to be when he caught him. Detective Sergeant Golden, of Bexley, said he was passing along High Street, Plumstead, on a bicycle, when he saw Sheppard run after the prisoner, whom be caught. Witness took Cook into custody, and at the police station found a knife on him. Cook was sober, and had not been drinking. Prisoner, he said, was previously charged at Woolwich in 1898 for stealing some cake tins, and fined 5s. and costs One  month hard labour.” said Mr. Baggalley

67a High Street, 1900 (Kentish Independent) listed in 1931 & 1935

London Addresses Listed in 1931 and added   


Staines 167 High Street listed in 1931 & 1935 

Stoke Newington, Not listed in 1931

Stoke Newington 121 High Street, 1910-1919

Sutton, Surrey

101 High Street, 1901( Piles) -1928  In 1928 High Street was renumbered so 101 became 123 so it becomes the same branch 

Sutton 123 High Street (cnr Church Street), 1928-1935 listed in 1931 & 1935

Norwood News June 1934  Experienced junior sales woman required.—Lennards. 31. Upper Tooting-road

31 Upper Tooting Road listed in 1931 & 1935

London, 63 Tottenham Court Road, 1929-1938 Listed in 1931  & 1935 Lennards Corner

Leyton Walthamstow

405 Hoe Street, 1911-1917 & listed in 1931 & 1935 

London, 1075 Finchley Road, 1929 Listed in 1931 & 1935 demolished and replaced by modern building ‘New Burlington house’


Wembley 142 High road listed in 1931 


Woolwich Gazette June 1901 ADv Two convenient rooms to let suitable for offices; over the Public Benefit Boot Company 27 Powis Street Woolwich

Woolwich Gazette Jan 1910  POWIS STREET BOOTS CASE. , Elizabeth Hampton, 31. of 6 Rope Yard Rails Woolwich, who was charged with stealing a pair of children’s boots, value 3. 11d., outside the shop of 27 Powis Street. Woolwich, came op on remand. The boots were said to be the property of the Public Benefit Boot Company. The caae already completed, the adjournment being that certain witnesses might be bound over to appear at the sessions, where she was sent

Kentish Independent May 1904 adv for staff P.B.B.C.o 27 Powis Street 

27 Powis Street, 1901-1923

Woolwich, 5 Powis Street, 1911-1929 Listed in 1931 & 1935

Lennards Building, 1919 Elephant and Castle

London, 342 Euston Road, 1913

(Frederick Allwood manager) & 1919 Leamington Spa Courier Jan 1913 LEAMINGTONIAN’S SAD DEATH. A CHRISTMAS TRAGEDY.’ As briefly reported in a portion of our town edition last week, an inquest was held on Friday afternoon at Walworth Coroner’s Court concerning the death Frederick Allwood (25), whose body was recovered from the Thames the previous Monday. The deceased a son of Mr. and Mrs. Allwood, of 7, Queen Street, Leamington, and had of late been manager of the Euston Road branch of the Public Benefit Boot Company. Consult surnames E- H for the full tragic story

Charles Hamilton Poole Manager in London he lodged with Frederick Allwood

London, 125 Shoreditch High Street (west side), 1921

London, 264 Regent Street, 1924-1929

London, 58 Trafalgar Road, 1937

London, 145 Oxford Street, 1938


East London Observer Nov 1894 –90 Houndsditch near Liverpool Street with their usual surplus and annual sale

London E C 25, Middlesex Street near Aldgate Station Lloyds Weekly 30th August 1896 ad. From P.B. selling their wares directly to the public from the factory gates continuing by this Adv. in Lloyds weekly 4th July 1897

East London Observer Dec 1896 The Public Benefit Boot Company at 117, High street, Aldgate, (Whitechapel a few doors west of Commercial Street and 98 Houndsditch is (near Liverpool Street) have a good show of boots and shoes, and very suitable articles for Christmas presents

East London Observer Nov 1897 117 high Street Near Aldgate East Station & Houndsditch also a factory 26 middlesex street Aldgate confirming that Union wages paid

Tower Hamlets & east End Local Feb 1896 up to end March: THE PUBLIC BENEFIT BESPOKE BOOT & SHOE COMPANY. OUR ANNUAL SALE NOW PROCEEDING SURPLUS STOCK and TRAVELLERS SAMPLES of Ladies, Gents and Childrens Boots and Shoes all at GREATLY REDUCED PRICES. CALL at ONCE and do not miss this opportunity of saving at lead 1s on every pair purchased. WE must SELL now to make room for our Spring and Summer Stock, ALL GOODS direct from our own Factory to the wearer. ONLY ADDRESS ;- 1 17, HIGH STREET WHITECHAPEL a few doors West of Commercial-street, E. 90, HOUNDSDITCH E.C. near Liverpool Street.


London Devastating Fire at the Public Benefit premises of Mile End Road report in Morning Post  December 1901 Early on Christmas morning a fire broke out 291, Mile-end-road, E., upon the premises of the Public Benefit Boot Company. The first and second floors were tenanted by two families and lodgers named Crass and Levy, who were just in time to effect hasty escapes, rushing half naked into a blinding storm of snow. The shop was almost destroyed. 

Leytonstone London Not listed in 1931

726-728 High Road, 1911-1920 Close to the Leytonstone Tube Station


Harry Hartington Barrow He worked at the boot shop at Croydon, Surrey, and in 1911 he managed the company’s premises at 121 High Street, Stoke Newington

Frederick Joseph Beard In 1904 he managed the Public Benefit Boot Co premises at 32 Rye Lane, Peckham in 1911 he managed the premises at 159 Highland Road, Eastney, Southsea, Portsmouth,

Herbert James Bool Born 1877 at Bristol.  At the age of 13 he worked as a shop boy at Battersea, London. From circa 1901 to 1911 he managed the company’s premises at, 16 Victoria Arcade & 1 King Edwards’ Road (Lennards Corner) Swansea, where his sister-in-law Clara Ellen Finch also worked as a shop assistant. More info surnames A-D

Thomas Albert Carter Born 1879 at Gloucester. Thomas worked as assistant in Croydon, Surrey and in 1911 he managed the company’s premises at 36 High Street, Stratford-on-Avon. Consult surnames A-D

Arthur Church Born c1893 at Hampstead, Middlesex. He worked firstly as a shop assistant in London and in 1911 he managed the company’s premises at 405 Hoe Street, Leyton, Essex. Consult surnames A-D

Edward John Church Born 1897 at Hornsey, Middlesex, In 1911 at the age of 14 he worked as an assistant at the company’s premises at 405 Hoe Street, Leyton, Essex, managed by his brother Arthur. Consult surnames A-D

ROBERT C. CLEMENTFrom 1942 to 1946 Mr. Clement was manager of the Public Benefit Boot Co., Ltd., branch Midland Road, Bedford. . He had been in the service of that firm since 1905. starting at Kilburn as a youth and transferring to Luton in 1910 as branch manager. During the war years, he carried on the firm’s Bedford shop while his wife managed that at Luton. Consult surnames A-D

Thomas William Collins Born 1874 at Lambeth, London, 1911, he managed the company’s premises at 90-92 Beckenham Road, Penge, Surrey consult surnames A-D

Francis Walter Dycer Born 1872 at Milborne Port, He married Florence Martin in 1895 at Yeovil, in 1898 & 1899 he is manager of Bedminster branch and from 1901 until at least 1911 he managed the company premises at 26 King Street, Hammersmith. He died at Hammersmith in 1941 his widow died there several years later. Consult surnames A-D

Edward Alfred Fleet He managed the company’s premises at 101 High Street, Sutton 1902-1911 and later the premises at 407 Harrow Road, Paddington, London West circa 1911. His wife Edith died in 1941 aged 66 – at the time he was listed as a retired boot salesman.

Ernest Victor Forse Born 1870 at Marylebone, London, son of Frank John Forse.. He initially worked as a boot salesman in Battersea in the 1890’s and in 1911 managed the company’s premises at 58 High Street, Hornsey. He died in 1939 aged 69.

Harry Gill In 1901 he managed the company’s boot shop at 48 Stapleton Road, Bristol, and in 1911 he managed the premises at 102 High Road, Chiswick, Middlesex.

John William Goldsack  In 1901 he worked as a boot shop assistant in Willesden and by 1911 he managed the company’s premises at 331 Old Kent Road, London.

Arthur Watts Grinley in 1911 at the age of 53 he was single and managed the company’s premises at 5 Powis Street, Woolwich.

Harry Hills. In 1911 Harry managed the company premises at 4 The Broadway, High Street, Bromley.

Thomas George Hollings 1911 he managed the company’s premises at 307 Mare Street, Hackney, London E-H surnames for details

Augustus Ernest Hopkins 1911 to circa 1925 he managed the company’s premises at 101 High Street, Sutton, Surrey.

Charles Henry Hudson 1891 he managed a London boot shop. In 1901 he managed the company’s premises at 246 North End Road, Fulham, London and 10 years later 1911 he managed the boot shop at 726 High Road, Leytonstone, Essex. Consult E-H surnames

 B. Hunt Manager of 1010 High Street Sutton 1926-1930

John Richard JACKSON 1901 manager of 17, High Street Croydon. In 1911 he managed Lennards retail premises at 37-38 High Street, Bristol.

Henry Jones Manager of 110 High Road Chiswick in West London Observer 1902 regarding a felony see the full case in this section

Frank Murray 1901 he worked at the company’s boot shop at Croydon, Surrey.

Charles Henry Myers 1911 he managed the Public Benefit Boot Co premises at 27 Powis Street, Woolwich, LondonT

Thomas Henry Palmer Born 1879 at Gloucester, son of Thomas Arthur Palmer.1. At the age of 21 he worked in a London boot shop as assistant, in 1900 at 5 Eastgate Street Gloucester as assistant.1906 at London and they had a daughter Violet Evelyn Mary born 1908 by 1911 he managed the company’s premises at 124 Lawrence Hill, Bristol.consult surnames P-S & 1900 newspaper report at Gloucester

Frederick Patch, He worked as a boot shop assistant in 1901 and by 1908 he was managing the company’s premises at 11 Carr Street, Ipswich, discovered in a local newspaper citing him in a court case. Further details consult P-S surnames

Charles Hamilton Poole Manager in London 1913 lodged with suicide victim Frederick Allwood manager of another London branch  consult surnames P-S

Edwin Reeves  Born 1876 in London, son of Edwin Reeves . At the age of 14 Edwin Jr worked as a boot maker’s assistant in Hampshire and when he was 21 he married Anne Lennard at Gloucester. By 1901 he was living at 4 High Street, the Broadway, Bromley manager of the Public Benefit boot shop listed as Bootmaker shop keeper. Consult surnames P-S

Emily Reynolds. From at least 1901 until1911 she worked as a shop assistant at the Public Benefit Boot Co premises at 125 Edgware Road, West London.

John Reynolds From at least 1901 until1911 he managed the company’s premises at 125 Edgware Road, West London. His sister Emily REYNOLDS worked as an assistant at the same boot shop.

Arthur Thomas Robinson. At the turn of the century he managed the Public Benefit Boot Co branch at 3 Lavender Hill, Clapham

William Edward Rush. William Edward RUSH managed Lennards Ltd boot shop at Southampton and then the company’s premises at 99 High Street, Winchester. In 1911 he was based in 28 London Road  Enfield, Middlesex, and working as a boot shop assistant.consult surnames P-S 

William Sheppard from 1891 to 1901 William managed a boot dealership on High Street, Brentwood, Essex, where his son William assisted in the business. In 1911 he was still managing the company’s premises at 67a High Street, Plumstead, London, where his son Herbert worked as an assistant.  Kentish Independent Oct 1906 SHOP PILFERING. MONTH FOR A PLUMSTEAD MAN. For the complete story consult London, Plumstead, Southern branches H-O

George Matthew Spicer Born 1848 at Saffron Walden, Essex, son of Matthew SPICER, brazier, and his wife Jane. George was educated in Royston, Cambridgeshire and he married Mary RAYNHAM in 1876 at London. He worked initially as a warehouseman in Hammersmith before going in to boot and shoe manufacturing in Islington. 

Mr Spokes Inspector for Lennards Ltd. West London Observer June 1927 STAFF OUTING. On June 19th, the managers and staff of Lennards, Ltd., together with the London factory staff, held their annual outing, Box Hill being the place chosen. Consult London Hammersmith for full story

Edward Stringer he managed the company’s premises at 121 Uxbridge Road, Shepherds Bush, Middlesex, continuing there until at least 1911. Consult Surnames P-S for full biographical details

Collin MaCallum Stewart In 1897 he worked as a shoe salesman, Ilfracombe Devon branch as one of his children was born there? 1901 he managed the company’s premises in Walthamstow, Essex. In 1911 he managed Lennards premises at 379 High Street, Cheltenham, Gloucestershire Consult Surnames P-S for full biographical details also consult Exeter & Plymouth Gazette Ilfracombe Jan 1897 for mention of Colin

Sydney Walter Strange Born 1869 at Notting Hill, London, the son of Samuel Strange, who for many years managed a London boot and shoe shop. In the 1890s, Sydney, as well as two of his sisters, Florence Johnson Strange and Gertrude Maria Strange assisted their father in the boot shop. He managed Public Benefit Boot Co premises in1894, Bristol and Gloucester. In 1901 he managed the premises at 102 Notting Hill gate Kensington branch & 1911 he managed the company’s premises at 90 Parsons Green Lane, Fulham, London.

E. C. Surridge Lennards Ltd manager    Uxbridge Gazette 23rd July 1937 Claude Dampier on Friday night presented to Mr. E. C. Surridge. manager of Messrs. Lennards, 41 Station Road, Hayes, his trophy as winner of the Hayes Gala Week Window Dressing Competition. Between them is Billy Carlisle (whom I assume actually produced the winning window but it was presented to the manager Mr Surridge?) There is a photo in the newspaper Consult London Hayes Southern Branches H-O

Harry William Sutton Born 1884 at Wimbledon. In 1911 he managed the company’s premises at 102 High Street, Notting Hill Gate, Kensington, West London. Consult Surnames P-S for full biographical details

George William Swaffield
Born 1875 at Newington, Surrey, son of George William Swaffield. He worked firstly as an office lad in Brighton, Sussex and in 1901 he managed the Public Benefit Boot Co branch at 58 High Street, Hornsey. From at least 1901 to 1916 he managed the company’s large premises in the Albert Buildings, 21-23 Derby Road, Nottingham. His wife Lizzie died at Derby in 1946 aged 84 and he died at Nottingham in 1954 consult surnames P-S 

Vivian William Tapp Manager of the Morden branch: Norwood News Dec 1942 Blitz Casualty Took Drink to Relieve Pain: Charged with embezzlement. Consult London, Morden, Southern branches H-O

William Harker Taylor Born 1891 at Manchester, son of John Henry Taylor, boot dealer and his wife Susannah HARKER. In 1911 he worked as a clerk for the Public Benefit Boot Co. In 1917 at Lambeth he married Ellen Victoria Parker and in the 1930’s he managed the London boot shop owned by his uncle William Herrenden Harker.

J. Thompson Manager 123 High Street Sutton 1931-1935

Alfred William Warry Born 1876 at London. At the age of 13 he worked as a shop assistant and ten years later managed the Public Benefit Boot Co branch at 110 High Road, Chiswick consult surnames T-Z

Arthur Pratt Wass Born 1875 at Sudbury. From the age of 16 and for at least 10 years he worked as a boot shop assistant in Sudbury. In 1911 he worked as a boot and shoe salesman at the company’s premises at 5 York Road, Battersea, London.consult surnames T-Z

Leonard Wilfred Whybrow Born 1895 at West Ham. At the age of 16 he worked as a shop assistant at one of the company’s premises in London. He served in WWI consult T-Z surnames

Londonderry Not Listed in 1931

Derry Journal June 1899 THE PUBLIC BENEFIT BOOT CO. FOYLE-STREET, LONDONDERRY, HAVE received recent Consignments of BOOTS and SHOES, up-to-date in style, of excellent qualities, and at lowest possible Prices consistent with good work. Public Benefit’s No. 492—Men’s S. Kip, lace, steel points, 4/11. Public Benefit’s No. 486—Men’s S. Kip, goloshed, lace, sewn, 5/11. Public Benefit’s No. 490—Men’s S. Kip, round toe, sewn, grand line, 6/11. Public Benefit’s No. 491—Men’s S. Kip, goloshed, lace, wide welt, 7/11. Public Benefit’s No. 483—Men’s Business Boot, sewn, 8/11. Public Benefit’s No. 0483 —Men’s Square-toe, leather lined, splendid for present wear, 8/11. Public Benefit’s No. 4713—Gent.’s Crup, goloshed, wide welt, damp-proof soles, 10/6. Public Benefit’s No. 4714—Gent.’s Crop, goloshed, wide welt, damp-proof sole, square toe, 10/6. Men’s Pegged and Riveted Shoes, from 3/11, with or without heel tips. Other varieties too numerous to mention. Large Stocks of heavy Goods for country wear. THE LADIES’ DEPARTMENT. Public Benefit’s No. 679—Levant, lace, tipped heels, leather lined, 3/11. Public Benefit’s No. 667—Leather lined, laced, nice appearance, 4/6. Public Benefit’s No. 668—Satin, laced, peak cap, tipped heels, well made, 5/11. Public Benefit’s No. 664—Satin, lace, peak cap, a favourite boot for best wear, 5/6. Public Benefit’s No. 675 – Persian, lace, made from picked materials, round or medium pointed toes, 5/6. Hundreds of other varieties which on inspection are sure to please. Children’s Boots and Shoes, for School or beet wear, at various Prices. Boot Trees, all should have a pair to fit their Boots for cleaning purposes, 2/11. Repairs neatly done by First-lass Workmen. PUBLIC BENEFIT BOOT COMPANY, the Hotel, Foyle-street, Londonderry,

Derry Journal May 1907 Edward McGrath, a manager in the employment of the Public Benefit Boot Co., stated that on the date mentioned defendant visited the shop and got two pairs of boots value 5s 11d for which he tendered a coin resembling a sovereign. When witness questioned him as to where got the coin he said he received it from a man named Thompson who lived on the Strand. Defendant took one pair of boots and paid 2s lid in the current coin for them. Witness retained the base coin and informed the police of the matter. Mr. Scott—The man was very drunk at the time and probably might not have known what he was saying. Constable M‘Donnell, who gave evidence of arrest, said that when the defendant became sober he said he got coins in his mother-in-law’s house, and took them, he thought they were good enough, other wise he would not have touched them. To Mr. Scott—Witness did not know whether or not defendant tendered the coin knowing it to be base. Robert Thompson. Strand Road, denied having given defendant any money any time. He had not known the man.

Derry Journal Oct 1908 LAND FOR THE LANDLESS. FAIR AND FULL SECURITY (Bv John L. Kinloch, M.A.) (Special to *■ Derry Journal.”) Famishing people gazing longingly into bakers’ shops: bakers standing idly within, wearing their hearts out for customers barefooted children leaving a track of blood in snow past the very doors of shops overflowing into the streets with boots and shoes, while the shopkeeper racks his brains to devise some catchy advertisement that may induce customers to buy ; thousands of empty houses, hundreds of thousands of people living in cellars, hovels, slums, even altogether nonetheless; millions of acres of  hungry” land, millions of men with the land hunger upon them eager to tend, to labour, to feed” that land, knowing that in the end they would receive a rich return; cheerless people shivering in front empty grates, mines closed down and miners idle. Such is the muddle we have got into in our day. extraordinary it is that professors in their studies can only shake their heads over it and say it indeed very ‘ complex.” But is it really beyond the wit of man. who has drained the lightning, bridged the made the elements his willing helpers, there is nothing complex about it.Today idle men are rich toiling men are poor. .

In short the ‘crushing’ system of the landlords of Ireland was fuelling poverty, change was needed, before the gun would be used to make those changes. The author is stating the case for intervention, to redistribute the land, give incentives, and create once more the employment needed to recharge the economy in order to buy food, clothes and even boots and shoes. The Derry journal paints a true picture of why the PUBLIC BENEFIT BOOT COMPANY came to Derry in 1897 and cannot be found a decade later!!

Foyle Street, under the city hall. 1897, 1901, 1915 derry Journal

Lowestoft, Suffolk  Not listed in 1931

Evening Star Sept 1909 A young fellow named Benjamin Street, pedlar, of Lowestoft, pleaded guilty to the theft of two pairs of shoes, from the Public Benefit Boot Company, Lowestoft on the 1st inst.—The shoes were valued at 7s. 9d.—There was another charge against the prisoner of stealing eight packets of picture postcards, valued 4s. lid., goods of Mr. Cowell, stationer, Felixstowe.—The prisoner pleaded that he was under the influence of drink at the time. He felt a bit queer during the morning, and was overcome by few drops of whisky.—Barbara Brown, assistant. employed by Mr. Cowell, said that the prisoner came into the shop during the evening and picked up two packets of picture postcards, marked 6d. per packet. wanted them cheaper, but the witness told him that she could not let him have them below the marked price. Witness was called away to another customer, and the cards were subsequently missed.—Farther evidence showed that the cards were found on the prisoner after his arrest on the previous charge. He was under the influence of drink when arrested.—Prisoner said that if the Bench would discharge him he would clear out of the town. He had been in custody nearly a week.—Fined 5s. on each charge, or seven days’, the sentences to run consecutively.—A gentleman in Court promptly volunteered to pay the fine.


1-2 King Street, 1926, 1929, 1934  Shrewsbury Archives


30 Newerne Street, 1914-1919 listed in 1931 & 1949

Lynton, Devon not listed in 1931

Queen Street, 1910-1914


23 Commercial Street, 1926 & 1929 listed in 1931


106 High Street, 1911-1929 listed in 1931

Maidstone Kent 

29 & 29a Week Street, 1915-1938 listed in 1931 Maidstone Library

Thomas Bertie Hedge Born 1876 at Longford, Ireland. Thomas worked as a boot shop assistant at Maidstone, Kent. From circa 1911 until 1914,  he managed the company’s premises at 137-138 St Mary’s Street, Southampton consult surnames E-H for more detail


Malvern Church Street 1910 the shop was in Doggerbank House

Church street Doggerbank house, 1907 as Public Benefit Boot

1914 & 1916 same address but trading under Lennards Ltd

1929 listed in 1941 Kellys & 1942 newspapers

Manchester & Oldham, Sale, Hulme, Salford 

Manchester Eve News April 1882 IMPORTANT to BOOT BUYERS. STRETFORD.—The PUBLIC BENEFIT BOOT COMPANY have OPENED a BRANCH SHOP at MARKET PLACE, STRETFORD, where they Selling their Celebrated BOOIS and SHOES at COST PRICE for a Short Time only

Manchester Evening News Jan 1899 Boot repairer wanted apply P.B.B.C. Woodfield Road Broadheath

Manchester Courier March 1911 All British Preparations for Shopping week. Manchester Firms Enterprise. Footwear of British make to be brought forward The English Company and Public Benefit Boot Company, both  firms pride themselves on  offering in the ordinary course of business, British goods to the British public. It is worth noting that Lennards are the proprietors of the Manchester shops but continue to utilise the original ‘start up’ name of Public Benefit Boot Company


Manchester Evening News Aug 1905  The premises of the Public Benefit Boot Company, Stretford Road, were damaged by fire on Saturday evening. The fire brigade had some trouble in dealing with the outbreak, which originated in a ventilating shaft due to running from the ground door to the roof, but they were able to subdue the flames after working for about half an hour

Manchester Evening News Jan 1907 BOOT SHOP ROBBERY, TWENTY-SEVEN PAIRS STOLEN. On the night of December 17 a lock-up boot shop kept by Mrs. Kate Stanton in Stretford Road was entered through a fanlight in the roof, and 27 pairs of boots were stolen. A number of the boots were afterwards pledged in various pawnshops in Stockport and Salford. To-day two respectably-dressed men, named Thomas Jackson (alias Beilby), of Embden street, Hulme, and Harry Adamson, Ellen street, Hulme, were charged at the Manchester City Police Court with entering the premises and stealing the boots. The prisoners were remanded ’till Tuesday. There was a further charge against Jackson of stealing a pair of boots from outside the shop of the Public Benefit Boot Company, Oxford Road. he was remanded on this charge also

3 Curzon Street 1935

Manchester 60 and 60B Oldham Street Manchester Courier & Lancashire general Advertiser 9th June 1894 ad for staff

Manchester, 60a & 60b Oldham Street, 1890-1929 

Manchester 60a Oldham Street listed in 1931 & 1935

Manchester 166 Oldham Road, Miles PlattingListed in 1931 & 1935

Manchester, 310 Stockport Road, 1903

Manchester, 118 & 120 Stretford Road, Hulme 1891 Manchester Courier Aug 1891 1903-1911 listed in 1931 & 1942

Manchester, 407 Oxford Road, 1907, 1911-1929 Listed in 1931

Salford, 194 Regent Road, 1909-1929 Listed in 1931 

Manchester, 152 Stockport Road, 1909-1929 Listed in 1931 & 1935

Moss Side 127 Alexandra Road, 1929 Listed in 1931

Sale 91-93 School Road listed in 1931 & 1935

Seedley 146 Langworthy Road  1911-1929 Listed in 1931 & 1935

Alfred Davis Born 1880 at Appleby, Westmorland, in 1911 he managed the Public Benefit Boot Company branch at 118-120 Stretford Road, Hulme. consult surnames A-D

Alice Helliwell Born c1862 at Bradford. Firstly, as Mrs Alice TILLOTSON and later as Mrs Alice WILLIAMS, she managed the company’s boot dealership at 146 Langworthy Road, Salford, Lancashire, where her daughter Lily assisted in the business.

Elizabeth Lucas in 1911 she managed the company’s premises at 91-93 School Road, Sale, Cheshire.

Alfred Sidney Milner In 1911 he worked as a boot salesman at the company’s premises in Hulme. Served in WW1

Hubert James Morgan  In 1891 he worked as a boot salesman at Hulme, 118 Stretford Road Lancashire. He served as a gunner in France during WWI.

Joseph Richard Lillicrap Born 1882 at East Stonehouse, Devon. He in 1914 managed the boot shop at 118-120 Stretford Road, Manchester. consult surnames I-O

Hubert James Morgan Born 1890 at Gloucester, son of Thomas Jarrett MORGAN, post office parcel porter, and his wife Edith Emily MERRETT. In 1891 he worked as a boot salesman at Hulme, 118 Stretford Road Lancashire. On 14 July 1914, he married Edna Elizabeth JOHNSON and they had a daughter Clarice MORGAN 1916. He served as a gunner in France during WWI.

Percy Thomas Paxton Born 1876 at Northampton, son of Thomas Henry PAXTON, boot manufacturer, and his wife Emma Curl. He married Kate Helena Wesley in 1902 at Bristol and their children included Cyril Percy born 1904 and Francis Thomas born 1906. In 1911 he managed the company premises at 58-60 Oldham Street, Manchester, consult surnames P-S

Mrs Alice Williams  Manageress 1911 at 146 Langworthy Road, Seedley, Salford her assistant was daughter Lily both listed for the year 1911 but likely to have been longer

Market Drayton

Crewe Chronicle March 1940 Market Drayton, UNSCREENED SHOP LIGHT.—At the Petty Sessions on Thursday. before Ms. A. H. Heber-Percy (presiding) and other magistrates. Hugh Griffiths (23) Butts Road, manager of Messrs Lennards, Ltd., Boot Stores, was fined £8 for showing “a light on his employers’ premises on February 22nd.—P.C. Heath said he saw an unscreened light in the window of the boot shop. He was unable to get into the building and though he made enquiries he was unable to locate the manager. He switched the light off at the main. Later, he interviewed defendant, who said that all the lights were out when he left the shop. The only explanation was that the switch came on again after he had turned it off.

17 Cheshire Street, 1926, 1929, 1934  Listed in 1931 Shrewsbury Archives

11 Cheshire Street 1941 Kellys directory

Market Harborough Added from 1931 list

St.Mary’s Road 1929

Matlock Added from 1931 list

Lennards Corner 69 Dale Road 1909, 1929 listed in 1931 confirmed 1932 kellys & 1935 from newspapers


Wiltshire & Trowbridge Adv Sept 1933 Messrs. Thompson and Noad report that they have recently completed negotiations for the letting of the commanding business premises, No. 7, Bank Street, Melksham, the lessees being the well-known firm Messrs. Lennards, Ltd., who will shortly be opening an up-to-date branch boot and shoe store

Wiltshire Times and Trowbridge adv Aug 1934 GENEROSITY ABUSED Defendant Who Forgot to Pay His Interesting County Court Case At the County Court on Friday Mr F. A. Wilshire (deputy Judge) explained to defendant the difference between controlled and de-controlled house. The tenant concerned, W. Hulbert, 5 Bank Street, had received notice to quit, but had not done so, but following Mr. Wilshire’s explanation he promised to quit in three weeks and also pay by instalments certain rent arrears. Lennard’s, Ltd. were the applicants, and Mr. W. H. Taylor, solicitor, explained that defendant occupied the upper and back portion of the premises known 5 Bank Street, belonging to applicants, at a rental of 12s. 6d. per week. The premises were de-controlled. Defendant was not a satisfactory tenant, said Mr. Taylor, and in June received notice to quit. There were rent arrears covering ten weeks amounting to £6 55., and applicants also asked for an order for 15s. mesne profits from July 9. Mr. Rex, Queen’s Road, Bristol, property manager for Messrs.Lennards, said there was no written agreement covering the tenancy. Hulbert was an ex-Service man, he believed, was married, but had no children. He had been out of work for some time. Defendant: . He then explained the conditions of the Rent Restrictions Act, and the difference between controlled and decontrolled premises. I know that this house in Bank Street is a decontrolled house and therefore not protected under the Act. Therefore Messrs. Leonard’s are entitled to possession, and make an order to give up possession by September 8 and enter judgment for rent arrears to be paid at 5s. per week.” Defendant said he was on night work, and during his spare time he had been out looking for another house. 

7 Bank Street February 1933

Melton Mowbray Added from 1931 list

Market Place 1909, 1929 Listed in 1931 & 1935

Merthyr Tydfil,

Merthyr Express Jan 1905 WANTED FOOD.—Walter Thompson and Jas. Pickering, tramps, who had very bad feet, and limped badly, were charged with stealing two pairs of boots, value 8s 11d., the property of the Public Benefit Boot Company, at their Merthyr shop on Saturday.—Charles  Jones, the manager of the shop, said he saw Thompson take a pair of hoots from a nail and walk away. He followed him, and found him in the other man’s company, who also had a pair of boots.— P.C. Howells said he had the prisoners under observation as suspicious persons, and saw them steal the boots.—Prisoners said they were refused admission into the Workhouse, and they stole the boots so that they might be locked up. —Sent to prison for three months

Merthyr Express  Jan 1907 FALL OF A  SIGN —During the storm a huge sign over the premises of the Public Benefit Boot Company at Merthyr was blown down. breaking one of the electric lamps lighting the street and injuring the wires. Mr. T. Aneuryn Rees. town clerk, stopped at the corner of the street a few yards away to purchase a paper, or he would probably have been at the spot when it fell. No one wee hurt, but the car service interrupted. The barber’s pole outside the shop of Mr Tom Edwards, Glebeland Street , was blown away

Merthyr Times Aug 1899 62 High Street

Merthyr Express May 1901  66 High Street, (recorded up to 1911)

Merthyr Tydfil, 679 High Street, 1907

Merthyr Tydfil, John Street, 1901

Merthyr Tydfil, 56 & 57 Glebeland Street, 1914-1929 Listed in 1931

Charles Jones Manager of Merthyr branch consult Merthyr Express 1905 above

David Levi Perry Born 1876 at Llawhaden, Pembroke, Wales, son of George Perry, railway labourer, and his wife Mary Sermon.  In 1901 he worked for the company as a shop assistant in Neath and from at least 1911 until 1918 he managed the company’s premises at Merthyr Tydfil, Glamorganshire, Wales. consult surnames P-S


Lennards Corner, 15 Fore Street, 1929(Mens) Listed in 1931

Mevagissey, River Street (ladies’ footwear), 1920’s?

Mevagissey, Cliff Street (children’s footwear), 1920’s?

Mevagissey 2 Fore Street, 1935


18a Park Street, 1923, 1929 Listed in 1931

Monmouth, Monmouthshire

8 & 12 Monnow Street, 1881-1929 Lennards Corner Listed in 1931

Benjamin Yeates
Born 1833 at Monmouth, son of Benjamin Yeates, agricultural labourer, and his wife Elizabeth Elias. He married Fanny Nelmes in 1866 and their children included Alfred B. 1866, Clara Elizabeth  1868, Emily Louisa  1869, Frances Millicent  1872, Edith Helen  1874, Francis Harold  1876, Sidney Charles  1879, Florence Helena  1881 and Ella May  1885. Benjamin managed a boot dealership on Monnow Street, Monmouth, and following his death 15 January 1890 aged 56, his widow and children carried on the business. His widow Fanny died 12 February 1917 aged 74.

Frances Millicent Yeates 1872 assistant to her mother Fanny Yeates 8 & 12 Monnow Street Monmouth

Mountain Ash, Glamorgan Not Listed in 1931

Western Mail July 1900  At Mountain Ash Police-court on Wednesday  Thomas Cuspar, absentee from the Cardigan  Militia Artillery, was sent to prison for fourteen days for stealing three pairs of boots, the property of the Public Benefit Boot Company, Mountain Ash, on Saturday last; and then to wait an escort from the Militia

51a Oxford Street, 1898-1902, 1912 Glamorgan free Press Dec 1898 & also  1900 26th July Western Daily Press Theft

51 Oxford Street Mountain Ash 1902-1920 BENNETT’S

2 Oxford Building Mountain Ash 1926

1 Oxford Buildings, 1929 listed in 1931

Morpeth Added from 1931 List

12 Newgate Street

Neath, Glamorgan

11-12 Green Street, 1891-1918

Neath, Corner 26 & 27 Green Street, 1920

28 Green Street 1926 Kellys

Neath, 27-28 Green Street, 1929 Listed in 1931

Neath, Lennards Corner, The Square, 1938

Edwin  Mill Born 1869 at Illogan, Cornwall.  In 1911 he managed the company’s premises at 12 Green Street, Neath, Glamorganshire. Consult surnames I-O

Cornelius Paul Perkins Born 1869 at Blaenavon, Monmouthshire, Wales, son of Joseph William Perkins, shoemaker, and his wife Rebecca Rawlings He married Louisa Nora Birch in 1895 and they had a daughter Stella Alexandra born 1896. In 1901 Cornelius managed the company premises at 12 Green Street, Neath. consult surnames P-S

David Levi Perry Born 1876 at Llawhaden, Pembroke, Wales, son of George Perry, railway labourer, and his wife Mary Sermon.  In 1901 he worked for the company as a shop assistant in Neath and from at least 1911 until 1918 he managed the company’s premises at Merthyr Tydfil, Glamorganshire, Wales. consult surnames P-S


Reading Mercury Sept 1909 William Brooks, a tramp, was committed for a month’s hard labour for steeling a pair of boots from outside the Public Benefit Boot Company’s shop, and the Bench said such an exhibition of goods was a temptation to crime

Reading Mercury Feb 1914 A Thief. Charles Dickson was sentenced to a month’s imprisonment for stealing a pair of boots from the shop of Lennards, Ltd., in Bartholomew Street, on the previous day (Friday). P.S. Rufey stated the facts. NEWBURY COUNTY POLICE COURT. THURSDAY, Feb. 26.

145 Bartholomew Street, 1909, 1915-1929 Listed in 1931

Francis Parker Ravenor Born 1875 at Lymington, Hampshire, son of Henry Charles Ravenor. At the age of 17 circa 1892 he worked as a boot shop assistant in Newbury, Berkshire, and from at least 1901 until 1911 he managed the company’s premises at 82 Old Town Street, Plymouth, Devon. He died at Plymouth in 1939 . consult surnames P-S

Newcastle-On-Tyne Added from 1931 List

Staffordshire Sentinel May 1938 

28- 34 Clayton Street East Listed in 1931 & 1934 Kellys continued up to 1968 Kellys Newcastle

Newcastle Chronicle 27th January 1973 ad. and several for 1974 for trainee managers at above address

Lennards Ltd., 50-52 Northumberland Street 1984


96 Shield Road Listed in 1931, 1934 & continued to 1968 Kellys Newcastle

94 Shields Road 1934

Newcastle Upon Tyne,Byker District 91  Shields Road, 1934 

96-98 Grainger Street 1968 Kellys Newcastle. Ad for staff at this branch in 1974


115 Coatsworth Road  1931,(Lennards List) 1934 & 1938 Kelly’s

Newport Monmouthshire

Newport Stow Hill Monmouthshire

South wales Daily News Feb 1899 JUDGE OWEN AND THE DENTIST. His Honour Judge Owen. who sat at the Newport County Court yesterday, had to deal with but 4& judgment summonses, which was only about half the number usually set down for hearing. The wife of a defendant asked in whose handwriting a certificate was which purported to set forth her husband’s earnings. The Judge said, You are very inquisitive. Well, I’ll -let you see it. I have not much to do to-day.” The document was handed to the wife, and having perused it she passed it back, and on being asked by his Honour if she was any wiser, she said that she was. Amongst the judgment creditors was the Public Benefit Boot Company, and on looking at the papers his Honour said, What’s the meaning of it ? Do they make worse boots than other people ?” (Laughter.) And he then asked the representative who appeared what he had to do with the benevolent company, and the representative replied that he was an assistant. The list of creditors included Mr Stanton, dentist. of Commercial-road, who appeared on two summonses. Mr Stanton had neglected to pay for the hire of a piano.  judge Owen told the debtor that a piano was a luxury, even for a dentist, and said, You don’t get a person to play whilst the patients are being tortured, do you ?” Debtor promised to pay both amounts within a week, and the usual 10 days. suspended for 14 in one case, and 10 days; suspended for 28 in the other was pronounced. 

Gloucester journal May 1901 At Newport on Monday Alfred James Spittle manager for the Public Benefit Boot Supply company was remanded charged with embezzlement. The evidence showed that an inspector from the company’s head office visited the defendants shop and found £119 worth of stock missing as compared with the books. J.A. Chapman district manager from 90 Queen Street Cardiff found the discrepancies when he examined the books. Three months imprisonment. 

South wales Echo dec 1900 FIRE AT NEWPORT.  Shortly after 8 o’clock onTuesday evening a fire broke out on the premises of the Public Benefit Boot Company, at the bottom of Stow- hill, Newport. Smoke was seen issuing from the portion of the premises nearest High-street, and immediately afterwards at the front; windows were full of flames. The fire quickly spread, and the whole of the premises was gutted, the back premises being burnt through to the roof. The shop of Mr Andrews Jones, draper adjoining, which forms a portion of the block, was also damaged, and the offices over the shops, known as Central Chambers, occupied by Mr E. Parton, Mr D. J. Robjont, Mr A. Gr. S. Batchelor, solicitor, and others, were also gutted. At one time it, seemed as if the Midland and City Bank would be involved, but by the exertions of the fire, brigade this danger was averted after an hour and a half’s hard effort. The damage is expected to reach between £3,000 and -£4.000. The, manager of the Public Benefit Boot Company, whose stock was all destroyed, locked up the shop only about half an hour before the outbreak was discovered, and apparently then all was safe

Peoples Benefit Boot Co. Commercial Road, 17th November 1891

Western Daily Press (A trading company set up by Lennard Brothers)

Newport, Monmouth Stow Hill, 1899 Central Chambers close to city centre

79 St.Mary’s Street 1914

175 Commercial Street, 1909, 1914-1940 Listed in 1931 & 1935

8 St.Mary’s Street Kellys directory 1941

Ernest Henry Brown Born 1879 at Bridgwater. In 1901 he worked as a shop assistant in Bath and by 1911 he managed the company’s premises at 175 Commercial Street, Newport, Monmouthshire. Consult surnames A-D

J. A. Chapman District manager based at 90 Queen Street Cardiff Gloucester journal May 1901 Alfred James Spittle manager for the Public Benefit Boot Supply company Newport remanded charged with embezzlement consult surnames A-D

Alfred James Spittle manager of Newport shop Monmouthshire 1901 embezzlement case consult surnames P_S 

Newport, IOW,

48 High Street, Lennards Corner 1914, 1915 -1951 Listed in 1931

40 High Street a shoe shop in 1914-15 1920’s trading in both branches so number 40 possibly a Franchise. By 1951 the company traded only in number 48 but could have traded until the early 1960’s


Newquay Bank Street new store opening hence the posers. sent in by Brian Lean                                                                                                            Royal Cornwall gazette May 1901  Alleged Pretence* in Cornwall. At Columb, John Parry. In charge of warder, was charged with, on April 3rd, at St. Columb by a false pretence, obtaining goods and Is. 3d., the property of Mark Gatley draper. The accused met Richard Gatley, brother of the prosecutor, in the King’s Arms Hotel, after the banks and business houses were closed. Subsequently he selected s shirt and other underwear and a macintosh. A bill for £1 14s. 9d. was made out. and the accused tendered cheque for £2 17s  drawn In the name of John Runnalls, on the Consolidated Bank of Cornwall, Hayle Branch, payable to John Parry. Mr. M. Gatley demurred to cashing the cheque. Prisoner said, ‘’Take it the bank. John Runnalls is in a large way of business. The cheque was taken to bank, and the name of John Runnalls appearing in the Directory, Parry endorsed the cheque, received the goods and the change, £1 2s. 3d.—Mr. Runnalls, of Hayle, said bis Christian names were Richard John Thomas, but signed bis cheques John Runnalls. father, who also had an account tat he Hayle branch, signed cheques Richard. Neither the signature on the cheque nor the other handwriting was his, and he had not authorised anyone to write for him.—Accused, who declined to cross examine the witnesses, and reserved his defence, was committed for trial the next Assises.—Prisoner was further charged with obtaining a brown leather pair of boots, value 16s. 6d., and £1.18s. 6d. in money from Robert Solcombe, of the Public Benefit Boot Company. Newquay, 2nd April. The cheque for £2 15s. was drawn by John Runnalls on the same bank in favour of John Lee, signed by accused as John lee and he received the boots and money after the banks were closed.—Defendant was committed for trial on this charge also                                                                                                              Cornish and Devon Post June 1901 Bodmin Assizes. . John Parry, alias John Parry Runnal , 56, horse dealer, pleaded guilty to stealing a cheque book containing twenty-two cheques, the property of Richard Runnalls, at Phillack, on the 30th March. The accused also, admitted receiving two gold rings, value £2 55., and £5 Os. in money, by means of a forged cheque, the money and property of Charles F. Zimber, at Bodmin, on the 4th April; also obtaining one pair of boots and 18s. 6d. in money, belonging to the Public Benefit Boot Company, Newquay, on the 2nd April ; also obtaining one shirt, one pair of pants, one vest, and £1 2s. 3d. in money, means of a forged cheque, the property of Mark Gatley, at ST Columb, on the 3rd April. Mr. Lawrence, for the prosecution, said the prisoner stole this cheque book, tilled it up, and obtained the goods from the tradesmen named…..(the article goes on. ) Detective Goddard, of the Metropolitan Police, said he had known the prisoner as a follower of race meetings and associate of race thieves. Prisoner said he got his living on coconut shys on race-courses, His Lordship imposed a sentence of ten months’ hard labour, and told the accused that next time would be sentenced to penal servitude. the application of Mr. Lawrence, a sum of 165., found in possession of the prisoner, was ordered to be paid to Mr. Zimber, who had been defrauded of £5 10s. 

West briton & Cornwall Adv. Dec 1920  SALE by AUCTION, at the New Hotel, Newquay, on THURSDAY, JANUARY 13th. 1921, at 3.30 p.m.. All that desirable Double-fronted Shop and Dwelling-house, known as No. 34. BANK STREET, Newquay, centrally situated, and in the main street, now in the occupation of Messrs. Lennards, Limited

Staff associated with Newquay Branch

Robert Solcombe Manager of Newquay:…..Prisoner was further charged with obtaining a brown leather pair of boots, value 16s. 6d., and £1.18s. 6d. in money from Robert Solcombe, of the Public Benefit Boot Company. Newquay, 2nd April. The cheque for £2 15s. was drawn by John Runnalls on the same bank in favour of John Lee, signed by accused as John lee and he received the boots and money after the banks were closed.—Defendant was committed for trial on this charge also…….An excerpt from a long court case involving fraud consult full story above  

Bank Street July 1900 Cornwall & Devon Post

Bank Street, 1902-1910

Newquay, 21 Bank Street, 1906-1935 Listed in 1931

Newquay, 34 Bank Street, 1914-1919 (selling Dec 1920)

Newton Abbot 1895

Totnes Weekly March 1895 THE HIGHWAY COMMITTEE AND IMPROVEMENTS. THE LAMP QUESTION. The Committee approved of the lamps at No. 8, Queen-street, (P.B.B.Co shop) subject to their being raised four inches higher than at present, the height being 7ft. 8in. This decision was communicated to the manager of the premises, who said he would at once telegraph bis principal on the subject. Mr Cull proposed and Mr Mills seconded that unless the Public Benefit Boot Company comply with the recommendations of the Committee, proceedings would be taken to have the lamps removed.  Mr STEVENS observed that, with regard to forgetting, to mention the matter of the lamps only came under his notice the Friday before the Council meeting and then he asked Mr Leonard if it would not be worth while to wait and get the opinion of the Council before erecting the lamps, as it would only be a delay of two days. Mr Mills pointed out that the Surveyor, whilst forgetting to mention the matter to the Council, was in correspondence with the Company’s manager. Mr Cull thought the Council had been defied from the first, and no desire had been shown to meet them in any way. Mr Parker considered the lamps had to be carried it was only fair that other establishments in the town should be treated in a similar manner. Mr Segar ; “Deal with one first”. Mr Parker : “Serve all alike”. Mr Mills : “I don’t say we shan’t”. The repo:t was then adopted. 

East & South devon Advertiser June 1901 Newton Abbot IPPLEPEN WOMAN FAILS AT OLD TRICK. Torquay County Court Saturday Selina Bibbings, of Ipplepen, resisted a claim made by the Public Benefit Boot Company for balance due on a pair of boots. Complaining that she was straightened circumstances, Mr Brewer, the local manager, let her have a pair of boots costing 10s 11d for the payment of a shilling down and the promise of regular instalments. Nothing had been paid since. Mrs Bibbings said she only owed 2s and put in a number of receipts. Plaintiff said they all related to payments prior to the purchase of the boots in dispute, the bills were not dated because all the shop’s dealings were supposed to be for cash. His Honour examined the bills and plaintiffs books and then said defendant had tried an old trick by producing old undated receipts. Judgment was given for plaintiff with costs

East & South Devon advertiser 9th Feb.1895 adv. For staff 8 Queen Street:

East & Totnes Weekly Times March 1895 argument of lamps being too low on the recommendation being they should be raised by four inches to 8 feet. Newton Abbot branch 8 Queen Street

Newton Abbot South Devon Advertiser report from May 1895 of P.B. complaining of exceptionally dusty streets causing clouds of dust and damaging trade.

Newton Abbott, 8 Queen Street, 1896-1938 Listed in 1931

Newton Abbott, 2 Queen Street, 1914

Arthur George Pearce
Born 1881 at Turnham Green, Middlesex, son of Thomas Pearce, a London metropolitan police constable originally from St Columb Major, and his wife Mary. Around 1901 he was a Torquay boot dealer’s assistant. He married Emily Matilda Perrott in 1904 at Newton Abbot, where he was likely to have been an assistant. In 1914 he managed the company’s branch at 8 Queen Street, Newton Abbot. consult surnames P-S 


Northampton, Shakespeare Road, factory, 1920

Northampton Mercury Series of ads 1910 34a Gold Street Northampton. Listed in 1931(Lennards list) & 1935

7A Abington Street opened in 17th September 1937 & still there in 1951 and in 1966 under Benefit Footwear Ltd

Northampton,  14 Abington Street, 1958-1973


8 Lower Goat Lane, 1890

Norwich, 60-62 London Street, 1916-1938 Listed in 1931 & 1935

William Postle Born c1825 at Norwich, son of William Postle, cordwainer, and his wife Susannah. By the age of 15 he worked in the boot and shoe trade. . In 1890 he managed the Public Benefit Boot Co premises at 8 Lower Goat Lane, Norwich. consult surnames P-S 


 14 Abingdon Street Coventry telegraph 27 March 1958 


Fore Street,Listed in 1931

Oldham added from 1931 list

3 Curzon street listed in 1931


31 Bailey Street, 1926, 1929, 1934 Listed in 1931 Shrewsbury Archives

Oswestry, 9 The Cross, 1926, 1929, 1934  Listed in 1931 Shrewsbury Archives


Oxford, 6 High Street, 1927-1943 also Listed in lennards lists of 1931 & 1935

Oxford, 141 High Street, Lennards 1925-1931 currently occupied 2017 by Edinburgh Woollen shop Listed in 1931