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19 Market Square Potton

19 Market Square February 2013
19 Market Square February 2013

19 Market Square was listed by the former Ministry of Public Buildings and Works in October 1966 as Grade II, of special interest. It dates from the 18th century, with alterations over the next two centuries. The property may date to 1783 or shortly thereafter as a number of properties in the Market square were damaged in the Great Fire of Potton in that year. The structure is constructed from dark red brick with lighter red brick facings and comprises two storeys and attics beneath a clay tiled roof.

The Rating and Valuation Act 1925 specified that every building and piece of land in the country was to be assessed to determine its rateable value. The valuer visiting 19 Market Square [DV1/C12/80] found that it was owned by William Bond-Smith, the grocer at 22 and 23 Market Place, and tenanted by Robert Day who, Kelly’s Directory for 1928 tells us, was a greengrocer. His rent was £10/13/- per quarter. Curiously, he owned next door 20 Market Place but leased it out.

The shop measured 15 feet by 20 feet and the rest of the ground floor comprised: a parlour measuring 12 feet by 10 feet and a kitchen. A wood and tiled wood and coal barn stood just outside. The first floor contained a lumber room measuring 12 feet 6 inches by 13 feet 6 inches and two bedrooms, measuring 14 feet by 17 feet 6 inches and 11 feet 6 inches by 9 feet 6 inches. Three derelict attics lay above. The valuer simply commented: “Very old”.

Kelly’s Directory for 1894, 1898, 1903, 1906, 1910 and 1914 lists Charles Bond-Smith, chemist at this address. Those for 1920, 1924 and 1928 list Robert Day and the directories for 1931, 1936 and 1940, the last for the county, see a reversion to a chemists shop, run by Ernest Cecil Riley.