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27 Market Square Potton

27 and 28 Market Square about 1900 [Z1306/91]
27 and 28 Market Square about 1900 [Z1306/91]

27 and 28 Market Square were listed by the former Ministry of Public Buildings and Works in October 1966 as Grade II, of special interest. The former house “probably” dates from the 16th century and so is probably the oldest building remaining on the square. It was altered in the 19th and 20th centuries. It was originally timber-framed but has been partially rebuilt in brick, the whole being rendered externally in colourwashed roughcast. The roofs are composed of clay tiles and the property comprises two storeys.

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. Unfortunately the map accompanying the valuation description is not annotated with the page number in the notebook, as it should be. On the basis of surrounding numbers it seems likely that 27 Market Square was owned by O. A. Bartle of 7 Market Square and was let to Thomas F. Harvey, a fried fish dealer, in other words he ran a fish and chip shop [DV1/C12/110]. His rent was 11/6 per week. The shop with “fitted fish frying stove” measured 14 feet 6 inches by 13 feet 6 inches. Other ground floor accommodation comprised a living room measuring 9 feet by 9 feet 6 inches, a coal shed, a pantry, a kitchen (“large, tiled”) and a bedroom measuring 11 feet by 9 feet 6 inches. The first floor contained a box room, a sitting room measuring 15 feet 6 inches by 11 feet 6 inches and a bedroom measuring 10 feet 6 inches by 12 feet 6 inches. The valuer summed up: “Very, very bad”.

The property has some history as a fish and chip shop. As we have seen Thomas Harvey was a fried fish dealer and he is noted in directories of 1928 and 1931. The last two directories for the county, 1936 and 1940 list William Hawkins, another fried fish dealer at this address. At the time of writing [2013] the business still dispenses fish and chips.

27 and 28 Market Square February 2013
27 and 28 Market Square February 2013