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10 High Town Road Luton

8 and 10 High Town Road June 2011
8 and 10 High Town Road June 2011

10 High Town Road has been a fancy goods shop and a toy shop. During the early 20th century it sold cooked meat so it is quite appropriate that at the time of writing [2011] it is a fast-food outlet.

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 10 High Town Road found it owned by draper Walter Garside. The area at the rear was leased by a wheelwright named Randall who paid £18 per annum. The area comprised 460 square yards and a number of old wood and corrugated iron buildings had been put up by the tenant including a wheelwright’s shop measuring 30 feet by 13 feet, a smithy measuring 28 feet by 15 feet, a hearth and an open cart shed (“very old”) measuring 30 feet by 15 feet.

A later visit, in 1928 [DV1/AP8/8] again visited the premises at the rear. The valuer noted that Randall employed one man to assist him and that his premises were “not under Factories Act”. He carried out general smith work as well as that of a wheelwright.

Directories for Bedfordshire were published every few years from 1839, for example, the beginning of the 20th century has directories for 1903, 1906, 1910 and 1914. Countywide directories ceased to be published during the Second World War, the last for Bedfordshire being in 1940. Bedfordshire and Luton Archives and Records Service has directories just for Luton for 1939, 1950, 1960, 1965, 1968, 1972, 1974 and 1975. The first street numbers in High Town Road begin to appear in directories in 1885.

  • 1920: S. Lees, pork butcher;
  • 1924: S. Lees, cooked meat shop;
  • 1928: Samuel Lees, cooked meat shop;
  • 1931: Samuel Lees, cooked meat shop;
  • 1936: Samuel Lee, cooked meat shop;
  • 1939: Samuel W. Lee;
  • 1940: Samuel Lee, cooked meat shop;
  • 1950: E. M. Moore;
  • 1960: Mrs. E. M. Moore, fancy goods dealer;
  • 1965: E. Russell, toy dealer;
  • 1968: HighTown Toys;
  • 1972: vacant;
  • 1974: vacant;
  • 1975: D & G Antiques, antique dealers;
  • 2011: Southern Fried Chicken Express, takeaway.