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13 George Street Luton

George Street in 1901
George Street in 1901 - for a larger version, please click on the image

13 George Street lies next to the Red Lion public house. It is first mentioned in a directory of 1885 as occupied by the Northampton Brewery Company, presumably as an off-licence. By 1898 it is listed as occupied by Henry Sach, bootmaker and leather seller. By 1914 Henry Sach has become Sach Brothers, leather merchants; the last mention of this firm in directories is in 1920.

The Rating and Valuation Act 1925 specified that every piece of land and building in the country was to be assessed to determine its rateable value. Most of Bedfordshire was valued in 1927. Bedfordshire and Luton Archives and Records Service is lucky in having the valuer's notebook covering most of George Street. Evidence in the book shows that the survey of George Street took place in 1928.

In 1928 13 George Street was owned by Trust Houses Limited and was vacant because it was "undergoing reconstruction". The frontage was 20 feet 9 inches and the shop measured 20 feet square. The valuer noted: "Part requisitioned by Crown". Another hand has written: "Now used as stock room - Red Lion".

Kelly's Directory for Luton of 1931 lists The County Laundry (Saint Albans) LImited as occupying 13 George Street. They continued to do so until at least the opening of World War Two. in 1950 the occupiers were Bennetts, furriers, as they were until at least 1965. In 1968 the premises was listed as the Red Lion annexe and continued to be so listed until the last Kelly's for Luton in 1975.

The Red Lion and 13 George Street (to the right) in June 2010
The Red Lion and 13 George Street (to the right) in June 2010