Tag Archives: 1905

1905 : Mellins Food ad

An ad in the Illustrated London News for Mellins Food:

DORIS MARGARET CLARK, aged 1 year, 3, Evelina Villas, London Road, Mitcham. “Has been fed entirely on MELLIN’S FOOD since 3 months old; her progress since that time has simply been marvellous, and the and the talk of all our neighbours and friends.” Sample free on application. MELLIN’S FOOD, LTD., PECKHAM, LONDON, S.E.

Source: Illustrated London News – Saturday 07 October 1905 from the British Newspaper Archive (subscription required)

The ad refers to Evelina Villas, although this is likely to have been Eveline Villas. In the 1902 commercial directory, there is an Alexander CLARK, a surveyor’s clerk, at 3 Eveline Villas.

Elmwood Road

Road off east side of London Road, next to the telephone exchange. It leads to Langdale Avenue.

Named after Elmwood, an 18th century house, as shown in this 1894 map:

1894 OS map

1894 OS map

Montague, in his Mitcham Histories : 12 Church Street and Whitford Lane, page 107, said that Elmwood was demolished in 1905. The Parade of shops was then built in London Road.

Elmwood Road is presumed to have been built some time after this.

From the minutes of the Croydon Rural District council, Volume XII 1906 to 1907
Highways and New Streets and Buildings, Page 33, application no. 3869 by W.F. Bubb was approved for a house and stable in Elmwood Road

Initially there were 3 villas built on the north side of the road, named
Glenholme, Great Tey and St. Agnes. The occupants from the 1918 census were:


Great Tey

Emily BUBB
Selina Louise BUBB

St. Agnes

Agnes Clarissa HALE
Arthur George SIMMONS
Lillie Ann SIMMONS

1910 OS map

1910 OS map

This 1953 map names Glenholme and there are houses numbered even, 8, 6, 4 and 2. Great Tey could be number 8, with St Agnes number 6. The semi-detached houses are 4 and 2.

1953 OS map

1953 OS map

Glenholme and Great Tey have since been demolished.

Google Streetview from 2009.

Maps are reproduced with the permission of the National Library of Scotland.

Minutes of meetings held by the Croydon Rural District Council are available on request from the Merton Heritage and Local Studies Centre at Morden Library.

The Parade

Parade of shops on east side of London Road, south of the Upper or Fair Green, consisting of 12 shops to Langdale Avenue, then a further 6 shops south of there. Historic England defines a ‘parade’ as

‘planned developments incorporating rows of shops (facing onto an outdoor space), with a strong degree of architectural uniformity…. (which) includes at least three shops’.

aerial view of The Parade

aerial view of The Parade

Built around 1905 according to Montague, in his Mitcham Histories : 12 Church Street and Whitford Lane, page 107.

Could the builder have been J. Harding? This planning application was approved at the same time as another for 12 houses in Langdale Avenue:
From the minutes of the Croydon Rural District Council
Volume IX 1903 – 1904
7th May 1903
page 72

No. 2505, Harding, J., 12 houses and shops, London Road, Mitcham

From a Tuck postcard dated 1950

From a Tuck postcard dated 1950

1913 map (1:2500 scale):

1913 OS Map courtesy of Merton Heritage Service

1913 OS Map courtesy of Merton Heritage Service.

This 1953 map shows it with the shops renumbered. (The map has been rotated.)

Occupants from Commercial Directories



Number Occupier Trade
1 Milton IRELAND grocer
2 Wm. Geo. EVANS customs & excise officer
2 Mrs. Annie Brooking MARTIN ladies’ tailor
3 Mitcham Liberal Association
3 The World’s Stores Limited provision dealers
4 Alfred Thomas JENKINS confectioner
5 Leonard Thomas DAVEY auctioneer
6 B. H. CRAIG & Co photographers
6 Gordon WILLIAMS artificial teeth maker
7 National Telephone Co. Limited
7 James WHITE oil and color dealer
8 John DOOLEY stationer
9 Charles BREESE chemist
10 Jean Baptiste ROMPEL watch maker
11 Clement CARLTON greengrocer
11 Cyril MARRIOTT printer
12 Frederick George PEARCE baker
13 Wraight, Dumbriil & Co. Ltd dairymen
15 Jas. NELSON & Sons Ltd. butchers

The Parade – Brookman, baker, at number 12 on the corner, is listed in the 1915 directory, but not the 1911

No. 13 The Parade, occupied by Wraight Dumbrill Ltd. dairymen.

From the London Gazette : “Wraight & Dumbrill Ltd. was registered in 1899, changed name to Curtis Brothers & Dumbrill Ltd. in 1917, which went into voluntary liquidation in 1931.”


Number Occupier Trade
1 Milton IRELAND grocer
2 George OAKES tailor
3 The Worlds Stores provision dealers
3 Mitcham Liberal Association political
5 Leonard Thomas DAVEY estate agent
6 Miss Ethel DIXON milliner
7 James WHITE oil & color dealer
9 Charles BREESE chemist
10 Gregory WILLIAM boot repairer
10 Harry HARDING builder
12 A.W. BROOKMAN & Co. bakers
13 Wraight Dumbrill & Co. Ltd. dairymen
14 Hawkins & Desmond laundry
14 Herbert SPENCER upholsterer
17 Cyril MARRIOTT printer

After renumbering
1 -> 225
2 -> 227
3 -> 229
4 -> 231
5 -> 233
6 -> 235
7 -> 237
8 -> 239
9 -> 241
10 -> 243/5
11 -> 247
12 -> 249

13 -> 251
14 -> 253
15 -> 255
16 -> 257
17 -> 259
18 -> 261
19 -> 263

From the 1930 commercial directory

Number Occupier Trade
225 James REYNOLDS grocer
227 George OAKES tailor
229 The Worlds Stores Ltd provision dealer
231 Percy MAYHEW confectioner
233 Pearks Dairies Ltd provision dealer
235 Walter HUNT greengrocer
237 James WHITE oil and colour dealer
239 Percy MAYHEW stationer
241 Edward WAVELL chemist
243 Harry HARDING builder
247 Russell and Son watch makers
249 Leonard T WELTEN confectioner
251 United Dairies dairy
253 Peckham Steam Laundry Ltd laundry
255 Stanley Philip BLOGG greengrocer
259 The Mitcham Printing Works printers engravers and account book makers
263 The Mitcham Garage motor engineers

Shops in 1989

Minutes of meetings held by the Croydon Rural District Council are available on request from the Merton Heritage and Local Studies Centre at Morden Library.

Ravensbury Park House

Built in 1864, this was the residence of the civil engineer George Parker Bidder until 1877, when he transferred it to his son George Parker Bidder II. The son, who as a QC helped secure the future of Mitcham Common, died in 1896. His Ravensbury estate was broken up and, after being sold in 1899, see sale notice below, Ravensbury Park House became the Catherine Gladstone Convalescent Home founded by the wife of the prime minister, William Gladstone.

From The Times, 20th July, 1899

Ravensbury Park House, Mitcham, Surrey for sale - gives sizes of rooms.

Mitcham, Surrey. To be Sold, Ravensbury Park House. This desirable residence, beautifully situated in its own grounds, containing 5 reception and 14 bedrooms, drawing room 45′ x 24’, dining room 27’ 6″ x 24′, library or billiard room 27′ x 18′, large, lofty conservatory, good domestic offices and cellars; entrance lodge with about 3 acres or more land. For further particulars and orders to view apply Mitcham Land Company, Ltd, 18, Adam Street, Adelphi, London, WC.

From the Church Times, 17th February 1905

The Queen has graciously consented to be the Patroness of Mrs. Gladstone’s Free Convalescent Home for the Poor of London, now situated at Ravensbury House, Mitcham. Founded in 1866 by Mrs Gladstone, this charity has received 35,617 patients, men, women, and children. It is mainly dependent on voluntary contributions for its support.


Manufactured at Grove Mills, on the Wandle in Mitcham.

First manufactured in 1903 by a company called ‘The Patent Horse Hair Co. Ltd.’, ‘lyxhayr’ was a curled fibre of vegetable origin for many upholstery filling applications. Developed by a chemist called Mr Holmes, the process was patented.

As well as hair from horses, wool or cotton fibre, called ‘flock’, was used in filling mattresses and furniture. Sometimes, hog hair was mixed in with the horse hair to reduce cost. Animal hair however was not hygienic, and the company’s advertisement in 1907 said that the Public Analyst for Hackney, Dr Leo Taylor, had found that the hair contained almost the same amount of bacteria as London sewage.

Being made from vegetable, this artificial horse hair was free of bacteria.

In 1905 the company changed its name to Lyxhayr Ltd. and Mr W. A. Dickinson was its Managing Director. Mattresses made with lyxhayr were popular with hospitals but cheaper, less hygienic ones were still being sold.

Mr Dickinson was one of those who lobbied parliament leading to the Rag Flock Act of 1911, which was the first attempt to regulate the abuses.

1907 ad

1907 ad

Listed in the 1938 commercial directory as

Mitcham Fibre Mills Ltd., horse hair substitute manufacturers, Grove Mills, London Road. Trading As “Lyxhayr, Mitcham;” Telephone Number 0807.

News Articles

1909 fire

At one o’clock on Saturday morning a fire broke out the Grove Mills, Mitcham, an artificial horsehair manufactory. The fire brigades from Croydon, Sutton, and Mitcham attended, but the four-storey brick building was completely gutted. The damage is estimated at from £5,000 to £6,000.

Source: Western Chronicle – Friday 05 February 1909 from the British Newspaper Archive (subscription required)