34 High Street

This was once the Nag’s Head, an old coaching inn which many believe was involved in the smuggling trade. Jane Bayes was the landlady of the pub in the late 1700s and also an employee of the local Excise Office which recorded all goods coming into port – very useful for someone involved in smuggling! There were posting and livery stables to the rear, as well as greenhouses and gardens to supply its kitchen. The name was changed to the ‘Londesborough’ in 1884, apparently after one of King Edward VII’s, whilst Prince of Wales, visits to the town with the Earl of Londesborough. The Earl was supposed to be in charge of the King’s suite, but seems to have spent most of his time at the inn. The hotel later catered for motorised transport and the Hants and Dorset Motor Services built garages at the rear. The building has been divided and now houses FatFace and Boots Opticians.

35 High Street

Since 1943 there has been no building here, as it was demolished to give the Hants and Dorset Bus Station a wider entrance. Prior to that, a number of saddlers operated out of the premises including EA Hobbs, Henry Hewlett and George Gidden. It was also the first site of Herbert Heppenstall’s solicitors, which he opened in a room above Gidden’s saddlery. Herbert went on to purchase the business of Coxwell and Pope at No 1, lived at No 74 with his wife Laura and operated out of No 75.

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