Monday 13 May 2013

King Street - 1963

Looking up towards the top section of King St. I think the photographer would have been about level with the Kings Head Inn, perhaps just slightly above there.
On the right, the large, light coloured property is the place that many people remember from the 1960's and 1970's as the Employment Exchange. It was originally built as The Hotel, back in Georgian times (very late 1700's or very early 1800's I think it was built) and was used as the Assembly Halls, where many important decisions regarding the town's future were made. By 1851 we had our first elected town mayor (Hornby) and by 1856 a brand new Town Hall, so all political affairs and meetings were then moved to there.

Photo courtesy of John Eddleston


  1. Signed on there once or twice...

    The Sudell Hotel originally I think?

    I love the lack of litter and how clean the streets look....more like Victor meldrew every day?

  2. According to Gearge Miller (historian), it was just simply The Hotel when it was built in 1904. It later became known as The Royal Hotel and possibly was known as the Sudell Hotel at some point.



  3. Well Colin, There's the Royal Hotel in the 1911 census 36-38 King St with the hotel keeper named as Valentine Rowe.
    The same bloke is in charge in 1901.
    However, in 1891 there is a Sudell Hotel at no.33 with the Royal still at 36-38.
    No mention of either hotel in the 1881 census.
    there are innkeepers/beer sellers mentioned in the 1861/51 censuses at or around numbers 32-36.
    not conclusive but interesting none the less.

  4. Sorry my comment above should have read ''when it was built in 1804'' (not 1904).

    There is quite a fair amount in the various history books about that place and it was definitely just called The Hotel when it first opened, as they have always emphasised the irony of such a large and lavish establishment (Assembly Rooms, Sessions House, Coaching Inn) having such a simple / humble name.

    It's name certainly changed to The Royal Hotel at some time too.

    I know there was a Royal Hotel on the opposite side as well (No 36-38 as you mention), close to Paradise Lane, that too is well recorded in the trade directories from the late 1800's through to the mid 1900's. I think that Royal was there into the 1950's, if not beyond.

    Best regards.