Sunday, 18 June 2017

Standing outside Burton’s on Well Hall Road remembering a suit

Thinking of my first suit......... outside Burton's, 2015
Now I am back with another one of those buildings that most of us take for granted.

Added to which a large chunk of people will not even know that this fast food outlet was once Burton's.

The building was on the site of Eltham’s Congregational Church but when it was demolished in 1936 Burton's built their store.

The company was founded by Montague Burton in Chesterfield in 1904 under the name of The Cross-Tailoring Company and was first listed on the London Stock Exchange in 1929 by which time it had 400 stores, factories and mills.

 After World War II Montague Burton was one of the suppliers of demob suits to the British government for demobilising servicemen, comprising jacket, trousers, waistcoat, shirt and underwear*

Burton's in the 1960s
And so sometime around 1967 this was where I went for my first ever made to measure suit which was a great successor, followed by heaps of shirts, and ties and a not very successful grey overcoat which I took an instant dislike to and did our dad for years.

The shop dominated the corner of Well Hall Road and the High Street and will be remembered with fondness by many, as will the dance hall above.

I never went there but would often pass it at closing time on a Saturday night having walked back from Grove Park and a girl friend called Ann.

It was such a feature of Eltham life that I just thought it would always be there but on one flying visit in the 1980s it had gone and with it a bit of my growing up.

Pictures; the old Burton building, 2015 courtesy of Elizabeth and Colin Fitzpatrick and Burton's in the 1960s from the collection of Andrew Simpson

* Burton (retailer), Wikipedia, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Burton_(retailer)

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