Street View: 38
Address: 12-13 Poultry


In 1788, Joseph Peart, son of John Peart of Stanhope, Durham, acquired the freedom of the City of London through the Needle-makers’ Company, and from 1790 onwards, we find his name in the Land Tax records for 13 Poultry and from 1792 onwards, also for number 12. In 1790, his younger brother Cuthbert is apprenticed to him and at some point, the brothers are in partnership as “hosiers, traders and dealers” in Friday Street, but that partnership was dissolved in April 1819.(1) The business with his brother seems to have been in addition to the shop in the Poultry, as that continues to be listed for him in the various records. In 1805, Joseph took on another apprentice, Thomas Dossetor (also Dosseter), the son of Daniel, a Dagenham farmer. This Thomas takes over the hosiery business in ±1820. The tax records for the Cheap Ward of 1820 still show Peart’s name for the two properties at 12 and 13 Poultry, but from 1821 onwards, it is Thomas Dossetor who pays the tax, although the business continued to be called ‘Peart & Dossetor’.

top part of the oath of the Needlemakers

top part of the oath of the Needlemakers

entry in the 1851 Exhibition

entry for Peart & Dossetor in the 1851 Exhibition

Thomas Dossetor and Harriet Richolls marry in December 1819 and their son Thomas Peart Dossetor is born in December 1821, or at least, he is baptised that month. The Bishop’s copy of the parish record does not give a date of birth. The 1841 census does not show the Dossetor family at the Poultry, just a number of shopmen, porters, apprentices and other servants, but in 1851, Thomas and his son Thomas Peart are to be found living above the shop. Ten years later, Thomas is still there, but Thomas Peart is lodging in Queens’ Road, Marylebone. He is still listed as a hosier, but without an indication where he is working. Still in the family business? Probably. He is certainly listed at the family address in 1863 in the probate record for his father(2), and also in 1864, when he takes out the freedom of the City.

advertisement in Tallis's Street View

advertisement in Tallis’s Street View

But Thomas Peart’s real interest did not lie in hosiery as we shall see in a moment and in 1869, a notice in The London Gazette states that Thomas has granted by indenture to Joseph Solly and Thomas Bayley all his copyhold and freehold estate, and all and every stock in trade for the benefit of his creditors.(3) Not that Solly and Bayley were to take over the business; they just dealt with the transfer to a new owner. The tax records for 1869 still show Dossetor’s name, but in 1870, the property is listed as “late T.P. Dossetor” and in 1871 its is Charles Sadler who pays the tax. Sadler was to remain at the Poultry until his death in 1888. More on him in a moment, but first the rest of the story for Thomas Peart Dossetor.

The 1871 census does not seem to list Dossetor, but in 1881, he can be found in Norwich as a lodger with occupation entomologist & wood carver. Well, that is certainly different than hosiery, and far less profitable. When he died in 1886, he left an estate of only £25 15s, to be administered by Henry Ralph Nevill, archdeacon of Norfolk.(4) Thomas Peart had been a member of the Entomological Society since 1851 and in their Annuals his interests are listed as British Coleoptera and Lepidoptera (beetles and butterflies to you and me). In 1859, E.W. Janson, the secretary of the Society, wrote in the Entomologist’s Annual about newly reported insects and mentioned Thomas as having, “with his wonted liberality”, presented Janson with a specimen of Hydrochus, which he had found in Holme Fen.

illustration of the new building from The Building News,  4 February 1876

illustration of the new building from The Building News, 4 February 1876

In the mean time, Charles Sadler had grand plans with 12-13 Poultry and in 1876, The Building News of 4 February reported on a new building, designed by architect Frederick Chancellor, to replace the former which “had become much dilapidated”. The new premises were “erected in red brick, with mullioned windows on each floor, executed in red Dumfries stone, but the principal features are 4 large panels in terra-cotta between each floor, representing scenes which have been enacted in the street below”. The panels were sculpted by Joseph C. Kremer. The Art Journal also reported on the new building and called it a “lofty edifice of four storeys, and dormers”. They describe the bas-relief panels in some detail:

The lowermost panel shows the procession of Queen Victoria at the opening of the Royal Exchange; the next above it, represents a presumed incident which occurred on the site of the newly-erected house on the occasion of Charles II making his public entry into London on the 29th of May, 1662, when his majesty saluted the landlady of the house of that date, which was then an inn: the good woman, though suffering much from illness, insisted on welcoming the monarch. Looking still higher up, the next panel shows the procession of Queen Elizabeth entering London in state, on the 28th of November, 1551: and above this, is the uppermost panel, representing Edward VI passing from the Tower to Westminster to be crowned, on February, 1546.

Despite the Grade II listing, the 1875 Sadler building fell victim to the re-development plans for the Mappin and Webb building at 1 Poultry, which had stood on the corner of Poultry and Queen Victoria Street for more than a hundred years. There was a lot of opposition to the plan, but it happened anyway and yet another part of London’s history disappeared. The new development at 1 Poultry, designed by Stirling and Wilford, is in itself now a Grade II listed building and all that is left of the original Mappin and Webb building is the clock. And all that is left of 12-13 Poultry are the terracotta panels which have been incorporated in the new building above Bucklersbury Passage. You can read more about the panels on the websites of London Remembers (here) or Ornamental Passions (here)

panels above Bucklersbury Passage (Google Street View)

panels above Bucklersbury Passage (Google Street View)

The 1875 building is sometimes given as the property of Alfred Hawes, hosier, but that is not correct. According to the tax records, Charles Sadler occupied the building from ±1870 when Dossetor left to 1888 when Sadler died.(5) It is true that Hawes is listed at 12-13 in The London Gazette in an 1880 bankruptcy notice, but before that he was listed at 40-41 Poultry (1873) and at 33 Poultry (1872). Tallis lists Hawes & Ottley at Nos 40-41. Hawes may just have rented some space in the Sadler building near the time of his bankruptcy. I will see if I can find out when I do some more research on him for the post on 40-41 Poultry. Also notice that the name of Sadler is on the building in the illustration in The Building News.

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(1) The London Gazette, 27 April 1819.
(2) England & Wales, National Probate Calendar (Index of Wills and Administrations), 1864. Estate valued at under £7,000.
(3) The London Gazette, 2 March 1869.
(4) England & Wales, National Probate Calendar (Index of Wills and Administrations), 1887.
(5) England & Wales, National Probate Calendar (Index of Wills and Administrations), 1888. Estate valued at over £7,600.


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