Oxford History: The High


43: Simply Sewing

43 High Street

No. 43 is the right-hand half of this timber-framed building, which dates from the sixteenth or seventeenth century (although the front was modernized in the eighteenth century). It is jointly Grade II listed with No. 42 next door (List Entry No. 1047281).

The building is owned by The Queen’s College, and the back has been incorporated into the Queen’s Lane quad behind: this can be glimpsed through the gate between the two shops. Fidler’s Court used to be behind these shops.

In 1696 Thomas Higgs paid tax on 14 windows of this whole house.

Mary Bellamy, a widow of 50 and the bookbinder here, was living over the shop at the time of the 1851 census with her five sons, of whom three were bookbinders and the other two at school. She was still here in 1861, when she was described as a “bookbinder & stationer employing 7 men, 5 women, & 4 boys”, and again in 1871.

At the time of the 1881 census, the bookseller Charles Bacon lived here over his shop with his wife and six children.

In 1886, when the landlord of the Link Lodgings was Norman E. Minty (the cabinet maker at Nos. 44 and 45) most of the rooms were converted into business premises, although two sets of rooms continued to be licensed to be let at rents of 28s. and 23s. per week.

Occupiers of 43 High Street


C.B. Chadwell, Cutler


H. Alden, Bookseller & printer

By 1852–1876 

Mrs Maria Bellamy, Bookseller & stationer
then A. Bellamy, Bookbinder (jointly at No. 44)


Charles Bacon (later Mrs Bacon), Bookseller, stationer, & printer


Miss Beesley, Stationer


Miss Tregilgas, Stationer


Alfred F. Briscoe, Stationer


Slatter & Rose Ltd, Stationers


Edgar Herbert Kirk, Vacuum cleaning contractor
later known as Kirk’s Vacuum-cleaning specialists and then Vactric


Jarman & Clogg, Chartered surveyors, auctioneers, & estate agents


J. P. Stott, Caterer

By 1998

A Taste of Ecuador, Hat shop


Simply Sewing

©Stephanie Jenkins

Last updated: 3 August, 2016

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