Beaumonts: not to be sneezed at

The roundabout on Southsea seafront. Picture: Jane Smith

NOSTALGIA: What was the missing word on this old Southsea roundabout?

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The photo of Beaumonts clothing shop a fortnight ago brought some interesting memories.

One came from the great grandson of Charles Beaumont who started the business.

Gregory Beaumont says the business was started in 1879 by his great-grandfather, Charles Jersey Beaumont – he came from Jersey.

There was a big ‘do’ for the shop’s centenary in 1979 held at the Wedgewood Rooms, Southsea, for all ex-employees.

Eddie Wallace says: ‘I recall the shop between 1936-39 when I was a pupil at Mile End House School (Olivers).

‘If any pupil had a runny nose and attended school without a handkerchief, Clary Payne, the headmaster, would dish out a few coppers and send the lad to Beaumonts to buy a handkerchief (the coppers were then deducted from the parents’ account). The shop itself was quite large and catered in the main for boys and men.

Brian Pilcher lived at Victoria Street, Mile End. When he passed the Eleven Plus in 1947 at Church Street School, he was taken there to be measured for a Southern Grammar uniform.

Ed Morgan remembers the shop well ‘going with my mother and shopping there in the early 1950s. As the advert said it was ‘‘outfitting at its cheapest’’ but the quality was very good and the schoolwear would last the whole year.’