By 1877 the Clarendon Park estate was already partially formed and ready to extend. Advertising to speculative builders, Solicitors Messrs Stone and Billson announced that “The new road, called Clarendon Park Road, will be at once continued through to the Welford Road.” By June 1880 the first houses were being offered for sale. Frederick Simms (c1831-1898) and Elizabeth Elliott (c1828-), who married at St Margaret’s Church in 1856, appear to have been the first occupants of number 66 Clarendon Park Road, which was built in 1889. Frederick had been a butcher and later a saw maker and sharpener, but by the time he and Elizabeth moved to Clarendon Park he had retired. Frederick died in 1898 leaving an estate worth £1724 8s 10d (so could have owned his home) and Elizabeth remained at number 66 until 1902. It isn’t clear where she moved to but she may have returned the Yorkshire, the place of her birth. Frederick was buried in St Mary’s churchyard.
1902-1908 – Broughton, Cox and Co
In around 1902 Leonard Broughton (1867-1947), builder living at 153 St Leonard’s Road and William Henry Cox (c1876-1946), bricklayer living at 112 Hartopp Road, established a partnership based at 66 Clarendon Park Road, styled Broughton, Cox & Co, builders and contractors. Leonard and William had lived in Clarendon Park and been friends for several years. When William married Mary Ann Crane at St John the Baptist Church in 1898 Leonard acted as one of the witnesses, and their two wives were sisters. The business partnership lasted for five years until on 31st December 1907 it was dissolved by common consent. The business continued as Cox and Co. It doesn’t look as though Leonard or William ever lived at number 66. Both are buried at Welford Road Cemetery.
1908 to 1917 – Cox and Co
William Henry Cox’s younger brother Ernest Joseph Cox (1880-1929) took on the business Cox and Co from January 1908. Ernest, his wife Ellen Sherriff (1881-1956) and their children Ernest Ronald (1905-1988); Edgar William (1906-1971); Margaret Ellen (1910-); Barbara Mary (1913-2011); Gerald Winston (1915-2001) and Joyce Rosamond (1917-2012) moved into 66 Clarendon Park Road some time between 1906 and 1909. Ernest was a house painter, like his father who had died when he was young, and so Cox and Co changed its focus from building to painting and decorating.
In 1914 Ellen – who kept one servant of her own – established a servant’s registry (which today we would call an employment agency) called Stoneygate Registry. She advertised for servants who were looking for positions in Leicester and the surrounding counties. For example in the Banbury Advertiser: WANTED all kinds of servants. Fees not charged until suited. Stamp. – Apply, Stoneygate Registry 66 Clarendon Park Road. Ellen didn’t continue the business for very long but may have sold it to Mrs Margaret Elizabeth Williams nee Brooks (1887-), who ran a registry with the same name out of 23 St James’s Road from at least as early as 1924 right up until the early 1960s.
The Cox family moved out of 66 Clarendon Park Road in 1917 and its owner, William Harry Cufflin, who lived in London Road, advertised in the Leicester Daily Post in December of that year “To Small Manufacturers – small two storey warehouse with very nice dwelling house and offices.”
Early in 1920 the Coxes moved to 42 Tichborne Street, later to Salisbury Street and finally to Aylestone Road where Ernest died in 1929. After Ernest’s death Ellen kept a boarding house at 28 de Montfort Street. They are both buried at Welford Road Cemetery.
Thomas Godfrey White
Mary Ann Dixon
Boot manufacturer Thomas Godfrey White (1878-1948) and Mary Ann Dixon (1882-1975) married at St Michael’s Church, Leicester, in 1904. They had children Annie Laurie (1906-1997); Connie Florence (1907-1998); Kathleen “Kitty” Mary (1911-2003); Evelyn (1913-1992) and Thomas (1918-1980). The last of these, Thomas, was probably born at 66 Clarendon Park Road, where the White family moved in 1918. Thomas was a protestant whereas Mary Ann was descended from Irish immigrants and was Roman Catholic, which made for some interesting debates! Mary’s granddaughter describes her as having had a great sense of humour. After leaving Clarendon Park Road in 1930 the White family settled in Braunstone, where Thomas died in 1948. Thomas and Mary are buried at Welford Road Cemetery.
Thomas Godfrey’s factory was in Little Holme Street until his death, when his daughter Evelyn and her husband moved the business – now styled T G White (Sandals) Ltd – to Old Milton Street to focus on making infants’ sandals.
1930 – 1942
In 1930 the Walker family moved in to 66 Clarendon Park Road. These were company director Herbert Walker (1886-1972), his wife Marion Ladyman (1888-1938) and their five children Donald Wilfred (1916-2008); Douglas Harvey (1917-1942); Anthony Walter (1919-2003); Diana J (1923-) and Rosemary J (1924-). It isn’t clear why the Walkers wanted a house with business premises attached, as Herbert worked as a director of a chemical manufacturing company and it doesn’t look as though any other business was carried out there. Possibly they sub let the premises – as in 1957 when it was occupied by Hornbrook & Godwin Ltd, house furnishers.
In January 1931 Marion advertised for a general domestic servant – “a capable girl” – to start work in February with wages of £26. Whoever took the job stayed until 1935 when Marion advertised again for a young woman servant. The next few years were difficult for the Walker family. Marion died in a nursing home aged 50 in 1938 and after war was declared in 1939, Herbert’s three sons left home to serve their country. In 1942 Acting Flight Lieutenant Douglas was killed in an air crash whilst taking part in a training exercise in Wales. He was buried at Gilroes cemetery and left a young widow. Donald and Anthony survived the war.
By 1958 number 66 was once again a business premises, this time home to Reggio Garage motor repairs and -by 1967 – service station. The Reggio Garage specialised in repairs to Citroen cars. By 1970 the business had expanded to include a service station at 135 Queens Road (now All Fours garage), and by the early 1980s there was also a bodyworks shop at Narborough Road South. The Queens Road garage was sold to the present owners after 1984 and only the Clarendon Park Road business remained until recently, when it closed for the last time. For the last few years 66 Clarendon Park Road has been home to Tippetts and Brooks, builders – returning to its 1900s roots! The house is divided into flats.