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No. 11 Silver Street

Bradford on Avon, Wiltshire

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The Dairy

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11 Silver Street was for a long time a grocer and dairy shop, but now is home to Carina Baverstock, one of Bradford on Avon’s bridal shops. While the building seems to be a a Georgian building, the timbers of the roof are those of a 15th century house. So, the ashlar stone fa├žade has been added three centuries later, to keep up with fashion and unify what were probably two late medieval houses with gables facing on to the street, into one. Later still, the two large large ground floor windows with curved tops were inserted to make it into a shop.

In 1841 it belonged to George, Thomas and John Spencer, the brothers who ran the large brewery that occupied the land behind next-but-one Silver Street House, which was the New Bear Inn at that time.

Account book from James Gore, Silver Street

By 1871 the shop was operated by James Gore, a son of Jacob Gore, a baker in Broughton Gifford and brother of Edwin who started a bed-making factory in Broughton. The account book was that of Major Thomas Forster of Holt Manor. In those days the customer’s purchases were recorded in the book and paid quarterly, usually on the Quarter Days: Lady Day (25th March), Midsummer (around 24th June), Michaelmas (29th September) and Christmas.

By 1903 Gore had been replaced by James Stevens and the shop was called The Silver Street Dairy in 1911. The building still belonged to the Spencer Brother brewery, which was heading into bankruptcy.

Next came Ernest David Williams (recorded in 1915) and through the 1930s and 1940s A. Seviour ran the Silver Street Dairy, followed in the 1950s and 1960s by M.H. Thomas. The 1970s and the 1980s saw the name change to just The Dairy under the management of Bill and Frances Taylor.

The Dairy, Silver Street

The shop survived as a grocer until 1990, over a century. After that there came Hopscotch, a toy shop which moved downhill to number 8, and then a gift shop, before turning to its present use for wedding dresses.