Tuesday 5 July 2011


Another of our Instamatic memories, this time of Pepper Street in early 1969. To the right is, of course, Seddon's Salt Works, which had closed in 1967 and was awaiting demolition. An achingly familiar view for many of us and, even after 42 years it's hard to believe we'll never see it again. Why was the Salt Works in Pepper Street? Where else would you put it? If we had to describe the present day vantage point for this picture, we'd have to say it's taken from the middle of the dual carriage way, probably right in the middle of the junction with Wheelock Street and to the left of the 'amphitheatre'. The works site is, of course, now taken up by The Moorings. Around the corner was Seddon's offices (of which more later) and the row of cottages which still exists and includes Sherry Hill-Smith's house. What was behind the wall on the left? We know that a little further along, on that side of the road, were, among other things, the now-demolished cottages where the grass verge between Pepper Street and St Michael's Way stands, Powell's Clothing Factory and the telephone exchange.

This photo was first published on Facebook on 25th April 2011 and the original feedback is reproduced below:

  • Geraldine Williams 

    Behind the wall was a rather grand house, set well back from the road, which in the 1950s was owned by the Griffiths family. I don't know whether there was some connection with Seddon's (manager's house?). The house was screened from the works by a row of wonderful trees - possibly limes - and as Pepper Street was our shortcut to school we used to love it in the Autumn when it was knee-high in leaves from these trees!

  • Dave Roberts Wonderful! There's an addition to our knowledge base for you. I didn't know about that particular property, and had more or less assumed that the land belonged to some of the businesses in Wheelock Street.

  • Colin Derek Appleton There was also a small P O W camp in Pepper Street housing German prisoners who were put to work in the salt works. This is not to be confused with the Italian P O W camp in Brooks Lane, the prisoners from which worked in Seddons' factory there.

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