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Exeter High Street, c1970, Exeter

Photograph of Exeter High Street, c.1970, Exeter

Here is a view of Exeter High Street as seen from Goldsmith Street. It was taken in about 1970 by an unknown photographer who was standing in the entrance to Goldsmith Street. The building to the photographer's left was occupied by Waltons department store. This company closed in 1972 and the building was demolished at the end of that decade to make way for the construction of the new Marks and Spencer complex. This corner of High Street and Goldsmith Street is now occupied by Ernest Jones. At the time that this photograph was taken, the building to the right of the photographer was occupied Horne Bros, a tailoring company, and is presently the home of White Stuff.

Immediately opposite the entrance can be seen the premises of Salisbury’s handbag shop and the Peter Robinson department store. At the present time these shops are occupied by Waterstones and Burger King, respectively. It is interesting to note that Nos 48-49, the Salisbury’s premises, had been the home of a branch of Deller's Cafe from the 1920s until the early 1960s and became the centre of the company's operations after the famous Bedford Street restaurant was destroyed in the blitz. The Peter Robinson chain of department stores was owned by the Burton Group. That company became disillusioned by the brand in the mid-1970s, and name had disappeared from the high street by the end of that decade.

Just visible in the bottom left corner of the photograph is the shopfront of No 47 High Street, one of the historic Exeter buildings to escape destruction in 1942. Occupied by Visionhire in the 1970s, this is an interesting reminder of the days when most ordinary people rented their televisions and companies such as Granada TV, Radio Rentals and Visionhire were household names.


Image Details

Date 20th century
Year 1970
Place Exeter
County Devon
Medium Photograph
Format Photograph
Subject Streets
Size 106x197mm
Creator Exeter High Street
Publisher s.n
Prints and Drawing Number 02470