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The Andrews Pages Picture Gallery : Godalming, Surrey
A selection of photographs and postcards of a Surrey country town
Old Town Hall, Godalming, 1907

An Edwardian view of the Georgian Pepperpot and the shops and houses that surrounded it.

The building in Church Street with the Breweries sign running along the top used to be the Skinner's Arms. Not all of the sign is visible but it reads "[Farnham United] Breweries Ltd. Fine Ales and Stout". John Janaway, in his book on Godalming and Farncombe Pubs, records that Farnham United Breweries had formed in 1889 following the merger of two Farnham breweries and the Skinner's Arms was conveyed to them in 1890[1]. It had already been in the hands of one family for about twenty seven years by then, beginning with Anne Earle, a widow, running the beerhouse.

She had previously lived with her daughter Susan on Ockford Road and worked as a sempstress (1861 census[2]) before moving to the Skinner's Arms[3]. By 1871 Susan had married Joseph Goldsmith[4] and they shared No.2 Church Street with Anne[2]. Anne died in 1877 and Joseph then took over the business[5]. By 1891 Susan Goldsmith was a widow and working as Licensed Victualler in her own right; the 1911 census indicates that the property consisted of 8 rooms. She was still there in 1913[6], by which time the family had been involved with the business for around fifty years.

Next door, but actually on the High Street, is a large white sign painted on the wall: "Best Natural Block Ice. Families Welcome Daily for Orders". On the right of the Pepperpot was what became the London City and Midland Bank at what was then 42 High Street[6]. The black and white building, far right, was a fruiterers, by 1911 run by Mr. C. W. Trimmer who lived on the premises. The blinds on the far left of the picture belong to Robert Agnew Robertson's General Drapery and Millinery. Robertson, from Midlothian, lived at the shop, 45 High Street, together with several of his shop assistants and his housekeeper[7] - see the next page for a front view of the shop.

"Old Town Hall, Godalming", Valentine's Series, No. 60099. First registered by Valentine in 1907. Not posted.
Postcard in the collection of, provided by and © Ann Andrews
Researched by Ann Andrews.
Intended for personal use only


[1] Janaway, John (2003) "Godalming and Farncombe Pubs and Breweries", Ammonite Books, Godalming, Surrey. ISBN 1-869866-14-2

[2] Census information can be found on FindMyPast. The 1871 census states that the two households were in the same house.In 1891 and 1901 Susan Goldsmith was at the Skinner's Arms with her two daughters, Edith and Minnie. By 1911, when Susan was listed as a Beerhouse Keeper, Edith was assisting in the business.

[3] Janaway stated that Ann Earle was at the Skinner's Arms from between 1863 and 1865.

[4] Susan Earle had married Joseph Goldsmith in the Portsea district in Q3 1868.

[5] "Post Office Directory of Surrey" (1878) Kelly & Co. Ltd, London.

[6] "Kelly's Directory of Surrey", 1913. Also "Kelly's Directory of Surrey" (1924).

[7] 1911 census.

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