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Thomas Jenkins Antique Shop Hornsey London,1935

This photo was entitled "Thomas Jenkins Antique Shop Hornsey London". It show Jenkins in is premises in Manor Cottages, Tottenham Lane, shortly before their demolition. The site is now home to the flats called The Chimes, opposite the junction with Ferme Park Road.

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Comment by Joe Bailey on November 8, 2011 at 19:55

How's this Hugh?

Comment by Hugh on November 8, 2011 at 21:29

Great, thanks.

Comment by Chris on November 9, 2012 at 14:19

>Thomas Jenkins was my grandfather. My brother in law, David Sutton wrote in his history of the family:

According to an article in the Hornsey Journal published in 1935, late in 1908 Thomas Jenkins and his family moved to numbers 1 and 2 Manor Place, Tottenham Lane.  Manor Place was a ramshackle collection of cottages, fronting onto Tottenham Lane and built in the 1770s by a farmer called George Boustred.  The Jenkins family stayed there from 1908 until 1935, and the premises became the family’s true spiritual home.  Here Thomas Jenkins gradually developed a business called ‘The Old Curiosity Shop’.  By the time of the publication of Kelly’s Directory of Hornsey and Crouch End, 1910-1911, we read in that volume:

     1 and 2 Manor Place        Jenkins, Thomas, antique dealer

Thomas Jenkins worked as a postman in Hornsey for about 15 years.  By his own account (given in 1935), he was discharged the postal service as unfit in 1914.  Throughout his time in Hornsey, he also kept up his trade as a master bootmaker, and he certainly mended boots in the Old Curiosity Shop, as a sideline; but he was happiest to be thought of as a dealer in antiques.

Around 1935, Manor Place was condemned and scheduled for demolition (probably by Hornsey Borough Council).  The family was allocated more spacious accommodation at 48 Inderwick Road, Hornsey, again only a few hundred yards away.  The loss of the Old Curiosity Shop was clearly a great sadness for Thomas Jenkins – as he made clear in a lengthy interview with the Hornsey Journal.  Early in the article (which is headed ‘Old Curiosity Shop To Close’) are comments about Thomas Jenkins’s health in which one might detect a hint of irony:

     "Mr T. Jenkins, who has been in business there for the past 27 years, has to close down because the premises are to be demolished.  Although he is being provided with alternative living accommodation in Inderwick-road he is losing his livelihood.  His health prevents him from doing any hard work and he is wondering what he will do in order to carry on in the future."

The article records some of Thomas Jenkins’s early successes as an antiques dealer, including some huge sales for the period – notably £220 realised on an aquatint of New York, and £52 for a reportedly unique copy of Robert Louis Stevenson’s The Beach of Falesa.  There are enough references to Stevenson in the article for it to be clear that this was a specialism.  The reporter was certainly an admirer of Thomas Jenkins’s talents and was prepared to take his account of the treasures of Manor Place on trust:

     "He showed me his landscapes, painted mostly with house paint on pieces of three-ply wood, but things of real beauty and a joy to the beholder.  Mr. Jenkins picked up his fiddle and played a few bars.  He is a gifted self-taught musician and I was very sorry when he stopped playing.  In the quaint little sitting room where we chatted he has a wonderful collection of interesting things, including a china mug which was used by Crippin [sic], the famous murderer.  He has also the smallest Toby jug in existence."

The article concludes with some comments of biographical interest:

     "Readers of the “Journal” will be interested to know that Mr. Jenkins has been a contributor to our correspondence columns on matters of religion and economics.  He describes himself as a teacher of those subjects and nearly everyone who entered his shop was treated to an intellectual discourse.  He whimsically observed that antique dealing was his recreation, but teaching religion and economics was his profession.
     Mr. Jenkins, who is 57 years of age, lives with his wife, two sons and a daughter.  One son and a daughter are married, and another son is living away from home."

The household was transferred to 48 Inderwick Road in 1935.

Comment by Hugh on November 9, 2012 at 14:27

Fantastic personal background. Many thanks, Chris. 

Comment by Chris on November 9, 2012 at 19:12

All the work was David Sutton's - I just came across the photo on your site. I assume that as it was a press photo it probably went along with the article in "The Hornsey Journal" that Dave mentioned. The son living away from home was my dad, Leslie, who'd gone to seek a better life in Egypt, what with the depression coming and all.

Comment by John Shulver on July 28, 2021 at 12:57

What brilliant findings and all due to this brilliant HoL site.

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