Mr Walton advertises

Mr Walton has cropped up from time to time in these pages. He built up the shopping emporium – the superstore of the Lavingtons, on the crossroads of High Street, White Street and Church Street. He sold most items a villager might require for he had groceries, bread, ironmongery, clothing and drapery. Oh yes, he had the local Post Office as well so he really did have many of the essentials.

In 1894 he was fairly new to the area. The front page of the local paper was a good place to advertise in the hope of attracting trade to his shop. The paper was The Devizes and Wilts Advertiser, printed, rather strikingly, on green paper.

Devizes and Wilts Advertiser at Market Lavington Museum

This is the edition for Friday June 8th 1894 and the bottom half of the page contains this advertisement.

Advert for the Lavington Cash Supply Store - proprietor, MrWalton

Of course, the prices sound very cheap and for those younger readers who don’t understand our pre 1971 money, the price of the really good men’s suit – 12/11 is as near as you like to 65p.

What! A whole suit for 65p? Well yes, but if you were an ordinary agricultural labourer in 1894 your wage would have been 13/8 a week or 68p. In other words the suit was about equal to a week’s wages. We suspect that a similar suit, these days, might be about half a week’s wage for a farm worker. So actually, the suit was an expensive item back in 1894.

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One Response to “Mr Walton advertises”

  1. James Welch | Market Lavington Museum Says:

    […] in 2011 we featured an advert for Mr Walton’s shop in an 1894 newspaper. You can click here to be reminded of […]

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