Days Gone By - Churchman’s made one million cigarettes a day in Ipswich

Churchman's premises at the junction of Crown Street and Westgate Street in the 1890s. Photographer

Churchman's premises at the junction of Crown Street and Westgate Street in the 1890s. Photographer William Vick took this photograph from St Matthews Street

Cigarette and cigar production in Ipswich employed thousands of people in the long history of Churchman’s, writes David Kindred.

The junction of Crown Street and Westgate Street - where Churchman's was founded in 1790 - as it loo

The junction of Crown Street and Westgate Street - where Churchman's was founded in 1790 - as it looks now

The firm of W A and A C Churchman was founded in Ipswich by William Churchman in 1790, beginning as a small pipe tobacco manufacturer with a shop at Hyde Park Corner at the junction of Westgate Street, Crown Street and St Matthew’s Street. The company expanded with sales all over the country. Cigarettes were a large part of its output and in the 1890s plans were made to move to a larger site at the junction of Portman Road and Princes Street.

The junction of Crown Street and Westgate Street - where Churchman's was founded in 1790 - as it loo

The junction of Crown Street and Westgate Street - where Churchman's was founded in 1790 - as it looks now

Churchman’s Portman Road factory was extended several times during the 1920s and 30s. By 1965 production was concentrated on the manufacturing of cigars. With a workforce of more than 1,000, the Ipswich factory produced in excess of 1,000,000 cigars a day. In 1972 the cigar business was integrated with John Player & Sons. In May 1992, the parent company moved all production to Bristol and Churchman’s closed with the loss of over 400 jobs.

The junction of Crown Street and Westgate Street - where Churchman's was founded in 1790 - as it loo

The junction of Crown Street and Westgate Street - where Churchman's was founded in 1790 - as it looks now

In this week’s Days Gone By I feature photographs of the days when millions of cigars were being produced by a mainly female staff in Ipswich.

The junction of Crown Street and Westgate Street - where Churchman's was founded in 1790 - as it loo

The junction of Crown Street and Westgate Street - where Churchman's was founded in 1790 - as it looks now

The junction of Crown Street and Westgate Street - where Churchman's was founded in 1790 - as it loo

The junction of Crown Street and Westgate Street - where Churchman's was founded in 1790 - as it looks now

The junction of Crown Street and Westgate Street - where Churchman's was founded in 1790 - as it loo

The junction of Crown Street and Westgate Street - where Churchman's was founded in 1790 - as it looks now

The junction of Crown Street and Westgate Street - where Churchman's was founded in 1790 - as it loo

The junction of Crown Street and Westgate Street - where Churchman's was founded in 1790 - as it looks now

The junction of Crown Street and Westgate Street - where Churchman's was founded in 1790 - as it loo

The junction of Crown Street and Westgate Street - where Churchman's was founded in 1790 - as it looks now

The junction of Crown Street and Westgate Street - where Churchman's was founded in 1790 - as it loo

The junction of Crown Street and Westgate Street - where Churchman's was founded in 1790 - as it looks now

The junction of Crown Street and Westgate Street - where Churchman's was founded in 1790 - as it loo

The junction of Crown Street and Westgate Street - where Churchman's was founded in 1790 - as it looks now

The junction of Crown Street and Westgate Street - where Churchman's was founded in 1790 - as it loo

The junction of Crown Street and Westgate Street - where Churchman's was founded in 1790 - as it looks now

The junction of Crown Street and Westgate Street - where Churchman's was founded in 1790 - as it loo

The junction of Crown Street and Westgate Street - where Churchman's was founded in 1790 - as it looks now

The junction of Crown Street and Westgate Street - where Churchman's was founded in 1790 - as it loo

The junction of Crown Street and Westgate Street - where Churchman's was founded in 1790 - as it looks now

The junction of Crown Street and Westgate Street - where Churchman's was founded in 1790 - as it loo

The junction of Crown Street and Westgate Street - where Churchman's was founded in 1790 - as it looks now

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