Piece of Ipswich’s forgotten past discovered as former Brand & Sons store is renovated ready to house Peggy’s Place

Former Brand & Sons Drapers of Tacket Street, Ipswich get a facelift before becoming a craft store

Former Brand & Sons Drapers of Tacket Street, Ipswich get a facelift before becoming a craft store - Credit: Lucy taylor

An historic name from the past has re-emerged in the heart of Ipswich as workers prepare for the opening of a new craft store.

Peggy’s Place is moving from Orwell Place to Tacket Street at the end of next month – but the new shop will have history behind it.

It is the ground floor of an old department store on the street that closed in the 1950s – but as decorators prepared the building for its new use they uncovered lost evidence of its former existence.

The old sign over the door was revealed, and now Peggy’s Place owner Janice Duffy is planning to include that in the new store’s frontage.

She said: “Since the sign was exposed I’ve had several calls from people saying how wonderful it looks and can we keep it that we think it would be good to leave it showing.

You may also want to watch:

“We’ll have vinyls on the windows saying we’re Peggy’s Place so I don’t think that should be a problem. It really does look good after all these years.”

The signs are believed to date from 1903 when the store was built – the words Brand & Sons are also built into the brickwork on the higher floors.

Most Read

However the store shut in the late 1950s and the building was later used as the First Floor Club and Liberty night club.

The ground floor was most recently a wedding dress shop.

Brand & Sons was a drapers, haberdashery and furniture store that was a feature of Ipswich town centre in the first half of the 20th century.

As well as being a well-known local retailer, it was also a major wholesaler of drapery and haberdashery supplies. Some of the store’s artifacts are now part of the Ipswich Museum collection.

Become a Supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Become a Supporter