Tuesday, 2 July 2013

Hovis, South Ealing

What is on this wall is not just an advert for Hovis but a real statement by the owner of the bakery that once stood at the corner of St Mary's Road and Ranelagh Road. Sadly this statement is now incomplete, because of the passing of time and because the back of the bakery was partially rebuilt when it was converted into a dwelling.

Pa... ... ... ... ...
We Will Go Into ... ...ke Them As Fast As We Can
...y Some ... ... Have Them For Tea
...y Are So ... Please Mummy, Daddy & Me
... Recommend
Baked - HOVIS - Daily
Everybody's Bread

The name of the bakery may have been written on the first line but, if that was the case, it has disappeared. Trying to match the few traces of letters that remain to the name of bakers listed at this address in different directories did not lead to a satisfying result. According to various editions of Kelly's Directory, a succession of bakers carried out their business from these premises: Edward Wyatt in 1889 and 1893, Halls & Howe in 1907, and Charles Wilkins in 1911. The name of the latter also appears in the London Gazette. In November 1915 it informed its readers that baker and confectioner Charles Wilkins had been declared bankrupt. Unfortunately I have not found who succeeded Wilkins. Whoever it was, he might have been the one behind this ghost sign. Indeed, the slogan "Everybody's Bread" is not one often found on Hovis adverts and the only mention I found of it dates back to 1917.

... Recommend
Baked - HOVIS - Daily
Everybody's Bread

Location: Ranelagh Road / Pictures taken in July 2010


Sam Roberts said...

I have to hand it to you with the decyphering of that one, great work. An aside, South Ealing is an underground station containing all the vowels, I know at least one other, discounting Heathrow Terminal Four which is dubious.

CarolineLD said...

The wording is probably a variation on a popular nursery rhyme:

Pat a cake, Pat a cake, baker's man
Bake me a cake as fast as you can;
Pat it and prick it and mark it with 'B',
And put it in the oven for Baby and me.

I'm not sure that helps much with the deciphering, however, as they've obviously made significant changes to it!

Anonymous said...

A tiny bit more info...I identified the current street number of this building via Google Street view - Munson's Cafe is 73 St. Mary's Rd. I then found a bakers at this address in the 1933 Kelly's Directory for Middlesex:

Findley Alfd. Jas. baker, 73 St.Mary's rd.

Think the previous post is probably right though, and the ghostsign is based on the Pat a cake nursery rhyme.

Sebastien Ardouin said...

Thanks all for the additional info. My knowledge of English nursery rhyme is non-existant (I can't even remember any in French to say the truth).
You are right thecatsmother, the exact address is 73 St Mary's Road (the ghost sign is just round the corner). To find out who was behind this ghost sign we may need a directory from the late 1910s or very early 1920s since the slogan at the bottom may well date from the second half of the 1910s.