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9 Hooper Street

Wheeler's corner shop

9 Hooper Street, on the opposite corner to the Petersfield pub, was a grocer’s shop for many years.


In 1881 the shopkeepers were Mark and Emma Winzar. Emma was born in Cambridge and Mark came from Finsbury in London. By 1891 Mark and Emma had left Cambridge for Chatham, Kent, and they ran a grocer’s shop there for several decades.

1891, 1901 and 1911

For roughly three decades the shop was run by the Wheeler family. Wesley Wheeler was born in 1855 in Steeple Morden near Royston, and was baptised in the Steeple Morden Methodist Church. His wife Grace was born in Cambridge. In 1881, before moving to Hooper Street, they lived in Bridge Street. Wesley was already a grocer, but they supplemented his earnings by renting a room to a 19 year-old lodger, John Thursby, an undergraduate at Trinity College.

Wesley and Grace had five children, of which two died young but three appear in later census records. George, born in 1880, became a grocer’s assistant, and by 1911 he had left home and had a wife and young son. Percy, born 1885, was living at home in 1911 and working for the family shop. Winifred, born 1893, was working as the family’s housekeeper in 1911, as her mother had died two years earlier.


In 1939 the shopkeeper was Ethel Kemp. She was born in 1888 in Thetford, Norfolk, the daughter of a baker. She lived at the shop with a friend, widow Sarah Kellengray, and a lodger, Frederick Mansfield. She died in 1979, aged 90, and was still listed on the electoral register for 9 Hooper Street in 1966.


UK census records (1841 to 1911), General Register Office birth, marriage and death indexes (1837 onwards), and the 1939 England and Wales Register.


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