Welcome to 175 Stroud Green Road, a house with an important little role in the history of chocolate and Doctor Who. Currently the middle of a run of three houses that has a Sainsbury’s in their ground floor, it was back in the 1880s home to George Osborne Barratt and his family.
The confectionery firm he founded made, amongst other products, Liquorice Allsorts and, Doctor Who’s favourite, Jelly Babies:
The firm became part of Cadbury in later years. Its manufacturing started in Islington and then moved for many years to Wood Green, on the site still known as The Chocolate Factory, though these days alas no chocolate is made there any more. Barratt was known as a good employer, providing the sort of conditions for staff that were all too rare in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries.
Number 175 itself was purchased by David Hall in 1899, along with the houses on each side, and so started the sequence of shops which spanned all three of them at ground level. One of the other shops to have occupied the site was Woody’s, which initially was kitted out with an apostrophe-induced grammatical horror on its shop front but thankfully its owners soon rectified that. The shop itself, alas, declined from its promising quirky independent supermarket start.