Circa 1850 this was the office of the Bridge End timber yard. By 1868 David Griffith Davies & Launcelot Lowther, partners in running the Davies family business since June 1865, had offices here for their business enterprises. They were Agents for ‘Otago Provincial Government’ for emigration to New Zealand, David Griffith Davies was Lloyd’s agent and an Anchor & Chain Cable manufacturer. Launcelot Lowther was an insurance agent for ‘London Assurance Corporation’ and ‘Wrexham’. D. G. Davies and L. Lowther were also Coal & culm merchants and dealers, iron founders and merchants, lime burners, timber merchants, rope-makers and corn merchants. On 18th June 1869 the Davies-Lowther partnership ended and David Griffith Davies continued with the business alone. In 1871 the property was linked with the adjacent timber yard.
The ‘Cardigan Mercantile Company’ were based here from 1st January 1876-1965. Launcelot Lowther was the Secretary for 1876-77. Thomas Davies was the Managing Director in 1876-84. In 1876-1965 this was the office building of the ‘Cardigan Mercantile Company’. In 1893-1902 Launcelot Lowther was the manager. On 1st March 1902 Launcelot Lowther resigned as manager. From 1902 to January 1923 Mr. E. Stanley Jenkins was the manager. In February 1924 the forecourt wall was replaced. In 1937-41 Leonard Hughes-Williams was the Managing Director. In 1940 ‘West Wales Factors’, Coal Suppliers, were based here. In March 1941 Managing Director of the ‘Cardigan Mercantile Company’, Leonard Hughes-Williams, was elected onto ‘Cardigan Borough Council’. In 1955 Doreen O. Mogg and Leslie Mogg lived here. In 1965 William A. Jenkins, Managing Director of the ‘Cardigan Mercantile Company’, became the Mayor of Cardigan.
By 1976 the property belonged to ‘F. J. Reeves (Wales)’. In 1993 the building became part of the showrooms of ‘Graham Reeves’, but the façade was retained, though the windows were replaced. In December 2008 the property, part of ‘Jewson’s’, was separated from the yard for the first time since at least the 1860’s, and was advertised for sale. It remained unsold in June 2011.
The following observations were made in 2000:
Mid to late C19 house, altered, in painted stucco with later C20 plastic windows and door, pitched slate roof and red brick right end stack. Two storey, 2 window range – tall flat headed windows with slate sills throughout. Ground floor centre door has rectangular overlight and raised stucco hood with keystone. Between first floor windows, ‘ESTABLISHED 1785’ in raised stucco letters. Raised stucco arched banner between floors with similar raised letters reads ‘CARDIGAN MERCANTILE COMPANY’ with ‘LIMITED’ in similar lettering beneath. Raised stucco pilaster to angle.
Census Returns 1871
Prospectus – Cardigan Mercantile Company, 01/01/1876
Notice – Board of Directors, Cardigan Mercantile Company, April 1876
Balance Sheet – Cardigan Mercantile Company, 31/03/1877
Letter – Cardigan Mercantile Company, 07/05/1877
Blank Port of Cardigan Entry Form, Cardigan Mercantile Company, c1877
Letter – Cardigan Mercantile Company, 1878
Letter & Accounts – Cardigan Mercantile Company, 21/05/1880
Kelly’s Directory of South Wales 1884; 1895; 1914; 1926
Annual Report – Tabernacl C M Chapel, Cardigan, 1901
Bill-Head, Cardigan Mercantile Company, 1935
Cardigan & Tivy-Side Advertiser 1866; 1893-97; 1899-1906; 1912-15; 1923-24; 1937; 1941; 2010
Cardigan Observer 1879
Telephone Directory – South Wales District 1940
Programme – Cardigan Carnival 09/08/1950
Register of Electors – Cardigan 1955
Post Office Telephone Directory 1955
Official Programme – National Eisteddfod, Cardigan 1976
Planning Consent – 5 Castle St., 11/07/1991
Planning Application & Plans – 5 Castle St. 19/05/1993.
Sale Particulars – 5 Castle Street, J J Morris 2009.
© Glen K Johnson 13/07/2013.