An earlier building is shown on this site on John Wood’s 1834 map of Cardigan. In 1861 this may have been the home and shop of Elizabeth Davies, 54, confectioner, her son James Davies, 15, and Sarah Griffiths, 34, servant. In 1871 Anne Owens, 80, washerwoman, lived here. In 1881-1901 Margaret Parry kept a baker’s shop here. In 1881 Margaret Parry, 36, baker & confectioner, lived here. In 1891 Margaret Parry, 50, ran a sweet shop here. On 5th September 1895 the property failed to sell by auction. In 1901 Margaret Parry, 55, kept a baker’s shop here. Born in the Mwldan she was a Welsh-speaker. In May 1903 the building, which jutted out across the pavement, was referred to as “…formerly occupied by Margaret Parry…”. In 1908 Nos. 8 & 9 were demolished.
In 1908 two new buildings were built on the sites of Nos. 8 & 9 by contractors Davies & Morgan, to plans by John Teifion James Williams, Cardigan architect, and were completed in March 1909. In 1910-12 Thomas F. Baldwin traded at No. 8. In October 1912 he moved his business to No. 55 Pendre. In July 1913 reference was made to the new hairdressing establishment of Thomas F. Baldwin at Empire House! In February 1924 Empire House was offered for sale as part of the former Stanley House estate. Mr. W. F. Thomas was the tenant. In July 1928 and April 1929 Empire House was advertised for sale and was sold in August 1929.
On 1st November 1929 ‘Lewis & Devonald’ opened a hair salon here. In 1929-42 Fred Lewis, hairdresser, lived and traded here. In 1938 Mrs. Lewis and Miss Lewis also lived here. On 27th September 1939 Frederick David Lewis, only son of Mrs. Lewis and the late David Lewis of No. 8, married Miss Sarah Williams of Gothic Terrace. In 1939-50 F. D. & W. L. Lewis traded here. On 29th March 1941 Charles Edgar Martin of No. 8 left for military service and closed his gents’ hairdresser’s at this address for the duration.
In 1945 this was ‘Edna’s (Lewis & Martin)’ hair salon. On 5th July 1946 Charles Martin re-opened ‘Lewis & Martin’s’ hairdresser’s. On 8th February 1954 Lewis & Martin’s hairdressers, established more than 25 years earlier, announced that their ladies’ salon was to be transferred to No. 10a Pendre under Fred Lewis’ management, but that the gents’ salon and tobacconists’ would remain here under Charles Edgar Martin. Charles Edgar Martin, tobacconist & barber, had a shop here in 1954-61 a. k. a. ‘Empire House’. In 1955 Selena Lewis, Charles Edgar Martin and Winifred L. Martin lived here. In 1968 C. E. & W. L. Martin, hairdressers & tobacconists, traded here. On 8th September 1972 C. E. & W. L. Martin announced the forthcoming closure of their business. On 5th January 1979 Charles Edgar Martin of Empire House held a Closing Down Sale.
In October 1979 a branch of ‘Victoria Wine’ opened here. In the 1980’s this was ‘Victoria Wine’. The shop became a branch of ‘Threshers’ off-licenses in July 1999. It traded as such in 1999-2004. In 2005-08 the business continued to trade under a new name – ‘The Local’. It closed in January 2008. A refurbishment began in May 2008. In June 2008 ‘Chwareon Teifi Sports’ sports shop opened here.
Map of Cardigan, J Wood 1834
Census Returns 1861; 1871; 1881; 1891; 1901
Kelly’s Directory of South Wales 1895
Cardigan & Tivy-Side Advertiser 1895; 1903; 1909; 1911-13; 1924; 1928-29; 1933-35; 1937-42; 1945; 1949; 1954; 1956-57; 1960-61; 1968; 1972; 1979; 1999; 2008
List of Voters – Cardigan 25/07/1910
Register of Electors – Cardigan 1912; 1955
Statement of Account – St Mary’s Church 31/12/1938
Post Office Telephone Directory 1940; 1950; 1955
© Glen K Johnson 27/08/2013