Tradesmans’ Arms

Sophie Baker was the last licensee of this Union Street beerhouse. It closed ten days before Christmas 1925 having been ‘compensated’ just a week before. It stood between Manor Street and Battery Street, roughly opposite Fenwicks on a site now occupied by the car park servicing the shops set back from the street-line between the Palace Theatre and Lidl’s. While some of this stretch survived the war, none of it survived the wartime plan, which originally intended to drive a dual carriageway along the whole of Union Street.

Confusingly there was and indeed still is another Tradesman’s nearby in Octagon Street, the name is quite popular in the county (there is one in Bideford and another in Stokenham) and while it originally had more of an association with craftsmen, the term now has a more general currency, covering most who deal in the retail industry.


1852 - Jonathan Truscott
1867 - Henry Ford
1890 - George Ball
1898 - Alfred Baker
1920 - Sophie Baker