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Earliest information: 1676
Original estate: ?Hungerford
Common Rights? Yes (Frontage 62ft + 9ft = 71ft; 4 horses or 8 cows)
Date of current building: 16th century and later
Listed: Grade II

Thumbnail History:

Formerly, in the 19th century, two properties, 26 & 27 High Street.
Home of Mills family, then Duke (surgeon), before grocers - Alexander's. Now Antiques Arcade.

Description of property:

From Listed Building records: House and shop, now shop. 16th, 17th and 19th century with 20th century alterations. Tiled roofs. Painted brick, part rendered, some timber framing exposed internally. Two storeys and attic. Three large and one small gable to road, the two to the left rendered, the rest brick. One two-light window to each of the two right gables. Eight mullioned and transom leaded windows, two to each gable. To the left of ground floor early 20th century shop front breaking forward from façade, central door, pilasters, fascia and cornice on flattened console brackets. To the right one mullion and transom leaded window and 20th century door in plain doorcase with open pediment, two mullion and transom windows to far right. Interior some 18th century panelling on first floor of No.26 and bolection fire surround; rear of No. 26 has two raised crucks.

[HHA Buildings Group] A mid 17th century timber frame with 4 gables of irregular symmetry on the High Street frontage. It has its original mullioned and transomed wooden casements with leaded lights. A print of the old town hall (1769) shows a very similar building in the background. After long use as a high class grocer, it was converted August 1974 into an antiques arcade. Photographs within the arcade show some of the restoration work. It attracts double common rights, perhaps because it was originally two properties, now 26 High Street (originally a dwelling house) and 27 (originally the grocer shop). Two storeys and cellar. Central cruck construction is taller and older, ?16th century. Small 5m x 5m cellar under 26 HS. Flint wall and small bricks under old central cruck part.

Photo Gallery:

1965-ish alexander  son
1965-ish alexander son

Promotional brochure for T Alexander & Son (Grocers) Ltd c1965


Hungerford Arcade, 26 High Street, Jan 2007


Alexander's Cake Shop and Alexander's Stores, 26 & 27 High Street, c1960s?

27hs - 2004
27hs - 2004

Hungerford Arcade celebrates 30th birthday. NWN 5.8.2004

27hs - 1991
27hs - 1991

Hungerford Arcade advert, 30.1.1991

1910ish alexander  son
1910ish alexander son

Advert for T Alexander & Son, c1910 [Berkshire by Pen and Camera]


T Alexander & Son, 26 High Street, c1912


Alexander's, 26 High Street, c1905


Hungerford Arcade and Spackman's, c1975

uhs-117 18750000 ws parry cdv upper high street
uhs-117 18750000 ws parry cdv upper high street

Alexander's, 26 High Street, c1877 [WS Parry CDV]

uhs-087 c1800
uhs-087 c1800

"Dr Edward Duke's house at Hungerford" (from an 18th century print)

26hs 2012
26hs 2012

Hungerford Arcade, 26 High Street Mar 2012

20210228 09.18.02b
20210228 09.18.02b

The Antiques Arcade, 28 Feb 2021.

19900213 Wall paintings at 26 High Street-01
19900213 Wall paintings at 26 High Street-01

Wall paintings at 26 High Street, ?18th century (found 13 Feb 1990).

19900213 Wall paintings at 26 High Street-02
19900213 Wall paintings at 26 High Street-02

Wall paintings at 26 High Street, ?18th century (found 13 Feb 1990).

19900213 Wall paintings at 26 High Street-03
19900213 Wall paintings at 26 High Street-03

Wall paintings at 26 High Street, ?18th century (found 13 Feb 1990).

19900213 Wall paintings at 26 High Street-04
19900213 Wall paintings at 26 High Street-04

Wall paintings at 26 High Street, ?18th century (found 13 Feb 1990).

- Hungerford Arcade, 26 High Street.

- "Dr Edward Duke's house at Hungerford" (from an 18th century print).

- Alexander's, 26 High Street, c.1877 [WS Parry CDV].

- Alexander's, 26 High Street, c.1900.

- Alexander's, 26 High Street, c.1905.

- T Alexander & Son, 26 High Street, c.1912.

- Advert for T Alexander & Son, c.1910 [Berkshire by Pen and Camera].

- T Alexander & Son, 26 High Street, 1947.

- Alexander's Cake Shop and Alexander's Stores, 26 & 27 High Street, c.1960s?

- Promotional brochure for T Alexander & Son (Grocers) Ltd c.1965.

- Hungerford Arcade and Spackman's, c.1975.

- Wall paintings (on 18th century plaster) found in 26 High Street. (See under 13th February 1990 below).

- Hungerford Arcade advert, 30th January 1991.

- Hungerford Arcade celebrates 30th birthday. NWN 5th August 2004.

- Hungerford Arcade, 26 High Street, January 2007.

- Wall paintings at 26 High Street, ?18th century (found 13th February 1990).

- Frontage of 26 High Street showing area damaged by runaway car, 15th March 2014.

- The Antiques Arcade, 28th February 2021.


16?? (NH) Norman Hidden is sure there was a building on the site prior to mid 17th century, but details uncertain.

Mills family (c1650s-c1726):

From Norman Hidden's notes:

Dorothy Mills the mother-in-law of J103 is presumably the Dorothy Mills widow who was buried at Hungerford in 1697.

The father of Dorothy Mills (wife of J103) left a will dated 7 July 1658 and proved (PCC) 13 Sept 1659. He describes himself as Edward Mills of Hungerford gent, aged 50 years and upwards, and he bequeaths to his daughter Dorothy an annuity of £20 for her life out of his lands in Chilterne co. Wilts, after the age of 21 years. He makes his son Edward and his wife Dorothy his joint executors.

Edward Mills was Steward of the manor of Hungerford 1651-58 (Money – Historical Sketch of Hungerford, p35).

On 1 July 1658 an Edward Mills was admitted to the Middle Temple. He is described as the eldest son of Edward Mills of the Middle Temple, hent; (Sturgess H.A.C., Admissions to Middle Temple). The admission presumably refers to the eldest son of Edward Mills senior whi it appears was himself a layer, although no record of his admission to the Middle Temple has been found. Under Hungerford in the names of thpse summoned to the herald's visitation of Berks in 1665/6 is listed Edward Mills gent (an Attorn' mort). This presumably refers to Edward Mills, senior.

1659 (NH) See also will of Edward Mills
1664 (NH) E179/343/20. Hearth Tax: 2 hearths – Dorothy Mills, widow
1666 (NH) John Mills, gent, died, D/S will.
1676 (NH-QR) Widow Mills, q.r. 1s 1d, and some land q.r. 2d.
1680 (NH-CL) Widow Mills

1687 (NH) F. of Fine, Berks: CP25(2)/769/3 Jas II/Trin: Richard Mountain Q and Francis Mills def – 1 messuage, 3 cottages , 4 gardens, 2 orchards, 14 acres arable + 1 acre meadow and rights of common in Hungerford. Mountain does not appear in parish register.

1697 Dorothy Mills widow buried at Hungerford
See wills of Edward Mills 1659, John 1666, Francis 1720, Rebecca 1726.
Rebecca Mills w/o John, held Quaker meetings in her house (but was it this house?). It is likely, Edward senior, as eldest son, would inherit house in 1659, and that John might continue to live there with his young wife Rebecca after his father''s death, and so his own children in turn.

1720 (NH) Francis Mills, mercer, died 1720 [DCW nuncupative will], son of John and Rebecca Mills, born 1664/5.

1726 (NH) Rebecca Mills widow (DCW will 1726) left her goods to her daughter-in-law (i.e. stepson?) Elizabeth w/o William Cheyney, mercer.

Edward Hanson, c1726-c1774:

1729 (NH) Edward Hanson the elder, gent of Chisbury, Little Bedwyn, was an executor of the PCC will of John Hamblen and his wife Elizabeth also left a small gift. The will was written April 1729, codicil 15 Sept 1730, probate Nov. 1730.

1753-61 (QR) Edward Hanson q.r. 1s. 1d and land in Breach late Mills, q.r. 2d.

1770 (NH) Edward Hanson of Hungerford, buried.

Duke family, c1774-c1844:

From Norman Hidden's notes:

Wiltshire Notes and Queries Vol VIII p 242.-An account of the Family of Duke of Lake:

Robert Duke succeeded to his father Robert's estate in Lake, in 1749. Robert had no issue, and by his PCC Will (probably 1793) manors of Lake Salterten and Newtown went to his wife for her life and after her to his cousin Edward Duke of Hungerford.

Edward Duke's father was George Duke of Andover (brother of Robert's father). George Duke married (at Avington) Sarah daughter of Edward Hanson. George had a daughter (Edward's sister) baptised at Hungerford 1728, but who died an infant. The family bible of George Duke and Sarah is in possession of R.E.H. Duke.

Edward Duke was his fourth son, a surgeon at Hungerford born 12 September, baptised (at Andover) 1 November 1731. He was married 7 November 1771 at St. Michael's Queenhithe to Fanny, only daughter of John Field of Field's Court, Islington by Anne, daughter of Edward Hanson of Hungerford, and great grand-daughter of Edward Hanson whose daughter Sarah married George Duke of Andover. [Fanny inherited copyhold property in Islington and tenements and lands in and about Hungerford from her grandfather Edward Hanson].

Edward and Anne (Fanny?) had:-
- George (baptised Hungerford 1774 and buried 1794),
- Edward baptised at Hungerford 1779 (matriculated at Magdalen Hall, Oxon.,1799),
- Robert baptised 1786, buried 1787.
The daughters were:
- Sarah (baptised 1772, buried 1857). Sarah's will proved PCC 1857. On death of her father Edward she resided in his house renting it from her brother Edward, who devised it to his son Edward who sold it after Sarah's decease.
- Jane, baptised 1775, married 1799 to John Westall, buried 1806.
- Mary baptised 1776,
- Lucy baptised 1781, married William Blandy, will proved 1847,
- Fanny, baptised 1782, buried in Pear Tree Green churchyard 1855, will dated 1 October 1855, and
- Susanna, baptised 1784, married James Prince, died at Pear Tree Green near Southampton.

Edward Duke (surgeon of Hungerford) was buried at Hungerford, 31 July 1797. Devised house in Hungerford to son Edward.

Widow Fanny's will was proved at Salisbury in 1826. Copyhold property in Islington to her five surviving daughters. Her tenements and lands in and about Hungerford to be sold for benefits of her daughters and son in-law John Westall. Buried at Hungerford 1826 aged 78.

Edward, the son, moved out of Hungerford after inheriting the manors of Lake Salterton and Newtown, author of "The Hall of John Hall" and "The Druidical Temples of Wiltshire". Buried Wilsford 1852. No more about Hungerford, though they married into Hungerford Family and there is a son Edward Hungerford Duke around in 1865.

See Sun Insurance Vol 14- 1722 - Hanson on property late Francis Milles.


1774-80 (QR) Edward Duke for his house late Hanson's, q.r. 1s 1d.
1781 "Entry 97 = Edward Duke. George Franklin to S. & Thomas Robinson to N.
1792 (UB) "Edward Duke, surgeon"
1795-01 (QR) "Edward Duke" 2 properties
1796 (BK) "Edward Duke, surgeon" (No Alexanders)
1805 (QR) "Edward Duke" 2 properties

(See also: Duke family history)

Peter Maggs contacted the Virtual Museum (Jul 2017) saying: "I am interested in the Duke family ... I am familiar with (the pic of 26 High Street) from the Duke Genealogy, published in Wiltshire Notes and Queries, 1915. Dr Duke was a surgeon and he married an heiress ... and was heir to a considerable fortune, but he died before he could inherit, so his son got it all. I was interested, nevertheless, to see that he was quite wealthy in his own right from the size of the house. According to the Duke genealogy, he left the house to his son, who, I think, rented it back to one of his sisters. Did the Dukes live in the whole house - which appears to have been two properties at one time? They were a large family, seven or eight children being alive at any one time, so together with servants, they would have needed a substantial house." 

1807 (CL) Rev E. Duke
1818 (QR) "Rev E Duke" 2 properties.
1819 (EA) Duke (Robinson to north, Cur to south)
1830 (PD) "Miss Sarah Duke - High St"
1832 (QR) "Rev E. Duke"
1836 (QR) Rev Edward Duke for house late Hanson's
1841 (CS) Sarah Duke (60) - Independant
1843 (CL) Miss Duke

Alexander's grocers, c1844-1972:

1844 (PD) "Benjamin Alexander, baker, High Street" = ?27HS
- "Benjamin Alexander, grocer, tea dealer, (&British Wine Manufacturer), High Street" = 27HS
- "Edward Alexander, tailor, shopkeeper, Chilton"
- "Miss Sarah Duke, High Street" = ?26HS

1847 (CL) Rev Edward Duke (own) - Miss Sarah Duke (occ) = ?26HS

1847 (SN) "Benjamin Alexander, grocer & tea dealer, High Street" = 27HS
1847 (KD) "Benjamin Alexander, grocer, salt merchant, and baker, High Street" = 27HS
- "Miss F. Duke, High Street" = ?26HS
- "Miss S. Duke, High Street" = ?26HS

1850 (SD) "Benjamin Alexander, grocer & tea dealer, (& British Wine Manufacturer) High Street" = 27HS
- "Miss Sarah Duke, High Street" = 26HS

1851 (CS) Sarah Dukes (sic!) (78), annuitant. (26 HS)

1854 (BD) "Benjamin Alexander, grocer, tea, and provision dealer, High Street" = 27HS
- "William Alexander, ironmonger, High Street" = 24HS
- "Joseph Alexander, coal merchant, High Street" = ? in HS

1861 (CL) Richard H. Barker (own) - Rev J Baron et al (occ) = ?26HS

1861 (CS) William Baron (33) MA, - Curate of H'ford & Chaplain of The Union =26 HS

1864 (BD) Benjamin Alexander, grocer, tea-dealer, and provision merchant, and dealer in British Wines, High Street = 27HS

1869 (PO) Mrs. Elizabeth Alexander, grocer, High Street = 27HS (widow of Benjamin Alexander? )
- Also "Joseph Alexander, coalmerchant & shopkeeper, High Street" = ?120HS
- (No Alexander appear in Private Residents list!)

1871 (CS) Thomas Alexander - grocer & winemerchant = 27HS (son of Benjamin Alexander?)
1877 (KD) Thomas Alexander, grocer & agent for W & A Gilbey, wine & spirit merchants, High Street = 26HS
- Also "Joseph Alexander, coalmerchant & shopkeeper, High Street" = 120HS

1881 (CL) Elizabeth Alexander = ?26 HS

1891 (KD) Thomas Alexander, grocer & agent for W & A Gilbey, wine & spirit merchants, High Street = 27HS
- Also Thomas Alexander, Church Street.
- Also "Mrs. Elizabeth Alexander, lodging house, Eddington"
- Also "Joseph Alexander & Sons, coalmerchants, High Street"
- Also "Joseph Alexander, High Street" = both 120HS
- Also "Joseph Alexander, jnr, Hill View House"

1895 (KD) Thomas Alexander, grocer & agent for W & A Gilbey Ltd, wine & spirit merchants, High Street = 27HS
- Also "Alexander Bros, coalmerchants, High Street" = 120HS
- Also "Mrs. Elizabeth Alexander, lodging house, Eddington"

See also: Alexander's ledger, 1895 (from Stewart Hofgartner)

1896 (CL) Trustees of Thomas Alexander (own) - Thomas Walter Alexander (occ) = 26HS
1902 (T&M Register) Thomas Walter Alexander (owner until 1967)
1903 (T&M Register) Thomas Walter Alexander (occupier until 1932)
1903 (KD) Thomas Walter Alexander, High Street = 26HS (son of T.A.) Thomas Alexander & Son, grocer, agents for W & A Gilbey Ltd., wine & spirit merchants, High Street = 27HS
- Also "Joseph Alexander, Hill View House"
- Also "Miss Alexander, 2 Elm View, The Croft"
- Also "Mrs. Ann Alexander, Wilton House" = 33HS (from 1891)
- Also "William George Alexander, High Street"
- Also "Alexander Bros, Wholesale & retail coal, corn, seed, hay & straw merchants, agents for all kinds of artificial manures, head office, High Street. Stores, G.W.R. Station depot. L.V.R. Lambourn" =120HS
- Also "Mrs. Elizabeth Alexander, apartments, Eddington"

1914 (CL) Thomas Walter Alexander (own & occ) = 26 & 27HS

1917 (Phil Wood) On 27 May 1917 an air crash occurred in Hungerford (and was reported in the NWN on 31 May 1917 (p7). A plane piloted by a Canadian from the RFC school at Upavon crashed in the Constable's garden on Sat, 27 May at 8.30pm, killing the pilot. The Constable (T W Alexander) presided over the inquest the following Monday. Follow this link for more on the 1917 Plane crash in High Street.

1920 (KD) Thomas Walter Alexander, JP, Market Place = 26HS
- Thomas Alexander & Son, grocers, Market Place = 27HS
- Also "Miss Alexander, The Croft" = Avenue House
- Also "Misses Alexander, Wilton House" = 33HS (sold to J.Whishaw in 1922 )
- Also "Alexander Bros, Coalmerchants, Station Rd" = 120HS
- Also "Joseph Alexander, farmer, Bacon's Farm" = later known as Beacon Farm, Salisbury Road

1932 (QR) 26: Void [unclear: .. Maurice …
- 27: T.W Alexander "House formerly Hansons afterwards Revd Edward Dukes".

1933 (T&M Register) Robert William Blissett Maurice (occupier until 1937)

1938 (T&M Register) Ambrose Wilkinson (occupier until 1967)
1939 (Blacket's) 26: A. Wilkinson at 26 High Street.
- 27: T. Alexander & Sons, grocers (27 High Street). Advert describes: Tea & Coffee Dealers. Family Grocers. Agents for W & A Gilbey's Wines & Spirits. Ales & Stouts, Mineral Waters. Customers waited on frequently. Deliveries in all country districts. Tel No. 4.

1939 (KD) "Thomas Walter Alexander, JP, Oak Lodge, Salisbury Rd."
- Also "Alexander Bros (Hungerford) Ltd., Coal Merchants, High St & Station Rd" (120 High St)
- Also "Joseph Alexander, farmer, Bacon's Farm"

1946-47 Alexanders, high class grocers, sold to Dudley & Norman James, continued as grocers

1947 (CL) Void

1952 (CL) George Edwin Mordey

1956 (CL) Void

1963-1970 (CL) Raymond Woodley
1968 (T&M Register) Norman Ernest James and Dudley George James (owners until 1973)
1968 (T&M Register) Raymond Woodley (occupier until 1973)
1972 Alexanders closed (James sold).

See also: Alexander's Leaflet, c1960?

Alan Rutter emailed (Nov 2020) to add: Uncle Stan Cook (my mother's elder brother) was a roundsman for Alexander's for many years.

Hungerford Antiques Arcade, 1974-present:

1974 (T&M Register) Grapekirk Ltd (owners until 1978). John & Peggy Collins. They had the vision, quite radical at the time, of opening an antiques arcade. It was the first such arcade outside London.

 - Hungerford Arcade leaflet, c1974. (from Stewart Hofgartner)

1974 (Peggy Collins) John & Peggy Collins (owners) - Antiques Arcade opened Aug 1974.
1974 (T&M Register) Miss Lynn Mann, manageress (occupier)
1975 (T&M Register) John Russell Collins (occupier until 1978)
1976 (CL) John Russell Collins (Antiques Arcade)
1979 (T&M register) Margaret Anne Collins, manageress (occupier)
1979 (Peggy Collins) Collins sold to Wynsave Investments Ltd., Chandlersford. A.E. Wyatt (Bert) , one of the 4 directors
1979 (T&M Register) Wynsave Investments Ltd (owners)
1983 (CL) Void (Antiques Arcade)
1984 (CL) Void
1985 (CL) Void
1988 Hungerford Arcade (Wynsave Investments Ltd) "This large building was one of the first arcades of this type in the country and now houses 80 stallholders, 6,000 sq feet of everchanging stocks of general antiques. Coffee lounge for light snacks and cream teas".

13.2.1990 Murals on plaster found in mid room, first floor of 26 HS. Visit arranged by Mr Ted Harris of Heritage Group, Shire Hall, to date them. Lois Pihlens and Fred Whitby attended. Conclusion: Not medieaval, painting is on 18th century plaster. Coloured, ?male or female figure, ?with sash, ?on horseback. Will be preserved. (See Photo Gallery) above).

14.3.1990 Deeds of 26 & 27 HS at solicitors. Fred Whitby planned to inspect.

2000 (CL) Karen Smykowsky

2004 After changing hands on several occasions, the Arcade was acquired by Adrian Gilmour and Hazel Browne.

2005 (CL) Adrian Gilmour
2009 Adrian Gilmour. Hungerford Antiques Arcade
2011 (CL) Adrian Gilmour
Mar 2011 Hungerford Antiques Arcade is officially the UK's Best Antiques Centre - as voted for by readers of BBC's Homes and Antiques magazine.  The award was presented by Kirstie Allsopp. The Arcade had been trading for over 40 years and was one of the first antiques centres to be opened in this country.

15 Mar 2014 Frontage of property damaged by a runaway car. (See photo in Photo Gallery and "Crash sounded like a bomb going off" - NWN 20 Mar 2014)

2016 (C) Adrian Gilmour

2020 Alexander's Tea Room opens. See "New tea room at arcade serving up some High Street nostalgia" - NWN 23 Jul 2020.

October 2022 Hazel Browne died. See "Tribute to co-owner of Arcade antiques Centre" - NWN, 13th October 2022.

The Arcade features regularly on TV programs such as "Bargain Hunt", "Antiques Road Trip" and "Trust me, I'm a Dealer".

See also:

- Edward Duke, Surgeon

- Duke Family History

Alexander's ledger, 1895 (from Stewart Hofgartner)

- Advert for Alexander Bros, Marlborough Times, 11 Jun 1898.

- Alexander's Leaflet, c1960?

- Hungerford Arcade leaflet, c1974. (from Stewart Hofgartner)

- Town's answer to Portobello Road (Hungerford Arcade) - Reading Mercury, 11 Aug 1977

- A5 promotional hand-out for Hungerford Arcade, c1990

- "Crash sounded like a bomb going off" - NWN 20 Mar 2014