The place and the people – 11 REGENT STREET WREXHAM
Richard Davies was born about 1803 near Denbigh,. His wife Mary Ann Davies was born about 1808 in Chester. In 1851 they were living in Kendrick Street, which is now known as Bank Street, Mary Ann was a temperance hotel keeper and he was a coachbuilder employing 8 men. They had two daughters – Mary Ann and Martha and at that time there were 4 male visitors.
In April 1857 there was an article about the improvements in Wrexham, churches and chapels were being built in Hope Street and Regent Street and private residences were springing up as if by magic in every part of the “West End” Mr Davies, Temperance Hotel had built a large and handsome dwelling in Regent Street.
On 4th February 1860 the annual meeting of the Wrexham Temperance Society took place and in the afternoon a finance meeting took place at the Temperance Hotel, Regent-street.
When Richard and Mary had moved isn`t known for sure but by 1861 they are at 11 Regent Street. Richard is still a coachbuilder and Mary is just listed as his wife. Daughter Mary Ann is working as a servant. There are 9 boarders so it is obviously a hotel.
On the 13 September 1864, at Hill-street Presbyterian Church, Mary Ann Davies of the Temperance Hotel married James William Bebell of Wrexham Railway Station.
James William was a goods clerk for the Great Western Railway, he was born in Gloucester and his father was a ship builder.
Sadly James William died 25 July 1865 aged 24 and was buried in the Dissenters graveyard in Rhosddu, the headstone reads “of the Temperance Hotel”
In 1868 the “Wrexham Loan and Investment Company” moved their office from Temple Place to Temperance Hotel, opposite the Savings Bank. Applications were to be made to Mr Richard Davies, Temperance Hotel.
Richard died 26 November 1868 aged 66; he was buried with his son in law in the Dissenters graveyard.
In March 1871, Mrs. Mary Anne Bebell (nee Davies), Temperance Hotel, Wrexham married Rev. Edward Jerman at the Hill Street Chapel where Edward was the Minister.
The same year Mary Ann Davies was still running the Temperance Hotel at 11 Regent Street, with the help of Mary J Grant who was her niece. There was one more servant and 5 boarders, but another 2 refused to give their names and left the premises.
In June 1874 there was a notice in the papers for the sale of furniture etc at the Temperance Hotel, No. 11, Regent-Street. Mrs Davies, was retiring from business, and was selling by auction the whole of her household and other effects. The list is very long, but there were items in the kitchen and lobby, the Commercial Room, the Coffee Room and in eleven bedrooms.
Mary Ann Davies died 16 Oct 1876 aged 68, at 4, Hill-Street, she was buried in the same grave as Richard in Rhosddu.
Thomas Henry Coleman was born in Lincolnshire in 1841, he was the son of James William Coleman , a druggist and chemist and Anne Mann.
By 1867 he had moved to Wrexham and was advertising in the papers.
Artificial Teeth. T. H. Coleman, Surgeon Dentist, (Resident) At Mrs Mulliner’s, 9, Bridge Street, Wrexham.
In the next 2 years Thomas moved to 3 High St, Wrexham, over the shop of Mr. Edisbury, chemist, and again to 42 High St, over and adjoining Mr Fraser’s, watchmaker, &c., “where he will reside and continue to carry on his practice so successfully maintained during the last two years in Wrexham”.
Thomas Henry married Susanna Emery in 1870 at Stoke on Trent. Susanna was the daughter of John Emery an artist who painted these portraits of the couple, her mother was Susannah Toft. The family lived in the Potteries area of Stoke on Trent. John was an artist all of his life and was described as such in his probate of 1893.
In the 1871 census Thomas was still at 42 High Street and his brother Joseph James Coleman was staying there, he is described as an analytical chemist. In 1880 the ship Strathleven arrived in London, containing a cargo of frozen meat, by the Bell-Coleman process. “ Mr J. J. Coleman, F.C.S., the inventor of the Bell-Coleman process, consigned to his brother in Wrexham, Mr T. H. Coleman, on Monday last, a fine sirloin of beef. It was wrapped in canvas and packed in matting it was conveyed by passenger train from London and remained at the parcels’ office, Wrexham all night, it was afterwards exhibited for two days at Mr Stevens’, confectioner, Hope-street. A portion of it was cooked on Thursday and afterwards tasted by several judges, and pronounced equal to the killed English meat both in flavour and quality. The remainder, to all appearance will keep several days.”
On 29 April 1871 it was announced that “Mr T. H. Coleman, Dentist, High-Street, will shortly remove to the house adjoining Mrs Davis’ Temperance Hotel, Regent-street.
In 1875 the papers published that Mr. T. H. Coleman, begs to inform the public that his new establishment, lately known as Davis’s Temperance Hotel, is now completely fitted up to suit the comfort and convenience of his patients. Natural appearance and comfort guaranteed. A private Waiting Room for each patient. It seems now that Thomas has extended his business and has taken over the hotel, which at one time had 11 bedrooms.
Thomas Henry was still running his dental surgery at 11 Regent Street in 1881, so it seem the building had not been used as a hotel for quite a few years.
Susanna died on 20 January 1882 after a “short and painful illness”
“DEATH OF MRS COLEMAN.-Great regret was felt in the town, at the beginning of the week, owing to a rumor that Mrs Coleman, wife of Mr T. H. Coleman, dentist, Regent-street, had died, somewhat suddenly on Sunday morning, a report which unfortunately proved to be only too true. The funeral took place on Wednesday, when great respect was manifested by the inhabitants, the shops of nearly all the tradesmen on the line of the funeral procession being partially closed, and general sympathy is both felt and expressed for Mr Coleman and his family in their sad bereavement.” She was buried in Wrexham Cemetery with her young son Thomas Camillus who died in 1879 aged just 17 months.
In June 1883 an advertisement reveals that Thomas Henry had been overseas after the death of his wife.
Mr. Coleman, Regent Street begs to thank his patients for their patronage during the last 17 years, and to inform them that he has resumed practice, after an extensive tour in America and South Africa.
In September 1884 he married again to Mary Ellen Bate at Chester.
MARRIAGES. “On the 13th inst, at St. Werburgh Church, Chester, Mr T. H. Coleman, 11, Regent Street, Wrexham, to Mary Ellen, fourth daughter of the late Mr George Bate, Wrexham”. George Bate died in 1857; he had been a “victualler” at the Black Lion, Rhostyllen. His wife was Lydia McCru who died 1883 and was buried in Wrexham Cemetery.
In January 1887 it was announced that the premises occupied by Mr T H Coleman, Regent Street will shortly be opened as a Commercial Hotel and Restaurant and will be called the Queens Jubilee Hotel. It is still number 11.
Later that year the whole of the household furniture and effects connected with the Jubilee Hotel were to be sold as Mr Coleman had moved to Bryn Edwyn. “The Hotel has recently been fitted throughout, and the Auctioneer invites particular attention to the contents of the bedrooms, which have been used by the Commissioned Officers of the Militia R.W.F during the training.”
On 12 February 1887 a private sitting room, with use of bedroom and piano was advertised to let,
21 May 1887. Highly Important Sale of Household Furniture, Oil Paintings, Carpets, and Other Effects, at the JUBILEE HOTEL, Regent-street.
The list is long and contains the items in the Drawing Room, Hall, Dining Room, Kitchen, Stairs and landing, ten Bedrooms and Bathroom with Long bath with stand, Fletcher’s patent hot water apparatus, with gas fittings.
On 9 July 1887 a report appeared in the paper.
Bridget McCleary , a furniture dealer bought some of the bedsteads, but found when she came to collect them one had been removed by Thomas Henry to his own house. She sued Thomas Henry who said that he needed it because he making a claim for damages against some of the Militia Officers who had stayed at the hotel while training. He had told the auctioneer not to sell the bedstead, but it had been sold by mistake. His Honour held Thomas Henry responsible, because when the auctioneer was put in the pulpit he became master of the situation, and the people were guided by him.. He gave judgment for the plaintiff (Bridget) for £1.
In 1891 Thomas Henry was still in Regent Street dental surgery, and in 1900 the Dentists Register has him at Bryn Edwyn , but in 1901 only Mary Ellen is found at 5 King Street with one of her sons. Thomas Henry Coleman of Wrexham died 24 May 1905 at Cheadle Royal Hospital, he was aged 63. Probate to Mary Ellen Coleman, effects £788 10s . Mary Ellen`s death has not been found.
John Stanford was born in Cefn Mawr in 1855; his father was Edward Stanford who had been a groom on the Wynnstay Estate before the family moved to Shropshire. His mother was Eliza Wild who was from Oswestry, Edward died and by 1881 Eliza is in Queens Street, Wrexham .
In 1881 John Stanford was an insurance agent, his wife was Annie Williams.
By 1887 they were also in Queen Street. There was a court case in that year when Emily Greenwood, “a pleasant looking young woman” , from Chester, aged 20, was in custody charged with stealing a mackintosh, valued at seven shillings, belonging to Mrs Stanford, Queen-street, on October 21st, 1886. The complainant said she resided at 13, Queen Street, and was the wife of John Stanford. Cocoa- room proprietor.
Later in October 1887 John Stanford proprietor of the Central Temperance Hotel sued John Crabby advertising contractor of Derby for £1 damages. There had been two bills posted on the side of his house, one announcing the Shropshire and West Midland Agricultural Society and the other the “Sweetheart Company”. He was so annoyed he went to the Public Hall where the Sweetheart Company was and asked for them to be removed, but as it was a number of days before they taken down he took the case as a matter of principle.
From an article printed in 1887 December 1887, it appears John had more than a local reputation as an elocutionist and entertainer. The article alluded to his very marked ability as an elocutionist in terms of praise, also to his ability as an entertainer, for as the article points out, “he has done much to add life and attractiveness to temperance meetings, which as a rule seem singularily devoid of that essential. The notice is certainly well deserved, and we hope Mr Stanford and his daughter, who assists him, will meet with copious success in their pleasant and useful mission of amusing and elevating their fellow beings who are too apt to sink down into the shadow and forget the sun.”
The 1891 census has John still at 11 Regent Street, proprieter of Temperance Hotel and Coffee Tavern, Annie is the manageress and Sarah their daughter is an assistant.
In 1900 John announces his intent to put himself forward for a position on the Town Council, his address was given as 26 Hope Street, so he has left the hotel and the following year he is at Regis Place as a refreshment and coffee house keeper.
By 1911 he is at 19 King St and a confectioner. John was buried in Wrexham Cemetery on 9 July 1920 and Annie was buried with him on 14 March 1922, both were of 19 King Street.
It`s unclear if the Temperance Hotel at 11 Regent Street continued as such after 1891, but later there are a number of business people giving it as an address. It may have been used as offices but this isn`t certain. Gomer Davies is worth looking at as it`s probable that the “Jubilee” 11 Regent Street later became part of the “Maelor Hotel”
Gomer Davies was born in 1844 he was the son of Hugh Davies a miller and timber merchant and Mary Jones. By 1881 his mother had died, the family are at 2 Hill Street, his father Hugh is a nuisance inspector and Gomer is an assistant.
Later that year Gomer married Margaret Edwards and on 24th September 1881 there was an announcement in the papers.
NEW COMMERCIAL TEMPERANCE HOTEL, the premises at No. 8. Regent Street have recently been opened by Mr Gomer Davies as a Commercial Temperance Hotel.
By 1884 it was known as the Maelor Hotel.
In 1891 Gomer was occupying 8 and 9 and was described as Temperance Commercial Hotel Keeper, so he has expanded his premises.
Also in 1891, 11 Regent Street is occupied by William Lloyd, a commercial Clerk and Martha his wife.
By 1901 Gomer Davies is at 13/15/17 Regent St, and described as Temperance Hotel Keeper.
By 1911 Gomer and Margaret are living in Linden Villas, Gerald Street , they didn`t have any children after 30 years of marriage. No Temperance Hotel is found on Regent Street.
Gomer Davies died aged 83 in 1924.
In May 1900 Davies & Moss, Architects are advertising with the address, 11, Regent-street, Wrexham and the 1903 “Trades Directory of Wales” has W H Gummow a glass and china dealer at 11 Regent St.
In 1904 the Maelor Temperance and Commercial Hotel was advertised to be let. Smoke, tea and coffee rooms. Private sitting rooms, and 15 bedrooms.
When the Maelor was extended isn`t known but there is a poster advertising the Maelor Hotel, there is no date but it is under entire new management and the name is given as Mrs Rae. Roberts. The image shows the building has extended over much of the original building built by Richard Davies. It seems to have had 11 windows where the whole of the façade had 14.
Part of the Maelor later became Astons furniture shop in the 1970s, then was used later by the JJB Sports chain which closed about 2012. Since then it has been used as an arts centre called Undegun – which translated from Welsh is 11.
Source: Researched and written by Annette Edwards.
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A Walk through the Old Maelor Hotel Wrexham.
Very much altered from it’s former days as a temperance hotel, but some of the original rooms still survive today. Wrexham History took a bit of a walk through the top floor of the old Maelor Hotel on 7th Feb 2014, with many thanks to Dave Gray (Undegun) for arranging access.