Plummers: Western Road

1952 advertisement for Plummers
From the private collection of Jennifer Drury

What do you remember about Plummers?

This is a 1952 advertisement for ‘Plummers’ department store in Western Road.

Can you remember this shop?

When did you shop there?

What did you buy?

Do you remember how much it cost.

Maybe you had tea in the ‘Floral Restaurant’?

Maybe you worked there or nearby at this time?

If you can share your memories with us, please leave a comment below.

Comments about this page

  • Thank you – I was wracking my brain recently to remember the name of this shop. I shopped there with my mother in the 1950s and 60s and then on my own from the 60s until it closed. I have a vague memory of Plummer Rodis (spelling uncertain) being a name at some stage but I really am unsure about that. I shopped there so often that I cannot remember exactly what was bought, apart from clothing items. It could have included things like handbags and accessories but, as I said, my memory of what is vague – apart from one that just came to me. A raincoat in pale blue, that was very smart and the height of fashion in the early 60s. Isn’t memory amazing? This was when headscarves were still an absolute must and they always remind me of Audrey Hepburn, not that I ever looked like her. I might have been almost as slim for a very short period of time when I was about 12. I would have been far taller by then though and I never mastered chic for long, ah me. Thank you again for posting this and answering one of me questions about shops in the area.

    By Helen Shipley (24/08/2014)
  • I worked at Plummer Roddis. I think it was 1957 and I would have been 16 or 17 at the time. I was on the Handbag department, and the lady who ran the department was Mrs Dare. 

    By Brenda Patrick (25/01/2018)
  • We used to visit Plummers in the 1960s during trips to Brighton. We ate in the restaurant and I remember the fish and chips and chocolate ice cream in little stainless steel bowls. Models used to walk between the tables modelling some of the fashions on sale. There were two sections to the department store and a wooden ramp between them.  It was definitely THE store in Brighton at the time along with Selfridges on the other side of the street. A pity it is now all chain stores and cheap shops in those days Western Road had some style! 

    By Julie Eaton (28/10/2018)
  • Does anyone else recall Selfridges being on the north side of Western Road in the 1960s? I can remember Wades department store (and being taken there to see Father Christmas in the 1950s) but never Selfridges until, that is, Miss Selfridge opened in the revamped Churchill Square.

    By Alan Phillips (29/10/2018)
  • Just before and during the early part of the War my mother Doris Sargeant ran the ‘Store Studios’ portrait studio in Plummer Roddis. Store Studios had franchises to operate photographic studios in many of the major stores at that time. After I was born my mother gave this up and set up on her account specialising in portraits and child studies trading as ‘Portraits by Paula’. I don’t know why she chose this name and never thought to ask her.

    By Tim Sargeant (31/10/2018)
  • My first job at 16 was in Plummers, in 1954. I was a Junior Shorthand Typist. I remember at Sale times the office staff had to help out on the shop floor. I was placed in the materials section and it used to be frantic there at sale time. I recall my attempt at using big shears to cut a straight yard or so of silk was a disaster. I’m certain there used to be a salesman in the carpet section called Mr. Goodenough. Prior to actually working there, my mother used to send me in to the hosiery department in Plummers, and I had to whisper “Mrs.Green says have you any nylons in today”

    By Judy Green (10/12/2019)
  • I have very fond memories of Plummers. My late mother had a job there in the office and my son had a holiday job there also. Both were extremely happy in the time they were employed there. I just loved shopping there as they stocked my favourite brands. Royal Doulton china, fabulous make up range and beautiful clothes . I ordered a beautiful set of Royal Doulton China which I still have to this day. There was also a fabulous restaurant and I remember so well going for coffee in the Summer of ’82 having had a fabulous two week holiday in beautiful Chania, Crete, with my two lovely children, and was tucking into my coffee and pastries when my lovely late husband suddenly said to my as he held my hand, I’ve been made redundant. I couldn’t talk for a few minutes but finished my pastries and coffee. I looked into his beautiful blue eyes and said to him “Don’t worry”.

    By Jillian Foley (13/12/2019)
  • For Jiilian Foley,
    Plummers, on southeast corner of Western and Montpelier Roads in Brighton, became Plummer Roddis which in turn subsequently became Debenhams. By the time I lived within 200 yards, in early 1975, it was already Debenhams, not Plummers, Jillian.

    By Alan Phillips (15/12/2019)
  • So? do you want a prize? Jillian.

    By Jillian Foley (16/12/2019)
  • No, Jillian, I do not want a prize. I was merely pointing out that long before your husband was made redundant in 1982 it had ceased to be Plummers. My apologies if I upset you in any way.

    By Alan Phillips (16/12/2019)
  • Hi Alan. Thank you for your apology. I wish you a very Happy Christmas and Happy New Year. Jillian.

    By Jillian Foley (17/12/2019)
  • I used to work at Plummer Roddis in 1971 on the make-up counter, my first full-time job. I remember the store lift, a bouncy affair, with bright brassy concertina type door. The lift operator, yes that was his job, always had difficulty stopping the lift in line with the shop floor! You used half your lunch break negotiating your way through the Fawlty Towers type stairs and passageways to the staff room. I earned very little there, but remember giving half my salary on a weekly basis to a shop called Maggs, which was somewhere opposite, near the cinema (now Waitrose) until I could finally pay for and own the most beautiful purple satin trouser suit.

    By Helen Durrant (07/04/2020)
  • I remember going there with my mother and walking down some stairs when I caught my heel on a sharp piece of metal on the stairway. I bled ‘for England’ and was taken to the First Aid room. I remember they gave my mother some compensation although I can’t remember what it was.

    By Lesley Miles nee Goddard (24/06/2021)

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