Musgrave Street, Hartlepool showing Birmingham House of Robinsons Store.
Donor : Hartlepool Library Service
Creator : Bill Stevenson
Matthias Robinson & Sons, department store, Hartlepool was opened in 1875 when Mr Robinson opened a drapery shop in Lynn Street which he quickly expanded into the shop next door. He then bought the large building next to his large drapery shop Manchester House, and called it Lynn House. As his business further grew he took large premises on the other side of Lynn Street calling it The Coliseum and in 1912 bought buildings in Whitby Street which he called Birmingham House.
Robinson also built large stores in Stockton and Leeds. The department stores sold almost everything including clothing, furniture and homeware and carpets. Robinson himself was a JP, on the first town council of West Hartlepool and built one of the large properties in Westbourne Road as his home.
Children for many years looked forward to the Robinson's Christmas Bazaar when Santa would arrive at the station and travel to the store on a house on wheels.
Robinson's stores in Hartlepool, Leeds and Stockton were taken over by Debenhams in 1964 and although the Stockton and Leeds stores remain as Debenhams, the Hartlepool store was demolished in the late 1960s along with the rest of Lynn Street.More detail »