Buckles 1923

Decades of suits and shoes


Shoes were made in this building in Victorian times, but it has been a men's clothes shop for many years. John Buckle opened his menswear shop here in 1923, providing made-to-measure suits. On his retirement his son Philip continued the business, followed in 1983 by Geoff Souster who attracted a number of celebrity clients including comedian Eric Morecambe.

In the 1860s James Lester had begun a boot and shoe-making business in the premises and stayed for 20 years. Another shoemaker, Thompson Smallwood, bought the building in 1889. It was damaged in the great fire in Middle Row in 1893. During the First World War the Misses Annie and Louisa Gaisford had a shop here.

Eric Morecambe with Geouf Souster in front of a rack of suit jackets.
In this photo Eric Morecambe opens the Geoff Souster shop in 1983.
Front of the store
John Buckle's shop pictured in 1927.
The shop in the street seen on the right of the photo
The shop on the right was purchased by John Buckle in 1923, it was previously a ladies and children's clothes shop run by Louisa and Annie Gaisford.

Text: John Buckledee of Dunstable and District Local History Society. ©
Design: David Turner.
Narration: Catherine Maile of Dunstable Repertory Company.
Recording: David Hornsey.
Website developer: Joshua Buckledee.