Do you remember Bonds of Norwich?

L0217 Norwich Bonds (now John Lewis) store mannequins 1960s Archant pic

The Norwich Bonds store mannequins in the 1960s. - Credit: Archant

Long before John Lewis stood in the centre of All Saints Green in Norwich, the city had its own home-grown Norfolk department store named Bonds of Norwich.

Spending more than 122 years in business, it was founded by Robert Herne Bond as a small drapers shop in 19 Ber Street, where he lived above the shop with wife Mary-Anne.

Bonds is visited by a pair of giant mice.

Bonds is visited by a pair of giant mice. - Credit: Archant Library

In 1895 Bonds started to expand gradually. 

It acquired adjacent properties along Ber Street, laying the foundations of what became the largest millinery outlet outside London's West End.

After Mr Bond died in 1924, he was succeeded by his elder son William, who led the store as it acquired the thatched cinema in All Saints Green.

The business used it as a restaurant, conference hall and ballroom and it later became a showroom for furniture.

Bonds store fashion show at Maddermarket in 1968.

Bonds store fashion show at Maddermarket in 1968. - Credit: Archant library

NORWICH BONDS IN ALL SAINTS GREEN IN 1965.

NORWICH BONDS IN ALL SAINTS GREEN IN 1965. - Credit: Archant

NORWICH BONDS STORE AT ALL SAINTS GREEN ESCALATORS OPEN UP NEW VISTAS IN 1978.

NORWICH BONDS STORE AT ALL SAINTS GREEN ESCALATORS OPEN UP NEW VISTAS IN 1978. - Credit: Archant Library

In 1942 the store was destroyed in the Baedeker Raids which led it to begin trading in the car park until it was rebuilt in 1951.

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It was eventually bought by John Lewis in 1982 but it continued to trade under the Bonds name until 2001, when it eventually became John Lewis.

Bonds Store at All Saints Green, Norwich in the 1920s.

Bonds Store at All Saints Green, Norwich in the 1920s. - Credit: Archant Library

Norwich Streets A All Saints' Green looking towards John Lewis Store (Bonds) with the Norwich Union complex in 1985.

Norwich Streets A All Saints' Green looking towards John Lewis Store (Bonds) with the Norwich Union complex in 1985. - Credit: Archant Library

Norwich Streets A All Saints' Green looking towards the Norwich Union complex in 1985.

Norwich Streets A All Saints' Green looking towards the Norwich Union complex in 1985. - Credit: Archant Library

The Bonds store new year sale in Norwich in January 1972.

The Bonds store new year sale in Norwich in January 1972. - Credit: Archant Library

Bonds after it was destroyed in 1942.

Bonds after it was destroyed in 1942. - Credit: Archant

Another view of All Saints' Green, Norwich, from our archives, probably taken in the 1930s.

Another view of All Saints' Green, Norwich, from our archives, probably taken in the 1930s. - Credit: Archant

Bonds after it was destroyed in 1942.

Bonds after it was destroyed in 1942. - Credit: Archant Library

Bonds after it was destroyed in 1942.

Bonds after it was destroyed in 1942. - Credit: Archant Library

Bonds in 1960.

Bonds in 1960. - Credit: Archant Library

The awnings hide the name but we believe it must have been Bonds when this picture was taken in the

The awnings hide the name but we believe it must have been Bonds when this picture was taken in the 1950s of Norwich Street. - Credit: Archant


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