A collaboration between Hugh Flouch (Harringay On-Line) and Alan Swain 




In the photo, next to the door, are adverts for Harringay's two early cinemas. The Hindoo, showing at the Premier Electric was released in 1912 (this is where I got to 1912 date from).

Henry Harby was born in Peckham in 1861. In 1863, his father, Alonzo died. Four years later his mother Mary Ann (nee Jubb) remarried (to Reuben Harby from Spalding) and by the time of the 1871 census Henry was living with Marry Ann's brother, William Jubb and his wife, Hannah, both from Spalding, Lincolnshire. The family were living at 220 Clyde Road, where Jubb was running a grocer's shop.

Jubb was also running an ironmongers next door at 64 Summerhill Road (see map - it was actually part of the same terrace even though it had a different street address). In fact records show that he owned 64-66 Summerhill Road.



In 1883, Henry married Gertrude Sayers and we can see from the Register of Electors that the couple moved into three rooms at 7 Summerhill Road, a property also owned by Jubb.

Entry from 1886 Register of Electors


By 1898, Henry had moved his family into 220 Clyde Road and was running the shop under the name Harby & Co. In 1901, the census records that he had two sons, Alonzo 16 (named after Henry's father who like his uncle came from Spalding) and William 14.


William Jubb had retired and was living next door at 64 Summerhill Road. Before his death, he moved to a house at 238 Phillip Lane.

From 1899 to 1902, Jubb was Chairman of Tottenham District Council. He died in 1903. Something of his story was told in one of his death notices.

1903 Death William Jubb London Daily News - 25 March 1903 copy

At the point where Summerhill Road merged with Clyde Road, the row of houses between Summerhill Road were originally known as Western Terrace. However, at a later date, some were renamed as Summerhill Terrace and I suspect that the 1888 Electoral Roll places number 7 remarkably close to where Harby’s Greengrocers store was located.

Prior to 1901 all the houses in Summerhill Road were only known by name. It was only when the Post Office insisted on house numbers that this changed.

These houses are at the top northern end of Summerhill Road whereas number 7 today is located at the southern end closer to West Green Road. 


The above entry from the 1911 UK Census shows Henry and Gertrude Harby, along with their children Henry Alonzo and Thomas William Harby, together with a nurse child named Nellie Houghton aged 4 living at the premises (Presumably unrelated).

It is most probable that the child pictured in front of Harby’s shop was none other than Nellie Houghton – then aged 5.

The occupation of Henry Harby is a Greengrocer and his place of birth reads ‘Old Ford’ but he was actually born in Peckham.

The last record of the grocers shop in 1914 ( Kelly’s Directory)


On the 1936 Electoral Roll Henry Harby (Snr) was living at number 7 Dunloe Avenue, Tottenham along with Ellen Houghton, the very same nurse-child who was living in Harby’s greengrocers shop in 1911. Coincidentally, also living at 7 Dunloe Avenue, were William and Charlotte Saunders, who had also been living at 220 Clyde Road at the time of the 1901 Census. 

Then again, when the 1939 Register was taken just prior to the outbreak of WW2, Henry Harby (Snr) and Nellie Houghton were living at 29 Abbotsford Avenue, Tottenham.

Henry (Snr) lived until 1941. He died at 29 Abbotsford Avenue, Tottenham.

The occupation of Nellie Houghton was given as a clerk in an Abrasives Manufacturing company. In 1939 Henry Alonzo Harby (Jnr) was living at 12 Dorset Road, Tottenham but also working for an Abrasive Manufacturing company. I very much suspect that this was the English Abrasives Company who operated from premises in Marsh Lane, Tottenham.



 One fascinating discovery from the Electoral Rolls has disclosed that Henry Alonzo Harby (Jnr) and his wife Grace Harby (nee Wright), when living at 12 Dorset Road, were near neighbours to my grandparents George and Minnie Harwood, and my late mother who lived at number 2. Please refer to the copy of the electoral roll for 1934.

 My grandparents and mother moved to 11 Summerhill Road in 1937 but our back garden would have backed on to the house in Dorset Road. I am absolutely sure that my family would have known the Harby family until Henry Harby (Jnr) died in 1966.


The extract from the Probate register shows that Henry Alonzo Harby died at St Ann’s Hospital, Tottenham on the 9th July 1966. He had still been living at 12 Dorset Road and a small legacy had been left to his wife Grace.


  Your article on HARBY’S greengrocers brought back some pleasant memories.

In 1947/48 when I was 11 years old I worked Saturday mornings in the HARBY greengrocers from about 9 am to 3 pm for 7 shillings 6 pence and permission to eat any bruised (unsaleable) apples. The shop was always extremely busy on a Saturday morning. My job was to keep the vegetable and fruit bins full. Your photo of HARBY’s shop shows part of a door on the right side of the photo. This door was to a side entrance in which the celery and raw beetroots where stored along with other vegetables. It was my job to wash the celery and remove the beetroots from the cooker. In winter, the celery was placed in a bath tub filled with cold water that always, in winter, had a sheet of ice. I used to break the ice, wash a few celery and then go to the cooker to remove a few beetroots, thus warming my hands. I no longer remember the name of the tenants of the shop at that period but I understand they emigrated to Australia years later. They were a very nice couple. I can remember some of the customers who came to the shop. One young, newly-wed, couple came in every Saturday morning about the same time. I guess they must have been about 23/24 years old. She was as pretty as a picture and he was a real handsome young man. I even noticed that as an 11 year old. He had just been demobilized and they always appeared to be so happy.

When my sister Gwen (10 years old) stood in the queue, she always teased me, in a typical sibling manner, and say “boy” do have this or that, knowing very well that particular item was not available.






This article has been prepared by Alan Swain and builds on an original article written by Hugh Flouch on the ‘Harringay On-Line’ website.

December 2020  (Added Fred Hardy's memories and photograph -January 2021)

Background image - Wash showing early map of Summerhill Road /ClydeRoad