No 4 – UPFIELD’S STORES

Upfield’s Stores was in the centre of the village facing the green.  By the early nineteenth century the Upfield family had established a grocery and draper’s shop.  Family members Sarah and Elizabeth ran the business for twenty years when Allen Watts Upfield took over the store in the 1870s.  Under his management the business expanded to sell items including hats, boots, shoes and suits.  Allen Watts Upfield is also thought to have sold grocery items, wines and spirits, corsetry, millinery and kitchen equipment.

Mr Upfield used his profits to build Upfield Villas on Durbans Road, and Eardenstowe, now Wisborough Lodge, on the A272.  Eardenstowe became a boys’ preparatory school in 1930.  In 1985 it was converted into a private house.

In the early 20th century Upfield’s Stores was sold and traded under the name Forrest Stores.  It is believed to have sold haberdashery, some clothes, drapery and grocery items.

Between 1978 and 1988 the shop changed ownership four times to become Fine Fare, Eversheds and Circle K.  In the early 1980s it was taken over by Spar.  From 1986 to March 1988 it was known as Eversheds but was still part of the Spar Group.  From March 1988 it was known as Circle K.  In December 1988 the grocery store finally closed and the building was sold to a developer.  By 1992 the building had been converted into five apartments called Forrest Place.

The house facing the Little Green that has the lettering Upfields Stores on the brickwork was probably a warehouse for the storage of goods for the store.

The Village History Society has an extensive archive of photographs, documents and artefacts about the parish and some of the characters who lived here.  It meets on the second Tuesday of every month in the Committee Room of the village hall and is always happy to welcome new members.

Wisborough Green Village History Society