William Hill is recognised running the first Huthwaite post office upon Market Street. Year of opening is best indicated by 1853 marriage, and the couples reported diamond wedding can shed some light upon earliest Hucknall Huthwaite postmasters duties.
Mr Hill recalled how Huthwaite post became independently transferred through an Alfreton Royal Mail sorting office. This required a daily walk into Derbyshire, to meet and swap mail sacks with another postman halfway in Blackwell. Records from final years of business suggested a typical weeks mail consisted of thirty letters, three cards, two newspapers and a book. A light load, and even with house deliveries plus stamping outgoing letters being dutifully performed, William had time to continue a Master Framesmith trade beyond his 1870 resignation from the Royal Mail.
Taking over that postmaster role next finds Samuel Lowe as a previously listed hosiery agent, whom, with wife Ann as farmer, were also shopkeepers. An 1876 Directory can firstly identify Samuel's new profession, noting all Huthwaite mail now comes through Mansfield Offices. Making that daily journey by horse and cart also sees Mr S Lowe offering a regular Huthwaite carrier cart service.
Precise location of a second Hucknall Huthwaite post office can now confirm past memories of a locally termed "Post Office Yard" behind New Fall Street premises. Mr Lowe began running his 1870's Post Office from a new building placed to determine that future street layout. A postcard scene covering full residential development can only show that original shop front long after moving those mail services. The property is lastly remembered serving a Bottoms Beer Off, but still stands facing modern redevelopment.
This street remained undeveloped and perhaps unnamed when an 1884 map lastly plots use of that "P.O." yard. That dates around time Samuel Lowe's office started handling Postal Money Orders. Introducing a telegraph service shortly after, was further followed by offering Insurance and Annuity Schemes. Expanding public services may give timely reasons for moving into a third location.
An older but larger building on Market Street could still be seen as a more prestigious location central to village expansion. Moving into Mr Hill's original office certainly presents the historically acknowledged roots of a Huthwaite Post Office, mainly because it was photographically recorded. Discovering the named Samuel Lowe running a long overlooked earlier New Fall Street office, should realise this Market Street premises was captured displaying 1907 village renaming long after reopening under Mr Lowe's keep.
An 1894 directory identified Mr Lowe being both a subpostmaster plus beer retailer. It suggests use of rear yard brewery equipment from Mr Hill's uncle Stempson running a beer house. Deeds mentioned a past Crown Inn, so its beyond coincidence seeing that's also the Royal Mail logo.
Arthur Rowland Lowe was one Peacock victualler, while shopkeepers Misses Sarah and Lavina Lowe continued the family name in farming, grocery and hosiery trades. Joseph Lowe is later recognised being another carrier to Mansfield, likely taking over Samuel's daily ride to exchange mail through those sorting offices.
Samuel Lowe remained in charge of the Huthwaite Postal service for around 38 years. This vacated Market Street Post Office was lastly a Westminster Bank, until all older properties eventually faced demolition. Smaller cottages that fronted Allsops Pudding Bag Yard left space of later significance.
The 1909 opening of what now asserts being a fourth Huthwaite Post Office, was even more prominently presented among newly built shop fronts lining Sutton Road. A rare glimpse of its window display at number 201 comes from the neighbouring hairdressers family album
The marriage joining Mr Alfred Quayle with a Mrs Lily Quayle also bonded a business partnership for opening this Sutton Road Post Office. Alfred may have initially led this enterprise, but Lily equally held sub-postmistress listing in 1912. Likewise emerging as highly respected staff of the Post Office, Mr Quayle showed particular courtesy also on Committee organising Old People's Treats.
These adjoining shop fronts were built opposite Urban District Council offices, aside which later sited the present day Huthwaite Free Library. Viewing the library in 2004 simply shows where the postal service installed our first public telephone kiosk in 1932. British Telecomm took over a familiar red booth, but persistent vandalism left this replacement until breaking a 72 year connection.
Although its not yet been possible to identify postmen responsible for emptying up to five Huthwaite pillar boxes, one employee can be revealed by a 1932 Petty Court hearing. Fred Buckberry of the Post Office, Sutton Road, is among several shopkeepers who faced similar charges. He admitted selling a tin of salmon at 9.30 pm, pleading ignorant of the fact it was an offence after hours when new to the business. The case didn't affect principal business diligently conducted between Mr and Mrs Quayle until 1935.
Its the untimely death of 55 year old Alfred Quayle which offers staff names. Among mourners and representing Huthwaite Outdoor Staff are Mr. Tomlinson, Misses Brailsford and Hursthouse. Messrs. Wain and Walker represented Mansfield Head Office Postal Staff. Mrs Lily Quayle successfully went on running the post office beyond last found gazetteer entry in 1941. With no children to continue the business, the Quayle surname disappeared from Huthwaite after delivering post through and into living memory.
Fifth and final location for today's Post Office finds it relocated back into Market Street. Third time is presented from a newly built far larger premises on opposite road side addressing 19 Market Street. The much earlier clearance of old cottages which can be sighted beyond first Post Office site, offered a vacant plot fronting their past Pudding Bag Yard.
Laying 2003 block paving has improved pedestrian safety, especially for elderly customers. Its a year that just happened to coincide with a big change in benefits and pension payouts. Regular queuing to cash presented Girocheques then ended through electronic banking. Residents felt rather lucky that this local facility wasn't lost among mass closures.
Later addition of a wall cash machine, like the first free one shown on the Coop store, is just one of a number of recognised modifications throughout the years. Under changing ownership came a dwelling extension, ramp access and a secure shop layout.
A computerised 21st century transformed many past needed services including alternative electronic means of communication. An old red pillar box and postal counter staff for handling outgoing mail, parcels and handy services is still demanded though. Private companies compete for business, although most mail still comes via Sutton sorting office. Delivery between Sutton into Huthwaite letter boxed doors made good use of the trusty GPO bicycles, until 2010 officials deemed them too unsafe.
It seems worthy to note here that the General Post Office took control of the 1950's telegraph service in 1868. Telephone services were started in 1876 and until 1965 when it became a nationalised industry, the GPO functioned as a government department. BT was founded in 1981 when splitting the GPO into postal and telecommunications divisions, and then privatised on the 6th August 1984.