Royal Welsh Warehouse, Newtown

PWMP logoRoyal Welsh Warehouse, Newtown

This building was once the headquarters of textile company Pryce Jones, the first business in the world to sell mail-order goods. Several employees and a director were killed in the First World War.

Pryce Jones was a flannel maker.  The arrival of the railway in Newtown enabled him to dispatch his products by train for rapid delivery. From 1859 he invited customers to order direct from the manufacturer, to save money. In 1866 he received an “extensive order” for immediate dispatch to Queen Victoria at Windsor Castle. She ordered more in December 1875 for delivery to Osborne House, Isle of Wight. The Prussian army ordered the company’s innovative sleeping bags in bulk.

The first part of the Royal Welsh Warehouse was built in 1879. Extensions were added in 1887 and 1904. Such was the volume of mail orders that the warehouse even had its own post office branch inside!

As his wealth grew, Pryce Jones had a mansion named Dolerw built for himself.

At least four former employees died in the First World War – see below for their details. During the ill-fated Gallipoli landings in Turkey, Sir William Lennox Napier was killed, aged 47. He was a director of Messrs Pryce Jones Ltd, of the Royal Welsh Warehouse, for many years. He had been a Lieutenant Colonel with the 7th Royal Welsh Fusiliers, before retiring from the army in 1912. He joined the South Wales Borderers as a Major when war broke out. He is buried at the 7th Field Ambulance Cemetery in Gallipoli.

Rex Pryce-Jones of the Canadian Infantry died after being hit by a shell in 1916 in France. He had emigrated to Canada to run a branch of the Pryce Jones business before the war.

Today various retailers trade in the Royal Welsh Warehouse. The ground floor is home to Liberty Furnishings, which continues the association with textiles.

Postcode: SY16 1BH    View Location Map

Website of Liberty Furnishings

 

Royal Welsh Warehouse employees who died in the First World War

Jarman, John Henry, Serjeant 15087. Died 25/08/1918 aged 26. Grenadier Guards. Awarded Distinguished Conduct Medal. Vis-en-Artois Memorial. Son of John and Annie Jarman of 3, Stone Street. Worked as a tailor at the Royal Welsh Warehouse.

Mumford, George Henry, Serjeant 290312. Died 26/03/1917. Royal Welsh Fusiliers. Buried Gaza War Cemetery. Son of George and Mary Munford, of Sheaf Street; husband of Mary Anne Mumford. Was a clerk at the Royal Welsh Warehouse in Newtown.

Potts, Henry Lewis, Rifleman 860871. Died 15/11/1918. London Regiment. Buried St Andre Communal Cemetery. Son of Lewis and Susan Davies, of 30, Canal Road. Worked at the Royal Welsh Warehouse, Newtown.

Reynolds, Harold, Private 822. Died of illness 22/04/1915. Royal Welsh Fusiliers. Buried Newtown & Llanllwchaiarn Cemetery. Son of Mr Richard G  Reynolds and Martha Reynolds of Park Street. Worked as a clerk at the Royal Welsh Warehouse.