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Locations - Surrey



Croydon: Allders

Richmond: Palmers



ADDLESTONE. Co-op. "I well remember that money system, it was also in the Co-op at Addlestone, Surrey. At about four years of age I thought there was a little man inside it who went and got the change." Janice posting to GEN-TRIVIA-ENG-L list, 6/7/99. See also MORDEN. Co-op.

CAMBERLEY. Army & Navy/Allders. Pneumatic tube system. Maureen Kerleau

CAMBERLEY. Pages. "Pages in Camberley Surrey UK used this [pneumatic tube] system in the 70s. The makers were Lamson from memory." Richard Bennett in posting to Historic Photographs on Facebook

CARSHALTON BEECHES. Grocers, Gordon Road. Wire system. Oliver Pearcey

CHEAM. Co-op. "A branch of the Co-op where the money whizzed overhead in tubes." Flickr website

COULSDON. Co-op. Wire system - went through a hole to the cashier's office. Ian Paisley

COULSDON. Pay 'n' Take grocery shop. Wire system in 1940s. T.Hollobone

CROYDON. Allders, North End [of the High Street]. Allders is the third largest department store in Britain. It still has a pneumatic tube system with 42 terminals in working order and belt cash desk which was used for emptying tills up to the Christmas period in 2005. See photographs

CROYDON. Buckworth's, North End. "Judging from the frequent use of the cash railway, the ?? heavy turn over of cash generally." Croydon Chronicle, 16 Dec. 1893, p. 3

CROYDON. Co-op. Cash carrier. "Fascinated me, in the 50’s." Sue Barker in posting to Facebook

CROYDON. Draper Bros, Lower Church Street. "They had a machine and they put the money and the bill in there and pushed it round the shop overhead and a girl sat in a desk put in the change and sent it back to the assistant." Shops and shopping 1920-1992, ed. May Johnson. Talking of Croydon, no.4. Croydon: Croydon Oral History Society, 1992, p.9

CROYDON. Grants, High Street. "They moved to No. 14. When a fire broke out in the adjoining shop they were able to buy that too, and when the widening of High-street was carried out they bought still more property. When they bought No. 22 they had to get a licence to run the cash tubes underground, but later on they acquired the intervening premises and eventually extended from the Arcade down to Roffey and Clarke's." Croydon Times, 29 Jan. 1938, p. 15
"Floss worked in the accounts department of Grants Department Store at High Street, Croydon. I enjoyed seeing her at work behind a high glass screen which was the junction for the overhead cash cable system and pneumatic tube system. The tem of women assistants would handle all of the store cash transactions from here." Harley Miller website. Store is now a 'leisure complex'. Crystal Palace Football Club forum

CROYDON. Hewitts (school uniforms) 45-51 Church Street. Cash carrier in 1960s. Peter Rowbottom

CROYDON. Kennards. Became Debenhams in 1973. "On Saturday, April 14th, Miss Fay Compton .. will declare open the latest extension of Croydon's most popular store... The Sub-Basement contains .. the 30 horse-power air pump supplying the cash tubes." Norwood News, 13 Apr. 1928, p. 5
• "A special feature will be the enlarged cash system, not yet completed, installed by the Lamson Pneumatic Tube Co., Ltd. Although there are about 180 stations scattered about the various floors they will all link up with one cash desk on the first floor. The system will be one of the largest in the country as can be gathered from the fact that there will be over ten miles of tube connecting the different departments with the cash desk and that it requires a 30 horse-power air pump to supply the necessary power. The speed at which the carriers travel is between 36 and 40 miles per hour." Croydon Times, 14 Apr. 1928, p. 4
• Lamson tube system. Twelve automatic belt cash desk stations were installed in 1906 and more later. There were 150 stations throughout the store. The carrier took 30 seconds from the most distant station. On the first day of the summer sale in 1923 over 10,000 cash transactions were handled. Town and Country News, 6 Sep. 1929, also quoted in McInnes et al.
• Photographs in Lovett.

CROYDON. Pelton Bros, 40-44 High Street. Inside, as well as the powerful lifts commanding all floors, there was an inside tramway. Views and Reviews, Croydon ca. 1897, p.22, quoted in McInnes et al.

DORKING. Degenhardts, South Street. "Lease for ten years of Lanson [sic] Junior Tube System (cash railway) at 75 South Street... 4 Jul 1933." Exploring Sussex Past website
• Wire system. Cash office was upstairs. Knowhere Noticeboard for Dorking

EPSOM. Co-op, Stoneleigh Broadway. "She frequented.. the Co-Op (Butchers and grocers) where cash was sent back and forth in wooden barrels to and from the cashier by means of an overhead railway." Epsom and Ewell History Reporter. There in 1950s. David Milborrow

EPSOM. V.Coppen (draper), East Street/Upper High Street. "Perhaps the most entrancing thing about the shop was the wires that ran between various points in the shop and the cashier's kiosk. A sales person would accept the money from a customer and with the bill would put it into a little wooden container that screwed into a fixture attached to the wire. They would then pull a handle attached to a wire and the little container would whizz along the wire to the cashier. The cashier would return the bill, with any change via the same mechanism. Children would watch this in fascination and sometimes did not want to leave this shop of magic." Epsom and Ewell History Explorer

EPSOM. Sainsburys, Upper High Street. Cash carrier. Enid Short in posting to Facebook, 8 Mar. 2021

EPSOM. H.G.Wells [real name?] (drapers). "The only money I needed was the price of a cheap bathing costume .. which I bought at the H.G.Wells draper's in Epsom with its smell of calico and overhead cash trolleys" - referring to 1939. John Osborne. A better class of person: an autobiography 1929-1956. London: Faber, 1981, p. 90

GUILDFORD. Carling, Gill and Carling. Wire system in 1950s. Rob Kilby

GUILDFORD. Gammons (drapers), North Street. "Gammons was a general Drapers Store, old fashion. When you paid your bill you could see your cash being put [in a] capsule, and whiz around the store on a rail that hung from the ceiling." Barbara Mallyon in posting to ENG-SURREY-L, 18/10/04
• "Gammons drapers on North Street / Market Street corner, now French Connection on the corner and east in the next unit uphill, a store I rememmber entering many times with my mother, a seamstress. I have a memory of an overhead cash transfer system taking cash from the counters to the cashier and bringing back receipts and change." John Lomas in posting to Guildford Dragon, 3/10/14

GUILDFORD. Harveys, High Street. Now House of Fraser. "This [wire system] was a forerunner of the pneumatic system which Harvey’s installed in their store." John Lomas in posting to Guildford Dragon, 3/10/14

GUILDFORD. Whites, 62 High Street. "Lighting, heating ad the 'cash railway' were out of action at Whites." Surrey Advertiser, 2 May 1951, p. 2
• "Cashier required for busy Lamson tube Cash Desk." Portsmouth Evening News, 7 Sep. 1957, p. 14

GUILDFORD. ?? "A friend complained to me that she had to wait ten minutes in a Guildford store just before Christmas for two pence change... The trouble is that money paid over the counter has to be inserted in a container and 'shot' up to te cash ofice on a wire." Surrey Advertiser, 31 Dec. 1958, p. 9

KINGSTON. Bentalls. "[On opening of the new wing in 1907.] The customers ... were further exhorted to 'see the pneumatic cash system in operation'. This was the first of the so-called 'Lamson tube' systems installed by the Lamson Tube Company. The little carriers overhead, taking money from assistants to a central cash department, later became familiar to customers in stores and shops all over the country - but in 1907 the sight of shining brass tubes containing carriers which whizzed along at 40 feet per second was something not to be missed." Rowan Bentall. My store of memories. (London:Virgin, 1974) p.48

LEATHERHEAD. Moulds, High Street. "The single most fascinating, and I thought just so modern thing about Moulds .. was the cash transfer system... Moulds had an updated version of this [wire system] that operated on a twin pneumatic tube system." Francis Frith website

LEATHERHEAD. Wakefields (outfitters), High Street. "Overhead wire arrangement." Leatherhead Local History website

MORDEN. Co-op. "Both the Co-ops in Morden & Addlestone used the pneumatic systems certainly in the 60's" Tony Dragon in posting to UK Railways newsgroup. 3/1/09

MORDEN. Halls. "Yes we did [have cash carriers] in our Co-op and in Halls in Morden." Irene in posting to ENG-SURREY-L, 18/10/04

MORDEN. Hawes. Hawes dept store in Morden also used the wire system until about the same date. Tony Dragon in posting to UK Railways newsgroup. 3/1/09

NEW MALDEN. Tudor-Williams, High Street. Wire system in 1950s and early 60s. James Follett in posting to demon.local newsgroup, 10/6/02

OXTED. Co-op. Wire system at Co-op mentioned in C. Matthew "A nightingale sang in Fernhurst Road" but may be fictional.

PURLEY. Swattons. "There were 3 linked shops on Brighton Road Purley which were haberdashers, selling underwear, holdhold linens etc., with the tubes whizzing along to the cashier. I think the shop(s) were called Swattons." Valerie Privett in posting to Facebook

REDHILL. South Suburban Co-operative Society. "Wanted, for new departmental store at Redhill: Cashiers (experience of Lamson Pneumatic Tube System preferred)." Surrey Mirror, 27 Sep. 1935, p. 2
• Pneumatic system. Brian Reed

REDHILL.Jones's (material shop), High Street. Wire system in 1960s. Brian Reed

REIGATE. Co-op, Allingham Road. "My vivid memories are of the Co-op (SSCS). I was always fascinated by the overhead wires which transported change to and from the cashier sitting in a wee booth in the far left corner of the shop." Bob Post in posting to Old Reigate website 16/12/11

RICHMOND. Barton's, Kew Road. "The Mayor and Mayoress .. evinced great interest in the working of the Lamson cash tube system, which has been installed." Richmond Herald, 24 Nov. 1934, p. 19

RICHMOND. Palmers, drapers. Part of system acquired in 1973 and installed in Museum of London. Info from the Museum where I have seen it. Photographs

SUTTON. Shinners (later Allders), 71-79 High Street. "Shinners, Ltd., require a young lady as junior cashier, one used to Lamson Pneumatic Tube System essential." Croydon Times, 14 Oct. 1933, p. 12
• "When you paid for your purchase, your money used to be put into a canister and whizzed off to the cash office via a complicated network of pneumatic tubes and overhead tracks.  Minutes later it would clack its way back to the counter, complete with change.  Endlessly fascinating to a youngster like me." Steve in posting to East End Memories
• "We're going shopping in Sutton's great department store, Shinners... I never notice, only .. the sophisticated swoosh of the little cable cars that are shot along overhead wires to carry the cash from the counter to the cashier's office and bring the change back." Michael Frayn. My father's fortune: a life. (Faber & Faber, 2010), p.51

SUTTON. Southern Co-op household and clothes store, Stonecot Hill, Morden Road. Wire system. Closed soon after WW2. R.Hennessy

WALLINGTON. Co-op. Wire system in 1950s. Peter Forbes in posting to newsgroup, 13/12/07.
• "The Co-op, with its fascinating system of overhead wires to convey the money to and from the cashier sitting behind a barred grill." Friends of Honeywood Museum website

WOKING. Co-op, Knaphill. Cash ball (?) system in 1950s. Dominic Strange


star indicates systems which are still there (as far as I know) though they may not be working.