Unlocking Stourport's Past

2 Lombard Street The Outback

 2 Lombard Street in 1964 The Outback as it is today

This early nineteenth-century building was originally a private house. It was the family home of George Pearce Baldwin (1788-1840) and his second wife, Sarah Chalkley Stanley, the grandparents of Stanley Baldwin. It was Sarah's maiden name which would provide her grandson's first name, Stanley. The sons of George's first marriage, William Hill and Pearce, together with two sons from his second marriage, George and Stanley(snr) ran the Wilden Iron Works. George and Sarah Baldwin had ten children, eight of whom survived to adulthood.

So 2 Lombard Street must have echoed with the sounds of children. Most of the children were probably born in this house, including the couple's youngest son, Alfred, a man destined for fame and fortune and to be the father of the future Prime Minister, Stanley Baldwin. George and Sarah had four daughters, Lucilla, Eliza, Sarah Ann and Mary Jane. They were referred to as 'The Pert, The Pretty, The Pious and The Proud' although it is not clear which each description referred to. George Pearce Baldwin died unexpectedly of scarlet fever in 1840 at the age of 52 and was buried in the family vault in St Michael's churchyard. His widow continued to live in the family home until her death in 1874. Their daughter, Sarah Ann Robinson (widowed in 1871), lived at 11 Lombard Street (opposite) for most of the 1880's until she moved to Weston-super Mare where she died.

About 1900 THE STOURPORT WORKMENS CLUB moved to the premises. The Workmen's Club had earlier merged with Stourport Literary Institution (founded 1845) which boosted of a library of over 1,000 volumes (Kelly's Directory, 1908). Alfred Baldwin was the first president of the newly merged organisation. It is not clear when the single storey extension on the left-hand side of the building was built but it was used as a Reading Room and for playing billiards and, reputedly, Stanley Baldwin paid for it. The Workmen's Club clearly had a thriving membership and a decision was made in the 1960's to relocate to new purpose-built premises. Land off Lickhill Road was given by Vales and by 1968 the new building was occupied. The move was partly prompted by a proposal by the local authority to demolish 2 Lombard Street in order to widen the roadway but this never happened. Subsequently the building became the Severns Club and, latterly, The Outback.

Research on this building is still ongoing. If you have any information or photographs, please contact Pauline Annis.
This page researched by Pauline Annis
This page last updated 23 February 2006

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