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Van Heusen Factory - Past and Present


Watchet's Heritage - The Van Heusen Shirt Factory

Watchet's Historical Buildings
Previous View

This distinctive and rather curiously-shaped building has been here for well over a hundred and fifty years and seems certain to have made up part of the farm buildings that originally occupied this site.

Sometime in the first half of the 19th century, in all probability, the farmhouse adjoining the property underwent a transformation and the elegant and well-proportioned late Georgian facade and interior were 'gentrified' and may well have been the home of Stuckey's bank; certainly, it was the home of NatWest in later years.

The building now housing the surgery and opticians also has a number of flats incorporated above. The history of this building since the late 19th century is remarkable. It has at various times been home to the Co-op, a cinema, a garage, a ballroom which during the war years entertained American servicemen.

It was also one of the town's largest employers when the shirt manufacturers Van Heusen occupied it for a number of years. In more recent times, it has been a nightclub and snooker hall. There are both a coal merchant and maltster associated with this building and for a time a small private school operated from a building to the side of the Bank House.

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This page is provided by Watchet Conservation Society with the help of Watchet Chamber of Trade
and with funding from Somerset West & Taunton Council's High Street Emergency Fund.
Text and history provided by Nick Cotton