[From William Cooper's Castletown]

Malew Street north side from Bank Street.

Cooper's Text Notes by Eva Wilson
At the right from the Bank the first was a shop kept by a
Mr. Hudson, boot shop, etc., now pulled down to widen the
The next was Mr. R. K. Kermode's chemist shop and is
now still kept by the family.
Castle Pharmacy. The current pharmacist, Mr. M. P. Patel, took over
from R. G. Baker and Angela Steward in 1986. There would originally
have been a central entrance with shop windows on either side.
The next was a crockery-ware shop kept by a Mrs Williams. 22 Malew Street. Perhaps, just for once, Cooper gets a name wrong
here. Miss Elizabeth Ann Kewley , glass and china dealer, is listed at
this address in Census returns and Directory entries from the 1880s to
the turn of the century. Or, perhaps she married a Mr. Willams?
The next [24 Malew Street] was a greengrocer's shop kept
by a Mrs Corrin and daughters. Mr. Corrin was a mason and
went by the name of Corrin Joppa. It was in their
occupation for a very long time until the daughters died.
Maynrys, clothes shop. Remembered as Beena's (Corrin) sweetshop
before the Second World War. In another context Cooper explains that
Mr. Corrin worked at the building of Derbyhaven breakwater. 'There was a
place at the Ronaldsway house side of the bay called Joppa, and he had
so much talk about Joppa that the name stuck to him'.
I cannot remember who lived in the next two, but one was
occupied for some years by Mr. James Kelly, painter.
The next two [30-32 Malew Street] were the house and
shop of Mr. W. Bell, shoemaker. I think both these houses
were thatched at one time, but afterwards slated and the
house part raised.
Daa Hie. In 1999 the houses were renovated and joined as one private
The next was the Big Tree House, which at one time had
been a gentleman's residence, but in my time was in a bad
state of repair and was pulled down to build the Primitive
Chapel on the site.
Primitive Methodist Chapel, built 1890. Sold 1970, when it became a
carpet warehouse for Taggarts, 8-10 Malew Street. When they closed
down in the 1990s the building was converted to the present use as offices.
The original house on the site was the 'Big Tree House' or Thie Billey
Mooar owned by Deemster Moore, named for the large sycamore tree at
its entrance. Leighton Stowell writes: 'In 1890 this building was bought and
demolished, the stones kept for the erection of the new Primitive Methodist
Chapel, replacing the old Chapel in Hope Street. The architect was
Thomas Howdill from Leeds. My grandfather, Quaylie, and his elder brother
Flaxney, were the builders ... The facings in front of the Chapel were all
carved in Scarlett Quarries, where John Cornish was expert stone carver.
The red brick ornamentation ... is Ruabon from Stafford.
The chief feature ...was the pulpit, large enough to hold four people ... My
great-uncle Flaxney went to London with his Nephew Richard, a joiner, to
see the City Temple pulpit and take measurements etc.... The present pulpit
was originally called 'The City Temple pulpit'... The joiners were my two
uncles Richard and Edward Stowell, Mr Charlie Cubbon, Mr John Corlett
and others ... My father Flaxney was responsible for the interior decoration
which, in keeping with the times, was very ornate with intricate stencil
Next to the Chapel was the house of a family named
Shimmin, who went by the name of Shimmin-a-Hecks.
Some descendants are now living in Douglas.
The next [38 Malew Street] was the house of Mr. William
Condon, who was skipper of the schooner Ida trading to
Liverpool for Mr. John Taggart, grocer. His wife kept a
small shop, and, when the boat arrived from Liverpool, he
had a supply of cakes, and the lads used to call their son,
Dick, Treacle-cakes, and woe betide any of them he caught.
Dick was a joiner and at one time worked for my father and
helped to make the gallows to hang Kewish. He afterwards
emigrated to Canada. When at one time he went over with
the Homecomers, he said that he was the last of those who
worked at the gallows.
38 Malew Street. Kewish was hanged 1872.23 Richard Condon was 18
years old at the time and remained in Castletown long enough to be
listed in the 1891 Census at this address with his wife and six children.
His father, then 82, was also living here.
In another part of our manuscript Cooper tells the story: 'When Kewish
was to be hanged, the joiner who did the work at the Castle refused to
make a gallows and the High Bailiff, who had the ordering of it, came to
my father to ask if he would do it. My father agreed as he did work for
him in his private capacity. The hangman was named Calcraft and he
sent over a plan of the scaffold and came over some days before the
hanging to test it. It was erected against the inner wall of the ramparts
about where the well by the wall is. After it was taken down it was stored
in a small room under the flag-tower and was there until Mr.
McLaughlin's time as custodian. For some time after the execution small
boys used to shout after my elder brothers and sister, "Who made the
gallows to hang Kewish?23 But this had ended before my time. Kewish
would not have been hanged in these days; he would have been put in
the Mental Home.'
The next [40 Malew Street] was the house of Mr. Quilliam,
grandfather of Mr. W. Collister. He kept cows and did
carting work, the cart being driven by his son Tom, who
took fits of wanderlust and would go off sailing and was
lost on the south coast of England, the boat he was on being
driven ashore in a blizzard and he died of exposure. It is
now occupied by his grandson, Allan Collister, who has a
motor business. These two houses have back entrances from
Hope St. but Mr. Joseph Qualtrough built a coal store at the
bottom of Condon's.
The next house [42 Malew Street] is a small house,
occupied first I remember by Miss Corrin, sister of W.
Corrin, painter, who lived on the opposite side of the street.
Afterwards, for a good many years by Mrs. [Miss?] Geldard,
her niece, daughter of Mr. G. Geldard, who was master of
the Board School in my day, and was called Bulldog and his
children called Bulldog's Pups.
Cooper attended Board School, in Hope Street, under Mr Geldard. In
another context he remembers: 'Mr. Geldard used the cane: the highest
number of slaps on the hand was six. He had an unruly lot to deal with
and often had to send for the police. Billy Clucas, the policeman, would
come and give them a talking to ... The School was not noted for any
subject, but Mr. Geldard tried very hard to make us good writers ... he
would say "Heavy on the down stroke, light on the upstroke".'
The next [44 Malew Street] was occupied by Mr. Quayle,
tailor, and is still occupied by his daughters.
Robert Quayle, tailor, and his family are well documented in the Census
returns and Directories from 1881. They also owned the property. In
1901, Robert and his wife Elizabeth lived here with their daughter, also
Elizabeth, dressmaker, and another daughter, Charlotte, who was listed
as blind in the column reserved in this Census for infirmities such as
deaf and dumb, blind or lunacy.
The next was occupied by a Mr. and Mrs. Roberts - she was
the daughter of Mr. Jeffcott, High Bailiff. Mr. Roberts went
by the name of Cooty - he was what they used to call a
transport, sent away by his family. The house was owned by
a man named Gelling who went by the name of Bun Gelling
- the house was called Malew House in my young days.
This fine early 19th-century house has been recently renovated.
The next [50 Malew Street] was the house of the Hudson
Family who went by the name of Hudson Tanner. Two
brothers two sisters.
In another context Cooper has a story to tell about the Hudson's: `There
were four, two sons, George and Robert, and two daughters, Mary and
Jane. Robert and Jane were small, George and Mary big. They had a big
St. Bernard dog called Marshall and he was so thin you could nearly see
through him.
Mary was the last of them. She was missed and was at last found in the
yard - she had had a seizure. A Mr. Boyd was sent to from Douglas. She
was found on Saturday. Mr Boyd came on Sunday and came over to my
father for a man to lock up most of the rooms. I was over on Scarlett, and,
when I had had my tea after arriving back, I was sent over with some
staples and padlocks to put locks on the doors.'
'There was a dispute over the wall between a nephew of Miss Hudson
and Mr Boyd [next door] and the nephew won the case. It was brought out
in court that I was over on Sunday, breaking open drawers for Mr Boyd to
find the will, and that he bumt it. All I did was to put locks on the doors and
come away, but I was seen going in to the house, as the people were going
to the Chapel, and seen going to the house with my bag of tools'
The next [52 Malew Street] was occupied by Miss Julia
Boyd and her brother James.
The next [54 Malew Street] was the house of the Misses
Jeffcott's, sisters of High Bailiff Jeffcott. This house yard
goes down to Hope St. It was bought by a Mr. Preston, a
farmer, who started a coal yard at [the] Hope St. end, but
gave up the coal yard and went back to farming. The yard
was taken over by Messrs. R. T. Kneen and Sons. House
now occupied by Mr. Corkill, smith.
The next house was that of Mr. G. Quilliam who was carter
at the Railway Station. The yard of this house also goes
down to Hope St. and Mr. Quilliam had his stable at the
lower end. I worked in this house when I was an apprentice.
Now occupied by his daughter Mrs. Nash.
The first tenant I remember in the next was a Mr. Leece,
one of whose sons served his time as a joiner with my father
and is now working in Douglas.
56-58 Malew Street. The houses at the junction with Mill Street have
been rebuilt as a part of a sheltered housing complex. Millhope Close,
completed in 2000. Cooper adds some further memories of occupants
along Mill Street
The next on the entrance to Mill St. was occupied by Mr.
Comish, who was foreman at Scarlett Quarry. It now
belongs to the cinema.
There were two houses, ruined, where the cinema now
stands. I remember Mr. Quilliam, Stonecutter, living on one
side. He had a yard on the opposite side of the street. He
also kept cows and sold sand which was put on the floors in
those days. He went by the name of Quilliam the Sandman.
An old Pensioner, Caugherty, his wife and two sons lived in
another - this house is now a ruin.
James Leyland and his sister, he was a mason with Flaxney
Stowell. A family named Christian with four sons and two
daughters - the sons were all sailors going foreign and went
by the names of Pauly, Hamond, Briggs and Toby.
Harry Coffin, the cobbler, who went by the name of Harry
Juan Bob. House now in ruins.
John Bell, who lived in the last house on the left and had a
mill on the right side, taught in the Wesleyan Sunday
School, when I was a small lad. He tried to teach us Manx
and we managed to be able to count up to ten.
There was also a back entrance to Mr. Cubbon,
stonecutter's yard in Hope St. Also the bakehouse and yard
of Mr. Stephen Gelling, baker.
The Pavilion, Royal or Cosy Cinema. The Pavilion was built by the
brothers Dicky and John Cubbon before the First World War, a multi-
purpose building used for roller-skating and concerts or as a boxing ring.
Later films were shown there and, by the 1920s, it became the Royal,
later known as the Cosy Cinema. It finally closed in 1964 and the
building was taken over by the Strix factory. 2 Mill Street still remains.
The rest, including the derelict cottages mentioned by Cooper, were
demolished for the Millhope Close development.
The property on the opposite to Mill St. [60-64 Malew
Street] was owned by Mr. Stephen Gelling, baker, who had
a baker's shop. This property extended from a small house
in Malew St. to the first house in Mill St. When Mr. Gelling
died he left the property to his son, Bill, who worked in the
shop with him. Some person told Mr. Tom Gelling, who
worked with my father as a joiner, that Mr. Gelling could
not leave it to his son, Bill, as the property belonged to his
wife, who died without a will, and that the property
belonged to him, as he was the son of Mr. Gelling's eldest
son, and he went to law over it and won the case. He held
on to the property as long as he lived, hoping that the
Commissioners would buy it to widen Malew St. which
they have not done. It has other owners now.
The small house in Malew St was occupied by a family
named Lewin, a widow with a son and three daughters.
The next old building was Flynn's Marine Store.
The hotel was kept by Mr. John Flynn and afterwards by his
wife Bridget.
66-70 Malew Street. This was the Band Room and Victoria Hotel,
demolished in the 1980s for the Millhope Close development. An arched
passage through no. 68 provides access from Malew Street.
Castletown Metropolitan Silver Band used the upstairs floor of the old
warehouse for practices from 1935 until they removed to Queen Street
in 1954. Below was Cody Cubbon's garage and repair shop. Edwin
Cuibbon remembers that hard hats were required during rehearsals as
mortar regularly fell down on them!
The next house was occupied by Mr. McMullen whose wife
was a daughter of Mr. Flynn.
The first tenant I remember in the next [74 Malew Street]
was a Mr. Gray who worked at Scarlett Quarry. Afterwards
a Mr. Robert Kewley when he gave up the coal yard. When
he died, the Rev. John Kewley, his son, got promoted from
Arbory to Andreas. Mrs Kewley went to live with him at
Andreas, and when the Rev. John returned, they came back
to live in it.
Rev. John Kewley was Vicar of Arbory 1891-1912. He retired as
Archdeacon Kewley in 1938 and died 1941.
The next [76 Malew Street] was the house of the Primitive
Methodist Ministers, and when they moved out, it was sold
to a Mrs Caley whose daughter still lives in it.
The next [78a and b Malew Street] was the house of Mrs
Cain who kept a small shop and also kept cows - these had
to go through the house to the cowhouse. Her daughter, Mrs
Quayle, had the house made into two, but still lives in one
part of it. Mrs. Cain went by the name of Betty the Crib.
She was a widow when she married Mr. Cain - her first
husband was named Cubbon. (Mrs. Quayle died lately.)
The first tenant I remember in the next house [80 Malew
Street] was a Mr. Bridson, tailor, who went by the name of
Bridson Clippings I have been told that he lived in this
house before coming to Arbory St. but that was before my
The next house [82 Malew Street]- the first tenant I
remember was a Mr. Kermode, who was a driver for
Taggart the grocer. He also kept cows that had to go
through the house to the cowhouse.
The cows in the town could obviously cause a nuisance. In July 1894, the
Commissioners decided that the 'cow keepers of the Town be informed
that the Commissioners cannot allow the depositing of manure in the
streets in the summer whenever they clean their premises.'
The next [84 Malew Street] was the home of my aunt, my
father's eldest sister who had been married twice, first to a
man called Eagan, later to a Mr. Kelly. When she died she
left the house to another sister, Miss Alicia Cooper, and
sometime later Mr. Cubbon, saddler, who had gone to
Douglas to live, came to see my father with a Mr. Kelly
who claims the house as his. After some haggling my father
bought the house on mortgage from Kelly. It is still in our
The next [86 Malew Street] was the house of Tom and
John Costain, who were masons and worked for Mr.
Flaxney Stowell, and their two sisters.
The next was occupied by Mr. T. Preston, baker, with the
Misses Clague, and afterwards was occupied by Mr. W.
Corrin, the painter, until he moved to his father's house
lower down the street.
88 Malew Street 'Corris'. Like many of the houses in this part of Malew
Street it has been renovated and perhaps partly rebuilt. It is by no
means certain that what we see is what Cooper remembered here. In
another context Cooper tells about Mrs. Preston: 'When we were
children we would be over seeing my aunts, and if playing with the other
children in the street and their youngest son was playing with us, his
mother would come to the door and shout "Harry, come in and don't
play with that cat tribe." My pet name was Henny and it was also put on
their son Harry, who was never called it by themselves, and whenever
Mrs Preston saw me she would tackle me about allowing people to call
me by that name. The name stuck to their son all his life and to me also.
Their eldest son, Willie, who worked with my father and was also a
joiner, always called me Bill; he was not allowed to call me Henny
The next [90] was occupied by Mr. H. Cubbon, sawyer, and
afterwards by his son Richard, joiner. Mr. Cubbon had five
sons, all of whome were good craftsmen. Harry, butcher;
John, mason; Neddy, stonecutter, Richard, joiner; Charles
The next was occupied by Mr. T. Anderson for a good
many years and is now occupied by one of his daughters.
This house has been demolished.
The next was Mr. Robert Corkill's house - it was a thatched
house and is now a ruin. Mr. Corkill had a carter's
business, but was made overseer of Malew Highroads and
removed to Ballasalla, and the house went to ruin.
94 Malew Street. This was the home of Ted Shimmin who died in
November 2000. It has now been virtually rebuilt with an extension at
the back.
The next was the house of Thos John Clague and his
mother. Mr. Clague was a mason with Mr. Lace, and when
his mother died he married Mrs. Cretney's daughter and
went to live on the Promenade.
The many changes here makes it impossible to relate Cooper's text to
the houses in this part of Malew Street, now numbered 98-106.
The next was occupied by Miss Mary Gell, who kept a
huckster's shop - she afterwards went to live with the
Blackburns, two door further on.
I have no recollection of anyone living at the next but it
belonged to Mr. John Welch.
The next belonged to Mrs Quilliam~ mother of R. E. E.
Quilliam, and the first tenant I remember was Miss Susan
Cleator who was a friend of Mrs Quilliam.
The next was occupied by Mr. Tom Creer after he moved
from Red Gap.
The next was occupied by Mr. Tom Corlett, mason, at that
time working with my father.
In one of the houses here, 100 Malew Street, lived Keith Clare, The Bird
Man, a falconer and painter of birds.
Paradise Lane. It is said that the Apostles' Bridge got its name because
it leads to the Saints in Paradise. The 'Saints' being the family of that
name which owned a lot of land in this part of Castletown, and
'Paradise', the name for the area where nightsoil was deposited. A
typically sly example of Castletown humour.
The next was above Paradise Lane and was occupied by a
widow, Mrs. Kinrade, who had two sons who were deaf and
dumb - one was tall and the other short and they went by
the names of Big Dumby and Little Dumby. They went to
the mackerel and herring fishery and afterwards to
I do not remember who lived in the row of little houses, but
one of them was burnt out and the woman who lived in it
Another was occupied by a mason named Christian who
went by the name of Jacko. He was in the habit of going to
relatives in Douglas for Christmas and one year there was
no sign of him coming back, and the neighbours went for
the police, who burst open the door and found him sitting
on the edge of the bed. He had been dead for some weeks.
The two tall houses here were owned by Mrs. Alexander,
whose husband was an army pensioner. They lived in one,
and the other was occupied by Mr. Thomas Bridson, hostler
at the George Hotel. He afterwards moved to the other side
of the street. When the Alexanders died the property was
bought by Mr. John Cubbon, mason, whose daughters still
live in it.
I have no recollection of who lived in the next; it was
owned by Mr. E. Martin and Mr. Tom Corlett, mason,
afterwards bought it from him and lived in it.
Ellerslie House was empty most of my young days; it was
occupied by a Mr. Crellin, retired farmer from the Friary,
for a short time until he moved to Derbyhaven - he was
drowned in a boating accident at Fort Island, his body being
the only one found, the other two, Looney and the Rev.
Gordon, never heard of afterwards.
Ellerslie. E. Peach Market Garden was here for a long time. They
closed down in 1999 to make way for the Ellerslie Gardens, housing
development, completed 2004.
An entry in Brown's Directory 1894 reveals that Henry Bloom Noble
was the proprietor at the time when Edward Crellin lived here. A rateable
value £35 indicates that it was a substantial estate at this time.
The next house was occupied by a man named Kennaugh
whose wife went by the name of Jenny Redheels.
The garden was owned by Mr. H. E. Gelling, advocate
whose son, Robert, afterwards built a house on it and still
lives there.
Others I remember living here in this part of Malew Street,
called Kione e balla, was a Mr. Curphey, sailor, and his
three sons.
The top house was occupied by the Kennaughs; afterwards
a farmer named Quayle who went by the name of Jonnie
Ma-Ma - he had two sons, one emigrated to Canada.


22 Stowell, P. L. 1972 `Methodism in Castletown', Castletown Methodist Church, Souvenir Brochure, Trustees of the Castletown Methodist Church.

23 For a recent account of Kewish case, Creer, Hampton, Never to Return, 2000, Manx Heritage Foundation, 106-109.

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