Originally a branch of Misslebrook and Weston, grocers, based in Newport, the premises were owned by a Mr Way and were rented to William Orchard from 1865 for an annual rent of £50. Originally Mr Way had Alexandra House built as a private residence around 1845.
Cover of the conditions of sale document for Alexander House.
In 1867 William Orchard had the opportunity to buy the business outright when it was put up for auction. The auction was held at Murrow's Hotel, Freshwater Bay, now known as the Albion Hotel.
William Orchard was the successful bidder and with the help of his son, William Thomas, now 23 years old, he started to expand the business which was then known as "Orchard and Son".
Fragment of an original poster for the auction sale of Alexandra House.
Architect's plans of 1862 showing the shop, bakehouse and stables.