A rather blighted area between Grimwade Street and Star Lane
(not counting 'Transport House': the UNITE Union offices on the corner)
contains the former Portia Engineering works which specialised in
wrought iron gates and the old Peter's Ice Cream shop and works.
The former Peter's Ice Cream shop at 52-58 Grimwade Street in
rectliniear 1930s style, boarded up for many years. The strip above the
shop door used to display the letters: 'PETERS'.
A view over the fencing at the side. From left: tower of St Clement's
Church, Portia Engineering building, in the background flats built
behind The Foyer on Star Lane. The single span structure is in a sorry
state, but still bears the lettering:
Peters Ice Cream was founded in 1897 by Maria and Napoleone
Zagni in the kitchen of a house in Rope Walk. The company is still
operating, but now based at Holly Lodge, London Road. These buildings
and land were sold in 2012. The story of ice cream manufacture here is
one of the, perhaps unlikey, trades to emerge from the large area of
poor housing in the Rope Walk area known as 'The Potteries' in the
later 19th century. The story is told in Grace, F.: Rags & bones (see Reading List).
From the car park beside the UNITE office (Transport
House) next door we see:
with the cursive 'Peter's' plus the word 'ICE' all but weathered
away; 'EST. 1897'
[UPDATE summer 2013: the
Peter's site is being worked on and it remains to be seen what will
happen to the lettered structures.]
[UPDATE 21.12.2013: A
watercolour of Upper Orwell Street by W.J. Leggett (1856-1936)
– see Links under the 'Painted wall signs'
heading – features The
Eagle public house (the taller building which still bears the 'Palmer's
Mats' sign shown on the Martin &
page with 'The Eagle' itself signed on a blank window on the first
floor). To the left of the pub entrance is a shop bearing the sign:
PETERS . PARLOUR MAID
The Quality Italian ICE CREAM of EAST ANGLIA
Also Carlo's Diabetic Low Calorie Desert Ices
John Bulow-Osborne writes: "The large building ... was then
partly occupied by Signor Zagni, who made and sold ice cream. He
later moved his business just around the corner to Grimwade Street,
where its derelict premises may still be seen, as 'Peter's Ice Cream'.]
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throughout the Ipswich
Historic Lettering site: Borin Van Loon
No reproduction of text or images without express written permission