John Lewis Building Limited, Southampton

Photo:A garage in Southampton, partly constructed by John Lewis Building

A garage in Southampton, partly constructed by John Lewis Building


By Jonathan Blatchford

Southampton based building firm

Between the years 1944 to 1963, John Lewis had its own building company. John Lewis Building was commissioned to take on any construction task or repairs at any of the department stores and other John Lewis buildings. The company was originally based in Southampton, and took on work where it was needed at Leckford and Longstock. But it was soon realised that having the company based in the South of England was in no way cost effective. Many projects for the company would have involved copious amounts of travel, a waste of time and money. Getting equipment to other areas of the country meant that in reality that it was cheaper for the Partnership to use a firm local to the project.

Going external

So the decision was taken to offer the services of John Lewis Building to projects outside of the business. The picture opposite shows a new car showroom, being built in Southampton as part of a new three-storey building. John Lewis Building was one of the new contractors.


However in 1964, the Partnership decided to close the John Lewis Building Company. After an extended trial of twenty years, it had become apparent that the unit was not able to attain an acceptable minimum level of profit. Of it twenty five Partners, some managed to find work elsewhere in the Partnership.

This page was added by Jonathan Blatchford on 25/09/2014.
Comments about this page

My father drove the lorry for the building dept. then went on to work in the cpt store in Northam.

By Reggie Morris
On 26/03/2015