Pre-Partnership - Lewis' Ltd Bristol

A page from the Gazette, showing two images of the Lewis' store, and below it, a map of the Broadmead

Catalogue of successes

Lewis’ Ltd Bristol was just one eleven department stores in the Lewis’ group. In the 1920’s, Lewis’ became pioneers of a central buying system for their department stores, and as a general rule their stores far exceeded the average size of the Partnership’s own. Despite a long and varied history, and a catalogue of successes behind them, the Bristol branch had run its course by the 1980. In stepped the Partnership to overhaul the existing building and ways of the business, and install their own established and highly successful practises.

The Partnership’s West Country ambition

The John Lewis Partnership up until the beginning of the 80’s, had no presence in the West Country whatsoever. It had been a long term Partnership intention to establish itself in this area of the world since the original expansion in the thirties. Up until this point however, an opportunity had never arisen.

Purchasing Lewis’

This all changed in the year 1980. Lewis Ltd Bristol, a department store based in the area known as The Broadmead, was to cease trading in 1981. It was quickly arranged that the Partnership would buy the premises, on which would be built John Lewis Bristol. This was announced in the Gazette of the 13th September 1980.

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