Plumstead Bakery 60 Years of Progress

Published in a Woolwich news paper.Guild Logo
Woolwich, Kent, England 1951


A foggy November morning sixty years ago (1891) bought despondency to a young Mr & Mrs  Clark. Recently married, they had put all their money into a bakery and confectionery business at 152 Plumstead Road and it was the first day of the new business venture.

At the end of the day it was found that the turnover had been very good, and a new business was born.

Things continued to flourish and this year marks its diamond jubilee – now it is J.H. Clark and Sons, Ltd – and the diamond wedding of Mr and Mrs Clark.

60th Wedding anniversary Celebrations with a cake.

Mr Joseph Henshall and Mrs Teresa Ruth (ne Errey) Clark’s 60th Wedding anniversary  celebratory cake.  1952


In 1899 the first branch was opened at 98 Plumstead High Street and was the first shop in the street to have electric lighting.

Other branches were opened later at 6 Lakedale Road, Plumstead and 278 Plumstead High Street, and a limited company was formed in 1915. The business is now controlled J.H. Clark (son of Joseph & Theresa) and his son B.J. Clark (Joseph & Theresa’s Grandson) .

J.H.Clark Bakery

The firms guiding rule has rested on the biblical maxim given to the founder Joseph, by his father-in-law (George Errey) when he opened the business – “Not slothful in business, fervent in spirit, serving the Lord.” Romans chapter 12, verse 11.

Pride is taken in the firm’s ability to produce, from its modern bakery, cakes for all occasions and it recently had the honour of assisting in the production and decoration of the Royal Silver wedding cake.


Rabbits, chickens and pink elephants were on show at the firms bakery last week, but none of the Woolwich  bakers who saw them  were alarmed . For although pink elephants are usually associated with “hang-overs” the creatures were mere  models in marzipan exhibited by Mr Paul Gough official lecturer and demonstrator to the confectionery trade, in his display of Easter eggs and cakes.

With a blob of sweetpaste the a flick of the wrist he can transform it into anything from an animal to a decorative Easter egg. Naturally most of his recipes are secret , but some he obtains from cookery books compiled in Queens Anne’s reign.

One of these early writers of the craft thoughtfully included in his book a chapter  dealing with cures for stomach disorders . Apparently he did no share Mr Gough’s confidence in the quality of his recipes.

The Clark family tree…Clark Family Tree

The Errey family tree…Errey Family tree

A day at the beach for the Clark family in 1900

A day at the beach for the Clark family in 1900.