Alfred Walter Lapworth (Lapworth & Son)


Lapworth's Stores, High Street, Arundel

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Proprietor of the Arundel Stationery & Fancy Goods Store, High Street and Market Square, Arundel. Born at Winchcombe in Gloucestershire in about 1851, Lapworth was the son of Charles Lapworth, a schoolmaster. By 1881 he had become a printer in Littlehampton, sharing a house in the High Street with his unmarried sisters, Kate and Louisa Lapworth, who both worked as milliners. On September 25, 1882, he married Fanny Jane Peirce in the Parish Church at Arundel. She had been living in Arundel and was the daughter of Joseph Peirce, a tallow chandler. She joined her husband in Littlehampton, which was where their son, Percy Charles L. Lapworth, was born in 1884. By 1891 Alfred Lapworth had moved with his family to Arundel to set up his stationery business. When Percy left school he helped his father run the shop, which by 1911 was renamed Lapworth & Son. Alfred Lapworth died in 1915, aged 64.

Alfred Lapworth sold an exceptionally varied range of cards, including real photographics supplied by John White & Son of Littlehampton, the Tunbridge Wells firm of Photochrom, Mezzotint of Brighton and other publishers. He acted as an agent for White's cards for many years. Some of the real photographic cards that he sold he may even have published himself.

Printed cards included coloured collotypes with wide basal borders and coloured halftones with narrower borders. A view of Arundel Castle combined with the Borough and the Duke of Norfolk's Coats of Arms was printed in Bavaria. Black and white collotypes printed in Germany include views of the Black Rabbit Pub at Offham and Arundel Park. They have captions printed in black in narrow basal borders, with Lapworth's name and address underneath. Other collotype cards show views of Slindon (1907 postmark) and Amberley.

Lapworth published an album entitled One hundred and one views of Arundel, Bognor, Chichester and Littlehampton, which is undated, but probably appeared around 1900.

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