83-93 High Street, Winchester, about 1885

83-93 High Street, Winchester

Winchester City Museums hold well over 1,000 photographs taken by William Savage in the later nineteenth century.

This street scene on the north side of Winchester’s High Street just below the Westgate includes an interesting range of businesses. In the foreground is The Star Inn, its uneven roof and the jetty overhanging at first floor level on the west side hinting at its medieval origins. Two doors down from there are the printers and publishers Warren and Son, first established in Winchester in 1835 and still at 85 High Street operating as a stationer’s shop. Then there are the premises of a cutler, two drapers, a grocer, an army outfitter and a bank.

Quite a lot of the architecture seen here survives, including the attractive bow windows at 86-87 High Street, although The Star Inn was demolished not long after this photograph was taken.

The image was taken by William Savage, a professional Winchester photographer with premises lower down the High Street and also at Southgate Road (now St Michael’s Road), where he had a specially built studio attached to his home.

Winchester City Museums hold well over 1,000 photographs taken by William Savage in the later nineteenth century. A selection can be viewed in the “Gallery” section.

Quick Facts

  • Photographer William Savage
  • Medium photographic print on paper
  • Accession number WINCM:PWCM 3565
  • Date taken about 1885
  • Dimensions Original print Height 18cm (7in), Width 23cm (9in)


  • The side road leads to the Staple Garden area which has a long history.  Evidence of Iron Age round houses dating back three centuries before the Romans came to Britain in 43 AD has been found as well as graves of, possibly, the ninth century.  In the fourteenth century Winchester was one of a handful of towns where the wool staple was set up to control the export of wool - the country’s most important product - and the collection of dues on it for the king. The city’s wool staple business was sited here, giving the area its name.
  • Thomas Stopher, a Winchester architect who wrote a book about some of the city’s streets at the end of the nineteenth century and also designed the building which replaced The Star Inn, records that when the building was demolished  “Three skeletons were found in digging for the foundations of the new building, all buried in an upright squatting position….They were evidently very early burials.”

Did you know?

Winchester City Museums has over 40,000 photographs in its collection.


William Savage
83-93 High Street - 2011

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