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Fire Station and Martins - 11-13 Holyrood Street

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The original site for the fire station was in the Guildhall. The photo, from 1905, shows the type of horse drawn equipment available for fire fighting.

It is likely that fires at properties outside the immediate town would probably have been destroyed because of the time it would have taken to raise the alarm, assemble the firemen, to harness the horses and make the journey to the site of the fire.

The fire station then moved to Holyrood Street and half the site was used for the fire engine and equipment and the other half housed three firemen.

In 1936 the fire station moved to Crowshute House, then to the site where Tesco is situated in 1976, before moving to its permanent site off Avishayes Road with 20 on-call staff. Meanwhile, 11-13 Fore Street became a private house until the 1970s.

Many remember the site then being occupied by Martins of Chard. Owned by Bill and Mary Plumridge and latterly run by their son Mark until the closure of the shop in 2022, it catered for all diy needs including wallpapers, paints, tiles and flooring.

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