'British Empire' building marked

THE latest Blue Plaque, marking out places of historic interest, was unveiled by Exmouth s mayor Darryl Nicholas this week on a building which in its heyday embodied the British Empire.

THE latest Blue Plaque, marking out places of historic interest, was unveiled by Exmouth's mayor Darryl Nicholas this week on a building which in its heyday embodied the British Empire.

The building that now houses The Clipper in The Strand was in the late 18th Century used as a Tea Warehouse for one of the world's first multi-nationals, the East India Company.

The East India Company traded mainly in cotton, silk, indigo dye, saltpeter, tea, and opium.

But it also came to rule large swathes of India, exercising military power to the exclusion, gradually, of its commercial interests.


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Michael Gittiins, Chairman of the Exmouth Society, said: "The company used the route from Exmouth to London, by coach and horses; this being quicker than passing through Bristol.

"At that time tea was a scarce and valuable commodity; the quicker it reached the sellers the higher the price.

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"After 1810, when the 'Tea Bubble' burst, the premises became a high class grocer's shop.

"In 1955, the full licence was taken up, the premises becoming Leonard's Bar until modernised and renamed, returning its associations with the tea trade."

The Exmouth Society has been marking Exmouth's heritage by placing Blue Plaques on some of its most historic and interesting buildings.

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