This area of our collection is designed to collect significant changes in today’s South Holland people, places and events which will form tomorrow’s history. Our first entry records the changes in the Dryden shop. 

DRYDEN & Son, the prominent Spalding jeweller established in 1927 by William Dryden.

William was born in Falmouth where he served his apprentice ship before moving to Buckingham as a watchmaker. It was here that he met Mr G W Gibbs, who moved to Spalding and founded Gibbs, the shoe shop.

Through his friendship with Mr Gibbs, William Dryden followed to Spalding and took work as a watchmaker to Henry Lamming in Hall Place. When he started his own business in 1927 it was in a small in Victoria Street. He was joined by his, Ernest in 1929.

They moved to larger premises in the town’s Sheep Market just before the Second World War, at the end of which they moved to the Market Place. But it wasn’t until 1976 when Millet’s the camping shop, left Spalding that the size of the shop was doubled.

Ken Dryden joined the company in 1955, his brother John in 1962 and Richard in 1965.

Over the years the family has taken over several local jewellers and had shops in Spalding, Holbeach, Wisbech and Stamford the latter traded under the name of Rodgers & Son.

Ken Dryden trained as a watchmaker and qualified as a Fellow of the British Horological Institute in 1958. In May 1987. Both Ken and Richard passed exams for the Retail Jewellers Diploma. Ken received top marks in the country and was awarded the Greenbough trophy at the Goldsmiths Hall in London.