H.B. Hammond opened their doors to the public on March 22nd 1912 under the ownership of Horace Barfoot Hammond. The first day’s takings were 4/6d and on the next (a Saturday) they took 8/6d. On Christmas Eve takings were £14-0s-3d and in their first year of trading they took £459-1s-11d.
The outbreak of World War I saw Mr Hammond serve in the army in France and in his absence the business was carried on by Mrs Hammond. After World War I, Mr Hammond returned from the army and in 1925 he qualified as an optician. Hammonds then became both jewellers and opticians.
Mr Aubry Hammond, H.B. Hammond’s son, joined the business in 1928 and qualified as a member of the British Horological Institute as well as an optician. With the outbreak on the Second World War in 1939 Mr Aubrey Hammond joined the RAF and was invalided out in 1945.
Mr Aubrey Hammond’s son Graham joined the business after his national service in 1956, having first served an apprenticeship at Meaders in Bournemouth. Mr Aubrey Hammond died in 1968 and his son, Graham, retired in 1996. The business then transferred to Mr Michael O’Brien who had been employed there since 1964.
Together with his wife Frances, their daughter Beth and the manager, Mr Alan Rhys Jones, he continues to run this highly successful independent business to the same high standards set by the Hammonds family.