Henry James Channell was a hairdresser in Sydney with two salons in Park and George Streets.1 In 1907 he and his brother Arthur bought land at the Waukivory Subdivision,2 and by 1909 he had moved to Gloucester and erected two brick shops on the corner of Denison and Church Streets.3 Apart from the Commercial Hotel these shops were the first brick buildings in Gloucester.4 It was here that Channell opened his hairdressing and tobacconist business.5
Between 1913 and 1916, Channell handed over his business to August G Reichert Senior and Channell appears to have dropped out of Gloucester town life for a while.6 However in 1916, Channell took back his business and renamed it ‘H J Channell: Hairdresser, Tobacconist, Fancy Goods & Newsagent’.7 Channell was among the early newsagents in Gloucester and was thought to be the one of the oldest family owned newsagencies in NSW.8
Since the shop’s original construction, there have been many alterations to accommodate changing business ventures and modernisation. In 1929 Channell built a brick billiard room at the rear of his barber’s shop which proved to be very popular.9 1934 saw a major renovation with a new shopfront and verandah and the removal of a central interior wall.10 Further major renovations occurred in 1962 and again during the 1980s.11
Henry Channell and his wife Jessie both died in 1962.12 By that time the business was being carried on by Channell’s son William James ‘Jim’ and his wife Doris, and then later by their son Peter and his wife Marcia. On 2 December 2018 Peter and Marcia sold to Lovey’s Grocers ending 109 years of a family business – one of the oldest continuous family businesses in Gloucester’s history.13
Author: Janine Roberts
1 Sydney Morning Herald, 3 August 1907, 11 & 3 April 1909, 3.
2 NSW Land Registry Service Bk-No: 842-543; Bk-No: 842-544.
3 Gloucester Advocate, 15 May 1909, 8; NSW LRS Bk-No: 928-891.
4 Various articles from a search of NLA’s trove website.
5 Gloucester Advocate, 15 May 1909, 8.
6 Gloucester Advocate,8 February 1913, 6.
7 Gloucester Advocate,11 October 1916, 4.
8 Gloucester Advocate,24 December 1910, 7; Gloucester Advocate,16 December 1911, 5; Gloucester’s Book of Memories, p. 58.
9 Building application 12829/1929, viewed at Gloucester Museum; Gloucester Advocate,7 January 1930, 2.
10 Building application 16/1934, viewed at Gloucester Museum; Gloucester Advocate, 16 October 1934, 1.
11Gloucester’s Book of Memories, p. 58.
12 NSW BDM, death index Nos. 30315/1962 & 9934/1962.