Historic Jersey buildings
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18 Queen Street
General Post Office
Queen Street, St Helier
Type of property
Former town house, then the island's main Post Office, now a shop
No recent transactions
Families and businesses associated with the property
The 1851 census is not clear, but it seems that dressmaker Eliza Coutanche (1828- ) was living here. There is then a gap to 1871, when auctioneer Bernard Hastings was living there. So, too, was James Turpin (1840- ), described as a Post Office civil servant.
This is an indication that Jersey's General Post Office was in Queen Street from 1852 to 1881. George Henry Smith was the postmaster there when it opened.
Although there is no record of the Grand Hotel du Calvados or Hotel Continental operating at No 18, the hotel name was still on the front of the property in 1936, long after the hotel closed. It is possible that the hotel had rooms on the first floor of the premises, connected to No 16.
When the Post Office moved to Broad Street in 1909, auctioneer and estate G Le B Benest moved into No 18, expanding into No 16 when the hotel closed.
This was George Le Bas Benest (1859-1951), who is believed to have taken over the business from his Uncle George Philip Benest (1836-1907), who was shown at No 18 in a 1905 almanac and is believed to have had no children. George was still here in 1930, and in 1940 the business was listed to his sons Cyril John and Philip Labey Benest.
It was then taken over by Langlois, who traded at No 16 from 1950, and C Le Masurier established a Wine Lodge at No 18.
Historic Environment Record entry
An unusual late 19th century premises with interesting detailing on the first floor, contributing positively to the streetscape in overall scale, form and massing. Two storeys, six bays. Rusticated render. Bracketed and moulded render fascia above shopfront. Elaborate first floor has segmental headed windows, separated by pilasters with Ionic capitals and decorative keystones. Frontage likely to have been shaved off for road widening and frontage rebuilt.