Pooley's Grand Pavilion Hotel

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Pooley's Grand Pavilion Hotel at Greve de Lecq was a fashionable establishment in the late 19th century, when it was run by Rodney Pooley. It was one of the first properties in St Ouen to be connected to the telephone exchange, having been allocated the number '3' by the National Telephone Company in 1900.

From the earliest days of the island's tourism industry in the 19th century, Greve de Lecq was a popular destination for visitors, and a number of hotels were built in the bay. The most popular of them at the turn of the century was Pooley's Pavilion, also known as the New Pavilion or simply The Pavilion. It appears for the first time in a census in 1891, under the management of Rodney Pooley, but was clearly open some years earlier. We have an 1887 advertisement below and other photographs show that the building dates from at least 1880, and possibly a few years earlier. It was certainly not there in 1868. In 1891 Mr Pooley was a 41-year-old man from Surrey. He had died by the 1901 census and his sister Charlotte, born in London in 1859, is recorded as hotel proprietress. The hotel was a popular venue for visitors and Mr Pooley seems to have been a very caring employer, leaving various individual legacies in his will to members of hotel staff. He first appears in the 1881 census as a visitor at the home of Alfred de Veulle at 45 David Place. By 1891 he has married Elizabeth, who was born in Grouville. Rodney was probably the son of Alexander Pooley and Eliza, of Clapham, Surrey. The hotel was later destroyed by fire and rebuilt. Then in the 1980s the site became Caesar’s Palace, a venue for live shows and cabaret. In the late 19th century and early 20th it was popular not only with visitors, who would arrive by carriage from St Helier Harbour and be taken on island tours in horse-drawn charabancs, but also with local people for dinners, weddings and other celebrations. Many Militia functions were held there with the participants posing for photographs outside. The hotel site has long since been redeveloped for housing, but the Greve de Lecq Barracks opposite still remain
A picture taken in 1884. On the rug at the front is Horace Ransom, great-grandfather of David Ransom, who sent us the picture. Horace was born in Islington, London, in 1860. His father Henry Ransom ran a drapery business at 40 Upper Street, Islington. In 1884 Horace was still single, working as a clerk, and living in Barnes, Surrey, with his retired parents. Horace married Sarah Annie Baker in 1889. David Ransom (printerspie@gmail.com) would appreciate hearing from anybody who can provide further information about the photograph.
1887 advert
A Royal Paragon charabanc outside Pooleys in the 1870s
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