French’s Dairy, Cawnpore Street

French’s Dairy, Cawnpore Street

Thomas French was born in 1827.  His cows were a regular sight being taken up/down Gipsy Hill to graze in the meadow/‘French’s Field’ at the bottom of Gipsy Hill. Thomas French appears to be a generous man, on 2 July 1910, he donated a pedigree heifer to a stall at a Country Fair at the Botanic Gardens, London, in aid of‘Our Dumb Friends’ League, which sold for £2,000.

French’s Dairy on corner of Gipsy Hill and Cawnpore Street


Advertisement for French’s Dairy from the Norwood News

To invalids – For Sale or Hire, a fine goat in full milk, without the kidApply for terms, Railway Bell, George Street, Gipsy Hill, Norwood

72 & 74 Gipsy Hill, Upper Norwood Thomas French, Proprietor High Class dairy produce only. Noted for Pure, Rich Milk. Inspection of the Jersey Herd and Working Dairy Specially Invited. Under Strict Medical and Veterinary Supervision Tel: 772 SYD. (‘Our Dumb Friends’ League’ Founded in 1897 was later renamed The Blue Cross Animal Chari

Reported in the Norwood News 28 April 1877:

Crime at French’s Dairy


CONTAGIOUS DISEASES Act – At the Lambeth Police Court on Thursday, Thomas French, Dairyman, Gipsy Hill, Norwood, and John Pentilan, were summoned for removing 12 cows within the metropolis contrary to the recent orders in Council under the Contagious Diseases (Animals) Act.  Police Constable 378P stated that on the day named in the summons, the 14th inst; he saw the defendant Pentilan, driving some cows from Leather Bottle Lane, Croydon, towards Gipsy Hill, Norwood.  He stopped him at Church Road which is the boundary fixed by the Metropolitan Board of Works and told him he was acting illegally and explained the penalty he was liable to if he persisted in removing the cattle beyond the boundary.  He told him his master Mr French had told him to drive the cattle to Gipsy Hill within the Metropolitan area prescribed by the Order in Council. The defendant French said that he called at the police station seven or eight days before the alleged offence and was informed that he could take cattle within the Metropolitan district.  Inspector Eastwood stated, since the information mentioned and before the day of the offence, an Order in Council had been issued in consequence of the outbreak of the cattle plague.  That Order prohibited the entry of store cattle into London from the country.  The constable in the case was specially placed at the point where he saw the cattle.  Mr Ellison required the defendant French to pay 20 shillings and costs and the other defendant the costs only.  The money was paid.