Topic: Leach Street (DN 04/07/2009)

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Leach Street 

Another Director of the Plymouth Company whose name lives on in a New Plymouth street is George Leach, Esq. Records indicate Leach lived in Penlee Villa, Stoke and was appointed a Director on 25th January 1840.

Little else is known about him, although he possessed the title of "Esquire".  Such a title was bestowed upon those who were considered worthy as a Knights Shield Bearer and, who in turn, could become Knights themselves.  Those that did not take up their Knighthood became holders of a Knights estate and in later times became known as "The Squire".  The Squire was the principal landowner within a Parish.  It is probable that this title made him a useful candidate, politically, to be a Plymouth Company director.

Leach seemed to be a very private person for much of his life, but was not averse to the occasional social gathering. He is known to have attended a dinner to farewell the second of the Plymouth Company ships, the Amelia Thompson.  This gathering included the ships cabin passengers, amongst them the soon to be prosperous, but ill-fated Captain Henry King. The gathering was held at Whiddow's Royal Hotel, on 19th March 1841, six days prior to their departure.   The meal, prepared by Mrs Whiddow was described as "consisting of every luxury that could be desired".  Although a number of directors offered toasts to the safe voyage, Leach was not one of them.  Possibly he chose to bid farewell with a few private thoughts.

Today, Leach Street provides a vital transport route through the New Plymouth CBD.  It includes the Leach Street Bridge, built in 1976 providing an important but unobtrusive solution to traffic flow.  It is a bit like George really- an unobtrusive conduit for our settlement. 


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Leach Street (DN 04/07/2009)

City:New Plymouth