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Town Trail Point 20

The Poplars - Council Offices

Photograph of the Poplars in 2008
Right - The Poplars in 2008

Frederick Preston and his first wife Jane moved to Burton Latimer in 1878 acquiring ‘The Poplars’ which was then a small old house on the High Street.  This he later enlarged. 

Photograph of Mr and Mrs F W Preston outside The Poplars in 1912
Mr and Mrs F W Preston outside The Poplars in 1912

A successful businessman and engineer, Mr. Preston was joint Managing Director of Kettering Furnaces until 1908 when he retired after making his fortune.  At his death in 1913, he left £64,000, which at today’s values would be more than £6 million.  Frank William Preston was 77 and after his death Anna Maria lived on at The Poplars until 1942, when she died aged 92.

The Poplars was purchased by the late Alderman A G Miller for a sum something in excess of £4,000 and later that same year became the Council Offices.  In more recent time the paddock became a bowling green (see Trail Point 20) , and the kitchen garden is now the public car park.  The stone stable-block bearing the date 1898 became public conveniences (now a restaurant). Click here for more information about the Preston Family.

The public library was housed in The Poplars from the 1940's until 1973. (Click here for more on library services in Burton). The Town Council Chamber remained at the house until September 2010, when it transferred to the new Civic Centre, housed in the former Health Centre in the High Street. Kettering Borough Council Office for administration had relocated to the Town Library (Trail Point 25) in 2009.

Photograph of the Library and Council Offices
Library and Council Offices

In 1962 the War Memorial was relocated from The Cross to the grassed area in front of The Poplars until within twenty years the memorial was returned to more or less its original location at the High Street/Church Street junction.
Photograph of the War memorial located in front of The Poplars
War memorial located in front of The Poplars

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