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4 The Square, Richmond, TW9 1DZ

Sipping your coffee in the Richmond branch of Coffeeology, you may question this peculiar building tucked away on the side of Eton Street which made up part of the town’s Square. The coffee shop building was once part of the town’s fire station, which now also houses Dexters estate agents .

Don’t spit out your hot drink when I tell you that this building which is to the left of the clock tower, actually served initially as the town’s mortuary before it became an extension to the fire station itself.

The Fire Stations construction in 1870, was prompted by the disastrous fire at the Star and Garter. A full-time fire captain was also employed to lead the essentially volunteer brigade. Perhaps it is his head carved in stone and wearing the distinctive helmet which can be seen above where the doors once were. There is also a plaque which reads Richmond Fire Brigade Station 1870 and another stonehead below.

The building ceased operation as a fire station in 1932.