The history of 16-20 Goosegate
We are housed in the historic Grade II listed building that was once home to Jesse Boot's first store. From these humble beginnings Boots went on to become one of the world's largest chemists chains.
Jesse was born and raised within a stone's throw of Goosegate, and his father, John's first store was a few doors away at number 6 Goosegate. After his father's death, Jesse and his mother took over the family concern. As business thrived, in 1881 Jesse commissioned an architect to turn three properties (numbers 16-20) into one large shop creating one of the first department stores in the world.
Whilst the original store was spread over four stories and a basement, the restaurant now occupies the first floor. The floor to ceiling windows were designed to display wares prominently, a great innovation for the time. Many other original architectural features remain unchanged; part of an original 'Boots Cash Chemist' sign hangs in the dining room and table greenery is displayed in apothecary bottles discovered during the renovation of the building.
In 2015 thanks to the hard work of Nottingham Civic Society, a blue plaque at the entrance to the building was unveiled by Jesse's great grandaughter.