Arber & Co Printing Works was on Roman Road in Tower Hamlets for 117 years. The shop closed in 2014 and in its final years was run by Gary Arber, the grandson of the founder at that premises, Walter Francis Arber. The business was initially started by Gary’s greatgrandfather
Charles in nearby Tredegar Road, as he made paper bags and wanted to incorporate printing
onto them. Along with the printing the shop also sold toys, and is also thought to have printed posters and leaflets for the Suffragettes. Arber & Co printed using letterpress and even in the later days printed for local businesses including shops and taxi firms.

Gary Arber in his workshop
Gary Arber in the compositors’ room of his shop, formerly the family parlour. 2014 © Amy Freeborn
View of Arber & Co shopfront
Gary Arber’s shop on Roman Road, which closed in 2014 © Amy Freeborn