Pontings was a department store located at Kensington High Street, London. It was established as a “retail fancy goods and silk business” by brothers, William, Sydney and John Ponting in 1873.
In 1898 the business was turned into a limited company and embarked on a policy of rapid growth, but almost immediately William Ponting died and the direction of the enterprise disappeared.
In 1899 – 1901, Pontings replaced their makeshift premises facing the High Street with a wholly new store building. The new store included a large basement and four full storeys above ground. The basement was for heavy goods, carpets, ironmongery and glass; the ground floor housed “fancy goods”; the first floor was for millinery, capes, costumes and mantles. The floor above was used to house the 120 or so sales assistants.
Severe financial problems for Pontings culminated in the company going into liquidation in 1906.
John Barker & Co bought the business at a bargain price of £84,000 in April 1907. Barkers did not neglect Pontings in their early years of ownership and the store continued to have its own distinctive image.
In 1957 Barkers was acquired by the House of Fraser and the Pontings department store was closed down in 1971. The premises were subsequently demolished and a new complex was built in their place.