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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
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Quite often on this Forum, people have recorded their memories, often from their childhood, of many interesting SHOPS (or other retail activities such as pubs or cinemas, etc) that have been a major part of their young lives, or their parents or grandparents lives - BUT, they are no longer there.

It is interesting (for example) to sometimes look at the retail activity that is going on in 2010 in a building where you have memories of a VERY DIFFERENT shopping experience in times gone past - in that VERY place!

You look at busy people walking in and out of (say) 'Yates Wine Lodge' on Grainger Street, and you wonder how many of them know the long history of that beautiful old building?

Not many of them, I would imagine . . . and indeed, why should they, and why should they care!

There is no reason for most of them to care, most of us will usually just 'live for today', most of the time. That is what the world is like, and always has been.

But (occasionally) some of us DO care. So for us, this thread (rather than 'clog up' the MAIN Retail Thread) is the ideal place where we can share our memories with others of a like mind, on the subject of Retail Memories from Times Past . . .

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Discussion Starter #2 (Edited)
Anyone remember Mawson Swan and Morgan?

One of the most famous ("has always been there/always will be there") of Newcastle shops.

Part of that unique group of shops that (to me) 'defined' that you were IN NEWCASTLE . . . There aren't many with that feeling about them these days (most shops are just part of a 'could be anywhere' chain) in fact there never were many really . . . but at least there used to be some!

The ones that felt like that to me were . .

CALLERS
FENWICKS
MAWSON SWAN & MORGAN
WINDOWS
ISAAC WALTON

There may have been one or two more?

Sadly, the "has always been there/always will be there" feeling, has not been lived up to, by three out of those five!

They are only my personal selections, particularly strongly felt when I returned home from periods of living away from the Newcastle area.

Does anyone else have any places like the above, that mean 'Newcastle' to them, past or present?

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Ah yes, Isaac Walton's. I meant to ask about that place recently but forgot.

Google Street View

I went in a couple of yours ago to buy a hat and the service was first class! I wondered if there was a long history of that place in Newcastle as it certainly felt like a proper little business that harked back to an age gone by.
 

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Discussion Starter #4 (Edited)
Now, the small Isaac Waltons shop there on Westgate road, is not a place I am really familiar with, though it looks a nice little shop.

They haven't been there long though, the shop that I am referring to in my earlier post is the large premises they had for most of last century, along Grainger Street (on the 'Grainger market' side) near its junction with Market Street.

The only photos I can find at the moment, are of it quite a long time ago, but it was there right up to the early nineties (approx).

It was the place many of us used to get our school uniforms from, I seem to remember!

This is the place . . .


1911 (on the left, with the HUGE all-over-the-building writng of "ISAAC WALTON & CO") . .


1912 . .


1928 . .


1960s . .

ALL PHOTOS courtesy of Newcastle City / City Libraries PHOTOSTREAM Website - http://www.flickr.com/photos/newcastlelibraries/

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Discussion Starter #6 (Edited)
I remember Isaac Waltons though I don't recall ever being in the shop. My school uniform (St. Cuthbert's Grammar School) could only be bought from Raymond Barnes in Grey Street.

I can remember being in Raymond Barnes as a young-un, with my mother, getting my FIRST school uniform.

I remember being on a 'raised area' at the back of the fairly long/narrow shop.

I remember that raised bit at the back, purely because years later (in the mid-1980s) me and Mrs H used to sit in that area in the new 'Fitzgeralds Wine bar', which that shop had then become!!



Fitzy's, shortly after that, also took over premises further down Grey Street, to become the much larger 'Fitzgeralds Pub' that we know today.


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Mind, I remember also getting school stuff (of some sort) from a shop called the North of England School Furnishing (which later became the 'North of England Book & Staionery Company') on Grainger Street, towards the station on the other side from Isaac Walton.

It was located in the premises that (in this recently taken Google Earth Photo) are up for sale/to let . . (think it became an 'Antique Centre' after the School Furnishings closed in the 1980s?)



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I remember the North of England School Furnishing Company where all my school requirements were purchased. When I left school I worked for Gateshead Council in the education department and discovered that the company had a contract to supply all Gateshead schools with everything from pencils to desks and cupboards. The company's head office was in Darlington. I also remember the building when it was an antique centre and I think it might have been called "The Peoples Museum & Antique Centre". The museum bit prompted me to take my grandchildren on a visit. The basement was split in to tiny little shops which looked like they belonged in a Dickens novel. It was a strange mixture of antiques and junk but it was claustrophobic and smelled of damp. I don't think we repeated the experience.
 

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Discussion Starter #9 (Edited)
Beatties.

Modelzone who I think bought them out just don't even come close.

Yes, Beatties was FAR better. I have spent a fair bit of time in there.

Also, there used to be a shop on Blenheim Street called (simply) 'The Model Shop'. It was a small shop-front, but it was on three floors, I think.

You could get anything you wanted there, and I used to sell items in there, as well as buy them. Did anyone on here ever buy any (beautifully) hand-painted small metal 'Napoleonic Soldiers' (British and/or French troops) that I was selling there in the 1970s . . . ?

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Remember my dad (and grandad) always going on about the Model Shop. They used to take me there loads of times. The aircraft hanging from the ceiling were brilliant. It was demolished to make way fir St James Boulevard, moving down opposite the CFL. I used it a lot then when I was into AFV models. Unfortunately they closed down a couple of years ago. Shame,

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Boydells Model and Toy shop on the corner of Croft Street and New Bridge Street (next door to the much-missed Burton House pub) was another terrific shop to press your nose against the glass and wish for one of the aeroplanes with a ‘real’ i.e. glow plug engine in it.
We used to catch the ‘green bus’ back to Wallsend from the stop right outside of the pub, so there was always time to linger outside the shop until the bus came.
Strangely enough the green bus never had a service number as far as I can remember.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
I remember the North of England School Furnishing Company where all my school requirements were purchased. When I left school I worked for Gateshead Council in the education department and discovered that the company had a contract to supply all Gateshead schools with everything from pencils to desks and cupboards. The company's head office was in Darlington. I also remember the building when it was an antique centre and I think it might have been called "The Peoples Museum & Antique Centre". The museum bit prompted me to take my grandchildren on a visit. The basement was split in to tiny little shops which looked like they belonged in a Dickens novel. It was a strange mixture of antiques and junk but it was claustrophobic and smelled of damp. I don't think we repeated the experience.

I was sure that I had a photo of the North of England School Furnishing Co, after it had changed its name (mid-60s?) to the North of England Book & Stationery Co.

I haven't been able to find it yet, but I did find the "modern new shop frontage" (that I was looking for the photo of) clearly featured in an advertisement for the shop, in an Evening Chronicle supplement from 1971 . . .




As this is an advert, I will doubtless feature it soon on the 'Old Adverts' thread, but I thought it's first viewing should be on this thread, as part of our exchanges about this particular shop, that we have had in recent posts.
 

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Discussion Starter #13 (Edited)
Who, apart from me remembers the fabulous Leathards shop, on St Georges Terrace at the top of Acorn Road?

There are still a number of independent shops there, but the pressure grows by the year.
 

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Who, apart from me remembers the fabulous Leathards shop?
(Hand rises). A full range of epicurist foods (since called deli), and with full counter service. Shopped there 2 or 3 times a week.

There are still a number of independent shops there, but the pressure grows by the year.
Two less in Acorn Road this year so far, Fleurtations the florists in March, and Jill Watkin closing her Le Beado accessory shop last month. Also two non-independents closed in the spring, one of the bakers (Milligans, only Greggs left now) and Victoria Wine (Oddbins closed last year, so now no Off Licences left).
All the butchers, veg, dairy produce and newsagents have long gone, and even the thriving Jules B hardly counts as an independent, having has become a bit of a Northern chain store!

But the "growing pressure" is, of course, challenging increases in the rent levied by the few.

It will be clear from my posts on here that I have a strong bias in favour of independent retailling and local shops staffed by people committed to their produce; and am opposed to international retaillers selling imported branded goods by staff who are disconnected from their production. Thats simply my position, so clearly I regret the loss of all the locally-managed independents across all suburbs anywhere in the Economically developed world. But notwithstanding that strongly held belief, I am slightly cheered by the prospect of Waitrose in the heart of Jesmond offering an alternative to Tesco if its really impossible for independents to survive the rates charged by you-know-who.
 

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Discussion Starter #15 (Edited)
(Hand rises). A full range of epicurist foods (since called deli), and with full counter service. Shopped there 2 or 3 times a week.

Excellent that you remember that beautiful shop, and I share some of your feelings about independent stores.

Do you also remember?



The above advert is from a 1971 Evening Chronicle, but I remember this shop (Barnetts, and its predecessors, Stevens Grocers) was here, where SAKS now is (see below photo from Google earth) and that 'Asprey House' next door, was a garage that you had to drive up a ramp to get to part of, on the 1st floor.



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Discussion Starter #16 (Edited)
Inside Woolworths of Northumberland Street.

This is an interesting 'interior photo' of what the big Woolworths on Northumberland Street (next to Fenwicks) looked like a long time ago, in the early 1950s . .




This is the same building (which has just re-opened in 'yet another' guise as the new Peacocks) shown from the outside, as it was in the 1970s . .





Woolworths of Northumberland Street closed in the 1980s, leaving Clayton Street as the only remaining City Centre branch. The other long-standing Woolworth premises in Newcastle were at Gosforth Hight Street, which stayed open until Woolworths themselves ceased trading recently, and at Shields Road, which closed in the 1960s.

There were recently two new (and relatively short-lived) Woolworth stores, at the 'Newcastle Shopping Park' in Byker, and at the MetroCentre.

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Discussion Starter #17
A little piece of genuine 'retail nostalgia', along Sandyford Road, as I remember it from my childhood, before large parts of it were destroyed for the Central Motorway East and Newcastle Poly's 'Education Precinct' of the early 1970s.

The photo is from much earlier, but there were still a lot of little shops like this along Sandyford Road, right up until the 1970s . .

 

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NH, what a wonderful picture of the old lending library. Growing up in the 40s and 50s they were a common sight and most neighbourhoods had one. Ours was a sweet shop with a few rows of books which customers could borrow for a small fee. I tried to find a photograph of the old shop but I searched in vain. It has now gone the way of most corner shops and has been converted in to a not very pretty flat.

Rawling Road Ellams by alfred stone, on Flickr

Courtesy of Google Street View.

Of course the most famous private lending library was Boots, I remember the Newcastle one well. I bought several volumes from them when they closed and sold off their stock which must have been about 1966.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
^^

Alf, very glad you liked the E G Archer corner shop/lending library photo!

Then, seeing the photo you posted about how your old neighbourhood corner shop looks like today, really "triggered off" (and you'll see why!) some of my own, similar, memories.

You see, from the age of two months (and eight days) I lived until the age of four, in a VERY similar corner shop, owned by my parents in West Hartlepool.

Then, in 2007, I went back there for the first time in many years, and it had suffered an almost identical fate as the one you mention, Alf.

Being as my earliest lifetime memories are from our West Hartlepool shop, I was quite upset to find out what had happened to it.

1 - ME, in front of our shop, with my mother . .



2 - The EXACT same spot (that bloke is about to "walk into" my pram!!) taken in 2007 . .



As an aside - the first of the above two photos is now the THIRD photo of me, posted on this forum (if anyone wants to spot me in the street, I haven't changed much!)
 

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I don't think I ever went into his shop, but I've got really fond memories of the Metro Radio adverts that Mr Rahman did for his own tailoring/alteration business on Westgate Road.

"We do eveything from leather goods.....to bikinis".
 
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