LETTER: Bygone era - Rasen shops were thriving

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I have been pleasantly surprised at the number of people who have stopped me and asked if it was indeed I that had penned the letter, regarding the shops in Market Rasen back in the Thirties onward, and I was even more delighted that 100% agreed with all my comments.

One or two did say that I had missed out certain shops, of course I had as I was only trying to give a broad outline as the Town shops were then, but to put things in a little more order here for them are few more for their delectation and delight!.

We had four fruit and veg shops, Ted Limon on King Street, Wards in Union Street, Mrs Bowers in Queen Street and Searbys in Oxford Street.

We had two ladies fashion shops in Miss Myers and Towles, and Miss Parkinson had a Wool and Baby outfitters also on Queen Street, on the Jamieson Bridge Street corner Miss Hill had a shop that sold a variety of corn, dog biscuits and general array of feeds for different Livestock.

Another grocers was Burtons on King Street, in the Market Place we had Spencers, from where we bought our Fireworks for Bonfire night, next door to him was Mr Coates who had a General Hardware Shop as did Mr Horsefield across the road who later went on to sell the First Televisions.

We had, I had forgotten, another Barber in Len Hyde, who also ran with his wife and daughters, a sweet and tobacconists and also took the advance bookings for the Town Hall Cinema, we had another watch repairer in Mr Brown who had a shop as you entered the Corn Exchange and on the other side Bertie Parkinson had another Shoe repairers. Mr Chappel had a Photography shop on Queen Street where many fine portraits were displayed Mr Wilson also had a tailors business on Queen Street and we also had Greenwoods Sweet and Cigarettes.

There were shops at the bottom of both John Street and Union Street, Mainrpizes were in John Street, Redfus Page in Union Street and Mrs Chambers had a small shop at the bottom of Oxford Street.

In Serpentine Street was Mrs Webb, a small grocery outlet and a large grocery shop and sweet shop with Mr Pommy Sands on the Willingham Road.

My brother Chuck and myself all were his errand boys and he gave us the wonderful sum of Five Shillings a week, far too much, but he was an exceedingly generous proprietor.

There must be more, isn’t it really amazing they all made a living, but time marches on, and I must conclude by really wishing all the shops that are doing their best to keep the town alive the very best of luck, as my letter was never intended to decry their efforts only the mountain they have to climb, only to survive.

Best Wishes to you all

Dennis Hall