One of Horncastle’s longest established businesses closes its doors this month as its owner retires after 45 years serving the town.
Bed, furniture and giftware stockist Pauline Atkinson has gained a reputation for her Christmas tree decoration in the shopfront of Horncastle Furnishers, with children of all ages glued to the window looking at the ten-foot-high display from Armistice Sunday to Christmas.
Over the years, she has supplied beds and bedroom furniture to generations of homemakers in the Horncastle area.
Her earliest customers brought their families to buy beds, they were followed in turn by their children and on many occasions it is now their grandchildren who have also gone on to be loyal customers at Horncastle Furnishers.
Delivering to a vast part of the county, Pauline has supplied many thousands of beds in all shapes and sizes over the years, as well as suites, recliner chairs and other furniture, even recently travelling to a local celebrity’s home in Derbyshire.
“I would like to thank all my faithful customers for their support over the many years, as well as the large number of helpers who have delivered furniture for me and also those who have given assistance in the shop to give me some welcome time off,” said Pauline.
The shop is now looking dramatically less well stocked, as her retirement sale reduces the stock to be cleared by the end of the month.
Originally a chemist’s shop, then a second-hand goods shop, Pauline bought the Bull Ring premises in the 1970s.
A local lass, from leaving Cagthorpe School, she worked for the late Geof England, the local funeral director and carpet specialist, before deciding to become a business owner herself.
With the help of her parents, Henry and Joan Marshall, family and friends, plus local tradesmen, Pauline transformed the shop premises, filling two floors of retail space to overflowing with stock.
Now, more than four decades later, and thrilled to have a grandchild, and another on the way, Pauline is closing the doors at the end of the month on the successful business she has built up over the years.
She is looking forward to catching up on quite a few holidays, not least to the Guernsey home of her son Wayne, now a successful commercial lawyer and partner in a law firm on the island.
“It is really hard saying goodbye to my customers and suppliers, many of whom have developed into friends,” said Pauline.
“I will be having a few tears as I say thank you to all of them when the time comes.”