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Dissapearing Shops


Guest KeithC

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I am probably showing my age now, but I was thinking about the many small family run shops on the Broads that have closed.

At Ranworth staithe just up the hill past the Maltsters on the right was a small post office and general store. At Belaugh you used to moor on the right just before the public moorings and walk up through a private garden to a small provisions shop. At Thurne dyke on the left what is now a private house was a small general store and at the bottom of the dyke turn left at the Lion and the post office was just along on your right. The Berney Arms had a small shop at the side. I am sure there must be many more, but what a shame to see these small private ventures going. I suppose it is a sign of the times where the big supermarkets call the tune. But then i can remember the times as a child on the Broads that to get milk, we used to walk across farmland with a jug to the farm.

Happy cruising

Keith :(

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Hi Nigel.

It's good to see stores like Throwers still surviving. It proves that they must be doing something right.

I was in Throwers a couple of weeks ago but didn't realise that they had been established so long. One of my favourite haunts are Ludham and Womach

keith :wave .

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Do you rember the shop at Womack, passed the staithe, this was run by a Mrs. Golling?? (think that's the right name) it used to have a monkey outside in a cage.

Then there was the shop on Horning Staithe run by Sissy Lant, open 365 days a year, including christmas day. It was possible to buy a single egg or a couple of slices of bread from Sissy.

the shop on Thurne Dyke was run by Basil Curtis, bit of a sour bugger, and his brother ran the shop on the river bank at Acle.

One shop that cannot survive much longer must be the shop/PO at Upton. As a protest against the villagers not supporting the shop enough, she opens minimum hours and keeps minimum stock!!!

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Hi Labrador

Yes; I remember the shop on Thurne run by Basil Curtis. Horrible even at his best. I remember my lad buying one of those multi coloured biro pens which we found not to work when we unwrapped it. The abuse we received when we took it back to him-well.

Now a private residence.

Keith

Norfolk :norty:

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My granfather ran a little general stores shop. From what I gather his manner was much like the one described above - he didn't like customers.

Even so, anyone that knows the Romney Hythe & Dymchurch Railway, and The Pilot pub at Lydd On Sea may well remember the old post office and general stores which was there, just along the road from the pub, for a very long time (despite the shop keeper's grumpiness). It's surprising how often I meet people who do know that area well - mostly in connection with Maddison's Camp, the old holiday village there (now Romney Sands).

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I know it goes against Broads culture and it wasn't well recieved when I voiced it on another forum but my thread went something like "Why Do The Broads Close Early", people from Norfolk obviously are used to not being able to buy anything after 5pm but the holiday makers arn't. Was really refreshing to call at Stracey Arms Mill the other week, our first ever stop there, and find the shop open to serve the tourists after they had tied up for the night.

Unfortunately untill a lot more stores wake up to the idea of beng open at a time their customers want or need them then second time visitors are going to run to Tescos every time they get a chance avoiding what happened last year when they could'nt get milk or bacon and eggs for breakfast.

I personaly would rather wander to the local shop for the things I need for a cuppa and breakfast and am quite happy to pay a few pennys more for the privilage of not having to trapse to the suppermarket and work out the weeks shopping requirments before hand. Would prefer to do it when I moore up though rather than spend my cruising time looking for a shop.

Ian

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I think the shop at Womack was run by Mrs Gollinge. I think the family also ran the boat yard, Womack Boats. Had a boat from there in 1972, Sachina, we set off with a small tool kit and a spare spark plug from the yard, Sachina had a two stroke engine that kept oiling up and we had to regularly change the plug mid river!

Ken

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Its sad to see a lot of the smaller village shops closing down, a few years ago many had a local Co-op or village store that sold a good range of basic groceries, some also being an off licence which stayed open till around 10pm. A fine example of this is Horning. Although the newsagents sell a few groceries and theres the Deli and Butchers open during the day, after 5pm it becomes a place of pubs and restaurants only, not much good if you need fresh milk or nappies and babyfood for a young child after a day out on the river.

Like a lot of other UK Post Offices, the future of the one at Horning also hangs in the balance for closure next year, as the government aim to close down another 2500 of them nationwide. :norty:

Many of these also served as small convienience shops, selling just a few basic items of food, toiletries and cleaning products. The chances are that many more around the Broads villages will suffer a similar fate.

Julz :)

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Nigel

Correct me if I am wrong but on your excellent Ludham site the photo of Harrisons yard is that not the site of the Womack shop which after gollinge , belonged to Vaugh Ashby Commander Ashby's son of Hearts cruiser fame. All the boats were named after King Arthurs' legend I think.

I think the shop disappeared during their tenure.

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I do like Throwers..... the pies and pasties!!! Then the fancy buns and cakes....

On the slight upside, The Lion at West Somerton has opened a "shop" in the pub. I realise not many will get there because of the dwarf like nature required to access the navigation but it makes this opening more of a service to the community than a gesture to holidaymakers. I've yet to have a look myself but suspect I'll have plenty of chances over the winter when my cruising area suddenly shrinks to just Hickling and West Somerton as destinations!

Trevor

http://www.normanboats.co.uk

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looks like The Granary at Ranworth is also up for sale, although I am not really surprised :(

Being a Post Office it is probably another business that just cannot make ends meet now the government favour automated payments into bank accounts instead of over the counter for which the postmaster was paid a handling fee.

Ranworth is obviously bustling during the summer months, but having called in a few times during last winter, it was either closed or the place so deserted I doubt the takings would cover the cost of the energy bills incured to open.

Julz :)

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Wasnt that a small cafe to the river bank with a gift shop on the roadside Just before it closed down?

Bill and I used to sit with a cuppa out on the Benches and watch the antics of the Boats navigating the bridge. There were no dangly guide chains back then, and many a boat got a nasty scuff or lost its canopy in the hands of inexperianced crew.

We once saved a girl a nasty head injury as she sat on the roof facing the stern of the boat she was traveling on, unaware that the young crew at the helm were about to shoot the bridge :shock::o

After much shouting and waving by us, she realised that we wernt just being friendly and turned to see the bow already under the footbridge and just managed to jump down into the boats aft well in time, although with quite a scream as she twisted her ankle badly on landing, thank goodness she didnt land in the river with the propeller moving, she may not have survived :norty: :pirate:cry:

Julz :wave

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I remember that place next to Wroxham Bridge but I can't remember when it disappeared.

Another (recentish) closure was the second general store in Horning which is now being converted into living accomodation by the look of it. A few years back, they used to heat up sausage rolls for me while I was doing all the winter work on board and they did have a reasonable stock, though nothing like the main shop down the road. One thing they were always running out of was ciggies :(

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Hi Jim, the shop on Wroxham bridge was closed down and demolished to make way for the new pedestrian bridge footings, and at a guess, as time flys by so fast, I would say it was about 5years ago.

Everytime that I visit Horning, it seems like yet another shop has become geared to the seasonal Tourist trade, which cannot be so good for the local residents who rely on them, many of whom are elderly and may find a longer journey to one of the major supermarkets a bit too much. The place can be quite diserted on a winters weekday, apart from a few people in the pubs.

Julz :wave

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Hi Julz,

5 years ago...time flies.

Horning has become very seasonal but in the past, I've always found Ralphs (now Maureens) to be pretty reasonable for most things we need. I did notice though, back in July, that they seemed to close earlier than usual because I remember the shop usually being open till maybe 7 or 8 pm even through the winter months.

Having said that, Horning always seems to be teeming with people even during winter. Sure, I know there are far greater numbers in the high season but there always seem to be folk walking from Ferry all the way down to the main village and there's hardly anywhere to park near the shops if you want to nip in for a few bits

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the TESCO supermarket at stalham has done few of the shops any favours.

walking up the street there are now quite afew closed. the somerfield store

going first closely followed by the co-op, i know these are not riverside

but when moored in stalham the street is where people shop.

alan

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