Monthly Archives: July, 2014

Southend – Store 33

29/35 High Street, Southend-on-Sea SS1 1HR

“Woolworths opened in the fashionable Edwardian seaside resort of Southend-on-Sea in small premises at 29 High Street on 25th April 1914. Below shows the storefront in 1938 following an extension in 1934.”  –  www.100thbirthday.co.uk
THEN:
Southend Woolworths 1938

Southend Woolworths 1938

“A cinema front was added in 1957 when the store was extended to span 29-35 High Street. It was enlarged further in 1977, while the upper salesfloor and restaurant were closed in 1988”, and finally the whole store closing in January 2009.
Southend Wooloworths 2008

Southend Woolworths 2008

(Source: https://www.flickr.com/photos/southendborough/3070234949)

TJ Hughes opened in the building in August 2010 after a £1million refurbishment, but unfortunately they also went into adminstration and closed just one year later.

Southend TJ Hughes 2010

Southend TJ Hughes 2010

Source: http://www.sarfend.co.uk/southendnews/2010/08/tj-hughes-opens-on-old-woolworths-site.html

In 2012 H&M announced they would takeover the store, making a total of 3 H&M stores in Southend! It’s trading well and certainly looks good on the high street. Southend council have also locally listed the building, ensuring we keep a bit of Woolworths history on Southend High Street 🙂

NOW:

Southend H&M 2014

Southend H&M 2014

 

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Harlesden – Store 11

37-41 High Street, Harlesden NW10 4NH

THEN:

“Number 3 of the London stores, it opened in 1911 and closed in 1991 at the end of it’s lease. The original store was rather smaller, expanding to the below frontage in two stages in the 1920s and 1930s. The outlet took a little longer to get established than the first two London stores Brixton and Woolwich, but had built such a large clientele by the 1930s that it was doubled in size.”
(Source: http://www.woolworthsmuseum.co.uk/1910s-london.html and http://www.100thbirthday.co.uk/images/StoreGallery/pages/0011Harlesden-1920s.htm)

Harlesden Woolworths 1920s

Harlesden Woolworths 1920s

Woolworths shared the premises with sister company Superdrug in the 80s and moved out in the 90s.

Woolworths Harlesden 1990

Woolworths Harlesden 1990

Source: https://www.flickr.com/photos/stuartkew/8559943624

Quote from Pat (Moss) Hurwood who was born in Harlesden in 1947 and lived there until 1963. “Further along towards the Jubilee Clock was a fishmongers that would have blocks of ice delivered about 7.30 each morning. Close to this was a wonderful Woolworths where you could spend what little pocket money you had. This shop went on fire and my brother, who was a budding photographer, sold a photo of the fire.”  Source: http://www.movethat.co.uk/London/My/Harlesden

My sister works in Harlesden now at Champion records. She said her boss always mentions there was a Woolworths in Harlesden, which I supposed must have been really important being a record company. That’s where the interest in this post stems from. We are going to take a photo of what is in the building in the near future, when we are brave enough! Apparently it is some random home store, after Superdrug moved to across the road.

Slough – Store 263 / 1173 / 1243

190 High Street, Slough, Berkshire SL1 1JS

This store was one of the early ones, opened in the 20s. Below is a picture I found in Slough library from the 1930s (Source: The Changing Face of Slough) – Woolworths is on the far left, and the Eagle pub is now River Island. Boots is on the far right, still there today.

THEN:

Slough Woolworths 1930s

Slough Woolworths 1930s

Here is the store 20 years later, you can see in the background with the canopies. This was when the first EVER zebra crossing in the UK was opened in 1951 – on Slough High Street! It’s now just the pavement in between Boots and the Queensmere Shopping Centre. They should put a commemorative plaque here or something.

Woolworths Slough 1951

Woolworths Slough 1951

Source: The 1951 Club

Here is a postcard I found on Ebay – Woolworths is on the left. It appears they did a store makeover in the 1960s and changed the front facade.

Slough Woolworths 60s

Slough Woolworths 1960s

Below is the High Street store in 1982 “with notice in the window announcing that the store would be closing in February for two weeks for alterations”

Now my mum and I were in Slough in July 1983 the day before she gave birth to my brother. I said to her, ‘Wow so do you remember Woolworths when it was in the High Street then?’ – She says to me ‘Yes it was outside’

THEN:

Woolworths Slough 1982

Woolworths Slough 1982

Source: http://www.sloughhistoryonline.org.uk

NOW:

Poundland / JD Slough 2014

Poundland / JD Slough 2014

8, The Observatory, Slough, Berkshire SL1 1LE

Woolworths left the High Street site in 1984, and then opened in the Observatory on 14th June 1991 (where Primark is now). Below is a photo of the store being opened by retail director Martin Toogood and store manager Ken Webstar. According to the Woolworths Museum website, “…several Shopping Centres, like Slough’s Observatory Centre, offered ‘anchor’ sites in new developments at heavily discounted, capped rents. These stores opened long before the neighbouring properties were occupied, and helped to persuade others to take on tenancies.”

OBSERVATORY THEN:

Woolworths Observatory Opening, Slough 1991

Woolworths Observatory Opening, Slough 1991

Source: Woolworths Museum

OBSERVATORY NOW:

Primark Slough 2014

Primark Slough 2014

106/109 Queensmere, Slough, Berkshire SL1 1DQ

In 2000, the store moved to the Queensmere Shopping Centre, taking over the C&A site when they closed down. It was quite a large store with an upstairs floor too. Here is a photo I took when it was closing down in December 2008, with it’s last day of trading being 2nd January 2009.

QUEENSMERE THEN:

Slough Woolworths 2008

Slough Woolworths 2008

Today it is B&M Bargains, downstairs floor only, a cluttered store selling a mis-match of home goods, furniture, food and toys – remind you of anywhere? 😉

QUEENSMERE NOW:

B&M Slough 2014

B&M Slough 2014

Hayes – Store 541

53-55 Station Road, Hayes, Middlesex UB3 4BE

THEN

Hayes Woolworths 2008

Hayes Woolworths 2008

I took the above photo from my car in December 2008.

NOW

Hayes 99p Store 2014

Hayes 99p Store 2014

Source: https://www.flickr.com/photos/45101643@N04/12789577975

Greenford – Store 512 / 2023

48- 50 The Broadway, Greenford, Middlesex UB6 9PT

“Opened as store #512 on 9 September 1933, it was later renumbered as #2023 in about 2000, at the point where it was converted to the new ‘Woolworths General Store’ format. Though that concept turned out to be shortlived, the store continued to trade – still under its General Store fascia – until Woolworths’ collapse.” Source: http://www.soultsretailview.co.uk

THEN:

Greenford Woolworths 1950

Greenford Woolworths 1950 (behind the bus!)

Source: www.flickr.com/photos/81184879@N08/8425883449/

Greenford  Woolworths 1965

Greenford Woolworths 1965  (on the left)

Source: http://www.francisfrith.com

Greenford Woolworths 1980

Greenford Woolworths 1980

Source: https://www.flickr.com/photos/89207625@N06/8314641626/

Greenford Woolwoths 80s

Greenford Woolwoths 80s

Source: https://www.flickr.com/photos/61927816@N08/9876505754

I spoke to ex-Greenford employee Ganesh Jillah, who worked there from 1995 – 2001, and took the below photo when it closed for good in 2008. He reminisced “I remember when we moved the entertainment counter from the left side to the right and then back to the left in all the store refits”. I said “What? How did you move a whole entertainment counter” He said “We was Woolworths. We coulda done anything. And we did.”

Greenford Woolworths 2008

Greenford Woolworths 2008

He also mentioned the presence of ghosts at Greenford. “One evening, me and Stewart were cashing up when we heard all the sound books go off, you know the kids books where you press a button and it makes a sound. And there was no one else in store, just me and Stewart”
I said “What, all of them?”
“Yes ALL of them. We thought we must be hearing things and carried on. Went upstairs, came back down to lock up, suddenly the books start going off again, and one flew off the shelf. We legged it!”

NOW:

Greenford Iceland 2014

Greenford Iceland 2014

Source:  www.citikey.co.uk

Uxbridge – Store 370

157/158 High Street, Uxbridge, Middlesex UB8 1JY

My local Woolies in Uxbridge opened in 1929 – here is an original opening postcard from the Woolworths Museum website. “Each store opening was spectacular. The celebrations featured an orchestra or a marching band, fireworks and even circus performers. Most storefronts were draped with flags and bunting to add to the razzamatazz. Bosses knew that a big launch would draw a huge crowd, and that many of the day’s visitors would later add a trip to the new FWW to their regular shopping habits.”
Source: http://www.woolworthsmuseum.co.uk/1920s-herewegrowagain.htm

Uxbridge Store Opening Postcard 1929

Uxbridge Store Opening Postcard 1929

THEN – 1940s (it’s the building in the middle, next to Suters – you can see the WOOLWORTH letters along the top of the building) The 2 below photos are from the Philip Suter website, which is quite fascinating to read.
Source: http://www.philipsuter.co.uk/Suters_Uxbridge_Late_1940s.jpg

Uxbridge Woolworths 1940s

Uxbridge Woolworths 1940s

Uxbridge Woolworths from rear 1940s

Uxbridge Woolworths from rear 1940s

Uxbridge Woolworths 1950s

Uxbridge Woolworths 1950s (on the right of the photo)

Above photo – Source: Ken Pearce, Uxbridge From Old Photographs

Below are photos I took when Woolies Uxbridge was closing in December 2008.

Uxbridge Woolworth 2008

Uxbridge Woolworth 2008

Uxbridge Woolworths - Last day of trading 27 December 2008

Uxbridge Woolworths – Last day of trading 27 December 2008

Uxbridge Woolworths - Shutters coming down for the last time - 27 December 2008

Uxbridge Woolworths – Shutters coming down for the last time – 27 December 2008

It soon became Poundland – quite a massive one too. They kept the Woolies door and window frames and painted them green.

Uxbridge Poundland - 2009

Uxbridge Poundland – 2009

NOW – 2014

Uxbridge Poundland 2014

Uxbridge Poundland 2014

My boy clearly upset that Woolworths is no more…

Source: www.philipsuter.co.uk

Kentish Town – Store 176

329-333 Kentish Town Road, London NW5 2TJ

THEN:

Kentish Town Woolworths 2008

Kentish Town Woolworths 2008

Above image from my Facebook group.

NOW:

Kentish Town Sainsburys - 2014

Kentish Town Sainsburys – 2014

Source: http://www.192.com

A little snippet from a loyal Kentish Town Woolies customer can be read here: http://www.thecnj.com/camden/2008/123108/news123108_07.html

Brixton – Store 7 / 2020

415-417 BRIXTON ROAD,  LONDON SW9 8HJ

Brixton was the first London store! Number 7 of the group, Frank Woolworth decided to open it at 415-417 Brixton Road, as Brixton was an affluent part of London (yes really) where society ladies liked to shop apparently. It did really well there, catching commuters on the way to the railway station . It’s now the O2 store surrounded by many other phone shops, all quite new as this was the Foot Locker store that got set on fire in the summer of 2011 when the kids went all crazy. A bit of history repeating itself as this Woolworths store got bombed during WW1.

 THEN – 1910

The orginal Brixton Woolworths 1910

The orginal Brixton Woolworths 1910

Source: http://www.woolworthsmuseum.co.uk/1910s-london.html

 NOW – 2014

O2 store - Brixton 2014

O2 store – Brixton 2014

Source: http://www.192.com

457-461 BRIXTON ROAD,  LONDON SW9 8HJ

As the lease at 415-417 was to run out after 25 years, the store was relocated to the other end of the street on 3rd September 1936 to 457-461 Brixton Road,where an iconic Art Deco building was created and still stands there today – minus Woolworth sign 😦

 THEN – 1936

THEN - 1936

The new Art Deco Woolworths building in Brixton – 1936

 

1970s

Woolworths Brixton in the 70s

Woolworths Brixton in the 70s

Source: http://www.100thbirthday.co.uk/images/StoreGallery/pages/0007Brixton-1972.htm

2003

Woolworths 'general store' - Brixton 2003

Woolworths ‘general store’ – Brixton 2003

Source for 2003 and 2008 pic:  http://www.urban75.org/london/goodbye-woolworths-brixton.html

2008

Woolworths Brixton before it closed - 2008

Woolworths Brixton before it closed – 2008

2014

Brixton building - now EE and H&M - 2014

Brixton building – now EE and H&M – 2014

Source: http://www.192.com

 

Sources:

http://www.woolworthsmuseum.co.uk/1910s-london.html

http://www.urban75.org/london/goodbye-woolworths-brixton.html

http://www.100thbirthday.co.uk/images/StoreGallery/pages/0007Brixton-1972.htm