235 – 241 Heathway, Dagenham, Essex RM9 5NJ
Woolworths opened in Dagenham in 1939. It was part of a parade of shops – it does look purpose-built, I am guessing the whole parade was built in 1939. You can see the shops on both sides of Woolworths in this photo are still being fitted.
Source: Historic England
Woolworths traded from this location for nearly 70 years, closing in January 2009. Former store colleague Em Norton-Mathews shares her memories, including a ghost story:
“I worked at 746 Dagenham from 1997 until we closed. I did my work experience there and they offered me a Saturday job at the end of the 2 weeks. I gradually worked my way up to Entertainment over the years.
One evening, I was with a colleague staying extra to set up the charts for Monday morning. We were the only ones in the store, behind the Ents counter, working away. We kept hearing noises like the wind was catching on the tiles on the ceiling and wobbling them, but it wasn’t windy out. We were slowly getting more and more weirded out by the noise when we suddenly heard a loud scraping noise of metal being dragged along the floor. At that point I decided to investigate and found a ladder set up in the middle of the toy aisle. It definitely wasn’t there when I was checking for last customers before locking up! We immediately dropped everything, left the store, locked up and went home!”
Today Heathway Cash and Carry can be found here.
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I lived just off the Heathway from 1995 to 2004 and remember this woolies well.
Used it a lot……was friendly with a couple of the staff too.
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