Historians explore town’s local businesses in new book

Dale Wiseman, right, and Roger Pointer, with their book on the history of shops and trades in Thorpe

Dale Wiseman, right, and Roger Pointer, with their book on the history of shops and trades in Thorpe St Andrew. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY - Credit: Copyright: Archant 2016

The colourful history of a town's shops and businesses over the past 100 years has been explored in a new book.

The book on the history of shops and trades in Thorpe St Andrew, by Dale Wiseman and Roger Pointer.

The book on the history of shops and trades in Thorpe St Andrew, by Dale Wiseman and Roger Pointer. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY - Credit: Copyright: Archant 2016

From a Wagon to the Web focuses on the stories of the various traders in Thorpe St Andrew since the turn of the last century. It was put together by historians Dale Wiseman and Roger Pointer, who used archive material and local knowledge as their sources.

Stories include the time a florist on Spinney Road decided against cashing in a cheque from the Royal Household to keep it as a memento, as well as details of the damage caused to a store on Gordon Avenue following a fire bomb raid in June 1942.

Mr Wiseman, 53, who lives on Acacia Road, said: 'I've always been interested in family names and businesses that have passed from one person to another. In Thorpe we have an archive of shop posters and pictures, and the idea was to put all of that together in a book form.'

The self-employed painter and decorator spent a year-and-a-half creating the book with Mr Pointer.

He said one of the biggest changes to the business community since 1900, had been the rise and fall of family owned businesses. But, he said, they had started to make a comeback in the town, despite competition from supermarkets.

The book will be launched on Saturday at the St Andrew's Centre, Thunder Lane from 2pm to 4pm.

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Have you written a book about the area in which you live? Email luke.powell@archant.co.uk

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