'So many memories' - End of an era for family-run newsagents

The end of an era for Wendy O'Dwyer and her family at the Village Rise Newsagents in Lowestoft.

The end of an era for Wendy O'Dwyer and her family at the Village Rise Newsagents in Lowestoft. Picture: The O'Dwyer family - Credit: The O'Dwyer family

A new owner has taken over a popular newsagents that has served its community for more than 35 years.

Village Rise Newsagents has been at the heart of the community in north Lowestoft since 1985, as it has been run by the O'Dwyer family throughout this time.

The new owner of Rawmores Retail Ltd Craig Morris, with former owner of Village Rise Newsagents, Wendy O'Dwyer.

The new owner of Rawmores Retail Limited Craig Morris, with the former owner of Village Rise Newsagents, Wendy O'Dwyer, at the popular store. Picture: The O'Dwyer family - Credit: The O'Dwyer family

But from Monday this week the popular store was trading as Rawmores Retail Limited under the ownership of Craig Morris.

Rawmores Retail Limited owner Craig Morris.

Rawmores Retail Limited owner Craig Morris. Picture: Mick Howes - Credit: Mick Howes

It marks the end of a family dynasty that has seen generations working in the store, based on Weston Road, Lowestoft.

For Wendy O'Dwyer, a real "community spirit" has been evident over the years.

Wendy O'Dwyer at the Village Rise Newsagents in Lowestoft.

Wendy O'Dwyer at the Village Rise Newsagents in Lowestoft. Picture: Mick Howes - Credit: Mick Howes


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Mrs O'Dwyer said: "After 35 years of trading I have sold the business and want to thank all my customers for their support and loyalty throughout the years.

"I joined my soon to be in-laws - Derrick and Edna O'Dwyer - as a young 16-year-old, almost three years after they opened the newsagents with their son Mike."

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With Edna passing away in 1991, six years later Mike's dad Derrick took full retirement and enjoyed his time away from working.

Mrs O'Dwyer said: "Mike and myself ran the shop together while raising our children.

"Sadly Derrick passed away in April 2011 aged 86, and in 2014 Mike was diagnosed with terminal cancer.

Wendy O'Dwyer at the Village Rise Newsagents in Lowestoft.

Wendy O'Dwyer at the Village Rise Newsagents in Lowestoft. Picture: Mick Howes - Credit: Mick Howes

"He battled on for almost two years but passed away on March 22, 2016, leaving four wonderful children behind and a business which has so many memories for all of us."

Having been inundated with good luck messages, Mrs O'Dwyer is looking forward to the future - and some rest after seven days a week of early mornings over many years.

She said: "It is the end of an era, but after trading all these years I would like to thank everyone for their loyalty and friendship throughout the years.

"We still have a few original customers, who have been with us from the very start - people love coming up here and there is a real community spirit."

Rawmores Retail Limited owner Craig Morris.

Rawmores Retail Limited owner Craig Morris. Picture: Mick Howes - Credit: Mick Howes

The store currently delivers papers to more than 300 customers.

Hailing from Needham Market, for the past four years Mr Morris had ran the Home Bargains Lowestoft site on the North Quay Retail Park.

Rawmores Retail Limited owner Craig Morris.

Rawmores Retail Limited owner Craig Morris. Picture: Mick Howes - Credit: Mick Howes

Mr Morris, 32, said: "It is a really nice area around here and a massive community feel.

"I am hoping to extend the numbers of deliveries we make and potentially look to deliver groceries as well in the future."

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