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Shops we have loved and lost in Great Yarmouth

PUBLISHED: 10:50 31 January 2019

Great Yarmouth  -  Streets

Looking from King Street, Great Yarmouth to the town centre, with shops that are no longer there (2002), Debenhams now replaced with River Island , Jarrolds, Brahams and Timothy Whites have all gone only Palmers remains.

Dated  1970's

Photograph  C2461

Great Yarmouth - Streets Looking from King Street, Great Yarmouth to the town centre, with shops that are no longer there (2002), Debenhams now replaced with River Island , Jarrolds, Brahams and Timothy Whites have all gone only Palmers remains. Dated 1970's Photograph C2461

There's no doubt it is tough out there on the high street for shops struggling to make ends meet.

Etam on Market Place in Great Yarmouth. Photo: Archant LibraryEtam on Market Place in Great Yarmouth. Photo: Archant Library

Those of a certain age will remember what seems like a boom time for retail when the spectre of today’s vacancy rates was a distant nightmare.

But shops have always come and gone over the years and with H Samuel shutting its doors on Saturday it got us thinking about those names that left us many years ago, a large slice from the world of fashion.

Some are obvious big misses like Woolworths and Marks and Spencer but there may be a few outlets here you have forgotten about completely.

Great Yarmouth  -  Buildings

John Menzies retail shop on King Street.

Dated  8th January 1988

Photograph  C2468

Great Yarmouth - Buildings John Menzies retail shop on King Street. Dated 8th January 1988 Photograph C2468

1. Etam

Always a bargain to be had in this King Street shop which was a favourite with teenage girls looking for the latest trend.

It was one of many clothing shops in the town with a young fashion offer.

Still trading on the continent its last shop closed in the UK in 2005.

Hippo's in Great Yarmouth, 1988. Photo: Archant LibraryHippo's in Great Yarmouth, 1988. Photo: Archant Library

Although a comeback was reported it never made it as far as Yarmouth.

2. John Menzies

A retail chain very similar to WH Smith who bought the chain in the 1990s.

Mothercare in Great Yarmouth. Photo: Archant LibraryMothercare in Great Yarmouth. Photo: Archant Library

Who didn’t get their stationery from here?

A must visit when it came to going back to school and picking up your favourite magazine.

3. Hippos

Marks and Spencer.
Front of shop on the Market Place in Great Yarmouth town centre.
July 2014.

Picture: James Bass

Marks and Spencer. Front of shop on the Market Place in Great Yarmouth town centre. July 2014. Picture: James Bass

If you were into your fashion and wanted something a bit different this was the shop to head to in Broad Row.

The cute boutique stocked a variety of labels and was a bit more pricey, but lovely clothes that lasted.

4. Mothercare

In Time in Great Yarmouth. Photo: Archant LibraryIn Time in Great Yarmouth. Photo: Archant Library

Just at the top of Market Gates Mothercare moved out of Yarmouth just over ten years ago after three decades in the town. It was one of the first major names to pull out and a sign that all was not well in town centres.

5. Marks and Spencer

There are many who still can’t forgive M&S for upping sticks and moving over to Gapton Hall where it has a Simply Food branch.

The former BHS store is to taken over by Poundstretcher.
Picture: Anthony CarrollThe former BHS store is to taken over by Poundstretcher. Picture: Anthony Carroll

The store had been in the town centre since 1911 and has left a gaping hole in the main pedestrianised area of King Street when it moved out four years ago.

People still shake their heads at the loss and the question of what happens now to the vacant store has yet to be successfully answered.

6. Jarrolds

We once had a lovely Jarrolds in King Street with gifts and pens and stationery downstairs and art supplies and books upstairs.

Nice to wander round and browse.

7. In Time

Another fashion offer for teenage girls who also had the pick of Chelsea Girl, Trend, Dorothy Perkins (now in Palmers) and Tracey Fashions under Market Gates.

There was also Stage One, the ex catalogue shop, in the mall which was also good for a bargain.

In King Street there was also Richards where the EDP/Mercury office now sits.

The shop always looked lovely at Christmas with its windows full of glamorous party outfits.

8. BHS

A firm fixture of the high street and apparently a department store success, the loss of BHS was a big shock.

The single-storey store seemed to have reinvented itself in the 80s but in the end the pressure from rivals was too great.

It’s Christmas shop was a mecca for gifts, solving many ‘what to buy?’ conundrums.

Poundstretcher has filled the large store site.

9. Woolworths

Arguably the biggest fall from grace came from Woolworths which closed just after Christmas in 2008.

Pretty much a national institution it became a barometer for our changing shopping habits.

It wasn’t empty long, Ethel Austin moved in briefly. It is now Poundland.

10. David Mobbs

The sports shop started in that most auspicious of sporting years 1966, but the founder’s son called it a day in 2011.

At the time Tim Mobbs said he was struggling to compete with online and out-of-town shopping and even though he was selling stock at rock-bottom prices trade was still slow.



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