London Road was a very different place 50 years ago to the collection of twee wine bars and restaurants that it is now. It was a real 'working' village providing all the goods and services that were needed by the resident community.
Going north down London Road from the de Trafford Hotel, there was an excellent fish and chip shop on the corner of Chorley Hall Lane and London Road; a very popular spot as the Italian owner had the most beautiful daughter. Then the Corner House tearoom, selling Tiptree preserves and buttered scones, followed by the District Bank where the London Road Restaurant and Wine Bar is now. Next was James Bilsborough’s, a general hardware and tool shop, and then Broadbent’s furniture shop, which was also an undertakers and removers. Further down London Road on the west side was Mayoh’s, a really old-fashioned grocer, then a chemist, and Royle's garage on the corner of London Road and West Street. Finally there were the rail sidings, and the coal yard.
On the east side going north there was a garage on the corner of London Road and Chapel Road, then Cumberbirch the chemist, Holding the decorator, a newsagent for whom I used to deliver newspapers, Massey the jeweller, and at the corner of London Road and Stevens Street was the Co-Op, quite a large grocer and off-licence. On the opposite corner of Stephens Street was the first grilled chicken rotisserie in the area with a small inside restaurant, next a sub-post-office, a few more shops, and then Fitchett’s the greengrocer, for whom I used to deliver groceries at weekends and Christmas time.
On the corner of London Road and Clifton Street was Weinholts, the exotic patisserie, and in the last block of shops came G G Brooks, the cycle shop, and finally Williams Deacon’s Bank on the corner of London Road and Heyes Lane.
A memory shared byon Aug 23rd, 2011.
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