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The old shops and businesses of Surbiton

15 years ago...

Hello everybody, let me see what I can remember about old Surbiton. I may miss out a few but these stick in my mind.

Starting on the south side of the railway bridge and working towards the river along the west side of upper Brighton road. Crockers the coal merchants, Mr.Gibbards workshop, then under the bridge to Vanes the taylors, Milos snack bar,Andrews Stores,Nuttings the grocers, a chemist, across Victoria Avenue to The United Dairies, a large wallpaper shop, a drapery shop, The Surbiton Aquarium, The Grove fish and chip shop, The Penguin Lounge restaraunt, The Coop shoe shop, a tool shop, across Balaclava Road to another fish and chip shop ( my favourite), The Lamb ph, Whitwoods model shop, Nunns bicycle shop and garage.

Where now stands the YMCA from the bridge, a bit vague here, a florist which was also Maypine radio, a snack bar, a shoe repair shop, a sweet shop and barbers in the back, followed by another sweet shop run by two old ladies, then Wyllies the bakers. Across Victoria Road to Timothy Whites, a greengrocers,a toy shop, a newsagents, something else followed by The Red or The Black Lion ph, across Cottage Grove to a plumbers merchants I think, then the Coop food store, another sweet shop and then another ph which was either the Black or Red Lion. So many pubs then. Across the other side of Maple road to an off licence then a bicycle shop and a couple of light engineering companies, one of which made plastic mouldings.

Whose for Victoria Road, Claremont Road, St, James' Road and St. Marks Hill before Winthrop House was built when we had two cinemas? Maybe later.

And what stood in St. Mary's Road before the PO sorting office was built was Glendaw's machine shop where I would often stand on the way back from school and watch a man with one eye operate a huge milling machine. Across the road from that was St. Marys stores and tuck shop and G&R BMC and Lambretta garage where I would press my face to the window and dream of having a motor scooter one day. There was always something to look at then and it took ages to come home from school, with the occasional detour which may have been through a bombed house before St. Andrews Hall was built on the site.

Hope I'm not boring anyone. Pete.

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