Really interesting. Thanks for posting
Really interesting. Thanks for posting
Interesting, though, to learn about the first store in Church Street. I hadn't realised that it was there before they moved across the road to the bigger place.
My local ones as a kid were in South Road, Waterloo and in Moor Lane, Crosby.
Here is a little about the first Woolie's here in Chester.
The Picturedrome, described as "a popular picture playhouse" opened on 8 November 1909 in Eastgate Street as the Corn Exchange Cinema. It was run and managed by Will Hunter and his wife.
After a short period it became the Picturedrome. It was accessed via an alley running down the side of the offices of Dickson's Nurseries. Films were shown in the upper part of the building and the projector, which was hand cranked, was placed in the centre of the hall. Three months after opening, the equipment was placed in a fireproof box. This was because of the new cinematograph act.
The Picturedrome closed on 29 March 1924. Eventually it became a Woolworth store (long since closed- the later Woolie's, ironically, stood on the site of another demolished cinema in Foregate Street, the Classic).
The site is now occupied by a branch of Next, whose architects, remarkably, restored the shop's frontage to pretty much how it had appeared in the 1920s.
The recently-closed Woolie's is currently being transformed into a branch of Primark. Classy- a sign of the times I guess..
(Local talk has it that Primark wanted to open earlier, on the other side of the clock in Eastgate Street. The Grosvenors wouldn't have it, however, as it would have been located directly opposite their posh hotel...)
See a picture of the old Woolie's here-
Chester: a Virtual Stroll Around the Walls-
The Liverpool Gallery-
The Chester Shop
Chester & Liverpool Guided Walks
Nice one KH. Never knew any of that.
A really interesting bit of history there, and a great story.
I'm posting this image again. I missed off one the units from the original Woolies store on the map. 25 & 25A Church St. represents the two shaded areas shown. I've checked this a numerous different ways and I'm now satisfied is correct.
Other observations to add to the B&W photo: The image [I think] is early 1900's [but certainly before 1909, as it was taken before Woolies moved in to No. 25&25a]. I believe it was taken on a Sunday - as the shop windows have their shutters on [no Sunday trading], and the group of people are waiting for a VIP guest[s] of some sort. The high status couple [by the tram lines] are waiting opposite the East entrance gates [out of view] to St Peter's Church. So, I think this was an important church service, for someone coming from the Castle Street [Town Hall possibly].
Very interesting information. Many thanks, dazza. Incidentally I was glad to see that the fascia on the shop front actually said "F. W. Woolworth & Co. Ltd. 3d and 6d stores" -- this is akin to the way such stores were labeled here in the United States where they were known as "5 and 10 cent stores" a term many people can still remember... I think there are still some stores labeled that way if I am not mistaken. G. C. Murphy and Ben Franklin stores were other dime store chains here. Here's an article on Dime Stores where we find the following information pertinent to this thread:
"Frank Winfield Woolworth, the father of dime stores, learned the concept while running a five-cent booth in the store of William Moore in Watertown, New York. In 1879, Woolworth opened his first store in Utica, New York. That store failed, but his second store, in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, succeeded, and by 1899 he owned fifty-four stores. Woolworth eliminated the wholesaler and also entered into a buying arrangement with other store operators across the country. After a merger with these chains in 1911, the F. W. Woolworth Company became the dominant variety store chain in the United States and Great Britain."
All the best
Great info on this thread....
I know the one in Old Swan is missed greatly.
Chris, they've ALL closed down in the UK
I believe they still have them in Australia and Littlewoods have bought the "online" side of the business so Woolworths still exists to us in the UK, but only on the Internet
I've put together two sheets representing F.W.Woolworth & Co Ltd first and second stores, in Church Street, Liverpool.
I hope you all enjoy.
The 1st UK Store [1909-1923] at 25 & 25a Church Street, Liverpool was already an existing building before F.W.Woolworth & Co. Ltd came to the city. According to Joseph Sharples, author of Liverpool, Pevsner Architectural Guides describes it as:
'the Italianate shop now occupied by Clarkes was designed by Lewis Hornblower, c. 1858, for the art metalworkers and electroplater's Elkington's. The Builder disliked the thin columns to the upper floors, 'which suggest rain-water pipes without being so'.'
[Interestingly, 'Elkington's' sign can be seen on 'image 6' on the sheet below, in a photograph taken some years before the store opened. Also the 'rain-water pipe' columns referred to, can be seen painted white in image 2.]
The images - were once the property of Woolworth's Plc UK. and were displayed as part of their virtual museum website, which no longer operates. So far, I haven't been able to trace an owner, since Woolworth's UK stopped trading. Hopefully Kev will let us display them here for a short while?
The 2nd Store, on Church Street [1923-1983] After St. Peter's Church was demolished in 1922, this led the way for further expansion, and a bespoke new store design to be created in 1923.
Yes, you're right - it's our equivalent to your '5 n dimes'. I wonder did they have a specific way of referring to it here? You know like 'threepence/ sixpence store', or 'three and six store'? - although that last one sounds more like three shillings, and sixpence.
Thanks for the Woolworths link. It's a fascinating story, he was a genius, in the way he anticipated the store's success, despite some early failures in the US. They chose Liverpool for the 1st. UK store because it was considered the British Empire's second city, that and the trading links no doubt.
I've just posted some more new views above this one, which you might find interesting.
Very interesting indeed Dazza, thanks for the info and pics, great stuff
Thanks hmtmaj and Ged
i buy them for my kids every year from woolworths but this year i cant seem to find them anywhere, can any1 help.
Holland & Barrett?
The ones with the black shiny rubber toe caps. Yes, we called them 'borstal breakouts'
Keeping it real!
LIVERPOOL OLD POSTCARDS AND PHOTOS HERE http://s197.photobucket.com/albums/a...To%20Download/
Thanks for the info. much appreciated.