The Wonder Of Woolworths

wartime at woolworths

Our coupon in May 19 for Elaine Everest’s super novel got me thinking about Woolworth’s.

I realise I still miss Woolworths presence on the high street, even though it’s nine years since the shops closed their doors. I know it carried on online, but I still want to just pop in. Whatever I needed, Woolworths would usually have it.

And the more I think about it, the more I recognise that I can trace a lot of my life with visits to the shop.

As a child, coming over the bridge to Dundee from Fife was always exciting, and no visit was complete without a trip to the Woolworths and, oh, joy, the pick’n’mix counter! Nothing topped the happy knowledge you didn’t have to choose just one kind of sweet, and few decisions I’ve made have been harder than actually making the selection.

The sound of music

When I started at St Andrews University one thing I immediately saw I lacked was a record player, so off to Woolworths to pick out a stereo set. I can’t remember how I got it back to my hall of residence, but that set helped provide a musical backdrop to the rest of my twenties.

It was in Woollies in Hornchurch that I picked out a Christmas tree plus full decorations. I only got rid of the tree two years ago, and then only because it was shedding more than a real tree would have.

And then, as a young mother, I knew I couldn’t beat Woolworths for their reasonably-priced and well-made Ladybird clothes for my beautiful baby girl.

Yep, I know there are plenty of budget value shops which have sprung up, but I still look for that familiar red sign.

Do you have fond memories of Woolworths? Let us know by email or write to us.

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Margaret Scott

Margaret is a sub-editor within the Production Team on the "Friend". Her main job is to work on the stories and make sure the magazine leaves us in its best possible guise. When not doing that, however, she either has her head buried in the old “Friend” volumes or is out and about giving talks or going on Warner trips (fab!). She hates cheese.