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Children’s paradise – memories of Toys R Us

PUBLISHED: 18:00 06 October 2020

Concentration... a Beyblades national championship heat at Toys R Us in Ipswich in 2003 Picture: SIMON PARKER/ARCHANT

Concentration... a Beyblades national championship heat at Toys R Us in Ipswich in 2003 Picture: SIMON PARKER/ARCHANT

Were you a regular shopper at Toys R Us in its heyday? Did you take your children there, or visit as a youngster yourself?

Copdock Mill interchange in June 1992,showing the Toys R Us store and Tesco superstore Picture: OWEN HINES/ARCHANTCopdock Mill interchange in June 1992,showing the Toys R Us store and Tesco superstore Picture: OWEN HINES/ARCHANT

Today we are looking back to the days when the children’s paradise at Copdock Mill attracted thousands of families.

A Beyblades national championship heat at Toys R Us in 2003 Picture: SIMON PARKER/ARCHANTA Beyblades national championship heat at Toys R Us in 2003 Picture: SIMON PARKER/ARCHANT

The once mighty US toy giant arrived in the UK in the 1980s, and quickly expanded.

A youngster competing in the Beyblades national championship heat at Toys R Us in 2003 Picture: ARCHANTA youngster competing in the Beyblades national championship heat at Toys R Us in 2003 Picture: ARCHANT

MORE: Council firm bought Toys R Us to save town-centre M&S

From the early 1990s onwards, its Ipswich store was hugely popular, and a number of special events were held there over the years.

A trolley dash was a prize at the special Ben 10 party at Toys R Us Ipswich in 2010. Picture: ARCHANTA trolley dash was a prize at the special Ben 10 party at Toys R Us Ipswich in 2010. Picture: ARCHANT

These included a Beyblades championship in 2003, at the time when the Japanese spinning tops were the latest craze, and a Ben 10 party in 2010, inspired by the animated series.

Children at the Ben 10 party at Toys R Us in Ipswich in 2010 Picture: LUCY TAYLOR/ARCHANTChildren at the Ben 10 party at Toys R Us in Ipswich in 2010 Picture: LUCY TAYLOR/ARCHANT

In more recent years Toys R Us found it hard to compete with online rivals, and the Ipswich store closed in April 2018.

ATeenage Mutant Ninja Turtle - the toys made a comeback in the early 2000s and were in demand at Toys R Us Picture: PAATeenage Mutant Ninja Turtle - the toys made a comeback in the early 2000s and were in demand at Toys R Us Picture: PA

MORE: Retro toy and collectibles shop opens

The store has since stood empty, but was recently sold to Ipswich Borough Assets and could soon have a new use.

The Toys R Us store at Copdock, which closed down in 2018 Picture: ARCHANTThe Toys R Us store at Copdock, which closed down in 2018 Picture: ARCHANT

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What are your memories of Toys R Us? Email judy.rimmer@archant.co.uk or write to Judy Rimmer, Newsroom, 120 Princes Street, Ipswich, Suffolk, IP1 1RS.

Order photos from our website or call Diane Townsend on 01603 772449.


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