Sadness over closure of oldest shop

SHOPPERS today told of their sadness at the closure of Ipswich's oldest store.The prevailing mood was that a part of Ipswich will be gone forever when the Martin & Newby business closes in June.

SHOPPERS today told of their sadness at the closure of Ipswich's oldest store.

The prevailing mood was that a part of Ipswich will be gone forever when the Martin & Newby business closes in June.

The shop, at the junction of Orwell Place and Fore Street, has been trading for 131 years but is going to be sold for redevelopment.

Much of the building is likely to be converted into a block of flats and 21 people now face losing their jobs.


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Andrew Walsham, 58, of Thanet Road, Ipswich, said: "I will be very sorry to see it close because it is an institution in Ipswich.

"It is the only place where the staff appear to what they are doing when it comes to hardware.

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"There is no other store that has their knowledge or range of hardware goods.

"I'm not surprised it is closing as people tend to use the superstores for convenience and one of the main reasons for that is they can park their car free of charge."

David Butcher, 53, of Bucklesham, believes that the shop closing is bad for the area.

He said: "It is a bit of a shame because it has been here so long and you can always get everything you need from it.

"The area now is getting a bit run down and there are a lot of places that are closing."

Pensioners Shirley and Fred Fulcher, of Sheldrake Drive, Ipswich, are disappointed the store is closing and will now have a long journey to get DIY equipment.

Mr Fulcher, 76, said: "Nine out of ten times if you wanted an item you could come down here and find it.

"The other DIY shops are all out of town and we rely on places like this as we do not have got a car.

"Now we will have to go out of town to find what we want."

Mrs Fulcher, 68, is worried about how they will be able to get their hardware goods in future. She said: "It will be a shame to see the store go but there is not much we can do about it.

"We were surprised that it is closing as it is the only place in Ipswich left of the old shops.

"We will have to get two buses and it will be difficult for people like us who do not have transport."

N Are you said to see Martin & Newby close? Write in with your views to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN or send us an e-mail to eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk or visit the forum at www.eveningstar.co.uk

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