Town to lose its oldest name in shopping

IPSWICH town centre's oldest shop name is set to disappear later this year.The jeweller Croydons is to change its name as part of a major redevelopment of its store in Tavern Street.

By Paul Geater

IPSWICH town centre's oldest shop name is set to disappear later this year.

The jeweller Croydons is to change its name as part of a major redevelopment of its store in Tavern Street.

It will mark the end of a name which has been in the town since 1865.


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The shop will be renamed Preston and Duckworth – along with other stores in the same group.

The new name for the shop comes eight years after the original Croydons company went into receivership.

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The business was bought by Lancashire-based jewellers Prestons, which is planning to invest a substantial amount of money in the store.

The name will also change at the company's other Suffolk store, in Bury St Edmunds.

The new name was today unveiled by store bosses, and is due to come into use during the next three to six months.

Store manager Trevor Ireland said: "Prestons own six stores, and it was decided to brand them all under the same name."

Company chairman Neil Duckworth said the renaming was part of a national strategy. "We intend to be the best and most prestigious independent high quality jeweller in England," he said.

"The are six shops and ultimately we would like there to be ten. To be a national jeweller, we need to think nationally in terms of marketing. If we are to do this successfully, we must operate under one name."

Mr Ireland said the name reflected the past and present of the company.

He said: "The Duckworth family has been involved with Prestons indirectly since the turn of the last century, and directly since the 1940s, so there is authenticity in using their name.

"To call the company Preston, Croydon and Duckworth would have been a mouthful – and the Croydon family are still about but not involved in this business."

The name change will probably be introduced during the summer, at the same time as the Ipswich store is updated.

Mr Ireland added: "The character won't change a bit, but we will be making improvements to the store. It is wonderful to be able to invest in the store."

Among the changes will be the removal of the familiar paintings from the front of the shop building.

"They will probably be changed," said Mr Ireland. "They refer to the Croydon's heritage and will probably be donated to the local museum as part of the social history of Ipswich."

It is the second time in six years that the oldest shop name in Ipswich has disappeared. In 1996 Grimwades on the Cornhill closed down.

Now the oldest store name in the town centre will be Martin and Newby, which has traded on the junction of Tacket Street and Lower Orwell Street since 1874.

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