SHOPS AND BUSINESSES



Local businesses grew from 20 in 1927 to 68 in 1936.  There was a Friday market on the land behind the high fence, at the side of the Moorends Hotel every weekend from early morning until late evening, selling numerous commodities.  The people of Moorends did not have to travel anywhere for every day items.  The shops in the village sold everything and provided many services.


Milk, eggs, green grocery, groceries, meat, fish, tea, paraffin, hardware, wood and coal were all sold on a door to door basis.  Of course the 'tally man' also called from time to time. The two main coal hawkers in Moorends were Barry Collis, Sam and Ernie Cairns, Roy Cairns continuing the family business until fairly recently.


Large items of furniture or special clothing were the only commodities that people would have to travel out of the village for and then only for choice, usually to Thorne, Doncaster, Goole or Selby.  Cars were very rarely seen from the 1920s to the late 1950s.  Buses were available and had a daily service, they would stop on demand, not particularly at the designated bus stops.  The bus companies were Irene, Majestic, Corona, Blue Line, Reliance and Reknown, they charged various fares for the same distance.  Later the Cressy, Felix and Premer buses were introduced.  By the late 1950s, the bus route extended to the middle of the built up area of the village.





 Cressy single decker bus waiting for passengers from Doncaster to Moorends

 outside Christ Church in Doncaster in the 1940s


It seems that most of the shops were purpose built, the busnesses on the ground floor, the living accommodation above, with the exception of Mrs Robinson's small grocery shop in the front room of the end terraced house of Moss Terrace.


The first shop to open in Moorends was Prior's grocery shop on Marshland Road in 1910.  It is said that the shop was a gerneral store that sold almost everything from food to hardware.



                                                                                   Mr and Mrs Prior outside their shop


It seems that some people assume that Mr Prior seen in the picture above is a relative of the late Harry Prior, the well known green grocer in Thorne and in actual fact they are no relation.  Harry came from Hull in the 1940s and first sold fish on Thorne market.


By 1914, there was a post office on Marshland Road, where Teesdales bakers shop is located at present.  The location of the post office has changed twice since the early 1930s.  The first move was to the Bullring, where the newsagents are today, then back on to Marshland Road where it remains at the present time.


Other early, pre colliery shops were, Mellor's the saddlers opened in the area of the pizza shop, opposite from where Brown's garage is sited today.  Lawton's hardware and paraffin shop, located in the first row of shops on the left side of Marshland Road, travelling from Thorne, delivered their goods to farms and local households using a horse and dray. 


By 1922 and onwards, more shops were built and opened in readiness for the building of the village and with this, the influx of people, all working and earning money that had to be spent on every day living.  The shops sold a range of commodities.  It is said that some of the new era of shops and businesses were very prosperous and were passed on to future generations, well into the 1960s.


The more mature members of the community have been able to recall and give information about the local businesses in the early days; they say that it was very unusual to see business premises empty, as one business ended or moved on, another would be ready to take its place.  As we are covering almost 100 years, it would be almost impossible to cover all the shops but here is a list of the most remembered shops and their location where possible.


The row of shops located from the Miner's Welfare, leading to the top of Wembley Road, on Marshland Road:


Ernest George & Sons, was next to the cinema, they were evacuated when the cinema caught fire.  The family were of Italian descent and started the small business selling tobacco, sweets and producing and selling icecream in the 1930s.  They later expanded the business by setting up a production line for making ice cream on the premises.  They owned carts and later, ice cream vans; these could be seen well into the 1960s in the surrounding area, especially in Thorne Park on Sundays.  Mr George later expanded further, creating jobs for lots of housewives, by setting up a pickle factory on Bloomhill Road; later, he opened a shop in Bridlington.  In later years, the Candy Store sweet shop was in this area.



    Georges shop next to cinema


The Regal Saloon, ladies hair salon, next to Georges; Farmer's sweet shop and cafe, next to the hairdressers; Burras and Peaks, gents outfitters, where Mr Darfield was the manager for the duration, on the corner of Marshland Road and Wembley Road next to Farmer's.


The row of shops located on the right side, at the top end of Wembley Road:


Hands and Wright's, second hand furniture and removals, also coal hauliers; Firth's, wet fish and green grocers; Melias, grocery and dairy produce; Smith's butchers - Mr Smith was the first of many butchers in the village; he was given the choice of two shops, either the shop across the road, which later became Potter's newsagents or the one that he chose, which was the last one in the row of shops, before the first houses on the right side of the road.  He chose this one as it was positioned so as to avoid the sun shining through his shop window.



                                          Charles Joseph Smith with sons, Sidney and Joseph, 1928


The one shop located on the left side, at the top of Wembley Road was:


Potter's newsagents, later passed on to the Bennetts, then the Hunter's.


The row of shops located from the top of Wembley Road, on the right side of Marshland Road, travelling from Thorne:


Shops on Marshland/Wembley Road opposite the Moorends Hotel


Hopkinson's, grocers; The Meadow Dairy, grocery and dairy products; The Public Benefit Boot Company, shoes and boots; Dexter's, furniture shop; In later years, the Wool Shop, Wilson's , the drapery shop; the chemist and the Post Office. 


                                          The Meadow girls                                      



  The Boot Club shop


 The row of shops located in the recess on Marshland Road, towards the end of Alexander Road:


A C Brown's Garage,  cycle, motor spares, taxi service and local ambulance service, later with the addition of fuel pumps, was sited where the TGS is now when Albert Brown first set the business up.  Later, in the early 1960s, when Albert's son took over, the garage was relocated across the road to where Bloomhill Farm was previously sited. 


The dark blue ambulance was commonly thought of as the pit ambulance although journeys were made from the local area to Doncaster Hospital for emergencies or for anyone who couldn't travel by public transport. The ambulance and taxis were kept behind the garage shop, accessed from Alexander Road.




                                                         Evening time at Browns Garage


Also in this area was: Mellor's , the sadlers; Crozier's, the grocers and Calvert's on the corner of Marshland Road and Alexander Road, selling hardware and crockery;  in later years, Penny's Pantry, a small cafe complete with juke box, used mostly by the younger generation; Oglesby's, the butchers were also in the same vicinity.


Turning into Alexander Road opposite the Buff Club:


Pidds, cold meat and pie shop, a grocery shop, a hair salon.



 Picture shows curious onlookers after a shop fire on Alexander Road in 1927


Shop next to the front of the Buff Club on Marshland Road:


Lewis Rogers, the cobbler, next to the Buff Club, later becoming a grocery shop, then a wool shop.


Shops and businesses located on the left side of Marshland Road travelling from Thorne:


 Tony George's Garage, son of George's ice cream - later owned by Allports, now the Bosch Garage.


The Co-operative, selling groceries, with an adjoining butcher's shop, apparently no town or village was established until the Co-op moved there.


Ernest Glover, the bookie carried out his business in a wooden building at the top of Bloomhill Road, opposite the Moorends Hotel.


There were always two or three turf accountants in Moorends in various locations.  Gambling was illegal in the early days.  Pitch and Toss games were held near the crossing on Bloomhill Road.  The local police knew about it and now and again would raid and fine the offending bookie, the shop would be closed down for that day but the next day business was back to normal and all was forgiven on both sides of the law - until the next time. 


The recessed row of shops, on the left side of Marshland Road, from the grounds of the Moorends Hotel and before Prior's Row:


Ryder's fish shop, complete with talking parrot; Duffield's, assorted household goods; Saul's, iron mongers; Duffins, drapery, clothes and shoes; Wallers, toy shop; Butlers, drapery; Dawsons, fish shop; Bonsall's fish shop; Barber Lowe, later Ken Taylor's barbers.



In later years; Roses bakers and confectioners, they had vans that sold their produce door to door in the area; Clive Collis, green grocer; Zerney's dry cleaners; WVS base; Ken Clark, the cobbler; Mrs Maddison's fish shop.


                                                              Ken Clark, the cobbler


The row of shops located in the recess after Prior's Row, towards Brown's Garage:


Prior's shop, general stores; Jack Harrison, the butcher, later Middleton's, after that Wakefield's butchers, Northern Dairies after the war.


The row of shops located in the recess after the Social Club:


Barstow's chemist, who displayed the three brightly coloured decanters in the window; Crowther's green grocery; Yorkshire Penny Bank, a part time branch, later the Midland Bank; along with a part time optician and Dickinson's wallpaper shop. taken over by Fennings who sold wallpaper and hardware.


The row of shops located in the recess opposite Grange Road:


Gaffney's fish shop, they sold potato crisps, these were made at Gaffney's other fish shop at the top of Durham Avenue in Thorne, this family went on to open a crisp factory in Scarborough.  This factory manufactured the first XL crisps.  Gaffney's in Moorends later became the Silver Grid fish shop, owned by Mrs Robinson, later she converted it into a dress shop, another business that was based there was Reg Robinson, the local photographer; Percy Wood, the turf accountant was their next door neighbour, this property was a wooden building; Derrick Wilson later improved the building and sold carpets and had an upholstery service; Wayner's newsagents; later taken over by Skelton's.


Park Road, West Road, Northgate and South Road all led on to the circle of grass, known as the Bullring, this divides the four roads, it is known as The Circle today. 


 The Bullring


Shops on Park Road leading round towards South Road:


Unfortunately, the earlier shops in Park Road cannot be recalled, the following shops date from the early 1960s and onwards: Blackham's Self service store, the first of it's type in Moorends; a pet food shop, also selling green groceries; Archdale's bakers; Coulson's wool shop on the corner of Park Road and South Road, later Bailey's sweet shop; Bailey's drapery shop; Roger's wallpaper shop.


Across the road:


Sylvester's green grocers; ladies hairdressers; Barclays Bank; Post Office; later Bennett's cycle shop; Mary Woolley was the next propprieter of the newsagents, then more recently it was taken over by Peter and Pat Yates.


Continuing on to West Road:


Ward's butchers; more recently Ellis's butcher and confectionary; Langley's hardware, more recently Appleton's radio and television shop; McIntyres turf accountant.


These are but a few of the most remembered shops and businesses in bygone days.  The shops on Marshland Road were often referrd to as 'shops ont top road' by the villagers.  It seems that people that lived nearer to Marshland Road are unable to recall shops in the Bullring as they say that, because they could get everything that they needed on Marshland Road, they hardly ever ventured into the Bullring.


In the early 1950s, Moorends boasted a good selection of shops, a post office, a bank, an opitician, two chemists, five butchers and no less than five fish and chip shops and quite a number of small grocery shops.


Cyril Cadman also had his bus company over the crossing to the right of Goole Road, where the new pit lane is today, travelling towards Rawcliffe Bridge; Thorne Memorials, the long established Arthur and Phillip Leyland, stonemasons, can sill be located on Masrshland Road, after Wilkinson Avenue, travelling from Moorends Village.







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