The Corner Shop on Memory Lane

Do you remember your local corner shop? What did it sell? Did the shop keeper have a cat that slept on the counter?

Corner shops were a vital component of many communities. The relationship between the shop keeper and customer relied on trust – when things were getting tight towards the end of the month, supplies were often bought on ‘tick’ until pay day came.


Members of the Spring Chicken community have been sharing the goods that were stacked on their shelves:

‘You could get everything you needed, all sold loose, including butter and cheese. You could buy broken biscuits and pay a little less. You could buy washing for clothes, starch, flour… I could go on listing things for hours. Our corner shop was an Aladdin’s Cave.’

‘I worked in a great corner shop. We sold bacon rashers, eggs, sausages… People were grateful to buy things fresh each day. They could get cheese off the block, potatoes loose from the sack. Such better times.’

‘They were open all hours, but I remember you couldn’t buy soap powder or other cleaning goods on a Sunday.’


Particularly in the 50’s and 60’s, there were butchers, bakers, cobblers and sweet shops on nearly every street corner. Cheese was cut with a wire and wrapped in paper, sweets were kept in large glass jars, and bacon was put on the slicer.

Some Spring Chicken Facebook Followers remember working in their local corner shop:

‘My parents and I ran a corner shop for many years. I was popular with my school friends – I always had a bag of sweets on me at school!’

‘My mum and dad owned a corner shop in the 60’s. I got married in 1964 and I had to walk through the shop because we didn’t have a separate front door!’

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1 Comment

  • I lived for the first 5 years of my life in Kineton Warwickshire, a small little village deep in the countryside, where there was a corner shop, and for me it was the place where I could buy the most tempting sweets, particularly licquorise In long ropes which was lovely to eat. We used to sit eat the liquorice and talk to our hearts content me, sister Dee and any others who wished to join in. Life seemed so simple then. The owner of the corner shop knew us well,and often suggested other types of sweets though we had an inkling of liquorice.

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