I was sad to read in last week’s news about the demise of Seamer Stores. As a child in Irton in the 1930s my mother placed a weekly grocery order at the shop that we handed in to have delivered. The order never changed but she always made a new one out each week. It may seem weird but I can repeat it from memory even now; flour, lard, tea, sugar, butter, margarine, cheese, cigarettes, matches, two bread, two coals (we also shopped a bit for her during the week, and for other villagers).
The shop was run by Jack Dawson assisted by his elderly mother. Me and a couple of pals at Seamer school used to go there to buy open topped packets of five ‘Willy’ Woodbines to smoke after school in the adjoining farmer’s barn. I often wonder why Jack never told my mum. I have never smoked in the whole of my life from then and can claim I gave up smoking when I was 10.
Every year on November 4, Mischief Night, Jack’s front garden gate was lifted off its hinges and stood up by the wall and the next morning he would rehang it. The shop was always a community store with kids’ Christmas Club and Jack as counsellor to the village. He was a first aider and gave advice to villagers on all kinds of things.
A real treasure trove and credit to all his followers who have maintained it as a store for so many years.