Wayside, Potters Bar

Our Local Shops Gone

By Julie Regan-Starling

Wayside, 1990
Julie Regan-Starling

This picture was taken in 1990 using a black and white film.

These were my local shops in the 1970s although I think they were built earlier with the new housing estate, locally known as the Tottenham Estate (Oakmere Estate) because people from Tottenham were housed here around the 50s. (There is also an Edmonton/Ashwood Estate in Potters Bar).

From left to right, the shops were:

A butchers, a launderette, a hardware store, unknown store, newsagents, off licence, supermarket (Londis in the picture) and a greengrocers.



Penny sweets and comics

My memories of going to these shops are of tying our dog to the lampost outside and the butcher giving us bones for the dog, buying penny sweets and our weekly comics from the newsagents, mum getting her Family Allowance and taking used bottles back to the off licence in exchange for a few pennies.

In those days, children used to go into the shops with notes from their parents or nan to buy cigarettes. I remember the shopkeepers saying that they could not accept these notes. 

Cabbages with slugs

Once, my mum was in the greengrocers when another woman came storming in holding a cabbage half-eaten by slugs! I remember slugs often coming up to the top of a pan of boiled cabbage!

We also bought spuds (potatoes) by the sack load and they came covered in dirt from the field.

Now houses

The shops were knocked down and replaced by housing around the mid-late 1990s.


This page was added on 25/06/2010.

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  • The unknown shop used to be a wool shop owned by miss hardboard. Then it was a motorcycle shop. I also worked for roy and val in the green grocers. I also done a paper round for Mr waheed in the post office. October November when I wasn’t in the shops i was outside doing penny for the guy..Just before I left potters bar used to help out in the off licence. Loads of good memories around those shops.

    By Brian Cook (14/12/2020)
  • The unknown shop used to sell clothes and shoes then (so I am told) shop motor cycles. I used to work for Roy and Val who owned the greengrocers

    By Micheal collins (31/05/2019)
  • You can google streetview pretty much from the same spot. Just about remember the shops, now incidentally live just around the corner!

    By Matt Dickins (31/05/2012)
  • How wonderful to see this photo. I owned the laundrette leaving when they were pulled down. Many memories.

    By Janice Ford (12/01/2012)
  • It would be interesting to show a photo of the development which replaced these shops, from the same spot, if possible

    By Rosemary Ross (23/07/2010)