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Old 17th Feb 2013, 9:10 am   #61
Variometer
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Default Re: Bygone radio traders

In Preston, Lancs, in the 1950s, my favourite one was Parson's on the corner of Saul Street. He specialised in very old stuff, a lot of Government surplus and had large bins of components in the back where he was to be found most days with his pals. They were all very old and usually had overcoats & hats on and a fire in the room, even in summer. Customers in the form of small boys were usually regarded as a nuisance and answered in monosylbles. Eventually, he came to tolerate myself and a couple of friends and we were even allowed in the back and given a large bin of components to sort through. Everything was very cheap and a visit every saturday morning was a standard procedure for us. There was also Mr. Hodson at the bottom of Lune Street (now a heel bar), that he ran with his two lovely daughters. They only sold new stuff - components, valves etc for the home constructor, but all three were very knowledgable, patient and helpful. Then there was Danson's Radio House at the bottom of Fishergate Hill. It was a radio repair shop. Every month of so, we would go in and ask for Mr. Danson and politely request an old radio. We would then be taken into the cellar that was stuffed full of old radios and allowed to take our pick. I suppose they were old part-exchanges. He always stressed on us that we must not plug them in. But a lot of them were battery sets of the types that used accumulators, grid bias and 120Volt block batteries.
He eventually offered me an apprenticeship, but I went to sea instead!.
Happy days.
Bob
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Old 17th Feb 2013, 10:21 am   #62
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Yep, I remember Jim Logan well - I used to raid his shop every weekend.

As you went in the door left hand side for the length of the "showroom" there were tray and trays of valves, all pulls, 20p each - not the most helpful of individuals, but on a good day you could get a conversation out of him - I was offered a chance to buy up the stock when he ceased trading some years ago, i took some of it, but there was an entire shop load of sets, and the back yard and outbuildings were crammed to the rafters with stuff! - must be about 15+years now that he retired, only to die a year later...

Very interesting shop!

Sean
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Anyone else remember Logan's in Hitchin, Herts? They had two shops, and one of them had a room upstairs stacked with original, boxed record decks and changers. Collaro, Garrard, BSR.... absolute heaven!

Barry
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Old 17th Feb 2013, 1:09 pm   #63
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Hi johnlees, spot on yes it was Harding's.
Glad it's still going, thanks for the memory jog.

regards Alan.
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Old 17th Feb 2013, 1:18 pm   #64
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I've been enjoying this thread greatly. Whenever a place gets mentioned as still existing, I've been using google earth and streetview to go take a look.

There's a feeling growing that it would make an interesting holiday to do a UK tour covering these places. There aren't many left and their number is falling.

Do they do those little coloured vinyl pennants to stick in car windows?

David
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Old 17th Feb 2013, 1:49 pm   #65
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I keep forgetting about google street view ! Just had a look at where CES at Seacroft was, it reminded me the address was Limewood Approach, it's now a Nederman branch !
Strange seeing it again, even the door where we went in and out is still there.
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Old 17th Feb 2013, 4:29 pm   #66
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The YEB (Yorkshire Electricity Board) maintained extensive premises in this area too. Their meter calibration division as well as their first computer centre was there. When cable TV first started in the UK and it was supposed to be local firms and lots of enterprise & competition, (l.o.l.) Jones Cablevision started in the adjacent building to CES. Can't quite rememberhow many weeks it lasted before being taken-over & over & over...

Back to the Bygone Traders; how could I forget George Blakey on Cookridge Street in Leeds. A stoney faced man, never known to smile, clad always in the 'Cashdesia' sand coat. A decent bloke though who when asked would offer advice and always stocked the latest Mullard data book. He had a hoard of 'new' regunned tubes of obsolete types in his back room; think how we'd all like to get our hands on those now!
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Old 17th Feb 2013, 4:41 pm   #67
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I remember Blakeys. The never-known-to-smile comment is right on. The bit that sticks in my mind were the display cases of valves on the side of the inset door. The little shelves in them were deep enough for one valve and wide enough to take a dozen, but they looked like ebonite and had sagged a couple of inches in the middle.

Austick's book shop a door or two away had a good selection of radio and electronics books. I used to browse and memorise them!

David
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Old 17th Feb 2013, 4:43 pm   #68
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And one for Edinburgh:

Browns on George IV Bridge (reminded by the never known to smile comment above)

Millers on Leith Walk

Glasgow... I once visited RME and bought a few Tandberg cassette mechanisms complete with JVC sendust heads.

avid
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Old 17th Feb 2013, 5:06 pm   #69
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I remember that in Hurst street, Birmingham, back in the late 70’s there were radio shops all down that road, mainly Army Surplus equipment, and one particular shop down there springs to mind which was ‘Laskey’s’. (is Laskey's still trading?)

I used to go on the train, and bring all sorts of gear back home.

I don’t recognise the place looking on Google Earth now, as all of the radio shops have vanished.

Paul.

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Old 17th Feb 2013, 5:45 pm   #70
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Laskey's is long gone, I used to visit the Edgeware Rd or Tottenham Crt road branch, I don't recall which although they may have had a store on both ! Had many a Hi-Fi bargain there ! I think they may have become part of another large chain.
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Old 17th Feb 2013, 6:54 pm   #71
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I have just thought of another one from the '50s, Telekit supplies in Beckenham, they also had a government surplus place along behind Bromley common.

Peter
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Old 17th Feb 2013, 7:39 pm   #72
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Default Re: Bygone radio traders

Anyone remember Frank Mozer in Edmonton and Crescent Radio in Mayes Rd Wood Green ?
Jobstocks in Walthamstow brings back great memories.I bought a R1155 from them and took it home to Tottenham on the bus.

Dave
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Old 17th Feb 2013, 11:29 pm   #73
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I visit Walthamstow regularly, I'm curious to know where Jobstocks was, it's been mentioned before; next time I'm 'in town' I'll go & take a look at what's there now.
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Old 18th Feb 2013, 9:17 am   #74
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Jobstocks was in Hoe Street. When I Lived in Wanstead in the early 1960s I used to spend most Saturday mornings wistfully looking through their windows. Being a penniless schoolboy I could never buy anything, but I could dream.
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Old 18th Feb 2013, 9:23 am   #75
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Nearly everything on Hoe street now is a mobile phone shop, internet cafe, or coffee shop. With the 'Bell' pub behind you was it left or RHS going to town centre and was it as far up as the (now derelict) cinema?
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Old 18th Feb 2013, 9:36 am   #76
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Can't remember where the pub was (I was only about 15), but if I remember correctly, I used to turn right from the High St into Hoe St and the shop was not far along, on the left. They had heaps of stuff all over the pavement as it presumably would have prevented customers getting in if they'd left it inside. Was it a condition of being a govt surplus dealer that you always had to buy much more stock than you had room for?
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Old 18th Feb 2013, 9:53 am   #77
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In that case it's one of the few things that's not a coffee shop, probably the Co-Op bank!

On the subject of cramming it in; how to get 2 tons of surplus radio gear into less space than a man can stand in.... I'll wager that's where the creator of Dr. Who got the idea of the Tardis from.
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Old 18th Feb 2013, 1:03 pm   #78
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Jobstocks was in St Mary's Road, which is of off Hoe St.The building is now converted into flats.

Dave
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Old 18th Feb 2013, 2:26 pm   #79
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Hi. Other bygone shops in Leeds City Centre included Newmart Electronics (opposite the Corn Exchange and Market). I believe that it is now a cafe! They specialised in semiconductors, and sold many early transistors as NKT range, GET range, those transistors with coloured dots on them (where they 2SA types?).
Laskys in Leeds was situated down one of the arcades.
Cheers
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Old 18th Feb 2013, 5:41 pm   #80
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sean Williams View Post
Yep, I remember Jim Logan well - I used to raid his shop every weekend.
Sean, I know where the bigger shop was in Hitchin, but I can't think where the smaller one was on the outskirts. Can you jog my memory, please?

Barry
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