UK high street nostalgia

UK high street nostalgia


Damn. ELC. When did they go under? Haven't seen then in years.


Mothercare bought them in the late 00’s. And then shut most of them down when they themselves had trouble - moving them into small departments within the larger stores. I worked at the head office when they were closing the stores all down - and it was sad to watch (it went from hundreds in 2011 to about 5 in 2018). When Mothercare went through a CVA to try and limp on, they closed the last few stores off ELC as a brand is still around though - the Entertainer bought them a couple of years ago (before Mothercare collapsed)


There's still an actual ELC shop in Gibraltar.


I think the Entertainer got that too, or at least took over the franchise


We have ELC shops in Athens! Brings back my childhood memories


It was franchised around the world (and both the MC and ELC international franchises performed much better than the UK). I think Greece was one of the oldest partnerships as well


The one near me had one of those horrifying Jenny tree animatronics in it. When they went under the place got taken over by mothercare and they kept the bloody thing.


Even stranger when you go to another country and they still have those stores. Toys R Us: Philippines C&A: Germany


I'm pretty sure C&A just pulled out of the UK but continued trading all over Europe.


I always thought C&A was French, but TIL it's Belgian-German-Dutch. Someone once told me they'd seen C&A stores in the UK but I wouldn't believe them. But looking at the timeline of when they existed in the UK, now that conversation makes sense.


Whenever I go to mainland Europe with my mum, we make sure to visit C&A.


I once got trapped in Berlin after a weekend away, snow cancelled all flights for 4 days or so. Went into c&a and stocked up on pants, socks and t-shirts to last me.


Germany have Woolworths too


C&A is a huge in Brazil


I genuinely miss Gamestation. Although it was a chain, it still operated with an independent store morality. Hundred times better than GAME.


Yeah, the Gamestation buyout was genuinely the worst thing that’s ever happened to high-street game shops. Even the staff were gutted about it. Leaving aside Currys/PC world, GAME is easily the worst chain store in the UK in my opinion.


What's the issue with currys pc world?


The staff up-selling / addons is atrocious, two examples: 1 - They sold my grandad £250 worth of extra software he didn't needs, and something called KnowHow. I told him before hand to not buy anything other than the laptop but they pressured him into all of it. 2 - I tried buying a tv from there once and it was ludicrous the insurance, extra help, and cables they tried to sell me. I thought to myself, my god how hard is this going to be to return if it's not right. I went to John Lewis and bought the same tv at the same price with no issues, knowing it would be easy to return too. Currys PC World is a garbage store.


Ergh, they keep sending 'your warranty is about to expire' for a fridge and freezer I returned after the first day!


GDPR request to be forgotten those bitches.


The thing is they do it to make money but that kind of shit just puts me and many others off going and so I’ll just shop on ao instead losing all that custom just doesn’t make sense to me.


I went it to buy a TV, I knew which one I wanted and that it was in stock Should’ve been in and out Instead it took 20 minutes to find anyone working there and once I told them what I wanted they told me it wasn’t in stock so they could order it in for me or I could get “a better one” right now for around £100 more After a good couple of minutes back and forth trying to up-sell they went in the back and came out with the TV I wanted 10 minutes later Last one left my arse And only then did they start going on about warranties and insurance and other extras In the end by the time I’d gotten out with just the TV it’d been about an hour Pretty much anywhere else I would’ve been done in 10 minutes How can a store be so anti-consumer it’s crazy


I’ll never buy a tv from there again because of bullshit like this. Richer sounds all the way.


I was in a store and clearly heard the manager shouting out to staff push Norton for 50% commission on sales.


It was all about selling sky when I worked there. Think you got like £50 for each sign up... Fuck that I couldn't do it... Who the hell signs up for sky in a shop?


Worked there for about 6 months, sold 2 broadband packages. Had to ask every customer, surprisingly people coming in for a TV/Laptop are already signed up with someone.


I used to work in Maplin (rip) and we had to upsell McAfee. My sales pitch went like this Me: We have McAfee at 50% off Customer: Is it any good? Me: No. Just use the one which comes with Windows with Adblock Plus. Customer: ... Me: [loudly] ...


I remember a similar conversation buying something at maplin or some similar store once, I don't remember which: Employee: we have at 50% off Me: is it any good? Employee: there's a reason it's 50% off... Wonder if this was you, haha.


If ever you were in the North it very well could have been!


Famously only a single Maplin in the North


To be fair, the one thing I lived about Maplin was if you asked, you got an honest answer. I once had a Maplineer reserve me an item at the Argos across the street because you guys didn't have any. That Maplin died a death was a fucking travesty....


The most annoying thing is the vast majority of stores were profitable as-is, but the company itself was saddled with debt from hostile takeovers and aggressive financial planning (read “tax avoidance”) that it had to fold in the end


>, but the company itself was saddled with debt from hostile takeovers and aggressive financial planning (read “tax avoidance”) Where have I heard that before????? It shows the system is broken when so many try to run companies into the ground with dodgy financing.


Yeah I miss Maplin, if I needed any parts for my electronics or new bits for my PC I'd head straight there. Now I have to sit and stare at Amazon comparing the same two or three things over and over for hours on end before deciding which one is the best one (I really hate making serious purchases like hard drives, cameras etc...)


I miss Maplin like you wouldn't believe, but seriously, fuck amazon. If you need electronics, use RS Components or Farnell, and for PC components then either Scan or Ebuyer are my go to. Buy from a company that actually knows what they are selling and source quality stock, rather than a cheap peddler that will sell anything made by anyone.


Hahahah that's how I was when I worked at PCworld during college. Had to push Norton. People don't want any of that stuff lol


I worked at PCWorld during college and fuck me. You _had_ to push all the extra shit like all the "anti virus" crap, the whole office suit, the "knowhow" shit. As well as insurance incase of accidentally damage etc. I hated pushing that stuff so I never tried, so my manager really disliked me as my performance was so poor in the extras department. He was purely a numbers guy. Always pulling me aside asking if they took the office suite after I "made a sale".. a sale of which I made no commission and earned £6.20 an hour I think It was lol. You also had to push setting it all up for them in store, or for the half hour lesson on how to use the product you're buying. It's so shit because you get told off for not pushing it.. they tell you about all these different ways to secretly pushing it... my "favorite" one was low-key getting them to sign the insurance contract for a month of free phone help incase they get stuck, and blagging it as "just give us a call when you get stuck setting it up blah blah blah sign here... _remember to cancel..._" It's making me angry just thinking about it. The place is just total shite. Haven't walked into a store since I left there (after 2 years through college) like 7 years ago.


Only good thing pc world has done is price match, they are awful basically don't even sell pc stuff, staff have no knowledge either


I used to work there 15 years ago when I was just out of school. We had to push their Whatever Happens Insurance. I remember selling an old lady a load of White goods. She asked me what I thought and the trust in her eyes still haunts me. I only told her to get it on the Washing Machine in the end, but I still regret that and feel guilty about it. I hope her family found out and cancelled it. I'm sort of glad I served her though, as there were some absolute twats there who would have upsold everything.


Remember when Apple hired the guy responsible for this Currys experience to run their stores? It’s like they did zero homework in the guy. Utterly baffling.


I think they fired him asap, or you know not fired but you know as close to fire as you can for that level of executive. Not the word fired. They hired the lady who turned the Burberry stores around after that and she was a much better fit for the brand and role.


Right - he lasted less than a year - but Apple let him start running down the stores almost immediately - freezing hiring and wages, dialling back the customer benefits like no questions refunds. Classic stuff you have to do at a low margin retailer like Currys. But Apple was never just a retailer, never mind a low margin one. When they hired him, they must have been aware of his methods, Apple doesn’t take retail hiring lightly, never mind exec hiring.


I did buy my tv from there, but declined the £40 HDMI cable they were insistent my Xbox wouldn't run at 4K without.


I was told the same thing, to which I responded that there was one already in the damn box and to try and scam someone else


I just hate that the staff are always bothering me. I like to be able to browse in peace.


Had a mate who worked there a couple years ago. Apparently they're pretty much told to target the elderly and other people who seem naive to take advantage wherever possible, by talking them into paying for add-ons. Like it's something you'll get pulled up on if you let an elderly couple walk away without having made them pay for some technical support service to go with their TV or something ridiculous


Plus you got a John Lewis 5 year warranty included in the price :)


1) once went in to buy a £150 speaker. Asked two guys chatting who said they were out. Found the stock on the way out, went to John Lewis instead. 2) they have lots of exclusives that are a slight modification to an existing item so you can't easily price match. They're overpriced so they can reduce them to a reasonable price in the sale. 3) looked all over for different laptops. Bought one from Curry's because it has better spec. Turned out when it arrived it wasn't the spec the website said. As the windows setup asked for your personal login etc. it had my data in immediately. When I complained they said I can have a refund and nothing else, they said my data would probably get wiped at some point...I don't trust that at all. Took them 3 more weeks to correct the website.


Shite stock, shite staff that try convince you you need an 80 quid HDMI cable and when trying to buy a pc have less specific knowledge than the average cabbage.


>when trying to by a pc have less specific knowledge than the average cabbage. This! I was trying to get a graphics card and various updated bits for my pc to run Oblivion when it first came out. The bloke tried to upsell all these bits that were overkill for what I needed, and when I said “I’m just trying to run oblivion” he replied “Yeah you’ll need XYZ to get it running nicely, what’s oblivion anyway?”


Fuckers still do that now. Before first lockdown I was hunting for upgrades said to the guy I was looking for a new motherboard. Tried to convince me I was better off buying pre built and tried telling me they use "superior" products. Fucking thing had a red yellow wired PSU and a motherboard I'd never heard of. Just laughed at the guy and walked out.


Your store sells actual components?! I've popped in a few times to have a look and they don't have anything other then shite cheap "gaming" mice and keyboards. I went in years back to find a AIO CPU cooler and the assistant had no clue what I was talking about.




It's generally a sign of a low quality psu. I don't know of any decent rated decent brand psu that uses red and yellow wires anymore.


I went to buy a pc when windows 8 came out. Dude was trying to sell me lessons how to use Windows 8. I said I'll figure it out, I'm 17 I'll figure it out. He asked me to turn the PC off. Without knowing how to, I just hit alt F4. Dude was not happy. Dad went to buy Mum a ipad for Christmas. Mum likes Ipads hates other tablets. They sold my Dad a Samsung tablet. And a load of extras. My Dad at time was about 68, about as clued up on technology as a Rhino. They argued with me when I told them to return it and give me the ipad. And said they can't refund the extras. Half hour of arguing with them, they refunded. While the dude serving called me a sheep for buying Apple. Like, Dude. Shut thenfuck up.


Yup seems to be the case with dam near every bloody store. Utter bellends who don't have the slightest clue and prey on those with less knowledge. Some propper predatory behaviour.


Yep, first guy wasn't that bad. And he took the hint, second dude though, I seriously lost my temper with him. Now any time I buy stuff there, I just blatantly ignore them when they want to sell me stuff


Currys PC world will be one of the next retailers to fold, their prices are expensive and they sell older model products at high cost. Especially laptops and tablets.


Sales are still pretty strong, one of the few non-food retailers not to shut a large amount of stores in the last couple of years (except Carphone Warehouse which they moved into Curry's stores), and they are still the biggest electronic retailer in the country. I don't see them folding anytime soon.


GAME is owned by sports directs Mike Ashley, which makes it an instant no for me


oh shit didn't realise, yeah no go for me as well.


also the fact that it is 90% funcopops and other useless tat now, I'm here to buy games not a fcking phone. Also no retro? bye bye..


I'm a PC gamer by default, and to be fair to them nowadays it's almost 100% digital. To be unfair to them, even when PC gaming was still largely disk based their selection was shit. One tiny-ass shelf in my local store selling WoW and a few other random titles, sometimes not even new releases.


I worked at Game for a few years and it was great until the months before we went into administration (for the first time). After that we were forced to constantly try and upsell and offer things that we knew customers wouldn't want and would be irritated by. The old store I worked in was a cheap shoe shop for a while, they didn't bother changing any of the fittings and kept shoes in the glass cabinets behind the till. It really bummed me out whenever I walked past.


We had a local chain called Grainger Games. Also went bankrupt and was the cheapest way to buy new games. Good selection of pre-owned stuff too and nowhere near as sweaty as CEX


They were fantastic. Happy memories of buying stuff from the original stall on the Grainger Market in Newcastle. I remember getting absurdly excited when I saw the store in Liverpool some years later. Also remember being very amused watching some young ruffian trying to sell a console at the original stall, think it was a PS2, being challenged about whether it was really his and being adamant it was and everything was legit, only to become so crestfallen when it was pointed out to him that he hadn't got any of the cables....


Tbf I do enjoy going into a CEX and just looking around at all the crappy old games they have there for like 10p, but yeah it does have an extremely seedy vibe


CeX is alright but they always scalp people. Don't tend to stick around too long in there


I don’t think scalp is the right word. Obviously they sell second hand stuff, it gets tested to a degree (it seems each store has different quality in that department) but it’s a risk to buy hardware/phones particularly that may go busy, get blocked.. etc It’s basically the only second hand shop that people buy games & such in too. Game offer worse prices than they do, & cash converter and stuff isn’t really that popular. I think it’s alright if you remember what it really is. A second hand store


Their trade in prices on games are so bad that you're almost always better just flogging them on ebay. If you try to trade in a new game within six months of release then they might give you 50-60% (Cash, slightly more for store credit) of the usual ebay value for it, same for really rare stuff. Anything else though, fuck you here's 30% if you're lucky. Fine if you're in a hurry, but otherwise just whack it on ebay. I ran my collection through recently and across 200+ titles the average was 33% compared to the ebay value. And yeah you're right about the scalping. Any PS5 they currently have in stock is being sold for fuckin £650ish, that's ludicrous.


Grainger Games were great as they sold imports too


I worked at Gamestation when Game bought them out. The change was fast and awful. Also full of lies. We were told they were to be run as two separate entities, keeping the indie heart of Gamestation intact. That lasted weeks only. Such a shame.


Yes, I remember this. In the Manchester Arndale you had a a Gamestation at one entrance and a GAME at another and within weeks of the buyout, it just became the same store as GAME but smaller. Looked the same as every other GAME store.


If they left GS alone, they could of had two brands. One for the gamers and one for their parents essentially.


I worked during the takeover, too. We opened late the day we got the news because we were all gutted, not just because literally every Gamestation was spitting distance from the local GAME, but because we knew they’d take away everything we loved about it. The insurance upselling. The ridiculous bundles. The sales targets. The fun was gone, and we were just another electronics chain.


Second hand stuff was reasonably priced as well. Game knocks a fucking fiver off. Cheeky twats.


Was literally coming here to say this, genuinely felt like you was being helped by actual gamers when being served there, compared to game now a days where staff haven't a clue what they're talking about most days.


Gamestation was one of my nicest memories regarding videogames. I went to my local, a bit clueless, looking for a copy of some weird PS2 game called 'Ico' for my friend's birthday. I didn't see it on the shelves, so I asked one of the employees if it was something they'd be likely to have in stock anytime soon. The guy completely fanboyed out - turns out they had one copy tucked away somewhere, I think that he intended to buy himself. But he was so delighted that someone had asked for it by name, that he practically ran to get it for me. I thought he might be disappointed to sell it since he had wanted it for himself, but no - he was just really, really enthusiastic about the game! My friend was delighted by his gift - turns out, it was super hard to come by at that time. I finally played it myself years later. Really good stuff. But I still think of that guy in Gamestation every time I hear the name 'Ico'.


This. I could actually have a nerdy conversation with the staff in Gamestation. I stopped going in GAME many years ago, but whenever I did they were just interested in forcing stuff on you.


For me the nerdy talk has been fulfilled with CeX. The lads at my local store know who I am and what I like so we can have a good chat whenever I'm in there and sometimes even leave aside better quality disks/manuals/game boxes they know I've been looking for


The only problem with Cex is the *smell*.


That's because you were. I got friendly with my local one as a teenager as we used to be in the town every weekend and you'd run into the same staff. Used to pop in and talk about new releases my friends and I couldn't afford with them. Once one of my friends hit 18 he went to apply for a seasonal role and they basically wanted you to also talk about what games you enjoy playing/what platforms you've had/have as well as the usual stuff.


Same experience here. I used to go in at quieter times so we could have a bit of a natter. I wrote games in a former life and they were always curious about how game development works. Or worked, rather.


Skyrim was under £20 a month after release. Can't forget Fat Chris deals


Same here. GAME sucks in every way but Gamestation was good for second-hand games as well as new and was a reasonable price. CEX has stepped up really well to their credit.


And the cheap disc repairs.


'Electronics Boutique' anyone?


Absolutely. The genuine best balance of a store selling new, pre-owned, and retro.


Remember when somerfields used to be gateway?


Remember when Gateway used to be Fine Fare?


Oh god I remember Fine Fare. I am old. My mum once left me outside our local one as a toddler. Probably couldn't be trusted in a shop.


That's just being bugging me! Yes I remember gateway. They use to do the best hasslet meat on the fresh meat counters


Thank goodness for Gateway!




I'm sure that, at least towards the end, Woolworths just bought random long-abandoned shipping containers auctioned by dockyards and tried to flog whatever happened to be inside.


Sounds a lot like TJ Hughes


Woolworths then is what Wilko is now. They're basically the same shop but under different owners.




Did Wilko decide to change their name because Wilkinsons is too much of a mouthful?


Mate, I still say Wilkinson's haha


At least Wilko usually has what you want. Woolworths was just a jumble of shite and a huge pick n mix


Woolworths was effectively what you’d get if Lidl and Wilko had an illegitimate child




The big poster display racks that you could flick through, whack, whack, whack!


For us aussies it's even weirder as we have woollies still. But it's a grocery store like tesco.


I used to love the random toys there as a kid. I think I remember toy tanks that were as big as my torso. Rarely the same toys. That was my favourite stop on the trip to the highstreet. It was also such a jumble of a store, so I always forgot where the toy aisle was, so everytime I was taken there it was utter surprise and joy when we discovered it.


I miss Woolworths pick and mix 😍


I wasn't alive when the Berlin Wall came down, but the final day Woolworths was open is what I imagine the atmosphere was like in Berlin.


Funnily enough Woolworths still exists in Berlin


Woolworths was our 9/11


Our Woolworths used to sell sweets by the cup rathe than weight so me and my brother would cram as many in there as possible, fisting it to compact it if we had to. When we were done with the cramming it felt like a brick. This didn't last long


As someone who worked in Plymouth woolworths the cups were mixed. For a typical customer they were more profitable than by weight since people were usually bad at packing them. If you put a £2.99 cup on the scales it would normally have £1.50 worth of sweets. The occasional customer like yourself was rare enough I think when I "won" cramming in by fitting £15 with in a large tub it was seen as fun by the store manager. It didn't really hurt the bottom line. You have to understand in Plymouth they lost way more from elderly people walking in and "filling" a bag while eating the sweets, then ditching a bag and walking out So a certain high level of wastage was planned for. The problem was (in Plymouth) elderly customers who would walk into the normal confectionary and start adding mars bars or turkish delight, etc.. and buying the tub that made it quite a loss. About a year before the entire department was spun out as Candy King (like in Tesco's and Wilkinson's). The quality dropped since costs increased. Goods were no longer delivered via woolies lorries, you couldn't take containers and clean them in the woolies cafe dish washer, etc.. candy king staff arrived to stock the shelves and were seperate from staff. The last was sad for me I would restock several tonnes of drinks and crisps in a shift and the person on pic n mix was the only person i could talk to and candy king staff came during the morning. It was one of the signs of the end, take Plymouth. It was the highest grossing store in the country but lacked any senior management above store manager for 5 years. They spent money doing a complete refurb of lots of loss making small stores but couldn't afford to refurb Plymouth. I remember pulling a drinks cage and the concrete shop floor collapsed. All they could do is a quick pour of concrete and brown tape down the laminate floor tiles... That said I am sure loads of people know 5020 1600 thanks to easter but our woolies sold almost as much 5020 1642. Anyone know that one (you know the code because the barcode will not scan).


Cream egg. Galaxy was 1642? Loved my time in woollies, left a couple of months before they closed down, manager at the time was pushing me to go for store management training, dodged a bullet there. Loads of great memories of that place. Feel kinda depressed going in there now it's a b&m.. Oh also the lift in ours was hit and miss whether you got stuck in it. Must have been as old as the building, refurb didn't include anything the customers didn't see. I still have a load of "worthit" stuff kicking around the house too


> The problem was (in Plymouth) elderly customers who would walk into the normal confectionary and start adding mars bars or turkish delight, etc.. [Mr Homer- a Jolly Rancher is NOT a sprinkle…](https://youtu.be/cKSXoG9iWBk)


I remember they didn't do it by weight. It was done by pot size. When I was a kid me and my friends thought we had broken the system by pushing the bottoms out of the cups a little bit to fit in more sweets. It felt like we were performing a grand heist but in reality we got 5p worth of stale sweets extra.


Do you remember MFI with their awful plastic TV set things to help you to visualise what your TV stand might look like.


My daughter has some MFI furniture in her room (cupboards and wardrobes) that I had when I was a kid. It still looks modern to. I'll be gutted when we have to get rid of it, it's been with me most of my life now. Well made stuff.


ELC was legendary as a kid. I remember playing with the wooden train tracks in their stores


I loved that train set, I'd drag my mum in every time we passed, i swear if they had ever bought me one i would be designing the layout of HS2 now


[The wooden train sets were made by BRIO.](https://www.brio.uk/) Really good quality, my parents still have mine from when I was a kid. [I even had an Intercity 125 for my set.](https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/203591550373?hash=item2f670085a5:g:xqMAAOSwWvJhMVsy)


Just as a heads up for any parents of toddler train enthusiasts, the IKEA wooden trainset is built to fit BRIO trains and tracks and is a fraction of the price! The entire lot cost me less than 40 quid and the little one adores it, and all the hand me down brio peices and trains fit perfectly


My BRIO train set got passed down to my cousins, and then my Aunt gave it to her friends kids, think they’ve probably passed it on now too. Really simple but solid toys.


I think I'd actually rate it higher than LEGO for very young kids. No real small parts to swallow, tough, and as far as I know, they don't use any toxic materials to make and paint them. Plus, train sets are just cool.


Yeah building your own track with bridges etc. is definitely engaging enough for young kids. Wood is just a nice material too. My cousins got bought a motorised engine to go with the set, and I was genuinely a bit jealous as a teenager that that technology wasn’t available to me when it was mine!


My Brio did the rounds! It went from me to my cousin, from my cousin to his little brother, then it went to my nephew, off to another cousin and then up into an attic... and then when it was about to be charity-shopped during my cousin's house move it came BACK to me for my kid!




There was a Comet on the retail park where I lived when I was little, and there would be these working display washing machines or fancy dishwashers outside the shop doors. Like you could see the water being sprayed around on the inside and the soap bubbles forming on the window. I’d always point them out to my mum when we went past them. Not sure if it was real because I don’t know how they plumb them in. It could’ve just been a very mundane dream.


Better than that dream where you're naked on a toilet outside Carpet Right?


Index was the only I had really forgotten about.


Littlewoods answer to Argos. Which you'd think they would be able to do since they already ran a catalogue business. Tried using them a few times when they had a branch inside Littlewoods in Newcastle. Usually they didn't have anything in stock.


Gamestations preowned 4 for £20 was always a good deal! Most of the games included weren’t even that old. I remember seeing a game pre-owned in Game for £17.99 or on the 4 for £20 in gamestation just down the road. The buyout was the worst thing to happen


The 4 for £20 offers were amazing. I remember in my teens being obsessed with them and (even though it hasn't gone away yet) the 3 for £20/5 for £30 DVD offers at HMV. I think Virgin/Zavvi also did them.


Ah memories! Anyone else remember “Texas” before Homebase took its place.


Yup, and Focus DIY Intersport Tandy's Wimpy Netto MFI Army & Navy Co-Op Superstores (larger than their convenience only stores)


There are still a couple of wimpys hanging on for dear life. I know there's one in Swanage. I'm sure there's another one somewhere


I spent most of my twenties working at Comet. I have to admit that the money was great but it didn't really make up for the time I was assaulted by a customer, or the time a shoplifter tried to stab me with a syringe, or the time our security guard was murdered on the job.


Where were you? Kabul?


Close, Kidderminster.


>or the time our security guard was murdered on the job Mate, you can't just drop that and walk away.


Remember staying at my best mate's in primary school every weekend as a kid. His mum would take us to blockbusters each time and we'd rent a game AND DVD for the weekend!! Life has never been as good and that was 15 years ago now.


We used to go to one called 'choices' I think. Used to be great. I think we are spoilt nowadays and it kind of ruins it. I spend far more time searching for a film to watch then I do actually watching films.


We had a Choices too - it was connected to our local Sainsbury’s so my Mum used to let me rent a game and a film after the weekly shop. It was so good.


Used to order a Pizza on a friday and whilst waiting would go next door to pick a film to rent and a PS1 game to rent. Good times.


Ah man this takes me back to simpler times.


this was a monthly treat for me and my brother too. completing a ps1 game in 48hrs whilst having to share the console was a real feat.


Rumbelows. Because where else where we supposed to rent our TV from? And sometimes when it had to be repaired they gave us a loaner which actually had a remote. We lived like kings for a couple of days.


What about radiorentals?


Ah, yes. Kids these days wouldn’t believe we had shops for renting basic electronics.


what about granada? great service, great sets!


Can we add Electronics Boutique, Phones 4 U, Our Price, Virgin Megastore to the list


When someone calls work and I answer and it's for someone else I still say Phone's 4 u, and do the silly hand thing. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dTEgo0N_xzI (see end of advert)




Reminds me of an old favorite joke… A blonde asks a young lad why his shoes have L and R written on the soles. He explains that it’s so he can put them on the right way round. Ahh! She replies, so that’s why my knickers have C&A written in them!


Forgot JJB was even a thing


Wow rip BHS not even worth remembering, also Maplins


I miss those C&A label underpants that ensured you put them on the right way.


Anyone remember when Netto had a go here? Think they tried twice


I think they departed the UK when they discovered that kids were being bullied to shit if they found out their mum shopped there.


It's Scandinavian for value!


Renting Banjo-Kazooie from Blockbuster and then continuing to rent it out for weeks so I could complete the game was the dream. Deff came to cheaper than buying it.


There's still a Kwik Save sign in Byker.


Index! Crikey, that's a blast from the past.


I remember C&A as a kid because it used to have a projector that would shine the logo as a light moving the whole way along the shop, and I used to chase and jump on it. I really hope someone else remembers this also


You know Gap closed their stores this year? There is no longer a Gap in the market.


Forgot Our Price. 😭


And Tower Records


When did Our Price perish? Edit 2004, blimey.


GameStation was the only place for "fair" trade in prices, loved that place


Only reason I had plenty of games to play growing up was because of Game stations good trade in prices and general decent prices on pre owned games, used to love going there and then my local one got changed into a Game and now it's really shit and over priced.


I remember back in the mid-00s they had the most ridiculous offer of all time. "Trade in ANY 2 games and get a brand new title for 99p" And when they said ANY games, they meant it. I remember taking a pile of shitty worthless PC games in and getting Star Wars Battlefront, Destroy All Humans, Baldurs Gate and some others for less than a tenner. These were ~£40 per game at the time. Over 15 years later, I still wonder from time to time what in the world they were trying to accomplish with that deal lol


Haha probably deals like that is why it isn't around today,


Also a bag shop "Salisbury's". Assuming it was a chain of course.


I don't know how old people are on here but do any of you remember Zodiac toys? This was the Shangri-la of shops when I was a kid. Early learning centre was rubbish in comparison. Zodiac was the place to buy your Skeletor figure or scalextric. I once ran away from my nursery and was found a mile away in the nearest Zodiac store. I was 3 or 4.


No love for John Menzies?


We lost the Early Learning Centre and now we have TikTok


*Image Transcription: Photos* --- [*Image shows a collage of 12 different storefronts. This includes; Woolworths, Somerfield, BlockBuster, Dixons, Toys'R'Us, Early Learning Centre, Game Station, C&A, JJB Sports, Index, Comet and Kwik Save Food.*] --- ^^I'm a human volunteer content transcriber for Reddit and you could be too! [If you'd like more information on what we do and why we do it, click here!](https://www.reddit.com/r/TranscribersOfReddit/wiki/index)


Woolworths, Our price, HMV.


HMV are still fighting the good fight


Yep, they've nearly gone under a couple of times and they've shut a number of shops in recent years, but they are still going. No idea what their turnover is like these days.


i would assume minimal, the online store is most all thats keeping them afloat


Did anyone else do Blockbuster dates? I would meet my girlfriend there after work on Friday, spend over an hour browsing films while talking about our respective days, then add some snacks to our selection and head back to hers. It was great.


I'm nostalgic for this and it's something I've never experienced.


🎶There's millions of Jeffery's all under one roof 🎶


I knew someone who in worked at Toys R Us, when they got a new staff member they would leave them in the back on their own, then call the warehouse phone from out front and pretend that they were the regional manager doing a spot check, and tell them to sing the jingle because all staff should know it. Then they would put the poor sod on the store tannoy while they were singing.


Wow that's harsh!


*There's millions _says_ Geoffrey I will sadly admit I know the song word perfect. Initially because of the advert with the car driving up to the store which I've forever associated with Christmas, and then because I was unfortunate enough to work there at a new one that opened in my town and the song was played _constantly_ for about a year.


Staff at our local store changed that to "..millions of debris....". After Christmas trading it was more apt.


Anybody remember Borders?


Where the heck is Tandy and Rumbelows?


I had a Dixons in my city centre, but it closed after the street it was on was pedestrianised. We had a C&A many years ago as well. It's now a Next.




Yeah something about traders needing access was the end of it. I used to live nearby in Little Oakley, lovely village, brilliant tapas bar ran by a chap called Domingo and his wife Isabel. She was always very friendly to me, seemed lonely despite being married.


I’d sometimes go for breakfast at the Linton Travel Tavern. Great location. Equidistant between London and Norwich.


I remember toys r us and blockbuster and I still have a game called Kinect Star Wars that I bought from blockbuster. Good times


No Beaties?


Never really understood the draw of Index. Wasn’t it just the already overpriced Littlewoods catalogue but in store? Not sure how they would ever compete with Argos on price because of the Littlewoods tax. Speaking of catalogues I’ll be getting my annual Studio24 Christmas catalogue soon I expect as well. How they are still alive and kicking is beyond me. Cant you still see Dixons at airports? Haven’t been flying for a couple years now but I’m sure there is a Dixons at Manchester airport. The original image is also missing Jessops, whose sole purpose seemed to be to price match everywhere else as they were always far more expensive. Since been phoenixed by one of the Dragons Den lot I believe.


RIP early learning centre, my mum used to have to go a different route around town so I didn’t see that place cos if I went in I wouldn’t come back out


Does anyone remember MVC? We had a big one of those in Durham and it was basically a giant store selling CD's (I think they had three for 20 type deals). It was in the Milburngate, which has now sadly been knocked down to accommodate a bunch of open-air stores. I've not been to Durham in a while, but it's crazy to think how much it's changed in just the last 10-12 years.