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Trevor Edwards | all galleries >> Sheppey Pictures and Postcards >> Leysdown > Leysdown
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Guest 31-Jul-2014 14:23
The white building was, indeed, the Newsagent's. When Wellworths was so named, we had a good laugh as many visitors only glanced at the name and many were convinced is was one of the famous Woolworth Stores. (BB) p.s. so good to know you are still around Linda.
Linda 17-Nov-2013 21:39
The picture shown of Leysdown in its heyday is one we must have sold thousands of when stamps were (I think 3D) that old threepenny bit only some of us will remember. We also sold thousands of the naughty ones. I'm really amazed to have found this on-line. WELL DONE TREVOR.
Linda McMillan 17-Nov-2013 15:38
I am the youngest daughter of George Parlane of Wellworth Stores where I lived during my teens. I believe the white building in the photograph was the newsagents and Wellworth Stores was the larger building behind it (you can just see the roof in the photo).

George bought Wellworth Stores from his friend Stan Northover. At first he rented two units within the arcade: the grocery store and sweet shop. In the early days (1955) there was the grocery store at the front, the sweet shop behind it and a barbers at the back. On the left hand side as you went in was a butchers ran by Reg Terry, a Toy shop run by Mr and Mrs Gurr from Bexleyheath, and a chemists. In 1958 George bought Wellworth Stores from Stan who moved round the corner to another large place where he kept a pet lion on his balcony. The roller skating was behind the building and in the sixties it was buzzing with young people. I can remember standing on the balcony of Wellworth Stores watching a fight between Mods and Rockers. When I was 17 there was a huge fire started in the fairground next to Wellworth Stores. The wind helped the fire to travel and destroy the shops completely and I remember my dad, George Parlane, standing in the doorway of the charred building with silent tears running down his face. It was his lifetime's work in ruins. Six weeks after that first fire there was a second fire and Arson was suspected. This too began at the adjacent fairground but by then, my dad, George had had a brick wall built between the properties.
He was a born business-man. At school he told me he used to buy pencils for a halfpenny and sell them to his friends for a penny! He was always top of the class but his family did not have the money to allow him to go on to grammar school and pursue his education. I remember Len the toffee apple seller well; he was a familiar sight in the fifties and sixties. Some years later my dad bought the Co-op grocery store and butchers which was run by my Auntie Ella and her husband Gerald. The Carlton Stores was also purchased and owned and run by my late brother George William Parlane. And Vanity Stores also was bought by my father and then owned by my Auntie Win (his sister) and her husband Alf. Those were the days before the giant supermarkets. Outside Wellworth Stores my dad had a rock stall and I remember the huge delivery van with boxes and boxes of the sticks of rock with Leysdown all through. My uncle Alf was the star of the rock stall in its early days, shouting: "Any price you like, any colour you like, they're nice, they're lovely". He brought my Auntie Win, their daughter, Christine and my Auntie Daisy down from London each weekend to help in the arcade. Also outside Wellworth Stores was a fruit barrow run by Dido, Rose and Dido and Joey, their sons.
George died suddenly while on holiday in Malta in 1978 leaving shock waves throughout his circle of friends and family. My sister Joyce moved away to train as a nurse and I went up to London to work in a Bank. We did not share dad's love of his shops.
I haven't been to Leysdown for many years but I'm not surprised that the building is no longer there. Only the memories remain.
Mark 17-Oct-2012 16:52
Now I know why that hard standing is there, Thanks Iris.
brian 14-Oct-2012 11:39
I remember it well as when i was on holliday i used to go every day...Also my parents were very friendly with Bobby Wilson who died crashing his Rolls Royce on the M1...
Iris Adams 21-Jul-2012 23:27
I used to run the Skating Rink from 1964 untill 1968 for George Parlane the owner of Wellworth Arcade it was the white shop just down on the left hand side in this photo ,the skating rink was behind the shop ,where a market is held now ,George Parlane owned all the grocery shops in Leysdown in the 1960's ,Bobby Wilson brought the shop off him and turned it into a night club called Stage 3 ,which i believed burned down one night ,so hence nothing has been built on it since ,thats why its a hard standing space for market stalls ,in Wellworth Arcade at the time sold every thing from groceries to souvnirs ,the skating rink was so much fun .
pat collins nee baker 27-Jan-2011 14:36
can anyone also remember the skating ring it was situated at the back of the biulding here on the left,,,and there was small units in this building too,,,we used to walk thru the holiday camps from warden bay ,along the railway lines...
Dawn Benson 30-Sep-2010 18:00
That assistant was my mother, she used to spend afternoons making toffee slices & dipping the apples. I was only 3 or 4 at the time but i remember his disabled 3 wheel car & his hat. She took me with her a couple of times but it used to get so hot & boring we both got fedup of it lol, he used to sell at the donkey derby & various fetes too
Therese 17-Feb-2007 13:12
At about the time or a few years after this picture, in 1969 - 1973 I used to work at Greeno's on the left hand of the screen (I was aged 11 - 14) selling ice-cream, candy floss, pop corn, post cards, hats & novelties. The stall was owned by Greensmiths who also owned the fish shop just out of shot on the left. Opposite the was usually a man in a wheel chair called Len who sold toffee apples. He always had an assisstant with him. Just out of site on the right there was a red sea mine.
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