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Normandy Shops
The Main Road

The Wren's Nest c.1910The Wren's Nest

The Wren's Nest with Mrs Wakeford c.1910

The Wren's Nest was a small square old brick & tile bungalow at the junction of Sandy Lane and the Main Road at the corner with one bedroom, kitchen, the front was used as a shop run by the Wakefords family and owned by James Collins. Billy Wakeford first sold fish from his barrow. He used to push the barrow into Guildford to get the fish and sold it on the way back. Later he sold fruit from his barrow and also rabbits, which his son in law used to catch in the field behind the Homestead. He used to take the rabbit skins into Aldershot and sell them - he said he got more for the skins than the rabbits. He used to hawk vegetables and oranges round the village from a costermonger's barrow - he was disabled and used the barrow as a walking aid! 1920s/30s Mrs Wakeford used to sell sweets, not from jars but in boxes on a big table. She also had a large bottle of peppermint and made hot drinks from it in the winter or lemonade in summer

Shop at Parkview Cottage c.1906Shop at Parkview Cottage


E. Cranstone's Shop at
Parkview Cottage
c. 1906

Edwin Cranstone built the house and shop in 1903 and by mid 1930 was listed as a Wardrobe dealer run by Mrs J Smith, it continued as this also doing secondhand goods until about 1990 when the shop front was replace with a bay window to match the others of the building.

Rolph's Store at Willey Green, about 1918Willey Green Stores

Rolph's Store at Willey Green about 1918

This shop was built between 1841 and 1871 and served the Willey Green community at various times as a butchers, general store, bakery and grocery, draper and hosier and sweet shop until the 1970s when it became an antique and bric-a-brac shop, in the 1980s an autoglass shop and most recently a builders' merchant. In another photograph taken before World War I the shop has a flat roof but by the time this picture was taken it had been converted to a pitched roof. Walter Rolph and his wife Ruth, probably seen here standing in the doorway, occupied the shop, which was owned by Bowyers flour merchants of Stoke Mill, from 1910 until Walter's death in 1954. Around 1930 Palmolive had a sales promotion where they gave away 100 sticks of shaving soap, 100 shaving brushes and 100 tablets of soap to the longest established business between Aldershot and Guildford and Rolph's shop won it!

Normandy's Original Shop, about 1906Normandy's Original Shop

Normandy's Original Shop about 1906

It still survives as the Motorcycle Shop. It is recorded as being a grocery and baker's shop as early as 1841. It remained as such until the 1950s but during this time sold many other items including newspapers and hardware and until about 1900 it was also the village post office. It was occupied by a succession of shop keepers some of whose names are recalled today - James Dolley from the 1840s to the 1860s, William Deedman in the 1880s and Horace Holland who was also postmaster in the 1890s. In the early 1900s came J W Bentley and then R J Harvey. During the 1920s and 1930s, when the shop became known as "The Crib", there were Albert E. Durbridge and his wife Rosa, Arthur Page and finally Mrs Carpenter who traded there for nearly 20 years. After standing empty for a while, the Motorcycle Shop was established in 1959 by Mike and Brian Garbutt.

Normandy Stores

Was clearly feeling the pressure from the large supermarkets, closing down twice for extended periods in the 1990s. It was built about 1900 by John Horne who later went into partnership with Mr Hawes, a shopkeeper in Ash, and who was succeeded by his son John Horne. The next proprietor in the 1920s and 1930s, when petrol was also sold from pumps outside the shop was William J Henry the scoutmaster. In the late 1930s and the 1940s the shop was run by Edward H Worster, followed by Mr Burton, then Mr Denby and then Arnold Court who was successful in obtaining permission for a hairdressers salon at the back of the premises.

About this time it came under the Spar franchise. After several further occupiers it became a Circle K shop in the late 1980s then briefly reverted back to the Spar brand before re-opening as Normandy Village Stores in 1999 but was re-closed about a year later and is now a music shop.

Normandy Stores, about 1989
Normandy Stores about 1989
(Circle K)
Normandy Stores, about 1999
Normandy Stores about 1999
(Normandy Village Stores)

Pinewoods Post Office, about 1906Pinewoods Post Office

Pinewoods Post Office soon after it was opened in about 1906

This shop has had a remarkably consistent history. It was a grocery, post office and drapery run by J P Pryor and his sister for nearly 30 years. In the mid 1930s it was taken over by Arthur Bennett, "newsagent and bookseller" and, although no longer a post office it was a newsagents until it closed in 1996.

Map of locations of shops in Normandy
(JPG format)
Local shop advertisements - Side 1 (Leaflet 1970) (GIF format)
Local shop advertisements - Side 2 (Leaflet 1970) (GIF format)

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