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Two shops closing - end of an era

From Jenny G

Friday, 25 September 2015

Durtanczyc Jewellers closing Saturday 26th September after 52 years in business in Hebden Bridge!

Valet Stores closing after a long time too (anybody know how long?) at the end of next week.

Definitely the end of an era.

A bunch of us from the Trades Club had a whip round and got a "gold" watch each (well, ok, not quite solid gold ;-)) for "Mr.& Mrs. Valet Stores", and a nice bouquet of flowers from Fleur de Lys for "Mrs Duranczyc" (well, a gold watch would have been a bit like coals to Newcastle wouldn't it!)

Still time, just, for anyone else who feels like marking the occasions.

From Josephine Hartley

Saturday, 26 September 2015

All good things come to an end so they say.

First of all Harold Crabtree's and now Valet Stores & Durancycz. Old HB slowly fades away but new things come along to replace the old and life goes on.

I still have Christmas decorations bought from Valet Stores when they were on Market Street in the 60s. Mr & Mrs Dempsey were the owners in those days as I remember. The baubles are a bit tattered but still go on the Christmas tree every year.

I shall miss the current Valet Stores even though I only shop there occasionally. Likewise with Durancycz because they have always just been there for so long and I have taken them both for granted.

Congratulations and admiration to Gladys for staying so long and offering such a good service. Where shall I get my watch batteries replaced now? You will be missed.

Best wishes for a long and happy retirement. Who and what will replace you both? Time will tell. Hopefully, not another cafe.

From Linda Cunliffe

Saturday, 26 September 2015

Trevor remembers shopping in this store in the early 60's, buying jeans and donkey coat. Donkey coat 1 pound, 6 shillings, 11 pence. Now live in Vancouver Canada and would have to pay $200 for a donkey coat…

From Dave R

Saturday, 26 September 2015

Both Valet Stores & Durancyzks were on Market Street when I was younger.

Mr & Mrs Ekis had Valet Stores then, as I recall. It was the place for shoes, school uniforms and toys. Mum would say if you stayed still and were patient whilst being fitted for your CHS uniform you were allowed in the other side to browse the toys. It was like an Aladdin's cave to a small boy, tennis balls, marbles, jacks and water pistols. Somehow, you could always find just what you needed with your pocket money. They had a savings club too, and come Christmas the toy display got bigger and better.

Durancyks were further on, I think near to now coop, but I recall their window as being all glass and mirrors, you would see Mrs G putting the jewellery and watches in each day.

Sad to see the old style shops go. Personal service, efforts to please and if they didn't have it they would get it for you.

With them loss of Harold Crabtrees and now these 2, I think we need to be worried about our town of little shops label.

From Julie C

Saturday, 26 September 2015

Thanks so much for posting that today was finally the closing day. It meant I managed to pop down and see Gladys before she closed up for the last time. Valet Stores will probably shut on Wednesday.

From Jonathan Timbers

Wednesday, 30 September 2015

I am upset about the closure of Valet Stores & Durancyzks.

I have used both shops many times in the 25 years I have lived here. They were part of the charm of the place that first attracted me.

When I moved to Hebden Bridge it had few pretentions to being fashionable. It was eccentric and old-fashioned. Over the years, many things have improved, but I find that there is a growing element of class bound self-regard. It seems symbolic that whilst these shops are closing, a new fee-paying independent school is opening, which only envisages ever taking a small number of pupils.

Luckily, there are many bright and beautiful people here who keep on doing wonderful things and want to share them with the world. Thanks should go to the shop owners who kept their business's going for so many years. I was touched by the actions of the Trades Club in presenting them with gifts. This reflects the best side of the town.

I shall miss walking into Hebden to buy inexpensive pie dishes, watches, batteries and jewellery for family and friends.

From Nina Smith

Thursday, 1 October 2015

Stuck at home with a sprained ankle, I have missed making a final visit to these shops. As others have said, they were part of the Hebden Bridge that I know and love. Getting watch batteries and new straps will be more difficult and, as well as Mrs D (Gladys) and Nigel, I'll miss Sylvie, that gorgeous dog.

Regarding Valet Stores, where will one get the the ordinary household items that they specialised in? - perhaps Bonsall's will expand their range. How lucky we are that Bonsall's was sold as a going concern.

Let's hope the new occupants of these shops will not be ones catering primarily to the wealthy 4x4 brigade on the tops!

And people, please keep using the excellent traditional shops we have left - the butchers, bakers, greengrocers for starters.

From Bob Deacon

Friday, 2 October 2015

For residents concerned about the changes in the town such as these I suggest you go along to the AGM of the Calder Civic Trust on Wed. Oct. 14th at 7pm at Machpelah Mill, on the corner of Station Rd.

While the Civic Trust was very active in the past it is now seeking new committee members to help keep up the work of trying to preserve what is worth preserving in the town's conservation zone and make constructive comments on new welcome developments.

I am not saying they can determine who runs a shop but every bit of community planning watch helps.

From Jenny G

Friday, 2 October 2015

Great that lots of people gave these two shops a good send-off. And wonderful to see these tributes and snippets and stories.

Anyone got the time / inclination to compile a book of memories of old shops and businesses? No I'm not wanting to stick in the past, just to give due regard to all these people who have made HB what it is... and maybe also to enjoy a bit of remininscing..

Pity HB Times didn't see fit to print anything about Duranzyc's and Valet Stores, despite being asked by people. It would have been nice have to seen a bit of Appropiate Fanfare in the local rag.

May be that is cue for a new thread? Is it time for someone / a community group to start up a genuinely local not-for-profit weekly broadsheet? :-) ie, a printed-on-paper version, no disrespect for this estimable website, neither for the wonderful monthly yellow/pink page of events someone compiles. Anyone been to Ullapool recently? They have had a local stapled-together not-for-profit weekly rag for years. Don't know if they still have. It's about 18 months since I was last up there. (See also local newspaper thread)

From Diane Gorman

Tuesday, 6 October 2015

My mum, Gladys Duranczyk has asked me to reply to your kind comments saying…

I would like to thank everyone for the many bunches of flowers, gifts,cards and best wishes for mine and Silvie's retirement. I have been amazed and touched at the amount of people wishing us well for the future.

We are moving to a house with a large garden for Silvie to spend her retirement. She is not as mobile as she was and the stairs at the flat are getting difficult for her.

We will miss seeing everyone on a daily basis, customers have become friends over the years, Silvie will of course miss all the people she thinks just came in to see her!

My late husband Ted and I started on Market Street in 1963, taking over from Rogers and previously Joy's at number 48/50 next to Masters butchers. Erwin and Barbara Ekis were at Valet stores, also on the same side of Market Street near the crossing, later moving to Crown Street.

We moved to Carlton House in 1968, and to Hope Street in 1990. Nigel started working for us in 1983. He is not retiring. He is opening as NC Jewellers in the same premises. Due to popular demand he will be open most days for battery fitting, etc. while the shop is being fitted out and restocked.

He is intending to give the same personal service and efforts to please as we have always tried to do.

Thank you all for your support. Gladys Duranczyk and Silvie.

From Ray Alker

Thursday, 15 October 2015

The Hair Studio closed next to Valet as well. I know that someone is in the process of attaining a lease for this shop. The person in question will be known to many in Hebden and Tod. If all works out, the shop will be a great addition to the centre of Hebden.

I have my fingers crossed