Category Archives: Shops & Businesses

Welcome to the new manager at The Old Garage.

I met up with Georgia this afternoon and she told me how keen she is to make her pub a welcoming place for the young and old of Southfields. There will be dramatic changes soon to the food, and from a visit as a punter last night I can testify that the wine list is looking up too. She will be dropping by to the next SGRA meeting on the 26th February to tell us about her ambitions for The Old Garage.

Michael Southfields Hairdresser to retire!

Watch out there’s going to be a lot of longhaired blokes about soon as Michael, Southfields Village Hairdresser who has cut and shaped countless heads of hair on the Southfields Grid over the past 35 years is to retire at the end of December 2012.

Seen here giving ‘Bill’ one of his last trims, Cyprus born Michael has worked in hairdressing for 50 years, 35 in Southfields. He started his hairdressing salon above the Footcare Centre in Replingham Road.

Southfields Ward Councillor Terry Walsh said “Michael has been my barber for about fifteen years. He is very professional and knows his trade. He is one of the few barbers that still does singeing of the hair ends, a traditional practice, which is thought to strengthen hair and remove stray hairs. I think Michael does this for about only four of his customers, including me. Sitting in his chair, we have discussed current affairs and much else. I shall miss his dry sense of humour and his observations about Southfields and society in general.   I wish Michael well in his retirement”.

Spencer Childs, who owns the property and runs his Podiatry Clinic below Michael’s Hairdressing Salon said, “Michael has been a tenant at 37 Replingham Road for 35 years and in that time has cut thousands of Southfields resident’s hair. He has been an excellent tenant and will be missed in Southfields. I wish him all the best for an enjoyable retirement”.

St Georges Hospital Doctor, Phillip Hay of Trentham Street, mentioned to Stech, this is tragic, what’re we going to do, Michael’s been cutting my hair for years, he knows every one, I’ll really miss him”

Michael’s last day in the salon will be Saturday 29th December.

Make your appointment now and avoid the rush!

Stech.

The Old Garage Greene King Public House has new Manager

The Old Garage Public House on Replingham Road has recently acquired a new Manager and you could be forgiven if you thought it was the last manager of the Grid Inn, now Tesco’s.

Sorry, although a lookalike, lovely ‘Miss’ Georgia Pryor has been in post nearly a month and is already endearing herself to the local drinkers. I had a pint of Abbot Ale there after the Southfields Christmas lights ‘switch on’, paid for by one of the local Councillors but don’t expect this every time you go there.

Georgia is seen pulling the pints in this Greene King Pub on the site of the previous motor garage and she is anxious to discover if there are any old photographs of the garage before it was changed into a public house. Let Georgia or me know if you have any images or where they may be

 

Arriving in the job at this time of year, Georgia will have a busy time with Christmas Lunches and Dinners. Georgia sends out a warm welcome to all past and present customers on the Grid and invites all to come in and sample Greene King’s hospitality.

Lets wish Georgia all the very best and hope she keeps the noise down when their vehicles deliver. I also hope that once Georgia has settled in she will bring back the popular once a month ‘Elvis’ impersonator night’ that were on a couple of years back. Great fun especially seeing ‘Mad John’ escorted from the premises after trying to give his rendering of ‘All shook up’. [He’s a pussycat really].

Stech

 

Mr. Lu, Dentist, Retires

The image of the green painted front door at 67 Revelstoke Road will have become very familiar to hundreds, if not thousands, of Grid people over the years. Unfortunately, it is a door you did not look forward to entering unless it was to see William Lu and his wife Lin socially. W. H. M Lu is the name on the door, but he was known to most of us as ‘Mr Lu’. The sign ‘Dental Practice’ is now obscured by the hedge, signs on the door instructing people to ‘Ring Once’ now no longer needed as Mr. Lu has now retired.

 

 

William Hieng Ming Lu has served ‘Southfields Griders’ and the surrounding areas for 32 years at his surgery in Revelstoke Road. Many clients, despite moving considerable distances away, returned repeatedly for treatment and routine checkups, confident of his expertise.

On Thursday 23rd August, Mr and Mrs Lu invited past and present Clients and Friends to a farewell party at the surgery. ‘Hot n Spicy’ samosas guaranteed not to affect your teeth were made by their daughter who came over from France for the occasion. Many bottles of red and white wine were consumed and many ‘Happy Retirement’ cards and flowers were brought along. However, through the laughter, there was ‘just a tinge’ of sadness for the loss of this lovely man’s caring and thorough dental care over the years.

Mr Lu came to the UK from Sarawak and his wife Lin from Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. They took over the dental practice and the house from Mr. Dass. It will now cease to be a Dental Surgery and become a residential property again with Mr Lu spending more time on his studies not far away.

Oh Mr Lu, what shall we do now for our dental care and who will we let pull on our tongues to give our mouths, as well as our teeth, a thorough once over? We will also miss your lovely assistant Barbara, with her immaculate hairstyle and lovely smile. Do not worry, because at last you can now lay back, relax and forget about the drilling!

Our best wishes and good fortune cookies to both Mr and Mrs Lu.

Stech

TESCO EXPRESS – NOW OPEN!

The much talked about, new Tesco Express opened today, Friday 24th August 2012  on the site of the former ‘Grid Inn’ Public House, 22 Replingham Road.

A ‘photo shoot’ had been arranged outside for 11am and ‘Charity Big Cheque’ waving was going on with musical accompaniment, hugging, big smiles and beaming faces. A dapper looking Phil Ward, Tesco Store Manager wearing his best suit and happy face lined up his gaggle of red shirted employees for the photographer.

There was no evidence of ‘window bricking’ by other local shop owners and inside customers were already shopping and at the till.

There appeared to be a serious number of staff around and with any luck, these were employed from the local Southfields Community and not just ‘bussed in’ from elsewhere.

The store inside looked bright, very clean and well laid out plus the exterior had been kept somewhat ‘in keeping’ with the previous frontage. Possibly anyone being away this past months may not have noticed the Pub had changed until they went inside.

Glancing around adjacent shops, this Tesco Express will have a serous effect on their trade. Flowers, food, wine, and lots more, the Sainsbury Local in Durnsford Road when it opened saw other shops income drop by 60% on the day and it has never recovered.

The day before I dropped in and had a brief word with Phil Ward, who was stripped down to his jeans and T-shirt directing an army of his staff cleaning, stacking shelves and getting ready for the open day. Phil told me “there’s still some work to do but I look forward to people on the Grid coming in to see what we have on offer, many bargains”

Phil also apologised for the disturbance to residents whilst the work has been going on and promised to do his very best to ensure people are not inconvenienced by the process of deliveries, which he will be monitoring and promised to adjust as things progress.

The ‘Grid’ has seen many changes over the years; I can remember no pubs, bars or late night food outlets as recent as the early to mid 1980’s. I recall the first greasy burger take away thingy, now long gone, was where the Cook Pharmacy is located at the top of Replingham Road and the only other late evening take away was the Chinese in Brookwood Road. Things have certainly moved on and will continue to do so like it or not, it is the nature of life.

The best quality and cheapest retailers with good service may well continue to exist. They do survive as Boots and Cooks do although just a short distance of each other. The fruit and veg shop opposite, revered by local shoppers with fresh goods on display, the Fish Pedlar around the corner and butchers and hopefully others will may well endure too.

With Sainsbury Local just around the corner in Wimbledon Park Road and a possible Waitrose on its way, it is inevitable that local shops trade and takings will suffer. I also wonder how long it will be before Tesco make a move on the Old Garage Pub to extend its retail space

Nobody is being forced to use the new Supermarkets on the Grid; people still have the choice ‘at the moment’.

Many will stand, watch and hold their breath, some will have Tesco and Nectar cards in hand at the ready and wait to see what bargains are on offer plus what happens next in the saga of shopping on the Grid.

Stech

24.08.12