Mirfield shoe shop used lockdown to step into 21st century
A fourth generation family shoe shop used the second lockdown to give the outside of their premises a much-needed makeover.
Shoppers were surprised when Jackson Shoes in Huddersfield Road, Mirfield, replaced its traditional 1970s sign with a new one for the 21st century.
Jackson's started as a shoe repairs business in 1911 and is nothing if not traditional.
Now run by fourth generation Andrew Jackson, the shop still has a repair business at Battyeford but it’s the shop that takes the eye on the main road.
Mr Jackson, 53, said: “The old sign probably dates back to the late 1970s and it was time for a change.
“It caused a stir but most people think it looks good.”
Jackson's has survived two world wars and the business has ridden the storm of the pandemic so far.
Mr Jackson is anxious about Christmas though, now the shop is back open.
“After the first lockdown we tended to catch up but generally December is our best month. The last quarter of the year is usually our best quarter,” he said.
“We have lost November to lockdown and we are just hoping we are busy in the run-up to Christmas but you never know.”
The businessman started working in the shop in 1984 and recalls Mirfield heaving around 11am on a Saturday morning.
“You could look out of the door and sometimes you had to wait at least a minute to even see the main road through a gap in all the people going past,” he said.
“Mirfield has changed, of course, in the last 35 or 40 years. We had banks, the gas and electric showrooms, a broader range of shops - and no White Rose Centre or Meadowhall.
“We survive because we don’t need the big margins that the supermarkets do. It gets harder but we’re still here and we keep trying.”