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John Lewis department store in Barkers Pool


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End of an era as John Lewis closes in Barkers Pool in Sheffield City Centre
Often spoken about as the heart of Sheffield City Centre, John Lewis (previously Cole Brothers) will not be here anymore

Did you shop here?

 

 

 

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In the 1970/80s I did most of my non-food shopping there and even obtained a price reduction on a fridge... under their "We will not be beaten" policy. A very sad day for the City when John Lewis announced the closure of "our" Cole Bros.! Why did I stop shopping there one might ask? The answer being a long dose of joblessness and I never regained the habit of nipping into Cole Bros for whatever I wanted.🤔

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I along with many more gave up on Sheffield City Centre ages ago, so we’re all complicit in it’s demise. The last major purchase we made from JL was a washer dryer on-line, I much prefer Richer Sounds for TV/Audio, where I park outside and receive good service along with similar/longer guarantees to JL’s.

IMHO JL got very blasé about it’s superiority in all areas, which is very difficult when they suffer from historic city centre positioning, I have an idea that M&S have noticed that their shoppers have changed from suburban visitors to inner city residents, I’ve not set foot in Waitrose for a couple of years or so, which is a testament to how high it is on my favoured store list.

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It was an iconic store but to be honest I couldn’t afford to shop there, their prices were way out of earning capacity.

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12 hours ago, tozzin said:

It was an iconic store but to be honest I couldn’t afford to shop there, their prices were way out of earning capacity.

So much for their “Never Knowingly Undersold” pledge.

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When shirts, trousers and other clothes were over £40 that was me back to Burtons.

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46 minutes ago, tozzin said:

When shirts, trousers and other clothes were over £40 that was me back to Burtons.

IMHO Burtons will not see 2022, my guess is that the large supermarkets along with the on-line guys is where the likes of you and I will purchase our clobber. The likes of Meadowhall will be amongst the last to fall, but fall they will, if folk have to go ‘out of town’ they are far more likely to visit small specialist stores on well run and policed sites, rather than yob land.

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I’ve always dressed to what my income allowed but always, always smart, BUT I’ve always paid over £150 for my shoes as they give comfort through the day, the last pair I bought were a pair of dealer boots £250 and they will see me into the next life and beyond, buying cheap shoes just doesn’t work they last a year then you have to buy another pair, I bought my boots over ten years ago and due to looking after them properly they look almost new.

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I heartily agree with you Tozzin.  I have size 6 shoes in length, but often need an 8 to get the width which is why I'd never buy a pair online.  However about 10 years ago I bought my first pair of Walkey's clogs and have never looked back.  I can wear them all day with no problems, I've even done a cardiac test on a treadmill running in clogs.  I do have a pair of conventional shoes somewhere (always leather soles and uppers so that your feet can breathe) but only wear them maybe once a year.

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21 minutes ago, MartinR said:

I heartily agree with you Tozzin.  I have size 6 shoes in length, but often need an 8 to get the width which is why I'd never buy a pair online.  However about 10 years ago I bought my first pair of Walkey's clogs and have never looked back.  I can wear them all day with no problems, I've even done a cardiac test on a treadmill running in clogs.  I do have a pair of conventional shoes somewhere (always leather soles and uppers so that your feet can breathe) but only wear them maybe once a year.

I take a size 11, proper size 11 not the size they put on cheap shoes which are roughly two sizes smaller, a wise old man once told me, my dad actually, pay as much as you can for your shoes and your bed because if your not in one you are in the other so comfort is foremost.

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On 29/03/2021 at 18:56, Sheffield History said:

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Screenshot 2021-03-29 at 18.52.44.jpg

Screenshot 2021-03-29 at 18.53.12.jpg

Screenshot 2021-03-29 at 18.53.52.jpg

 


End of an era as John Lewis closes in Barkers Pool in Sheffield City Centre
Often spoken about as the heart of Sheffield City Centre, John Lewis (previously Cole Brothers) will not be here anymore

Did you shop here?

 

 

 

Yep 

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On 10/04/2021 at 19:02, tozzin said:

It was an iconic store but to be honest I couldn’t afford to shop there, their prices were way out of earning capacity.

Absolute nonsense they were practically the same if not cheaper then any other department store. It wasn’t exactly Harrods or Selfridges. 

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7 hours ago, Wisewood-Owl said:

Absolute nonsense they were practically the same if not cheaper then any other department store. It wasn’t exactly Harrods or Selfridges. 

Nonsense? my wages were much less than £14,000 a year, obviously not a professional job, if you could afford £70 / £80 for a pullover, good luck to you but it was way out of my range, it’s always been known as an expensive store, women’s clothes especially. 

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As a child in the ‘70s if we ever went into JL it felt special. Yes it was more expensive. But back then my folks felt their quality was the best. Even now my Dad still says ‘if Cole Brothers sells it, its good stuff’.

It had a certain smell to it, and I remember feeling ‘posh’ being seen walking in and out of it. And it even had its own Toy department across the road !

Sadly with peoples shopping habits changing, and the rise of online shopping, they are going the same way as some big names already have, and doubtless some still will.

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11 minutes ago, antony said:

As a child in the ‘70s if we ever went into JL it felt special. Yes it was more expensive. But back then my folks felt their quality was the best. Even now my Dad still says ‘if Cole Brothers sells it, its good stuff’.

It had a certain smell to it, and I remember feeling ‘posh’ being seen walking in and out of it. And it even had its own Toy department across the road !

Sadly with peoples shopping habits changing, and the rise of online shopping, they are going the same way as some big names already have, and doubtless some still will.

I agree with everything you've said, my parents worked all their lives and I cant ever remember them going into John Lewis as their prices were far, far out of range, my Mum had to get a "Cheque" to go to banners and then pay it off weekly, that's the difference between someone saying that the prices in John Lewis are comparable with other stores, if you have an income to be able to shop there its a great store but in the fifties my dad and mum had a joint income of less than eleven pounds a week, so Lewis`s was out.

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The John Lewis organisation have been totally out of touch with the general public for donkey’s years. Their ‘Never Knowingly Undersold’ pledge is in itself far from the truth, they have both their ‘partners’ (staff) and ‘secret shoppers’ visiting other retail outlets to find goods being marketed at a lesser price than theirs. Good on them you might say, but in many cases the retailers underselling them were threatened by the suppliers to either match the JL price or be refused future orders.

I have no problem with JL having their own marketing policy, however to have control over the marketing of other retailers products is outrageous. I’m convinced that they will soon trade mainly on-line, but with a minimum of flag ship stores, along with their pledge.

 

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We have shopped at JL since we got married in 1979 and bought a lot of household items and most electrical goods from them over the years, but not clothes, as I was never interested in designer labels or fashion. My wife has bought perfumes, shoes, haberdashery and some clothes and many Christmas presents from there. She was a traditional 'stay at home mum' so we only had 1 wage coming in for 16 years, until she started part-time working, I didn't have a high paying job, so we never had a lot of money, but always found JL competitive and interesting to walk round and buy things.

We are very disappointed and have said recently, as have many others, with JL closing, and M&S under review, Debenhams closed, there is little reason for us and others like us, to go into the town centre. We usually go into town every saturday and on 19th June 2021 we went into Atkinsons and were surprised how busy it was and that there were some young people in! Maybe that will be a replacement for JL, in part. I know that a final decision on JL Sheffield is being made this month, (June 2021) as Sheffield council reduced the business rates and offered incentives to keep them. The council leader said the store was profitable, so it's annoying that yet again, Leeds wins, as theirs is staying open and on a trip to Leicester, we saw a brand new tinted glass affair that is the new JL store there - I bet that stays open and does Leicester have more JL trade than Sheffield? Or is Sheffield's closure paying for Leicester?

There's no way we would go to Leeds or Leicester, just to go to JL as suggested by the company and we feel let down by them. I have used computers since the early 1980s and the pure on-line approach is ok for some things, but we both feel you can't beat physically touching and feeling items like clothes, shoes, sampling perfumes before buying; looking at cookers, washers, fridges, TVs and talking to knowledgeable staff. The business model needs to be online for sure, but backed up by bricks and mortar.

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Most folk that I know who were J/L weekly regulars quite simply parked up in J/L’s car park and then strolled down to M&S to do their real shopping. They on returning to pick up their car they enjoyed refreshments in J/L’s cafe in order to qualify for free parking, OK they most probably had a stroll around J/L, but they would hardly make a purchase on every visit would they?

We now use Richer Sounds for TV/Audio and  have an M&S food a lot closer than the city centre along with the larger supermarkets that have good none food departments, so why bother with either?

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Cole Bros ( it never was John Lewis as far as I was concerned) offered a policy of "never knowingly undersold" on the basis of "like for like quality and size"...not just on price!

Most folk I know haven't been in Town for over a year on account of CV19 restrictions and have found it convenient to shop on line or, where possible, locally. I haven't driven into town in years and used the tram...but am unable/unwilling to suffer the wearing of a face mask ( do they actually work?) for more than a few minutes... so sat on a tram for me is now out!

Come liberation for all us long twice jabbed !🙄

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1 hour ago, Lysanderix said:

Cole Bros ( it never was John Lewis as far as I was concerned) offered a policy of "never knowingly undersold" on the basis of "like for like quality and size"...not just on price!

Most folk I know haven't been in Town for over a year on account of CV19 restrictions and have found it convenient to shop on line or, where possible, locally. I haven't driven into town in years and used the tram...but am unable/unwilling to suffer the wearing of a face mask ( do they actually work?) for more than a few minutes... so sat on a tram for me is now out!

Come liberation for all us long twice jabbed !🙄

Look forward to more jabs than a second hand dart board, CV19 will very likely be boosted in line with your flu jab. The plethora of on coming variants will no doubt require even more booster jabs, happy jabbing. 🤗

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Cole Brothers certainly attracted the aspiring middle classes. I remember a pal of mine buying a shirt from there and charging it to his mother's account.  I could occasionally afford a shirt in the sales but otherwise it was too expensive for the likes of me, despite their famous motto.

An uncle also had a CB account, if he wanted a tin of paint he would just ring them up and have it delivered.

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I don't mind being jabbed til Kingdom Come....so long as,  like all other immunisations I know of, they reduce the chances of infection and,  lead to living a normal ( sort) of life. We seem dedicated to ever more "medicalisation" from experts, whom I was always taught , no matter how notable they are, should always be treated with some suspicion since most have their own agendas!

( I was once called to Crown Court as an "expert witness" in a fraud trial... I did know a lot about the subject and could talk about it with authority... but would never lay claim to knowing everything!)😐

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16 hours ago, Lysanderix said:

I don't mind being jabbed til Kingdom Come....so long as,  like all other immunisations I know of, they reduce the chances of infection and,  lead to living a normal ( sort) of life. We seem dedicated to ever more "medicalisation" from experts, whom I was always taught , no matter how notable they are, should always be treated with some suspicion since most have their own agendas!

( I was once called to Crown Court as an "expert witness" in a fraud trial... I did know a lot about the subject and could talk about it with authority... but would never lay claim to knowing everything!)😐

Which would make you an expert, ex being a has been, spert being a drip under pressure, (well nearly), which couldn’t possibly be the the case, could it? 😉

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55 minutes ago, DaveJC said:

Which would make you an expert, ex being a has been, spert being a drip under pressure, (well nearly), which couldn’t possibly be the the case, could it? 😉

I sincerely hope that this site is not going to become like 95% of all the others where the friendly atmosphere is replaced by personal remarks.

It's already drifting away from it's Sheffield HISTORY origins.

There are plenty of sites already specialising in the kind of humour which some think is witty repartee.

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