Stores pair say fond farewell to Shoreham Beach

The owners of Beach Green Stores are retiring after 33 years running their shop on Shoreham Beach.

Peter and Linda Stone behind the counter at Beach Green Stores. Picture: Derek Martin DM1822927a
Peter and Linda Stone behind the counter at Beach Green Stores. Picture: Derek Martin DM1822927a

Peter and Linda Stone have made many friends since they took over the old VG Food Store, in Beach Green, in 1985.

Peter, 67, said the shop was a new start for them after he was made redundant by Standard Telephones and Cables in Hollingbury.

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“I had never done anything like it before. I was in engineering for 18 years,” he explained.

“At the time, we had a timescale of three months for the redundancy money. The industry was changing to be computerised, so I decided to get a shop where we could both work together.”

The couple were living in Brighton at the time and had twin boys who were four.

Peter said: “Linda used to bring me over, take the boys to school, go to the cash and carry, then come back to the shop. Later, she would collect the boys and bring them to the shop after school.

“We have enjoyed it. Where does the time go? We have met a lot of people and we have made friends.

“After all these years, we wanted to hand it on, we didn’t want it to close. We have worked hard and don’t want that to be ruined.

“I have a lot of people who don’t go out of the house and I take deliveries. I will be introducing them to the new owners, as they want to keep that up.

“The new owners are very ambitious and are looking to introduce the lottery and a post office.”

Peter and Linda, 66, will have their last day on Saturday and the new owners will open for business on Monday. Retirement plans include decorating at their home in Portslade.

Peter is looking forward to having time to do up his classic car and Linda said they will plan a holiday in the coming months.

The many regulars at the shop are pleased it is staying.

Joss Loader, chairman of Shoreham Beach Residents’ Association, said: “On behalf of the Beach community, we’d like to say a huge thank you to Peter and Linda and we hope that they enjoy a long and happy retirement.

“Over the past 33 years, they’ve provided a fabulous service at the Beach Green store and will be remembered with affection by countless people.

“They’ve also supported the community and have helped the residents’ association by asking as a drop-off point for subscriptions and forms. Local people have really appreciated having a store at the western end of the Beach, that has also offered a much-appreciated home delivery service.

“We are also delighted that the store has been sold as a going concern and we wish the new owners every success.”