End of an era as couple retire from family run Hemel Hempstead newsagents business
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A couple who have been at the helm of a family run newsagents business in Hemel Hempstead are retiring after 49 years.
Tony and Kathy Dyde, who have been the friendly faces behind the counter at Warners End newsagents in Stony Croft, are shutting up shop tomorrow, bringing to an end an era spanning nearly 50 years.
Tony’s son Paul Dyde said: “Warners End newsagents has been part of our family for 49 years, so it will be a sad day.
“The business was originally run by my grandparents Peter and Gwendoline Dyde and my dad Tony.
“They took on the business in 1975 but my grandmother was a manageress at the newsagents for 14 years before that.
Tony added: “My parents knew all their customers well and many people will still remember them, especially when they made the news themselves after winning a £2,000 holiday to Australia in 1978.
"The competition was organised by a greetings card company and they had to arrange a promotional window display using a range of wrapping paper , greetings cards and stationery designed by one of the firm’s artists.
“The win coincided with my parents’ 27th wedding anniversary so it was a fabulous holiday-of-a-lifetime. I was 23 at the time and took care of the business while they were away.
“Stoney Croft has changed over the years but is still a busy thriving shopping centre with a great community spirit we cherish. So we’ll all miss it greatly.
He added: “We would like to thank all of our loyal customers and hard working staff over the years.
"There aren't many people in the area who did not have a paper round for Peter or ourselves over the years, with customers reminding us of that in their 40s and 50s.
“We will miss it and the people but are looking forward to relaxing, playing a bit of golf or bowls and spending more time with the family and our grandchildren.”
Kathy added: “We’re looking forward to retirement but it all feels a big strange and a bit emotional.”
She said the couple are hoping remain in the area and continue to be a part of the community they have been a part of for so long.