'A Forest Gate institution': Building supplies shop Websters to close
- Credit: Andrew Brookes
A DIY supplies, building materials and joinery shop in Forest Gate is closing after 43 years.
Websters, in Woodford Road, will shut up shop in around six weeks as owner Ron Webb is retiring.
Ron admitted he has regrets about leaving but, with his 78th birthday coming up, said his body has had enough.
"My body won't take it anymore. I like to work at a good pace and I find it harder,” he said.
"(It's) with much regret, because I'd like to have kept going.”
A number of customers on social media have expressed sadness at the closure, with one describing Websters as “a Forest Gate institution”.
Ron said he was grateful for the support of his customers over the years.
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“I thank them very much for their custom, I will miss them,” he said.
“I’ve got third generations (coming in) now – that's a bit scary.”
Some of those customers have come into the store for a chat since hearing it was closing.
"I've got one retirement card so far, but no, I've had quite a few of the older customers,” Mr Webb said.
“One young lady remembers coming in when she was about 12 and she's now a woman with a baby."
One of the more memorable jobs Ron has had over the years was making a 10ft door for the iconic Abbey Road recording studios.
“That’s our claim to fame,” he said with a laugh.
“But no, we’ve done a lot of big work, most of it hand-tool stuff.”
Websters is running a closing down sale to clear stock before shutting to customers around the end of September.
The two-building property has been sold and Ron, who owned it, said he needs to vacate by mid-October.
It will mark the end for Websters, as he was not able to find a buyer for the business.