Blaskeys Wallpaper & Paint, Market Place Mansfield.
How many of you purchased your “in vogue” wood chip at 39p a roll from Blaskeys on Mansfield Market Place during 1975/77. We used to have it stacked outside the shop in a 3 slot wooden trolley and sell it we did. On top of the sale of the woodchip we could then sell some emulsion, usually Brilliant White or Magnolia. The public always kept us entertained especially when one customer asked for some of “that there Mongolia paint for me walls”.
The Blaskeys shop was owned by Leyland Paint and Wallpaper and I had left my job at Emgas Lime Tree Place to become the manager. I remember two of the staff as Neeta, Senior Sales assistant and Janet in sales. There were two others but time has marched on and their names are lost. The wallpaper and paint stock was kept in a very manky damp cellar which, while I was there, was refurbished to make it waterproof and damproof. I wasn’t there long so can’t comment on how good a job was done. During the renovation a huge wooden beam was removed which I remember pushing up to the museum. Is it still there? The sink in the cellar regularly overflowed and the toilet on the first floor (accessed via the door on the left in the photo) was so disgusting we used the Market Place loos as they were better!
I occasionally delivered large orders in my Fiat 127 after the shop had closed. Arriving home after one such delivery I sat down and thought I didn’t lock the shop door. I rushed back into Mansfield (from Booth ST, Mansfield Woodhouse) only to find the shop doors wide open! Fortunately it appeared nothing had been taken, the cash having gone to the night safe, so I casually locked up and said no more of the incident.
A good line to sell was flock wallpaper and you would see the purple version in local pubs. Expensive at the time but then we all had jobs. The standard lines we sold came from Graham & Brown a company still manufacturing to this day albeit serving a different market. I suspect pink floral bedroom paper is no longer a best seller!
Is the shop still trading?
Incidentally another shop I remember under the viaduct arches on White Hart Street was “James – at your service” Mansfield’s early version of Ann Summers.