Family sewing business celebrates an unbeweavable 50 years

Beccles Sewing and Handicraft shop celebrates its 50th birthday. Business owners Sue and Steve Taylo

Beccles Sewing and Handicraft shop celebrates its 50th birthday. Business owners Sue and Steve Taylor with daughter Claire and staff member Tracy Simons. Picture: Nick Butcher - Credit: Nick Butcher

A family-owned business based in Beccles is celebrating after reaching its golden anniversary.

Beccles Sewing and Handicraft shop celebrates its 50th birthday. Picture: Nick Butcher

Beccles Sewing and Handicraft shop celebrates its 50th birthday. Picture: Nick Butcher - Credit: Nick Butcher

Beccles Sewing and Handicrafts, in Blyburgate, began trading 50 years ago on July 28, 1967.

Steve Taylor, who owns the store, said: 'We are really proud of ourselves. There are not a lot of small businesses that manage to get to this age.'

The business was started by Mr Taylor's parents Molly and Roy, known as Joe, in St Peter's Street, Lowestoft.

Originally called 'Taylor's Bargain Stores' the pair operated on a shoestring budget – using an old biscuit tin as they were unable to afford a till.

Beccles Sewing and Handicraft shop celebrates its 50th birthday. Business owners Sue and Steve Taylo

Beccles Sewing and Handicraft shop celebrates its 50th birthday. Business owners Sue and Steve Taylor with daughter Claire. Picture: Nick Butcher - Credit: Nick Butcher


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Selling a variety of items including fancy goods, toys and clothing, the business grew rapidly from its humble beginnings.

Following the redevelopment of Lowestoft in the late 1970s, reducing footfall at the St Peter's location, the couple decided to make the move to the Beccles premises where they still trade today.

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With the move in 1978 the business also shifted its focus to crafting and sewing supplies while Steve became a partner, taking responsibility for the sale and repair of sewing machines.

Today, it is Steve along with wife Sue who carry on the store's legacy.

'We were pleased we could carry on the business – it was something of a gradual process', said Mr Taylor.

He believes the key to the store's longevity is the way it interacts with its customers.

'The way we do business and the way we give the service to people are important. There are not many businesses like us about anymore.

'We are very friendly and always give the best service that we can.

'There is no set number of times people can come back for advice - we are always happy to help them.'

With the couple's daughter, Claire, joining as an embroidery machine expert after leaving school and displaying a keen interest in taking on the business once her parents retire it appears the Taylor family tradition will continue for generations to come.

Mr Taylor added: 'We are still going strong and the family is looking forward to serving people of the area for at least another 50 years.'

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