Emails & Letters

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This page contains some of the great emails and letters that have been sent to me.


Thank you for this letter and the enclosed items.

Colin
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9th April 2009. Jenny Creagh. (email)

Hi Colin I seem to think that the fish shop in South st was Marshalls. Macfisheries was in the High street somewhere between the White Horse hotel and Whites estate agents. I remember that a lady named Kate worked there also quite a character a man named Les. It was still there in the 60s as was the Golden Milk Bar. Hope this helps Jenny

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Click to enlarge this very interesting letter

13th April 2009. Monica Weller. (email)

Hi Colin I read your letter in the Leatherhead Advertiser, sounds like a good project, and thought you may be interested in some possible input into your story. My partner and I go to the Outer Hebrides every year in the summer. The story of Macfisheries and Lord Leverhulme has always fascinated me. I wonder if you have read ‘Lord of the Isles’. It paints a really good picture of this man who was way ahead of his time. You should be able to order it from a public library if you haven’t already read it. Local people around Leverburgh (An t’ob) at the time of Lord leverburgh’s venture there, did not believe he would be able to navigate the dangerously shallow channels off the coast in the south of Harris. About 8 years ago a new roll on-roll off ferry was launched between Leverburgh, Berneray and beyond using state of the art sonar equipment. So his vision for commercial shipping in and out of the village did eventually come to fruition. I have a few photos of Leverburgh if you’d like me to scan them to you. By the way, my mother used to take us into Macfisheries in Richmond, Surrey when we were children. The shop was near the Quadrant – can get the exact address if you haven’t already got it. Best wishes Monica Weller Freelance writer, photographer and public speaker

19th April 2009. Sue Wood. (email)

Hi Colin.Just read your letter in an old Dorking Ad Ican remember my mother shopping at Macfisheries in the 50 and 60’s. Iam sure it was in Cheam Village in The Broadway on the same side and near The Old Cottage.If not there it would have been in Upper Mulgrave Rd or Sutton. Hope this is of help Regards Sue Wood

23rd April 2009. Sarah Nicolle. (email)

Just browsing on the net and came across your website which is great. My father worked for Macs from 1930s until its closure and it was his life. Sadly he died in 1992 and since then I have been tracing my family tree and also doing a small project on Mac Fisheries on the shops he worked in, especially those in the South West; mostly addresses. I often look on the net but there has not been much info to date of any help. I will find the information I have and send it to you. I look forward to seeing updates on the site. Regards, Sarah Nicolle.

3rd May 2009. Craig Henderson. (email)

Dear Colin, Very interesting reading (web-site). I worked for Mac Fisheries (well, MacMarket) in Richmond (Surrey) for a couple of years in the 70’s. I look back on that time with fond memories. Do you remember the buy-line “Mac Market Markdowns, hundreds each day”? I can remember getting all the shelves labelled up with all the ‘mark downs’ and on the first day we overheard one lady say “well that’s a lie” – not the best start to the campaign. There again, these were times when the rules on discounting were (shall we say) dubious. I followed my brother and an Uncle working there. This was a part-time Saturday job that gradually became an after school job, then a school holiday job then full-time. Someone joked that I spent more time there than at school. One of the good things about it was that, after only six months, I was a relative long-timer at the grand old age of 15. At that time, Mac Fisheries was competing with Sainsbury and Tesco, the upstarts Waitrose and Safeway were considered way upmarket. My impression was that we were at the cheaper end of the market, and we considered ourselves much underpaid – often having to do 9 hours work for 8 hours pay (just 48p per hour – always trailing the competition). This led to a certain amount of worker adjustment (pilferage) which I recall getting out of hand. Generally all the shop assitants were young men (or boys). Once competition started playing a hand, your status went up depending on how much you nicked. It all came to an abrupt end when the head of security (name of Black, I think) turned up one evening and searched everyone. He looked like an ex-CID type, red-faced, middle aged, balding, rain-coat. One young lad on the butchers counter was sacked on the spot and that put an end to that. A new regime came in some time later (after I had left), much younger senior managers and the store changed to International. They continued for a while but I don’t recall what happened to them. Craig Henderson