It struck me again today, as it struck me every time I go there, that the B&M in Shawlands is situated in what used to be the local Woolworths. And although I only moved up here a couple of years ago, it was the Woolworths on Cosham High Street that I used to go into as a wee godlet in an attempt to find cheap toys. Things change, and yet, they remain so very much the same...
Bumblebee and Shockwave I picked up back home, in a toy shop in Portsmouth that is sadly long closed (and was the place where I received my first lightsaber, at the age of five, from a visiting Darth Vader).
I used to frequent Portsmouth a lot as a kid as my dad would take me to the library, but I find myself unable to visualise toy shops, which seems unlikely. Where was the one of which you speak? I must have been there.
Post by Baron B of Triple B on Mar 22, 2016 0:22:09 GMT
We had a couple of them in Glasgow, I think they were model specialists weren't they? The one at St Enoch briefly turned into Electronics Boutique before they were all changed to Game stores and is now a Maplin.
Aye, I think that's how they started. But my local store, at least, had also branched out into toys, with a separate section for modelling. This was a fairly canny move, because this was in the days before Portsmouth had a Toysaurus - making them one of the best toy stores in Commercial Road after Woolworth's.
Post by Baron B of Triple B on Mar 22, 2016 9:04:22 GMT
I can't remember there ever being a TRU near me when I was young. I got most of my toys from Jolly Giant, which is still the greatest shop in history and it saddens me that I won't get to take my son in there to buy toys, or Woolworths of which there was a large one in Glasgow City Centre and an even larger one at Parkhead Forge. Ones now a Poundland and the other is a Sports Direct.
There were a few smaller shops that I would've got toys in but those were the main ones.
We had a couple of them in Glasgow, I think they were model specialists weren't they?
My memory of the Beatties in Kingston was that it started off as a Train and Model specialist late 70s/early 80s. Ours had two floors so models upstairs, trains downstairs or something similar.
My first memory of it having toys comes from 1982 when we found the ATAT Commander, Luke Hoth, Tie Pilot, CloudCar Pilot, 4 Lom*, R2D2 Sensorscope and C3PO removable limbs wave in there. It was also where we finally found Zuckuss* early the next year and got one with the mail away Admiral Ackbar offer on it. They had a spot to the left of the main doors where the boys toys went. (* reverse names as necessary)
I can remember them stocking LOTS of Masters of the Universe at the same time including the Vehicle and Figure packs and 3 figure packs nobody else did.
I can remember Bearties being the first place I saw Head and Targetmasters in 87 (my earliest TF memory of them) and holding and wanting Snapdragon and not being able to afford it. Instead of saving my cash for a few weeks I went round the corner and bought Flywheels from Woolworths! I have a Headmasters offer/competition leaflet in my collection which came from there!
They were also good for Action Force and the only place in town that got in any of the 1988 figures during 1988! Sadly it was the crappy wave with Iceberg & Monkeywrench in it but I did buy Roadblock in there from that assortment. I can remember scooping the entire 1990 range out of there in one visit!
1990 was also the year I red hazed on Action Masters the first time I saw them!
I've got some vague AM Powersuit and 92/3 toys memories but the next thing I can remember buying in there was G2 Sureshot and Archforce in 95, but the TFs were at the back of the store then by the stairs.
There's some posts on the TMUK chat archive about them getting in lots of BW basics Autumn 1998 that were Chinese grey imports when you couldn't find Rattrap or Terrorsaur anywhere else.
I'm trying to remember when it all went under for them but my memory has it the writing had been on the wall for some time :-(