Summer Sheffield

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Atkinsons celebrates 141 years of independent trading in Sheffield

by cynthialing

Atkinsons store

Atkinsons store

Sheffield’s unique department store, Atkinsons is proud to remain a family owned independent store and it is proud to have served the Sheffielders for more than 140 years.

Atkinsons was founded by John W. Atkinson in 1872 as a corner shop near where the main entrance on the Moor today.

Now, the Sheffield’s oldest store is still own by the Atkinson’s family.

As a main stay indie store in Sheffield for years, yet, as a family run department store, Atkinsons have been key shopping destination within Sheffield City.

Three generations Atkinsons' operators: John Atkinson (Left), P. Atkinson (Right), Nicholas Atkinson (Middle)

Three generations Atkinsons’ operators: John Atkinson (Left), P. Atkinson (Right), Nicholas Atkinson (Middle)

Atkinsons’ undergoes

Atkinsons located on ‘The Moor’, which is one of Sheffield’s busiest and longest serving retail areas. It started in late 19th century with only a small corner shop. The business continued to expand and there were 42 departments that spread over three levels in 1902.

In 1940, the blitz on December reduced Atkinsons’ building to rubble, including the flattening of its majestic Victorian outlet, but within weeks trading resumed on seven separated sites.

The devastating attack destroyed much of the area and it was rebuilt in the 1960s. Thence, Atkinsons had gone through the biggest changes in its history which make it continues to be at the forefront of retailing in the city.

The expenditure of the extension was roughly one million pound. It completed in 2000 with the increased size of the store by almost 50%. The major face lift was completed to the outside of the building, and now Atkinsons consist of a large two floor site plus a large seven floor car park directly above the store.

Sketch of today's Atkinsons

Sketch of today’s Atkinsons

As Atkinsons had completely flattened in the 1940 blitz, it had jointly funded the Sheffield Biltz Memorial Trail’s plaque with the Moor Retailers’ Association in 2011. The plaque aimed to create more visible and permanent memorials to the sacrifices of 1940 blitz.

“Atkinsons makes Sheffield unique”

Atkinsons continues to offer its current ranges as well as hundreds of new products across household linens, kitchenware, crystal and giftware to toys, luggage, perfume, clothes for all the family, electrical equipment and furniture.

The store offers easy access from any direction and the three separate eating areas are ideal spot for friends and family to meet before getting down to the serious business of shopping.

Atkinsons’ Manager, Graham Firth (62) said, “Atkinsons is just in Sheffield, so it makes Sheffield a little bit different.”

In the Independents’ Day Market which Sheffield City Council had put on for the first time, Atkinsons had asked to take the lead with the event as it is the oldest indie store in Sheffield that still run by same family.

“People feel comfortable with the history. Atkinsons served only Sheffield, all our buyers live in Sheffield, and so we know what they want.” Graham Frith / Manager of Atkinsons

As a main and key indie store in Sheffield, Atkinsons planned to be around for many, many years to come as continual commitment to serve Sheffielder and the surrounding districts.

             Atkinsons’ manager, Graham Firth (62) talk about Atkinsons

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One comment on “Atkinsons celebrates 141 years of independent trading in Sheffield

  1. Pingback: Atkinsons’ Manager: “Indie stores make Sheffield different” | Summer Sheffield

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