One of Westhoughton's oldest shops to close
ONE of Westhoughton’s longest standing businesses is to close its doors for good.
DIY shop, William Bateson Ltd, has been a fixture on Market Street for 74 years.
And the firm’s roots, which span four generations, date back to the 19th century.
Now, with 78-year-old owner Harry Bateson set to retire after first working for his family business 62 years ago, the business will close.
Mr Bateson’s daughter and business partner Amanda Kendall, aged 44, said: “It is the end of an era but in many ways it feels like an appropriate time for us to close.
“I had always intended to carry on the business when dad ended his involvement but I just thought, for a number of reasons, that his retirement had come at the right moment with regard to closing.
“It was a difficult decision and we would like to take the chance to thank our customers for supporting us over the last 74 years.”
Mrs Kendall, who lives in Horwich with her two young children, said she hoped the change would enable her to pursue new career opportunities after working for the family business for 20 years.
William Bateson Ltd was a decorating firm in Bolton, started in the 19th century by Mrs Kendall’s great-grandfather William.
Her grandfather, also called William, and grandmother Ellen then opened the Market Street shop in 1939, as an extension of the company’s operations, with Mr Bateson, who lives in Over Hulton with wife Joyce, first working in it during the 1950s as a 16-year-old.
Mrs Bateson, aged 70, said: “Harry is sad because obviously it has been his life for such a long time. The shop is an institution in Market Street and our customers have been very upset by the decision.
“We’ve even had a lady crying, asking my husband not to close, which is obviously gratifying.”
The shop will not be vacant for long, with Bolton Hospice set to move their Market Street operations to the Batesons’ premises.
Mrs Kendall said: “It is good to know that a charity local to Bolton, who do excellent work, will be able to benefit from our closure.”
Westhoughton Town Council leader Cllr David Chadwick added: “From a purely personal point of view, I will be very sad to see the shop close.
“My family and I have used the shop for our DIY needs for 30 years and there was a real personal touch to the service provided by Mr Bateson and his family.
“I understand Mr Bateson is now retiring and I wish him well with that.”
Comments are closed on this article.