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Toys & Gifts for Kids Annual 27

Gifts

27

Sweet taste of nostalgia

SHOPPERS who step into ‘toot Sweets’ for a bag of old-fashioned sweets take a trip into the past and find themselves in a 1930s- style sweet shop.

The shop is the brainchild of

former head teacher, Bronia Gardner who has stocked up with glass jars storing everything from peppermints and liquorice to chocolate and fudge and old favourites including rhubarb and custard and midget gems.

“I wanted to create more than a

sweet shop, I wanted to offer people an experience, some affordable nostalgia, so that when they come in here they smile,” she said.

And judging by the queues that

form every Saturday Bronia has been more than successful.

“Children were not used to being served sweets and they love choosing what they want and then waiting for the sweets to be weighed into a paper bag. Adults enjoy finding sweets they remember from childhood and will share their memories which helps me find new

‘customers come in here and smile’

ideas for the shop.”

Bronia said she had long

wanted to open a sweet shop and when the right premises came up in Oakham, Rutland, she decided to give up her teaching career to fullfil her ambition. The shop was formerly a gentleman’s outfitters and the old-fashioned wooden shelves that once housed shirts and sweaters were perfect for jars of sweets. The shop was painted in

colours from the 1930s and Judith added vintage knick-knacks, a shop

bell and wonderful old till to complete the image. As a teacher who didn’t want

children chewing sweets in class, she refuses to open before 10am so her customers can’t buy anything on their way to school and she introduced a ration card to try and restrict their daily purchases. She also makes up a range of gift bags and has been asked for party bags, wedding favours and corporate gifts. In the future she hopes to offer ‘toot Sweets’ as a franchise opportunity.

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