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Thetford hairdresser celebrates 40 years at John Olivers Hairdressing

A popular hairdresser is celebrating 40 years at the salon where he started his career.

Peter Wade, 59, has been cutting hair at John Olivers Hairdressing, in Thetford, since 1981.

In that time he has not only witnessed many changes in the salon itself, but also hair styles.

Peter Wade is celebrating 40 years at the salon he started his career. Picture by Mecha Morton
Peter Wade is celebrating 40 years at the salon he started his career. Picture by Mecha Morton

The John Oliver Hairdressing Group took over the salon, in Guildhall Street, Thetford, just a couple of months after Peter began work there – and so the salon itself, is celebrating its 40th anniversary, too.

“When I started it in the 1980s there was lots of perming and not a lot of colouring,” said Peter.

“Now it’s completely the opposite. You have to be aware of trends and what people are watching and doing but if you listen to the client, they always get the best haircut.”

The John Oliver Group runs a number of salons in Norfolk and Suffolk. In the early days the salon, on Guildhall Street, there were around ten staff.

Peter now runs the salon himself, as owner and manager, after running it with two other staff, pre-Covid.

He says clients can always be sure of getting the very latest in hair technology design and care.

“It’s the clients that keep me going,” said Peter, who lives in Garboldisham.

I am now cutting the grandchildren’s hair of clients I have known for years.

"It’s the little things people say every day that make the job enjoyable.

“A nurse said the other day she was fed up of people complaining about not having all their freedoms due to Covid. She said they should try living for a month in China, and it made me laugh.”

Peter believes that listening is the secret to good hairdressing.

He also works on the basis of what kind of hair a person has, face shape, body shape, and how much they want to look after their hair afterwards.

“Over the years, there has been icons like Princess Diana, or Rachel from friends – but styles these days are much more individual,” he said.

“People here have a proper consultation and in my job, I always believe hairdressers should listen more than they speak.”

John Oliver’s Hairdressing had to close for 20 weeks during the Covid period. Peter is currently looking for a qualified hairdresser to join him at the salon.

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