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Halesworth Toy Shop, in Thoroughfare, set to shut doors after more than two decades in business





A town’s beloved toy shop is set to shut its doors after more than two decades of trading.

Nigel Kemp, 62, owner of Halesworth Toy Shop, decided to ‘take it a bit easier’ by closing his store next month, which he opened 24 years ago.

However, he will still be trading from the shop’s sister site in Beccles, which he has owned since 1995.

Halesworth Toy Shop is set to shut its doors after first opening 24 years ago. Pictured: Owner Nigel Kemp. Picture: Submitted
Halesworth Toy Shop is set to shut its doors after first opening 24 years ago. Pictured: Owner Nigel Kemp. Picture: Submitted

“Lots of people are sad to see it go because its been part of the town for many years,” said Nigel. “I think it was a toy shop even before I came, so for around 40/50 years.”

“But I’m not getting any younger and I decided to take it a bit easier.

“I hope some customers come and see me over in Beccles and support me for the last few weeks here.”

Nigel’s store is part of the Toymaster group, which is made up of 280 independent toy shops across the UK.

The shop's last day in business will be on March 2. Picture: Google Maps
The shop's last day in business will be on March 2. Picture: Google Maps

Sites in Bury St Edmunds, Newmarket and Framlingham are also part of the group.

Nigel said Covid had not played a factor in his decision – and in fact, he managed to remain profitable.

“Things have got tougher over the years, but we have been alright,” said Nigel. “We managed to bounce back from Covid and keep the costs down as well.”

When asked about the impact this will have on the town, a spokesperson for the Halesworth Town Council said it was sorry to say goodbye to a long-standing retailer.

It added: "However, over the last few months we've been delighted to welcome many new businesses to the town including sweet treats, gourmet burgers, a tap room, a wine importer, a beauty salon, antiques shops and seen a popular café expand.

“We've also seen many new stalls at our weekly Wednesday market. Like all small market towns we experience the natural flow of businesses in and out of the town.”

The shop’s last day of trade will be on March 2.