Retail Comings and Goings in Tameside, March 2015: The Ashton Review of Shops

More agony than ecstasy

  • Popular tea shop closes;
  • Plans unveiled for TAC demolition;
  • Old General depubification confirmed.


Before we give you this month’s round-up, some of you may have wondered why this fellow was strutting his stuff on Staveleigh Way this Monday:

It turns out that our dancer, Neil, is parodying the Money Supermarket advertisement. This dance, also known as the Ashton Strut, is Fragell Productions’ bit for Comic Relief. The video production company, owned by Frazer and Gareth Cottrell (of Tameside Radio fame) is responsible for this polished production.

Excellent work, chaps. Bring on “Newton State of Mind”, set outside the Co-op and The Cheshire Cheese!

More agony

After this month’s bonus clip, the last month hasn’t been too good, especially for Sara at the Sara Dip and Tea café, Stalybridge. Last month, vandals smashed their way into the café, practically undoing her excellent work. It is with great sadness for us to report that Sara Dip and Tea has closed for good. We wish Sara the very best in her next venture.

B&Q to quit Hyde

By the end of this month, Hydonians will be peeved at Kingfisher Group’s closure of the town’s B&Q store. For people living in Denton, Dukinfield and Glossop, it is a more convenient alternative to the B&Q Warehouse store on Snipe Retail Park. With its lease up for renewal on the new financial year, Kingfisher have decided not to renew its lease.

Hyde’s B&Q store opened in 1994 with ALDI and Poundstretcher its fellow tenants. April sees Poundstretcher as the sole tenant. Hyde’s branch is one of 30 stores that the DIY chain intends to close over a five year period. The town’s nearest DIY superstores will be the B&Q Warehouse in Snipe Retail Park, and Homebase in Bredbury off Stockport Road West.

Ashton shops

  • A new wedding shop is about to open on Old Street, in the former Cherry Tree Café unit.
  • The Willow Wood Hospice’s furniture shop on Old Street has expanded, adding a second floor to its showrooms.
  • The former Cockshoots showroom/Bestman unit on Cavendish Street/Old Street is set to be split into three units. There will be two takeaways, one of which being a kebab shop, and a taxi office.

Demolition of the TAC building – Update

September 2015’s demolition of the Council Offices will see retention of the former Water Board offices’ façade. The Town Hall will revert to being a separate building. On completion, Son of TAC will see its main office blocks face Warrington Street and Wellington Road. A new thoroughfare will be created, linking Wellington Road with the new-look open market.

As of before, Wilkinson will occupy a unit at ground floor level. Whilst demolition takes place, the pelican crossing will move towards the Welcome Inn end of Ashton Town Hall. To facilitate this, the bus stand for the 236/7, 348 and 350 services will be moved closer to the next stand used by the 346, 353 and 354 services.


Little to report apart from one thing: preliminary work has begun on the remodelling of Ashton’s Open Market. An ‘Alcatraz style’ compound has been erected opposite The Old Fire Station to allow works to commence.

As usual, for the second Sunday in the month, Stalybridge Farmers’ Market is on this coming Sunday (the 08 March). Stalls are on Armentieres Square from 9am to 2pm.

Planning Notices

The biggest story in the planning notices concern the demolition of TAC. Comprehensive information on its demolition stages can be seen on the Tameside MBC website. So far, some staff have moved from the TAC building to other parts of the borough. Most notably Dukinfield Town Hall.

Pub and club update: as sober as an old general

The depubification of The Old General in Dukinfield has been confirmed. Though we thought flats or another day nursery were likely conversions, we were proved wrong. The O.G. is set to become a solicitors’ office. One question remains: will they use the pub building itself and create an extension, or will it be demolished with offices on the site?

At the Etihad Stadium on the 26 February was Pugh Auctioneers’ latest auction. The Oddfellows’ Arms in Higher Hurst. The public house was sold for £108,000. Whether it’ll remain as a pub, or face depubification (which seems to be the common trend in these parts) is doubtful.

Just over a month since opening, The River Bank on Crescent Road, Dukinfield has closed.

Other comings and goings (some of which probably not so recent – corrections and additions appreciated as always):


  • Wedding shop: Old Street, Ashton-under-Lyne;
  • Two new takeaways and a taxi office, Cavendish Street, Ashton-under-Lyne.


  • The Oddfellows’ Arms: Kings Road, Higher Hurst, Ashton-under-Lyne.


  • B&Q: Market Street, Hyde: lease not being renewed;
  • Sara Dip and Tea: Armentieres Square, Stalybridge (sad to see you go – will miss your breakfasts!);
  • The River Bank: Crescent Road, Dukinfield: depubification?

*                     *                    *

Next Month:

Hopefully some happier news. In spite of the hyperbole from Westminster and the mainstream media, our borough has a long way to go till its economy returns to pre-2008 levels.

Till now (one gorgeous Buck Rarebit from Avenue 18) it is goodbye from me… (and it is goodbye from him).

Oh, and the hashtag for Fragell Productions’ video is #AshtonStrut. Get this fellow trending on Twitter or Facebook (other social networking sites are available)!

S.V., 04 March 2015.


6 thoughts on “Retail Comings and Goings in Tameside, March 2015: The Ashton Review of Shops

Add yours

    1. Can anyone let the public know what’s going to be replacing B&Q? Or is it going to be another wasted store just left to rack & ruin???? B&Q should of been able to stay. Not everyone has transport to get to Ashton’s Snipe Retail Park where the nearest B&Q resides. Depressing…. There’s going to be nothing left soon in Hyde besides takeaways n a KFC. Lol…..


      1. Hi Angie,

        The last time I passed the former B&Q supercentre (a fortnight or so ago), I saw the unit being reclad in blue and red. What it will become remains to be seen.

        The blue and red colours – and usage of which – on the building are consistent with: B&M (a move from The Mall? We hope not); Illingworth Ingham (expansion from present base?); Screwfix (also owned by the same people as B&Q); and The Range (no presence in Tameside yet).

        As far as I know, from my fieldwork, someone may be moving in though we don’t know whom. Hopefully we’ll know a little more by October’s instalment of ‘The Ashton Review of Shops’.

        Bye for now,



      1. Hi Paul,

        Not the first time a charity shop has left Hyde. There used to be an OXFAM shop on Market Street which closed due to a lack of volunteers. It isn’t that easy to find.

        Are they moving to a better unit in the town? B&M are moving to the former B&Q unit. Therefore, if they do leave Clarendon Mall, this leaves a vacancy. Who knows?

        Bye for now,



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