Popular South Shields market stall Yvonne’s Haberdashery shuts up shop after more than 60 years of trading

A family-run market stall has bid farewell after more than 60 years of serving the people of South Shields.

Tuesday, 25th January 2022, 11:13 am

Yvonne’s Haberdashery, which has been trading at South Shields’ Market Place for more than six decades, has said goodbye to customers old and new.

The stall is ran by Yvonne Martin, who first started on the stall at the age of just seven with her father Johnny Walker.

When he first opened the stall, Johnny sold china and cutlery, travelling to Sheffield and Stoke-on-Trent for his stock.

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Yvonne celebrating her final day on the stall

He eventually started selling haberdashery in the form of buttons, zips and thread, which is how Yvonne’s stall is known as today.

She took over the stall in 1971 when her father passed away and has been running it ever since, with her children joining in too.

The family has traded in all weathers and only missed trading during the pandemic when they were unable to run the stall.

Aside from South Shields, the stall has also traded at other markets including Blyth, Amble, Hexham and Stanley.

Yvonne's father, Johnny Walker who set up the stall

Yvonne has many happy memories working on the stall and describes other market stall traders as ‘down to earth’.

She said: “I love the people I’ve met working on the stall over the years and it’s been great company. It’s been a way of life for me and I’m going to miss it.”

Now almost 70, Yvonne has decided it is time to give up the stall and spend more time with her 97-year-old mother who also spent time helping out on the stall until the age of 85.

Yvonne said her mother suffers dementia and the free time will allow them more time together.

Yvonne's mum helping out on the stall

The stall recently celebrated it’s final day selling all off its stock for £1.

Yvonne was inundated with gifts and goodbyes from loyal customers, to whom she will be sorely missed.

She added: “I received over 20 bunches of flowers, chocolates and prosecco from my customers which was lovely.”

The stall has been well known in South Shields for over six decades and is one of the core traders at the market. It will be a huge miss to the community as well as other market traders.

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