A FAMILY business in Winklebury is celebrating 50 years since it first opened this month.

Greenways newsagent in the Winklebury Centre was opened in June 1971 and run by Peter Dodds and his wife Pat.

The shop was given to a landowner named Mr Hill, as part of a land sale deal with the council at the time.

Peter Dodds was taken on as a partner, and later bought out the other partners, giving him ownership of the business, and a number of other retail units in the area.

When he retired around twenty years ago, he passed the business on to his son, Barry Dodds, and daughter, Jackie Lambell meaning it has remained in the family for half a century.

“We were going to [have a celebration], but obviously because of Covid we can’t attract too many people in one area sadly,” Jackie told the Gazette.

The family sadly suffered the loss of their mum, Pat, who passed away in February, and Jackie says that while the bereavement has tainted the celebration, they want to honour her as “the glue that kept this place together”.

“Mum was looking forward to it [the anniversary]”, recalled Jackie.

“She was here day one. Her and my dad both opened it in June 1971 and as a family we moved in above. I was two when it opened.”

She added: “All of our childhoods are tied up around the [Winklebury] Centre. I remember learning to ride our bikes outside, but it was a lot different then.

“I do remember when I was about 11 working in the shop, and by 13 I was opening and closing the shop on my own! But Barry had the biggest input. He kept the place going when my dad moved to Spain.”

In December, the Gazette reported that Greenways faces being ‘forced out’ by landlord VIVID, as it prepares to embark on the Winklebury Centre regeneration project.

Speaking at the time, Jackie said: “Fifty years we have put into this business as a family and as a community - and now they want us out. When we go, I don’t know what the local community will do.”

Cllr Angie Freeman (Labour, Winklebury & Manydown) described the situation as “shocking” and accused Vivid of finding “any excuse”

While VIVID says it is in discussions with businesses, Jackie says she is yet to be given a viable option for staying, adding: “We don’t know one day to the next as to what is going on.”

However, for now the much-loved family shop wants to share its gratitude with its local community for supporting them over the years.

Sending a message as they mark the milestone, Jackie added: “A big thank you from the bottom of our hearts. It’s our locals and our regulars that have kept us going.

“If we didn’t have such lovely customers, it probably wouldn’t be worth it.”