Tenterden Tackle and Gun Shop set to shut after almost 30 years in high street


One of the longest-running stores in a town’s high street is set to close this month after almost 30 years.

The Tackle and Gun Shop will be shutting its doors for the last time in Tenterden on Friday, August 26.

Tenterden's Tackle and Gun shop is set to close. Photo: Sue Ferguson
Tenterden’s Tackle and Gun shop is set to close. Photo: Sue Ferguson

Owner Graham Parry took the difficult decision to hang up his shopkeeping gloves after 27 years.

He says that a range of factors made the future of the shop uncertain, culminating in a make-or-break decision at the end of his lease.

“The truth is that we are all shopping differently nowadays, and as a high street shop it is harder to make money in the present climate,” he explained.

“You have supply chain issues, high rates, and electricity, fuel and postage costs soaring.

“Covid closed the shop for some time – and all through our closure bills had to be paid with no money coming in from the shop.

Graham Parry is set to step back after 27 years of trading
Graham Parry is set to step back after 27 years of trading

“If I sign up for a new lease I would be risking all that I have worked for all of my life.

“I cannot see the future. The gamble is huge and the risk too high.”

Mr Parry, who now lives on Romney Marsh but grew up and lived in Tenterden for most of his life, said he will keep coming back to the town as a tourist.

“I will miss all of my customers greatly as the shop has been a way of life for me and of course the regulars,” he added.

“From the people who want specialist items not always available from other shops, the people in for a coffee and a chat, and the people buying a single fly, to those travelling abroad to catch monsters.

“I want to thank all of my customers, so many of whom are now good friends”

“I’ll miss the youngsters starting out fishing who need a little help or for their first air rifle purchased by their parents.

“I want to thank all of my customers, so many of whom are now good friends, for their support, smiles, and kindness over the last 27 years.

“I will miss the interaction, laughs, smiles and so much more.”

Last month, the town centre received a treble boost with three new shops confirming plans to fill empty units.

The former Laura Ashley shop is to finally be filled two years after it closed, while a cafe has moved into Sayers Lane.

The shop's closure will leave a space next to Boots on the High Street
The shop’s closure will leave a space next to Boots on the High Street

Haberdashery company Hop, Stitch and Jumper is moving into the empty store next to Bond Street to Your Street.

And just down Sayers Lane, Mr Bean Coffee House has been replaced by Coffee Pad Ltd, just a few months after the former closed its doors.

Meanwhile, Waitrose enjoyed a £3m refurbishment recently, with a sushi bar and dried meats counter added to the store.



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