At 74, this baby says Bye!

TAKING OFF: Jan Edwards and Brian Burns of My Baby’s Shop in Lismore head for relaxation.
TAKING OFF: Jan Edwards and Brian Burns of My Baby’s Shop in Lismore head for relaxation. Jacklyn Wagner

WITHIN weeks it will be the end of an era for a shop that has been part of the social fabric of the Northern Rivers for more than 74 years.

My Baby's Shop owner Brian Burns and his partner Jan Edwards have sold their Keen St, Lismore shop after 21 years to enjoy retirement.

Established before the Second World War by a Miss Jones, the first incarnation of My Baby's Shop traded in the Star Court Arcade.

Then there was a workshop out the back where ladies were employed to stitch and smock babies' clothes.

Over the years tens of thousands of babies' clothes, tonnes of balls of wool and countless more baby items were sold to people all over the Northern Rivers.

When Miss Jones retired, Phyllis Care bought the business and ran it until 1965.

John and Judy Greedy bought it when Mrs Care retired and ran the shop until 1992 when Brian bought it.

"It's been a good life over the years," Brian said.

"The shop is a bit of an icon; so many people have been coming in and saying 'Oh we are going to miss you'."

Three generations of families across the region have been clothed or bought products from the business.

"I had a lady come in this morning and say 'Oh you're going; I used to buy my clothes for my daughter here and she's 56 now'," Jan said.

"So many people have said I have shopped here for so many years and they will really miss the shop."

Over the years the couple said they had watched small business and customers' shopping habits change.

"A lot of people shop on the internet now, and because they shop differently these days that affects small businesses," Jan said.

"People seem to want to go to malls and shopping centres where everything is under one roof," Brian said.

"Clothing lines have changed too and people don't seem to go for the higher quality stuff like they used to," Jan said.

Brian said he was most proud of his strong customer service focus over the years.

"It's been very good, I have enjoyed the 21 years but now we are moving on to another phase," he said.

"We are going to take off in the motorhome and do some travelling and just enjoy some relaxation and rest," Jan said.

She is looking forward to reading, walking, going to the gym and lunching.

Brian will play golf, go fishing and get back into reading.

Topics:  business history retail

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