THE family of a well-known and much-loved former shopkeeper has this week paid tribute to him.
George Thorpe, of Chanctonbury Drive, St Leonards, died aged 90 on June 22 after a long illness.
He and his late wife Peggy opened a shop in Hughenden Road called George’s Stores in 1959 which became popular with locals.
Mr Thorpe’s daughter, Janet Miles, of Badgers Way, said: “The shop was rundown and tatty when my mum and dad opened it but slowly and surely they began to build it up, making sure each and every customer was served well and looked after.
“Nothing was ever too much trouble for them, as they both loved working together serving the general public.”
Mr Thorpe and his wife later opened another shop in Mount Road in 1970, naming it George’s Mini Market.
Mrs Miles added: “This shop premises had also been left in a state of decay. But once again both mum and dad set to work with their magic.
“They had a special way with people, as they were so friendly and always happy.
“Dad would deliver lots of orders and come back awash with tea and biscuits.”
The couple had George’s Stores from 1959 to 1983 and George’s Mini Market from 1970 to 1990. George’s wife passed away six years ago and his other daughter Carol died 15 years ago.
Mrs Miles said: “My dad was one of those people who was always doing something apart from working. He enjoyed gardening, was a founder member of the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB), a member of Hastings Motorboat and Yacht Club, and a governor at Elphinstone School.”
Mr Thorpe’s funeral is on Tuesday (July 10) at Hastings Crematorium and a wake will be held at the Civil Service Club.
Mr Thorpe is survived by his daughter, son-in-law, grandchildren and great-grandchildren.