New lease of life for John the Cobbler’s shop in Hastings Old Town.

The hearse carrying John's coffin outside his shop. Picture by Andrew Clifton SUS-181005-123351001
The hearse carrying John's coffin outside his shop. Picture by Andrew Clifton SUS-181005-123351001

The Old Town cobblers shop is set to re-open as a branch of a local law firm,

The High Street shop has remained closed since last April following the death of popular local character John Napier - known as John the Cobbler.

John passed away, aged 68, following a long battle with cancer.

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Bianca Eichler said: “John’s shop has been empty since the community lost one of the kindest, funniest gents the world will ever know.

“The shop still stands empty and I know that many in the Old Town have been wondering what will be happening and how we will be celebrating John. “My sister Jackie and I have talked about doing something with the shop for years and unfortunately Johns tragic death moved up the timetable somewhat.

“We have applied for change of use and had it accepted. It will be, not immediately, a branch of Jackie’s solicitors Funnell and Perring where she has been a partner for the last 13 years.

“We hope this will be a welcome addition to the Old Town and although it is not going to be a retail space it will provide a service that is needed in the area.

“Our family, who have lived here since 1981 know better than most that change is difficult and painful but one of the many reasons we love it here is that the no matter what happens we are a tough bunch who adapt and ultimately accept change.”

See also: Memorial bench unveiled for John the Cobbler

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