Today I paid a visit to Yummy Yummy in Old Kent Road. What struck me were the tiles on the wall in there depicting characters of Robin Hood's merry men.
Prior to Yummy Yummy, I remember going there when it was a South American restaurant, again with the same tiles on the wall.
I was wondering if the tiles are under some sort of preservation order?
It brought back memories of me as a child shopping with my mother in J Sainsbury before they became a supermarket conglomerate, when they were just a grocer chain. I remember that they were tiled in white, green and brown tiles from floor to about halfway up the wall.
They sold meats and grocery provisions, cheese, bacon, sausages and all sorts of cooked meats and I think fish all behind glass fronted white marbled displays. The smell of the foods combined with the smell of the sawdust on the floor, I can still smell it when I think of it.
I remember when we used to go there; I used to scan the floor because occasionally there was the odd coin amongst the sawdust that some unfortunate shopper had dropped. I can still remember picking up a 2 shilling piece and looking at my mother and she nodding at me, meaning put it away quickly. Then 2 shillings was a lot of money, but mostly it was the odd penny or thru'pence, or perhaps if you were lucky a sixpence .
After buying your provisions you would go to the checkout and they had a wooden drawer that you placed your shopping in and the checkout lady would pull a wooden handle on the drawer to bring the shopping to her, to price through the till.
Anyway I reminisce, but was wondering if anyone knows the history of the premises, that is now Yummy Yummy.
If anyone knows please let me know.
Actually, thinking on a bit deeper. I don't think Sainsbury's did sell fish. I remember we used go to another nearby shop called MacFisheries again more green and white tiles and marble surfaces. And an overwhelming smell of fish and sea food.
Back to Sainsbury's though, I can remember the large blocks of cheese and the large square pork pies they used to cut through with a cheese wire, however much you wanted.
I can also remember Woolworth's again with the glass fronted serving counters with glass dividers selling loose biscuits, like the pick and mix sweets they do today, although it was not self service. You cold choose a few custard creams, a few nice biscuits, a few jammy dodgers and all served in a large brown paper bag. Sometimes you could buy some broken biscuits at a discount.
Can you remember when you used to buy a lightbulb in Woolie's and they used to put it on a tester and the filament glowed a dull red glow to show it was not a dud. They also used to test the batteries when you bought them.
I can remember our local Co Op had the largest toy selection in the town. They also used to sell loose fireworks on the run up to the 5th November.
You could go and buy a couple of Catherine wheels, Roman Candles, Rockets, Jumping Jacks all loose like pick and mix and again all served in a big brown bag.
It's amazing what forgotten memories can be brought to the surface, after many years tucked away.
Yummy yummy used to be the pub The Green Man, which would tie in with the robin hood tiles. Very glad to hear they still have the tiles.
While we're down memory lane, on the opposite side of the road where Tesco's is, there was a Woolworth's branch where I spent my meagre pocket money back in the 60s and 70s. The shop had a lovely wooden floor. Also along there was a toy shop which had a train set in the front window, and you could put a penny (old one!) in a slot in the window frame and the trains would go round.
There has been a Green Man pub on the site for the best part of two hundred years. (The toll gate at the parish boundary was sometimes known as the Green Man turnpike and sometimes as the Dunn Cow turnpike).
The pub was rebuilt (in the 1880s?) but I think the tiles only date from the middle of the twentieth century.
Are they the same sort of tile panels as the Shakespeare ones in the Paper Moon in Blackfriars Road - on another thread we worked out that those were made by Carters Pottery, and it wouldn't surprise me if the two pubs were owned by the same brewery and refitted around about the same time.
It's been quite a few years since I was last in The Paper Moon, and to be honest I cannot remember the tiles in there. Perhaps in the near future I may pop in to have another look.
To be honest The Paper Moon never grabbed me as a pub, although I think it is owned by the same company as The Stamford Arm's which I quite like, although again I have not been in there either for a very long time.
It's just that the tiles in Yummy Yummy, although out of place in a Chinese Restaurant, are actually rather beautiful and still look bright and new as when they were first put in, whenever that was.
The difference is that the tiles in The Paper Moon depict a scene, whereas the tiles in Yummy Yummy depict 3 separate character portraits. However I am sure the green and gold border is identical.
On my next visit I will take a camera and post a photo of it online.