Community news - Sawston

PUBLISHED: 10:30 12 January 2006 | UPDATED: 20:09 28 May 2010

WOMEN'S INSTITUTE: The WI started the new year by welcoming Hayley Bayford, of Robert Sayle, Cambridge. She gave a brief history of John Lewis, the founder, who bought up Peter Jones and became director of that store in the 1800s. He came from a family

WOMEN'S INSTITUTE: The WI started the new year by welcoming Hayley Bayford, of Robert Sayle, Cambridge. She gave a brief history of John Lewis, the founder, who bought up Peter Jones and became director of that store in the 1800s. He came from a family of Quakers and did what he could to help his employees reap a share of the profits. He was a successful business man of his time. There are 26 John Lewis stores nationwide, with future branches planned including one in Cardiff, another in Northern Ireland, as well as the eagerly-awaited Cambridge store to head the new Grand Arcade. It will cover over half the floor space of the whole arcade. A restaurant and coffee bar are also planned. Hayley also gave a short history of the beginnings of Waitrose, which started as a grocery business - Wait, Rose & Taylor - in Acton, north London. The first Waitrose was opened in 1955 in Streatham and there are now 166 branches nationwide. Profits from the various services provided by the Ocado on-line delivery service support the important charity, MacMillan Nurses. The final piece of history she gave covered Mr Robert Sayle. The shop was bought in 1840 and until 1960 staff were able to live over the shop. Between 1940-2004 it was Robert Sayle, St Andrew's Street. During excavation work, eight fireplaces were unearthed, plus decorative masonry. All items of special interest are being stored and will be incorporated into shop units within the arcade to preserve the history. When it returns in the autumn of 2007 it will be known as John Lewis. The staff reap many benefits - extended leave, health care, subsidised holidays in specific scenic locations, rambling clubs, etc. Hayley gave a comprehensive illustrated talk, assisted by her sister.Our next meeting will be on Monday February 6, when we will be celebrating our 82nd birthday with a birthday cake and wine and fruit juice. Marie Burleigh of The Pampered Chef will be giving a cooking demonstration with the opportunity to buy utensils she uses. 10% of sales will go towards our funds. We have invited our Federation chairman, Jean Coxall, to this meeting. It will be her first visit to Sawston. Later in the month we will be enjoying an evening meal at the Plough, Gt Chesterford, to continue our birthday celebrations.We continue to meet at the Adult Common Room of Sawston Village College at 7.30 pm and look forward to meeting you there.For further information please don't hesitate to contact Pearl or Anne on C.833090/832913.'

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