10 pictures from the days before internet shopping, when every town had its own high street

It is that time of year, when shopping lists get ever-longer as Christmas draws nearer.

Monday, 26th November 2018, 1:04 pm
Updated Monday, 26th November 2018, 1:15 pm
How many of these shops of yesteryear do you remember?

So what better excuse to step back into the Echo archives for pictures of shopping in our towns and villages through the years?

Many people now do all their festive gift shopping online, but that hasn't always been the case.

People were out and about and bumping into friends and neighbours in Sea Road, Fulwell, pictured here in 1967.

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We thought we would take a look at shopping areas from the past, long before the internet, when going to the shops - or ordering from 'the catalogue' - were the only ways of buying presents.

These areas were buzzing with people buying their goods for the day, purchasing an item for the house and ticking something else off the gift list.

The majority of the shops in these areas were independent retailers; shops owned by families going back generations.

Sunderland, of course, had big stores such as Binns, Joplings and Blacketts, but also lots of smaller businesses. Do you recognise your shopping area?

Hylton Road in Sunderland had a wide variety of shops back in 1984. Who remembers buying something at Thursby's?

We'd love to hear your memories of shopping on Wearside. Email [email protected]

Church Street in Seaham was bustling with shoppers when our photographer took this picture back in 1983. How many of the shops do you remember?
The local baker is always one of the most popular shops in any high street. That was the case in Woods Terrace, Murton, back in 1983.
There was plenty of choice for shoppers in Easington Lane back in 1984.
Every community had its own shops in times gone by. Ryhope, pictured here, was no exception.
Doggarts was a chain of department stores with outlets around the North East. The one pictured here, in Newbottle Street, Houghton-le-Spring, closed in 1980.
In the days before everyone had cars, parking right outside your favourite shop wasn't a problem in Grangetown, pictured here in the summer of 1965.
The Galleries at Washington was a popular addition to the new town in 1974. Here's a picture of its Royal opening by Princess Anne. Who remembers Woolco?
The wet weather kept shoppers at home on this dreich December day in 1981. The shops in Maritime Place, Sunderland, would have to wait for the Christmas rush.