All down Portsmouth’s Lake Road, the shutters were going up.
Boarded windows were meeting the eye with their depressingly blank look.
On the window of a one-time furniture shop someone had written in whitewash ‘100 Divans Must Go’.
They had gone – everything, except the bare, empty shop itself.
But not everywhere was closed – in an area not far from the tall block of corporation houses was a tiny old-world shop with no name.
‘It’s an Old Curiosity Shop’, said the shopkeeper Lilian Saunders. ‘I have always liked this little shop, so two years ago I took it over as a small dress agency.
‘I do a very good trade in here – but, of course, the shop will have to go.
‘It is a pity this type of shopping area is going. People like this sort – it has the kind of fascination you find in The Lanes at Brighton.
‘But one by one the shops in Lake Road are closing down.’
It was a street of childhood memories for many who, with the age of affluence, had moved to the lusher areas of Southsea and Cosham, or out of Portsmouth altogether.