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Article and photos by Paul Wright, 2021

New Store opened 19th January 2021

The old store in Eaton Walk - the lease had run out
During the winter of 2020/2021 the popular “Iceland” store moved from Units 1/2 Eaton Walk, Rushden, and re-located to Rushden High Street.

The store now sits opposite the Rose & Crown pub, which along with every other such hostelry is closed during a third lock down due to Covid 19 restrictions. At the time of this article in early 2021, there is a mass vaccination programme taking place up and down of the UK. And the plan is to have people vaccinated aged 80 and over, some people aged 70 and over, some people who are clinically extremely vulnerable, the people that live and work in care homes, and health care and social care work staff.

The prime position for “Iceland” in the High Street opened on Tuesday 19th January 2021, and came available after the closure of “Store 21”.

Iceland Foods Ltd (trading as Iceland) is a British supermarket chain which is based in Deeside in Wales. Their strength is the sale of frozen foods, including prepared meals and vegetables. They also sell non-frozen grocery, meat, dairy, and dry goods. The company has just over a 2·00% share of the UK food market, and during the pandemic in 2020, their sales rose by 22%.

The company was formed by “Malcolm Walker” way back in 1970, with their first branch opening its doors in “Oswestry, Shropshire”.

Back in 1996 “Iceland” introduced its unique free home delivery service, and that was extended nationwide a year later. Now if you spend over £35 you can enjoy a free next day delivery, and we see their vans Monday to Sunday, with two-hour delivery slots available between 8am and 9pm.

To date they now have over 900 stores throughout the UK, and even have another 40 stores across Europe; some of these are either owned, or franchised outlets.

So from birth in 1970, “Iceland” is now a major player in the world of food in the 21st century.

The entrance

Iceland Celebrates its 50th Anniversary at 48 High Street, Rushden.

Going back to the 20th century, our High Street would have enjoyed Saxby’s, Jim Bugby’s excellent fishmongers, International Stores, numerous Co-op shops, Baxter's butchers, Norman’s Bakery, Anglo Swiss Patisserie, Maypole, Fine Fare, Woolworths of course, and in the 1970’s “Stitchers” store. And down the bottom end of the High Street “Osborne's” and “Billy Keller”.

There may be some that I have forgotten for now, but perhaps you have your own special memories of our High Street?

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