Good news, people of Sunbury. There have been changes at Skinners at 5,The Avenue. You will have noticed it has had a face lift. But there is more. The Post Office is now open seven days a week. If you need to get some premium bonds at 7am then you can. If you want to top up your ISA on Sunday you can do that too.
The refurbishment has created a new modern look with lots of space. There is more stationary and a greater selection of cards (including a huge range by local artist Daphne Clement).
Shirley Crossby and Karen Smale took over the running of Skinners from Albert Skinner (above)– ‘Mr Sunbury’ himself. Having worked with them, Mr Skinner’s greatest wish was that they should continue to run the post office/newsagents after his death.
I sadly did not know Mr Skinner myself, but I have heard lots of stories. He is immortalised in one of the embroideries in the Walled Garden which was done by John Stamp himself. The legs in the embroidery were apparently modelled on a photo of the Prince of Wales because as Mr Skinner was always behind the counter no one saw his real legs!
I hear that he always like to surround himself with attractive ladies. He even used to treat his staff to the occasional trip to Paris for lunch, one such lunch resulting in his being served a huge crab as he got his French muddled up when ordering. He had been expecting chicken!
Shirley Crosby has been at Skinners for 28 years. There is talk of selling the business but with a refurbishment of the shop she and Karen are certainly there for a while longer. It is such an important resource for us in Lower Sunbury and the range of services is endless:You can get broadband and a home phone service from them. You can top up mobiles and there will soon be a photo copying service.
You can get all manner of insurances: House, Bike, Life, Travel. If you are over 50 then the Post Office guarantees to beat your renewal by at least £50. That sounds amazing!
You can get premium bonds, credit cards, deposit and withdraw money from your account with major banks. You can get a mortgage and within a year you will be able to take out a current account with the Post Office.
As far as regular posting is concerned, I did not know that they offer a ‘drop and go’ service. If you have lots of parcels to send, you just leave them all with the staff who weigh and price it at the quieter times when there are no queues. That works well for everyone.
As if these are not reasons enough to visit Skinners, they also have a regular supply of dog biscuits for their four legged clients!
Opening times for all services
- Monday – Friday: 7.00am – 5.30pm
- Saturday: 7.00am – 5.00pm
- Sunday: 7.00am – 12.00pm