Read all about it! New era for Sprowston family newsagent

Newsagent for 25 years, Ian Moncur, and his father, Derek, who was a newsagent for 30 years before his son. Ian has closed his Sprowston newsagents, but is still delivering the newspapers. Picture: Denise Bradley Newsagent for 25 years, Ian Moncur, and his father, Derek, who was a newsagent for 30 years before his son. Ian has closed his Sprowston newsagents, but is still delivering the newspapers. Picture: Denise Bradley

Wednesday, July 9, 2014
8:44 AM

For almost 70 years the Moncur family business has been one that communities can trust.

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Paperboys and girls on a trip to Great Yarmouth organised by Derek Moncur (top middle) as a thank you for their hard work. His son, Ian Moncur is fourth from left along the bottom row.Paperboys and girls on a trip to Great Yarmouth organised by Derek Moncur (top middle) as a thank you for their hard work. His son, Ian Moncur is fourth from left along the bottom row.

From a tobacconists opened at the end of the war, to diligent paperboys and girls delivering hundreds of newspapers a day, the traders are an institution.

But now, third-generation trader Ian Moncur, 50, has decided to shut his shop on Cannerby Lane in Sprowston after 25 years.

The father-of-three will still have an army of paperboys and girls delivering the newspapers to homes.

But instead of asking readers to pay for the delivery in his shop, Mr Moncur says he is taking the business in a new and exciting direction by transferring payments to direct debit.

“It’s an end of an era”, Mr Moncur said. “The name Moncur has been in Sprowston for over half a century.

“Everybody knows us and they can trust us. My customers are like my friends, I have known them for years and years.”

Mr Moncur says his decision to close came after the Co-op unveiled plans for a supermarket in The Beehive pub just yards from the family shop.

Although Mr Moncur says the change is not a negative one, he said the new store would have cost him his business.

“I don’t see this as a negative thing, for me it’s a positive move,” he said.

“It’s the job I love; if I didn’t like it I wouldn’t be getting up at 5am every day.

“All I see is the business moving forward in a different direction.”

The family’s trading dates back to the end of the Second World War when Ian Moncur’s grandfather started a tobacconist at Devonshire Street in Norwich selling ration books to post-war shoppers.

His son Derek Moncur, 77, from Norwich, took over the reins and bought his first shop for £150, running a successful business on Magdalen Street in Norwich and Linacre Avenue in Sprowston for 35 years.

After a childhood of delivering papers and a career in the Royal Marines, Ian Moncur decided to follow in the family footsteps and bought the business from his father in 1988.

A staple in the newsagents’ calendar was taking paperboys and girls to Great Yarmouth for a day out as a thank you for their hard work.

Now the family want to thank their customers for their continued support.

Do you know someone working hard for their community? Email newsdesk@archant.co.uk

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