Newcastle has a been a well known shopping destination for years now, and we’re lucky to have a wide collection of stores to choose from. Although today we have an incredible selection of independent shops mixed in with larger brands, many chain stores, and some of our independents, have been & gone.
If, like me, you experienced shopping in Newcastle in the late 90’s and 00’s, lots of the following shops may take you back to a much simpler time. When Baby Spice made platform shoes popular, flavoured lipgloss was considered super fashionable and your collection of rubber bracelets needed to be longer than your actual arm.
Dolcis was the place to go for trendy shoes. If you were after a new pair of summer sandals or stylish school shoes, you had to head to Dolcis in Eldon Square.
2. Virgin Megastore
Remember standing in the little music booths in Virgin Megastore on Northumberland Street to listen to the latest chart topping singles, like Peter Andre’s Mysterious Girl? It was in direct competition with HMV, which was also just up the street at the time.
From what I remember, there was a Kookai concession in Fenwicks, and it also had its own larger store on Market Street, taking up part of what is currently Start Fitness. At the time it was considered high fashion… or at least the high streets version of it.
Kids today will sadly never experience the greatest pick & mix there ever was. Woolworths on Clayton Street was the go to for sweets, stationary, gifts and toys. *Sigh*, how we miss it…
5. Jane Norman
The best thing about Jane Norman was that you could use their snazzy plastic bags for your PE kit, and look dead cool at school. The clothes were pretty overpriced though, so it was best to go when there was a sale on.
Birthdays sat in between Haymarket bus station and Haymarket metro station for years. It was a tiny little card and gift shop which was super handy whenever you’d forgotten it was someone’s birthday.
7. Miss Selfridge
Now, although there is still a small Miss Selfridge above Dorothy Perkins in town, there did used to be a much larger version of the shop at the main entrance to Eldon Square. It had a lot more to choose from, and even a photo booth that printed photos as stickers.
8. Early Learning Centre
Many people around my age, *cough* early thirties *cough*, will remember the absolute joy of going to the Early Learning Centre to buy those amazing plastic toy animals and dinosaurs. It was one of the best shops in Eldon Square that a child could go to.
So, I’ve already mentioned the big Miss Selfridge that used to be next to the main entrance of Eldon Square, Quicksilver took its place afterwards and had a large store in town. Perfect fit you wanted to look cool and athletic.
10. The Disney Store
A lot of Newcastle’s regular shoppers will know that Disney had a shop in the new posh bit of Eldon Square recently, but years ago they had a dedicated Disney Store, close to John Lewis. It was either where Clinton Cards or Lakeland is now, but I’m not sure which.
11. Our Price
Now this is really testing my memory, but I’m pretty sure that Our Price used to be next to one of the entrances to the Green Market, where the new food quarter is now. It was SO cheap you couldn’t not come away with loads of random CD’s.
12. La Senza
La Senza was the lingerie shop that every girl bought their first (uncomfortable) push up bra from. No matter the season, La Senza was always stockpiled with underwear and flowery bras in every colour.
13. Gadget Shop
Remember the Gadget Shop? It was full of pointless gadgets that you never needed but always wanted. It was also a fantastic store to buy Christmas presents, or just waste half a day playing with stuff you didn’t buy.
I don’t remember going into Adams when I was a kid, but I may well have done. It was one of Eldon Squares few shops dedicated to just children’s clothing.
Morgan was another girls clothes shop that had fantastic shopping bags for PE Kits. They also sold large zip up tote bags and black & white t-shirts with just ‘Morgan’ written on them, which to be honest is the only thing I think I ever bought there.
Bay, or Bay Trading Co., was another clothes shop gone before it’s time. I had a pair of baby pink corduroy jeans that I absolutely loved from Bay, and I’ll never forget them.
There used to be a massive British Home Stores on Northumberland Street. Eventually Outfit took over the large high street shop, which has also, er, sadly now closed too.
Kathmandu is the odd one out here, as it’s the only small local/ independent shop in this list. But credit where credits due, it was a fantastic goth shop if you were into that kind of thing. Remember how busy hippy green on Old Eldon Square used to get? It certainly made Newcastle more interesting.
19. MK One
MK One was always full of bargain clothes. I think I was probably even wearing a top from MK One the first time I ever went drinking at Kiss in the Bigg Market when I was 16.
20. Green Market
I’ve already mentioned the Green Market very briefly, but I don’t feel like I can leave it out of this list as it feels so nostalgic. It was full of fruit stalls, a computer games shop, an ear piercing shop and a Greggs among others.
21. Tammy Girl
Tammy Girl was a young lasses glow up from children’s wear to FASHIONISTA. Their trendy t-shirts and funky accessories were all the rage, and you knew you were cool if you were wearing a Tammy Girl outfit.
Etam was slightly more grown up than Tammy Girl, and where you’d start shopping once you knew you were becoming a more elegant young lady. It was great for school trousers too.
23. Internacionale/ Au Naturale
Cast you minds back to a time when Eldon Square was home to a superstore that had both Intercionale clothes shop AND Au Naturale interiors. What a dream, what a time to be alive, you’ve never seen so many jelly candles in your life. Quite sure it was where Holland & Barrett is now?
24. Rebel Rebel
Who could forget Rebel Rebel? They had £10 trousers in every colour and every going out top and ridiculously short skirt you could dream of. Even if you didn’t shop there, their sparkly fake Burberry patterned t-shirts were unmistakable.
Have these shops brought back any memories for you? Are there any I’ve missed out that you wish you could step back in time to shop at again? Leave a comment or send me a message!