Lifetime member of Honiton Co-op recalls High Street store

Over three decades of changing times, a Honiton woman has served her community through the local Co-op store.

Susan Richards first joined the Co-op in 1988, and though she never imagined it was going to be a lifetime role – she says she has loved every minute of her 31 years of service.

As a colleague at the store in Lace Walk, Susan appreciates the fact that the business is very much at the heart of the local community.

That is what attracted Susan to the role of Co-op colleague when, with a baby to look after, she wanted hours that worked around being a mum.

She said: “I first started working on the Deli counter. The Co-op were really accommodating with my schedule and planned my rota around my responsibilities at home.”

The flexible schedule meant that Susan was able to help support her family and still be able to devote time to being a mum of two boys.

She explained a bit about the history of the store’s location: “The Co-op used to be on the High Street, in a premises with a really long, narrow shop floor.

“It then moved to the premises in Lace Walk about a year before I started, which is far more convenient for shoppers and is easily accessible for wheelchairs and prams.”

Susan is born and bred in Honiton, or ‘Huniton’ as locals say, and loves being part of such a thriving community.

“It’s a great town to live in and being a member at the Co-op means I get to work plumb in the centre,” Susan added.