Retro: Meadowhall staff recall days of shoulder pads and cash only!

Long-serving Meadowhall M&S staff Jane Depledge and Beverly Stuart
Long-serving Meadowhall M&S staff Jane Depledge and Beverly Stuart
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The days of polyester and shoulder pads on the rails and cash-only tills were recalled by two long-serving members of staff at Marks & Spencer at Meadowhall.

In total, 45 members of staff at one of the largest flagship stores within the centre are about to mark 25 years of service at Meadowhall, all proud of being part of the original team who helped open the doors at M&S on September 4, 1990.

Sales assistant Jane Depledge, aged 46, from the childrenswear department, has many fond memories of that first day when thousands of people were queuing up outside to get their first glimpse of the store.

Starting her retail career as a 21-year-old, Jane recalls: “I remember being very excited as I had watched it being built over the months and years from Wincobank.

“We’d never been anything like it before and I knew it was going to be something very special from the very start.

“Looking back, the way people buy items has changed; I can’t believe we only accepted cash for so long before introducing store cards and then finally accepting credit and debit cards.”

“Having worked in childrenswear for a long time, it’s lovely to see families grow and to see children we served 25 years ago grow up and bring their own children to the store.

“Meadowhall is very special to me because I’ve worked with the people here for a very long time, they’re like my family and I’ve built a loyal relationship with them all as both colleagues and friends.”

Beverly Stuart, menswear sales assistant who has also worked at the M&S store since its opening back in 1990, said “I applied to work at the store on the last day of applications. Everyone was concerned that Meadowhall as an out-of-town shopping centre wasn’t going to last but look at it now, it’s getting bigger and better every year and I am proud to be a part of that.”

She continues “Fashion has changed quite a lot over the past 25 years; I remember lots of polyester!

“Shoulder pads were in, along with shell blouses and pleated clothing. Double-breasted suit jackets were the fashion back then but they’re almost non-existent in store now.”