Family celebrate what would have been Stan's 100th birthday as they carry on store legacy

When Stan Faulks returned home from Japanese prisoner-of-war camp after the second war world he weighed just six stone and was classed as partially disabled.

Stans Superstore in Oswestry is celebrating what would have been Stan Faulks' 100th Birthday. From left; Robert Faulks, Sarah Dodsworth (Front), Bethan Faulks, Andrew Faulks, Lisa Faulks, Peter Faulks and Katie Chaplin.
Stans Superstore in Oswestry is celebrating what would have been Stan Faulks' 100th Birthday. From left; Robert Faulks, Sarah Dodsworth (Front), Bethan Faulks, Andrew Faulks, Lisa Faulks, Peter Faulks and Katie Chaplin.

As he struggled to rebuild his life with his wife, Vera, his brother-in-law helped him to run a fish and chip shop in St Martins near Oswestry, a hard task in the days of post-war rationing.

Shortly afterwards the couple started to manage the shop next door and when they were offered the chance to buy it they took the plunge, working long hours selling cigarettes, sweets and other goods to the mining community.

The shop was the forerunner for today's Stans Superstore.

Stan Faulks with his son's Robert and Peter

Today the shop is run on a day-to-day basis by Stan's grandson Andrew, other grandchildren and with Stan's sons, Peter and Robert, although semi-retired, still very much involved. Even the fourth generation children are now involved.

And this week the family celebrated what would have been Stan's 100th birthday.

Peter Faulks said Stan had been an errand boy then an apprentice gas fitter before joining the RAF in the war.

Recover

"He was held as a prisoner of war for three-and-a-half years, suffering from severe physical hardship, malnutrition, and various tropical diseases," he said.

"On his release he weighed just six stone and was classified as 50 per cent disabled. It took a long time for him to recover, but his war experience made him determined to make something of his life in respect to those who didn’t return."

The founder's 'open all hours' policy was carried on by his sons, who were introduced to shop work early, standing on boxes to serve customers and getting used to their father’s flexible hours.

“We’ve always traded seven days a week. We stayed open to do the business, and at Christmas that meant staying open until 10 or 11 o’clock at night," Peter said.

In 1991 a new building of 22,000 square feet was opened by Coronaation Street's Liz Dawn -Vera Duckworth - and another 5,000 square foot extension was built in 2009.

Stan passed away in 1988 but his name lives on in the superstore.

Andrew said the store had a brilliant team of staff.

" It is their loyalty and commitment that has helped Stans to succeed in a very difficult and competitive market place. With some Staff who have worked here over 30 years, many over 15 to 20 years and just as committed newcomers it puts us in great stead to forge out a continued successful future."

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