Find inspiration in the strangest of places….

… even the A40!

For the past year and a half, I have been getting a lift into work by my sister who worked in Harlesden. She used to drop me off at Willesden Junction where I would continue my journey overground to Kentish Town. Then, last week, she quit her job – shock horror!

Sorry looking postbox at North Acton - it's been taped up for years!

Sorry looking postbox at North Acton – it’s been taped up for years!

It got me thinking – this is the end of an era. Those car journeys along the A40 have inspired many things – a family holiday, days out – just by having to chat to my sister for 2 hours each day. And most importantly it inspired my Woolworths blog!

That empty Natwest bank. One day it was open, the next it looked like this.

That empty Natwest bank. One day it was open, the next it looked like this.

Oak Oak Cafe - does anyone actually go there?

Oak Oak Cafe – shoddy looking thing. Does anyone actually go there?

Traffic was quite treacherous on most days, and one day after work, we turned left at Old Oak roundabout for the long way along Old Oak Common Lane on to the A40. There I saw an Iceland, and I said to my sister, “That was a Woolworths.” She looked at me in amazement, “But how do you know?” I said, “I just do. I don’t know how, I just look at a building and I know!”

East Acton Iceland on Old Oak Common Lane

East Acton Iceland on Old Oak Common Lane – I knew it was a Woolworths!

All the head offices - I always liked the colourful signs at the front of the Perfume Factory.

All the head offices – the colourful signsย brightening a dreary location

That evening I was determined to find out if I was right. After much googling, I discovered a 1970s Store List from the Woolworths online museum with all the old addresses. Type an address into Google Images and you find all sorts of Woolworths photos. I was right, it was store 723 East Acton.

Art Deco beauty of the Hoover Building and its abandoned Tesco trolleys..

Art Deco beauty of the Hoover Building and its abandoned Tesco trolleys…

Lifesaver when stuck in a traffic jam and you need emergency snacks

Lifesaver when stuck in a traffic jam and you need emergency snacks

I thought, wouldn’t it be great if, rather than having to search for photos from all different websites, Flickr, Facebook groups – if there was one website that put them all together by store. And Woolies Buildings – Then and Now was born. Thank you A40 for being my inspiration!

Watching the sunset through the traffic whilst driving home, it really is beautiful.

Watching the sunset through the traffic whilst driving home, it really is beautiful.

I do love all the sights on the A40, the urban grit and the constant regeneration – I call it ugly beautiful. So I put a slideshow of our journey together, to the sound of that Ed Sheeran song we constantly heard on Radio 1. Enjoy!

Super Busy Mum

Brilliant blog posts on HonestMum.comEverything Mummy

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11 responses to “Find inspiration in the strangest of places….

  1. That restaurant could be mistaken for a shed!! It’s great how your morning trip to work has brought so much inspiration. Funny how you just knew the building used to be a Woolworths! #MMWBH

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    • Haha exactly – it is the strangest cafe I have ever seen, yet it’s always open so someone must go in there! Yes, I am a Woolworths nutter ๐Ÿ˜› Thanks for reading, hope you get inspired by something unexpected too! xx

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  2. Lol, love how you just knew it was a Woolworths! I recognise a lot of the buildings in your photos – my journey to work each day used to take me along the same route.

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  3. It’s amazing how what some see as a plain journey can be seen as wonderful by others, you obviously have a lot of memories tied into the journey which I guess is what makes it special.

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    • Ahh thank you! It is a plain ugly journey, but it was my sister’s first job, so I wanted her to have something to look back on in the future really. Actually we hated this journey, but one day she might might reminisce on it with fondness! x

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  4. It’s amazing how a journey on the A40 has made you observe and see so many things past the traffic and derelict buildings. I bet you’ll miss your chats with your sister. x

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    • Yes we were stuck in so many traffic jams, I was always staring at these buildings. Somebody designed and built them so they must have looked nice once upon a time. Maybe! And aw yes I will miss those chats ๐Ÿ˜ฅ x

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  5. Pingback: My Captured Moment – Cutie in Shorts |·

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