Sweets taste of success for Sue and Cissie

CISSIE Barlow is no longer around to pass opinion on the Shaw traditional sweet shop that carries her name.

But on the evidence of the popularity of the Market Street premises, you suspect she would wholeheartedly approve.

Sue and Myra

For Cissie, substitute former bank manager Sue Avery who has been selling sweets, ice creams and gifts in the town centre for eight years.

The business recently moved into its third home – a traditional weaver’s cottage, adding to the authenticity of the name.

“When I started to think about opening up the business I wanted to find an old-fashioned sounding name,” explained Sue who admits she’s lost count of the number of different sweets she now sells.

“I was brought up in Castleton, near Rochdale, and I used to hear the name ‘Cissie Barlow’ a lot of times because she used to run a corner shop.

“When I met my husband it turned out he had lived on the same street at the same time as me even though we hadn’t known each other then.

“Cissie by then was no longer with us and hadn’t got any descendants.

“But the name linked our families and we thought it would be a fitting name for the shop.”

Sue agrees Cissie Barlow’s has come a long way since opening her original shop in October 2010.

“I was a bank manager at the time and I just wanted a complete change,” she explained.

“There seemed to be a resurgence in traditional sweets and I did a lot of homework before deciding where to open. I just thought Shaw provided the best opportunity.

“Since then we have constantly evolved.

“We do a lot more gifts than when we first opened up, we now sell Grandpa Greene’s ice cream from Saddleworth and we have a wide selection of gluten free sweets as well.

“These new premises have an olde worlde feel about them and seemed so fitting for what we do.
“The timing of the overall package all came together at the right time.”

With plans for online sales, air conditioning for the first time and many new lines, Cissie’s is up with the times.

However, a traditional sweet shop wouldn’t be traditional without its sweets and values.

That’s why Uncle Joe’s Mint Balls and Mawson’s sarsaparilla remain firm favourites while customer service is high priority.

“I do feel we have become part of the community,” added Sue and Myra Jones, another familiar face behind the counter.

“We try and give a high level of customer service and do feel we go the extra mile to be accommodating.

“So, it’s lovely when people just pop in for a chat.”

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