A COUPLE who was facing redundancy have opened their own antiques and collectable store in Pickering.

Mark Witherington and his wife Tracy, who were both employed at Pickering Antiques and Collectables, spotted the opportunity to open their own store on Burgate Chambers called Ryedale Retro Antiques Collectables and Curios Centre.

Three days after the directors of Pickering Antiques and Collectables closed their store due to a restructure in January, Mark contacted several dealers who agreed to continue trading in Pickering.

“I was the duty manager at Pickering Antiques and Collectables for many years,” said Mark.

“Sadly, the directors decided to restructure in January and not reopen after lockdown.

“After contacting the dealers who were residents at the old centre, I asked them if I were to open my own shop, would they like the sign up and continue trading in Pickering. The response was a resounding yes.

“Within three days of being made redundant and our future unknown, I viewed the empty office on Burgate Chambers and instantly knew it would make a fantastic antiques and collectable shop.

“We signed up straight away and had 24 dealers busy stocking their items in readiness for the glorious April 12.

The Ryedale Retro Antiques Collectables and Curios Centre has items such as antiques, collectables, jewellery, military, steampunk, furniture, bric-a-brac, Americana, and retro-themed memorabilia.

Mark also runs the Elvis Fan Club in Scarborough and will continue hosting charity fundraisers.

“The store is looking fantastic, and the effort shown in only three weeks by our dealers has been superb,” added Mark.

“Some dealers are local, but we also have dealers joining us from Derbyshire, East Yorkshire, Bedale and even Edinburgh.

“We have Pickering’s Original Railwayana Room joining us too, showcasing some great affordable steam railway collectables. David Harper, TV celebrity antiques expert is stocking his books with us and we are almost ready to go.

“I run the Elvis Fan Club Scarborough, which also plays a big part in any charity fundraising. We also wish to offer our support to local charity events, town centre events and the community in general.

“We all need a boost for our wellbeing and mental health. It has been a tough old time, but as Captain Tom Moore said, tomorrow will be a better day.

“We look forward welcoming old and new customers and taking care of business, as Elvis would say.”

Ryedale Retro Antiques Collectables and Curios Centre is open Monday to Sunday, 10am to 4.30pm.

For more information, visit http://ryedaleretro.com or follow Ryedale Retro Antiques Collectables and Curios Centre on Facebook.