I am so thankful to have had R W Bayes on ‘da street’ for the many years I have worked at Camera Centre, and I think it’s fair to describe the two businesses’ relationship during my 10+ years as owner as nothing but harmonious. We regularly send our customers their way, and vice versa; we complemented each other as opposed to competed with one another and indeed I held both Neil and Alister in high regard. I was therefore very grateful that Neil allowed me to capture some images of him at work during his last day on Christmas Eve, marking a unique moment in time and acknowledging his unwavering service and contribution.
I’ve spent only half as many years working full-time on Commercial Street than Neil has, and it was a pleasure to read some nuggets of both history and Neil’s wisdom following a career in the photographic and retail industry. I’d encourage you to take a look at his words – https://www.shetnews.co.uk/2022/12/27/memories-of-a-life-in-an-old-fashioned-shop-that-became-an-institution/. As a young lad learning my craft, I made regular visits to Bayes and was always greeted with warmth and encouragement, the effect of which should not be underestimated.
I hope you enjoy taking a peek at the images captured, and join me in wishing Neil a very happy retirement as he puts the shutters up for the final time.