HEARTBROKEN: Skimmos owners Lorraine and Jamie Johnston.
HEARTBROKEN: Skimmos owners Lorraine and Jamie Johnston. Patrick Gorbunovs

South Lismore corner shop closing down after 70 years

WHEN well-known South Lismore corner shop Skimmos closes its doors this afternoon, it will be the final time.

Dismayed couple Lorraine and Jamie Johnston have been the business owners for five years, but according to them, the corner store has existed for about 70 years.

"It's so sad, there's not many left now (corner stores)," Mrs Johnston said.

There's a lot of work that needs to be done to get the building back up to scratch for council, she said, but they just don't have the funds, and as renters, there's not much else they can do.

"It needs renos, big time," Mrs Johnston said.

"It's come to the crunch and we've got no choice.

"It's just really sad."

The team will be relocating to new premises at the Rous Road shopping centre, but will be leaving their corner store identity behind to become simply a takeaway shop.

They've formed many relationships with their every day customers over the years, and they said it will be heartbreaking to leave them behind.

"We've had customers come in and have us in tears today," Mrs Johnston said.

"The customers have been so lovely."

Mr Johnston said it had been a long slog and that it was sad to see it end this way.

"All of our customers have been great, really great."

Kaz Keaton has been one of those everyday customers, having lived across the road from Skimmos for 13 years and said she's heartbroken that her favourite corner store is closing.

"It's going to be the saddest thing to see them go," Ms Keaton said.

"It's going to be heartbreaking; these people are absolutely beautiful."

Renee Rickard has worked at Skimmos for 10 years and has watched three different owners go through the place.

She said it was a horrible end for the beloved corner store.

She will continue to work for Skimmos when they move to their new premises, however, which she said she is thinking of as a new and exciting opportunity.



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