Gater's was a rather high-class pastrycook and confectioner situated next door to what was then the Crosville Bus Garage in Wheelock Street, more recently home to the Mococo Cafe and soon to become 'starter' flats for young people.
Gater's shop can be seen in the photograph below to the right of the cafe.
Despite being empty for many years, the appearance of the shop remains very much the same as it always was, with its distinctive 'gate' across the entrance (although the gate itself looks to be a replacement for an earlier, slightly higher, one, as seen in the third photo (below) from 1987 when T&M. Autoparts occupied most of the premises. Gater's shop was, evidently, in use at the time but it's very difficult to see what was being sold. Can anybody shed any light on this?
UPDATE (23rd July 2016): By 2016 all had changed again with the closure of the Mococo Cafe and its replacement by flats (still, though, under the auspices of the Middlewich Community Church).
See: MD Archive: MOCOCO CAFE TO CLOSE (JULY 2012)
Gator's former shop was included in the conversion and the shop front with its plate glass window and gated entrance finally disappeared, to be replaced by ordinary windows. Interestingly, the black fascia board seen in the above photo was retained, presumably because of the difficulty removing it would have caused, and so at least one clue to the building's former use remains.
(up-to-date photo coming soon).
|Photo: Carole Hughes Collection/Diane Parr|
The bill itself, for 30 teas at 3s 6d each, adding up to a grand total of £5. 5s 0d (or, to put it another way, five guineas) has something of an air of melancholy about it.
The teas were actually funeral teas and were sold to local undertaker Len Dean to be consumed by those attending a funeral in the Sant family.
But the slight air of glamour which hung around Gater's is reflected in the unusual and rather sophisticated typeface used on its paperwork.
First published 23rd July 2012
Updated and re-published 23rd July 2013
and 23rd July 2016