155 - Albert Inn
Off Licence

Picture With its door angled on the corner of Church Road and Albert Street, the Albert was a classic 'corner shop'. Off licences emerged from the mid 19th Century, when the Government allowed the sale of alcoholic beverages 'off the premises'. These 'off licences' followed pub-licensing regulations, so they could, for example be open Sunday evenings; this in an era before supermarkets were allowed to trade on Sundays. Therefore 'going to the Offy' meant you could purchase ham, milk, bread, sweets and cigarettes when no other shops were open.

With the changes in the 1990s small, family owned off licences faced acute competition. The Albert Inn closed down in 2001 and was empty for many years. It was later a shop selling Polish food but at the time of writing it is vacant.

Andy Jones remembers: 'The Albert was my local 'Offy'. At the Albert, beer, cider, lager, sherry and wine were all on draught to take away, as well as bottles and cans. The Albert sold a host of grocery items and cigarettes. In the 1970s a chest freezer was installed and Walls ice cream and Birds Eye products could now also be obtained.'

Note: Albert Street was one of the few Redfield streets subject to redevelopment and all of its terraced houses were demolished between 1967 and 1973.

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