McHardy’s tackle shop in Carlisle was opened by Jack McHardy back in the 1950’s. It was then bought by John and Yvonne Park in 1968, who have run it ever since. In the 80’s the Parks moved the shop from it’s original location on London road, to it’s current location on South Henry Street.
The shop used to be one of 5 in the town but it seems that a lack of new people taking up the sport and the couples retirement plans, will see the town reduced to just one remaining shop.
Fiona, the couples daughter has worked at the shop since she was 16 and although the family will continue to run the mail order side of the business, she will not be taking over the shop.
She told the News & Star; “I think everybody is going on the internet now”.
The shop mainly caters for fly and game anglers, stocking clothing, tackle, rods and reels. They have customers come from as far away as Yorkshire and are one of the oldest family run businesses in the area.
Yvonne told the News & Star that it was the customers that she would miss the most. Retirement age was only a year away and she felt that the time was now right for her and John to call it a day.
“We’ll miss all the customers,” says Yvonne. “The banter. And there’s something to be said for getting up in the morning and going to work.”
“In fishing there’s no difference between a lord and somebody on the dole.”