Turn Back Time (2010) Episode Scripts

N/A - 1970s

1 One typical British town.
Its high street was once its heart and soul.
Not any more.
But what if we could turn back time to the days of the butcher, the baker and the candlestick maker? A group of shopkeepers and their families have left the 21 st century behind.
You are going to discover what the high street was really like.
Your aim is to make this town fall in love with this high street again.
Today's mantra is: Sell, sell, sell.
Each week they're living and trading through a different era.
Can't get any more lift.
From Victorian to Edwardian.
Rabbits, pheasants.
Through peacetime and wartime.
The swinging '60s to the shocking '70s.
100 years of high street history.
It's absolutely magical.
Can they sell the products of the past to 21 st-century customers? Oh, the poor creatures.
I'd be frightened to give this to the birds.
And can they make a profit while they're at it? This is unbelievably hard.
I don't know how these poor buggers did this in the old days.
If I'm really being honest, I hate it! This time the high street reaches the 1970s.
It's an era of fast-moving fashions.
Turn it up and fill the room with noise.
And simmering tensions.
You can't get more than me.
It was horrible.
But as the high street concludes its incredible journey I feel like I've been in a time machine.
will anyone still love it? 'Ere, boys, you interested in some chicken? For the last time, these 21 st-century shopkeepers have been kitted out for an earlier era.
They're now heading into the 1970s, the era when chains and malls started taking over our towns.
From this decade on, traditional local shops really struggled to survive.
So the shopkeepers must cope with big changes as they return to the heart of Shepton Mallet in Somerset.
Their high street's now been trading since the 1870s, and, throughout, the Sergison family have been the grocers.
For most of that time, they've shared the square with a family butcher's.
But in the 1960s, the Sharps were put out of business.
Now a new family are coming to take over the site.
The Sandhers will be running it as a convenience store.
In the '70s I was running my dad's store.
It's gonna be fun.
- I can't wait.
- Excited.
It'll be great for the kids to see this era.
This is definitely not what I usually wear.
I think it's pretty cool.
Another high street store has changed use in every era, from penny bazaar to toy shop.
Most recently it was a hair salon.
For the '70s it's a record shop.
Coming to run it is David Lashmar, who used to own Europe's largest second-hand vinyl store.
It's gonna be quite a challenge, actually, because some of the people I'm talking to won't even know what an LP is.
Dressmaker Gill Cockwell has been on the high street since the start of the 20th century, but she really has her work cut out this time.
My honest view about 1970s fashion is that it's horrific.
I was always gonna struggle with this era.
Ensuring the traders stay true to the era will be the Chamber of Commerce, historian Juliet Gardiner, baker Tom Herbert and greengrocer Gregg Wallace.
Welcome to the 1970s.
Now, the decade kicked off with great optimism, but there are turbulent times ahead, so it's really important that you give your customers the full 1970s treatment.
This is the end of our experiment to see if history can give us any clues as to the future survival of our high streets.
Feedback at the end of this era is crucial.
We need to know what it is your customers want from their high street.
Good luck.
Go and see your shops.
Karl, Debbie, Harry and Saffron began trading six weeks ago as Victorian grocers.
Just like another family from the era, 100 years down the line they find themselves running a fully fledged supermarket.
SAFFRON: Sergisave.
- Sergisave.
DEBBIE: It's quite catchy, Sergisave.
That's got a good rhyme to it.
- How does that rhyme? - Sergisave.
It kind of goes.
The '70s was when supermarkets as we know them today conquered Britain.
Oh, my God.
Cheese ravioli.
Vesta curry, man.
Come back from the pub when you've had a couple.
Boil in the bag normally.
Love it, love it, love it.
Have we got any milk? DEBBIE: This is a drink I was allowed on Christmas day.
That was supper.
My goodness me.
'70s processed foods promised to make life easier, and '70s supermarkets promised to make shopping quicker.
Now their premises are even larger, they've got their wire trolleys, they've just got everything that makes it convenient and easy to shop.
GREGG: Well, I'm not convinced by it.
It seems to be the sterilised kind of shopping that we know now, and that's not what the Sergisons have been up to now.
It's certainly very different from the small, specialist deli the family run in their 21 st-century lives.
What we're doing nowadays in the real world is to try and get people away from supermarkets, and here I am running a bloody supermarket.
Most supermarkets in the '70s only opened between nine and five, Monday to Saturday.
By law, only small stores selling essentials were allowed to open in the evenings or on Sundays.
It's amazing.
Which is how the Sandhers hope to compete with the Sergisons.
- Whoa.
- It says our name on it.
- We've got the other store opposite.
- Yes, we've got them lot.
BO Y: They've got a bigger store and they've got more stuff.
Oh, God, it's empty.
We've got to stock it up.
Without the scale or technology of a supermarket, every job in a typical corner shop was done by the family, and usually by hand.
- Stock room.
- We need to Oh, my God, there's loads in here.
I didn't even realise.
move everything in here to in there.
Yeah, you've got to stock it all up, Josh.
Aren't you the lucky one? 12-year-old Josh and 16-year-old Karina aren't used to shop work, but their dad definitely is.
In their 21 st-century lives, the Sandhers own an award-winning convenience store in the Midlands.
Sundher's father bought a shop after coming here from India.
He said to me, "There's seven to support, and you being the eldest son, in the Asian community, it's your job now to run the store.
" Sundher built the business from a single shop into a chain of five stores.
26 years of graft have meant his children enjoy a more privileged life.
I don't think the kids do have any idea what it was like for my parents when they came over, cos it was really tough.
I think I could run the shop if I had to, but obviously I don't have to do it.
The children now have got to realise they've got to help Dad, work hard.
At their age this is what I did.
KARINA: Go, go, go.
Normally I'd just be watching TV or something.
Don't chocolates go up there and these sweets go down there? JOSH: I think this is gonna be the hardest bit, getting it all ready.
You have to actually price everything, pile on everything.
We're gonna be here all night.
In the 21 st century, Sundher wouldn't be doing this either.
These days he employs staff to look after the shop floor.
It's hard work, but we're gonna try our best and do our best and be different.
JULIET: They're going to have to work hard, though.
Long hours.
They've really got to make sure they sell all the little things that people really want and can't get at the supermarket.
A good corner shop can be at the centre of a community, just like a pub used to be, it really can be.
It's where you bump into your neighbours, where you chat.
JULIET: It can be, and let's hope it is.
I'm going super-speedy.
We need to go quick.
The Sandhers are offering products which still sell well 40 years later, but the same can't be said for every store on the high street.
Oh, look.
It's my shop.
Good Lord.
Cor! How brilliant is that! A real record shop again.
1970s Britain boasted 5,500 record shops.
There were also some 2,000 independent stores, like the one David ran for three decades until it was forced out of business two years ago.
When the shop was really running at its fore, it was so busy, we had over 20 people working here.
It was packed all the time.
In fact, we used to have a chap on the door on Saturdays to stop too many people coming in.
How about that? It was a place that kids would hang out.
You'd find bands that were getting together.
It was almost a community place.
I'm never happier than standing behind a counter.
(Laughs) It smells of records too.
It smells of vinyl.
I just don't know how David and his record shop's gonna work.
I mean, there's only 270 record shops left in the country.
There would have been two on every high street.
Great album.
It's not just gonna be about the records that he sells.
It's gonna be about the way that he engages with his customers, and he's got to make them want to come to his shop and talk to him about vinyl and really see music in a different light.
It's starting to look like a proper record shop.
JULIET: I think he'll make a big success.
If they buy a record, they've got to have something to play it on, and they don't exist any more.
It's like trying to have a blacksmith in here trying to selling you a horseshoe for your car.
It's not gonna work.
Record stores weren't the only places selling youth culture on the '70s high street.
Fast-moving fashion was now big business, which means there's a new, street-level store for dressmaker Gill.
GILL: It's so not what I was expecting.
It's loads posher.
It's like a proper stylish boutique and I was expecting a cheap shop full of loads of cheap nylon clothes, so this is fantastic.
What Gill has got to do is keep up with changing fashions.
I mean, they changed totally.
They went from cat suits right through to punk.
But she is not the girl with the biggest entrepreneurial spirit.
She's never ever, ever taken any money.
Now I've seen the shop and the stock and the fabric I've got available, I think I might have a chance of actually making some money this week.
At Sergisave, Karl wants to thrill Shepton's shoppers with an official opening.
But back in the '70s, a new store could bring the whole town out onto the streets.
The big chains laid on the razzmatazz, booking the biggest stars to do the honours.
It's publicity, darling.
Creating a sense of excitement in present-day Shepton Mallet may prove more of a struggle.
Mum, this is not working and it's really annoying me.
Whose idea was it to use the trolleys anyway? (Karl whistles) Ladies and gentleman, can you please gather round? Come along.
Come on.
The Sergisons have got David from the record shop.
Don't cut it yet.
Just look towards me and smile.
- They've got a big enough crowd.
- Yeah.
JOSH: Too big.
PHOTOGRAPHER: Three, two, one! Cut it! KARL: Right, come on, then! In you come.
In you come.
Come on.
There you go, my love.
There you go.
Would you like some refreshments? To lure in the customers, the Sergisons are reviving a supermarket competition from the era.
The winner is Blake! ALL: Three, two, one! Go! Trolley dashes were a standard store-opening stunt long before Dale Winton made a game show out of them.
Sainsbury's called theirs Grub Grabs.
ALL: Three, two, one! Stop! KARL: Great supermarket sweep.
Got all the public to know that we're here.
We got some good hits in the press.
Couldn't ask for more.
The corner shop hasn't the budget for a glamorous launch.
Let's have the doors wide open.
And there.
JOSH: I don't think anybody knows we're open.
Luckily, some of Shepton's residents have promised to shop only in the 1970s high street.
Hello, sir.
How are you? And when they eventually trickle in, they find some products that Sergisave doesn't stock.
- I haven't seen these in two years.
- Really? We love curries.
All the Indian spices and things over here.
We haven't got a clue what to do with it.
Chat with Pam.
She'll go through it and tell you how to make it.
I'll write it down for you, give you the basics and then you should be all right.
OK, wonderful.
The corner shop was one of the places '70s Britain got to know more about Asian cultures.
Sometimes shopkeeping was the only work available, even for highly qualified immigrants.
Record-shop owner David has gone glam for his grand opening.
His store is quickly full of browsers.
But to turn them into customers, he has some major hurdles to overcome.
Long-playing records cost over £20 each in today's money, and younger customers have to be taught what to do with them.
Flip over the biscuit, as they say, drop it on the spindle.
If you just bring that down gently Like all good record shops of the time, David is offering his customers the chance to try before they buy.
You should have something there.
(Tuneless singing) You can make as much noise as you like.
You're in a record shop.
Sing along.
(Tuneless singing) - This is brilliant.
WOMAN: It is brilliant.
Is this a live track? It's really good, yeah.
That's how we used to sell these, not going past a scanner and something going "beep, beep".
You actually got a chance to listen to them.
You talked to me about it.
"I don't like that.
I'll try something else.
" That was what buying records was all about.
Customers in the '70s didn't just get vinyl from their local record shop.
Many of them got a musical education there too.
Thin Lizzy, Johnny the Fox, a very powerful rock album.
Really nice.
Check that out and tomorrow tell me whether you liked it.
If you did, we can move in that direction.
If not, we'll choose something else.
Rob, take that original copy of Pink Floyd, Dark Side Of The Moon.
When your folks go out, turn it up and fill the room with noise and you tell me how much better that sounds.
- All right, yeah, sure.
- All right? David's enthusiasm is infectious.
Though to seal the deal, he does have to throw in a little something extra.
- You got it OK? - Yeah.
Not too bad.
Susie, you gonna pick the speakers up? - Thank you.
- Where my hands are.
Because Gill has struggled to make any money from fashion in previous eras, the Chamber of Commerce are sending in some expert advice.
Lee Bender knows all about making a business out of a boutique.
- Hi.
I'm Gill.
- Lovely to meet you.
I'm Lee Bender.
- Nice to meet you, Lee.
- Nice to meet you too.
Lee was the founder of one of the most successful boutiques of the '70s, Bus Stop.
LEE: We had our first one in Kensington.
Everyone used to queue up in the mornings to get in.
Really? You had queues of people outside your shops? How wonderful.
You must have been doing something right, then.
It was the first of its kind, really.
My public were young, and so they were really interested in new ideas and new materials and new colours and the new music, and the whole thing went hand in hand.
Da-da! A boutique owner needed to look the part, so Gill slips into the first '70s style she'll be selling.
Think I can carry off this look? Glam rock.
- You could wear that now practically.
- I'm not sure I would.
Would you not? Boutiques like Lee's sold not just single items of clothes but a whole look.
So Gill needs to provide accessories and also advice on which garments go together.
Yeah, that is glam rock, isn't it? Because it's shiny.
Yes, so if you had a third piece, then that would be really good, that was silvery.
No, that doesn't work.
Customers can now put their 1970s-style supermarket to the test.
It was so much nicer when you were serving us behind the counter.
- It was lovely.
- It was.
- We really enjoyed it.
- Yes.
But we have to go all the way round the shop before we get to you.
By the '70s, supermarkets had turned shopkeeping into a science.
As a result, life for the Sergisons is easier than it's ever been during their whole century of shop work.
However, efficiency comes at a cost.
The fact now that I'm a supermarket manager, I'm stuck in the office.
We've lost the interactiveness with the customers.
It's all do-it-yourself.
They come up on the odd price we've missed.
That's the only interaction we get.
But do the customers care if they talk less with staff? Having experienced previous eras of personal service in the grocer's, do they miss it? WOMAN: I didn't like it at all, really, cos you just get none of the service that you used to get.
I don't know.
It's just going round and it's all impersonal now.
There was everything there I wanted, I suppose, and it was easy shopping but just not so friendly.
My experience in that shop is it's dead and it's cold.
There's no life and there's no feeling.
I liked the old Mr Sergison.
He was always there to help, wasn't he? Anyway, unfortunately he's gone.
The 1970s Mr Sergison is too busy with his managerial duties, which now include distributing payroll.
Come along, Harry.
I've got some wages for you.
This is a day's wage in 1970.
- Go away with you.
That's nothing.
- How much have you got? - £2.
- How much did you get, Harry? HARRY: £3.
25 - You can't get more than me.
Laws on equal pay for women were only enforced from the mid '70s.
Are you outraged that you get paid less than boys? Yes, I am outraged, actually.
He did hardly anything today.
Well, to be fair, you have just sat on the till.
That's the law.
Ladies don't get paid as much.
- Why? - Because there's no price structure.
No wage structure at the moment.
Women get paid what we feel they're worth.
So whose bed are you gonna be sleeping in tonight? The typical 1970s high street shut up shop at 5pm, with one notable exception.
JOSH: The other shops have closed now.
All of them have closed.
Can't we just No, you can't, can you? Close early.
PAM: Did you say you're not gonna get bored? - I'm not bored.
I'm tired.
PAM: Get used to it, then.
The '70s convenience store would make most of its money when the supermarket was shut.
Yeah, just there.
Name and address would be good.
It also offered services other shops had abandoned.
- I understand you do deliveries.
- We do deliveries and newspaper rounds.
We're here for the customers.
Customer demand and we're there.
You know, that's what I love about the Asians.
It's all about service.
The one thing I noticed when I first came to this country was the lack of service, and I came in the '80s, just the whole personal touch thing.
You just can't get that with the big stores now.
- There's no time.
- It's just sort of in, out, in, out.
I'll pay a little bit over the top for that kind of service rather than go to my local supermarket.
I would pay a little bit extra to get what I want.
Above Shepton's new supermarket, the Sergisons can spend their evening relaxing at home HARRY AND KARL: Marc Bolan.
after a profitable first day's trading.
- Get it on, bang a gong.
SAFFRON: I love this song.
DEBBIE: I want hot pants.
We made a lot of money because a lot of people came in, which was good.
People weren't just buying daily shops, they were buying weekly shops, so more money was going through the till a lot quicker, which was really good.
To compete with a supermarket, small businesses have to work harder.
See you, boys.
They also have to work longer.
Sundher finishes a 14-hour shift at nine in the evening.
SUNDHER: The first day, I'm so tired, but this is like going back in time, and it was tough.
It did make me think about how my dad had to work when he was younger because it was a lot of hard work.
I don't know how he did it every day.
Reliving his youth also reminds Sundher of some of his father's old money-making schemes.
Dad, he was very clever because he got Mum to make onion bhajis and samosas.
Again, the locals loved that.
It's a pity I couldn't have done that today but maybe tomorrow.
The next morning, and the man who was working latest is up earliest.
Josh, do you wanna wake up, matey? You did say you were gonna get up for six o'clock, go and do a paper round.
- OK.
- Yeah? Good boy.
The convenience store opens two hours before their rivals at the supermarket.
PAM: You've got one extra there.
Another competitive advantage for the Sandhers is cheap labour.
Laters, peeps.
This is legendary.
No unions to worry about when you keep business in the family.
In the 21 st century, many newsagents no longer offer paper deliveries because they can't pay enough to persuade modern kids to do them.
My dad paid me less than a fiver for my work today.
I would probably never do it again as it's such a hard job.
Hello, Josh.
Josh is going to be paid the going rate for a paper boy in the early '70s.
- It was hard.
- Aw! There's 15 pence.
That's just £1 in today's money.
You should be grateful you're getting 15 pence because we got nothing whatsoever.
What we have to do is work all day at the till and we just have to do it.
If you wanna buy some sweets with that, you can buy them here.
You can see what you can get.
Really not fair, not at all, literally.
That is hard doing that, very hard.
At David's shop, customers are returning with feedback.
There's something really satisfying about having the music in your hands rather than in a sort of computer file or whatever.
Compared with the CDs that you get today and the downloads from the internet, it was disappointing.
I'd forgotten all the difficulties with vinyl that there was.
We had the jumping and the scratching.
We put up with that during the '60s and '70s.
I said, "I don't know how we put up with it.
" I don't think I could go back to it at all.
DAVID: Oh, dear.
Well, I've lost two customers.
There was only one alternative to vinyl which a '70s record shop could offer.
Could we try The Animals? - You certainly can.
- That'll bring back a lot of memories.
You just have to bear with me.
This is slow 1970s shopping.
I've got to rewind it now.
No, I don't care for that.
- Could you put it onto the next track? - No.
- You can't? - It's a cassette.
The other trendsetter on the high street also has out-of-date stock to shift, but at least she can pass it off as vintage.
- It fits quite well, actually.
- It's great.
There's a mirror right here.
What shoe size are you? Five, six.
As advised, she's not just trading in frocks, she's pushing accessories too.
- There you go.
- Lovely.
Thank you so much.
For the first time, Gill is selling stock she didn't make herself.
When mass-produced clothing first appeared on the 1930s high street, Gill preferred to stick with bespoke dressmaking.
I'm not really a salesperson who's just about selling for the money.
It was time-consuming and not very profitable.
The beauty of a boutique, however, is she can still make use of her dressmaking skills when she chooses.
I've actually brought some things in and I was wondering whether we could vamp them up a little bit.
- Great.
- A jacket.
- It's absolutely seen better days.
- Excellent.
Oh, I've got great ideas for this already.
We could whip this collar off and then I could do a bigger collar in the leopard print.
Gill also remodelled clothes in the "make do and mend" years of wartime.
She seems to be drawing on everything she's learned in previous eras.
I've got to try that on.
Whether she's also learned how to make money, the customers will decide.
It's fantastic to have a boutique like this in Shepton Mallet, my goodness me.
The one thing we haven't got is clothes shopping.
This would be heavenly, something that would draw people from miles around.
It's be wonderful.
Whoa! Zoe! We had a really good time in there.
That was like mine and Zoe's heaven, our idea of heaven.
This could be a contender for my favourite shop in all of the eras.
In their home above the corner shop, Pam and Karina still can't escape from work.
Mum, this is disgusting.
I've got mud on my hand.
Ew! They're making something the teenage Sundher used to sell in his father's shop.
Don't know how hot they are.
I'm only gonna put two in.
Mum, that smells disgusting.
I hate the smell of that stuff.
It makes me feel sick.
I feel like an Indian granny, a proper Indian granny.
- I don't really like Indian food.
- You like chicken curry.
I like chicken curry, that's it.
I don't like the taste of it at all.
The cooking's not the only culture shock Karina's experiencing after two days in the '70s.
I miss my clothes, I miss my phone, I miss my friends, I miss my bed.
I miss I miss everything.
- You've got it easy nowadays.
- You didn't know any better, though.
Cos there wasn't BlackBerries out there, there wasn't iPhones out in the '70s, so you don't know.
Yeah, but we lived without it, though, didn't we? You didn't know any better, though.
Downstairs the other half of the family start selling the samosas.
My wife actually made them, so let me know what they taste like.
I love it.
I can taste the cumin.
As soon as she says "I make them myself", they go, "I'll have a few.
" It's being different and I think it's definitely taken off.
But while the Sandhers sell fresh, home-made produce, their rivals are pushing the opposite.
Got some lovely ideas, make life easier when you've had a hard day at work.
Burgers, pizzas, ice cream, fish fingers.
At the start of the '70s, just 3% of British households owned a freezer, but by 1980 half the country did.
Frozen food became big business.
Especially flown in from Italy just for you.
- We've got lasagne.
- A taste of the exotic.
Oh, yeah.
Shoppers who would once have bought fresh meat from their high street butcher now bought it frozen instead.
To boost sales of chicken, which rocketed in popularity during the cost-conscious '70s, the Sergisons embark on another PR stunt.
The '70s was the last era when supermarkets would serve up showmanship with the shopping.
The Sergisons first learned the art as Victorian grocers.
World's largest cheese! I'm selling the world's largest cheddar tomorrow at the market! Afternoon, Shepton! (Clucks) I've come to show you my giblets.
(Cackles) Have a feel.
Nice little fella.
Oh, yeah, nice bit of breast on that.
Oh, yes.
We like a nice bit of breast.
I'll have one of those, my lover.
They're nice.
Nice and plump.
Come and visit our store, lovely new modern supermarket.
- Are they free range? - I don't know and I frankly don't care.
Well, I do.
No, I would imagine if this was 1970, it would've been mass produced.
- Definitely.
- Battery.
They would have pumped them out by the millions, so the chances are, no.
(Clucks) (Chuckles) HARRY: I can't breathe in this.
(Karl belches) Now the novelty has worn off, David's shop is struggling to attract customers.
He too needs to come up with a promotional gimmick.
A guaranteed crowd puller for record shops was a personal appearance by a famous band.
Scenes like this brought glamour to the high street, as well as big sales for the shop.
So David is trying to book a star from the era.
(Ringing tone) My name's David and I'm running a 1970s record shop in Shepton Mallet, and I'm really phoning to see if it's possible that David Bowie might be able to come down and do an opening for us.
WOMAN: Um I wonder if I should just bypass Queen for the moment and go for The Who.
I wonder if you'd give me a call back.
My name's David.
I really look forward to hearing from you.
Well, you never know.
WOMAN: You have to email her agent.
I have a big problem with emails because we are a 1970s record shop.
We don't actually have emails or anything like that.
All I can do is to write or phone.
They're missing opportunities, these people, you know.
As the rejections pile up, David sets his sights a bit lower.
I know you represent the Quo.
I wonder if there's any availability.
I'm trying to find a big and important band such as Mud.
Just when he's running out of hope We've got a yes! Brotherhood Of Man.
This is absolutely brilliant.
GILL: Oh, my God.
The high street has been hit by a '70s-style power cut.
KARL: That's a bit stupid.
All the food's gonna start So all them frozen chickens will be fresh chickens.
KARL: That's a bit bloody daft.
Who turned me lights out? How can I have a record shop without any lights, without electricity? For the Sergisons, with their extensive range of frozen and chilled food, this could be a disaster.
"In the event of the freezer breaking down, the priority is to minimise the amount of stock loss by trying to keep a steady temperature.
Wrap the freezers in blankets to retain the temperature.
" What about the fridges? Doesn't say anything about fridges? Doesn't say anything about fridges.
It's a miner's strike, but it's an opportunity to sell the batteries and the torches.
We need to get them out.
The ever enterprising corner shop is stocked for just this eventuality.
- You are a life-saver.
- That's it.
It's a shame you can't provide a generator for my sewing machine.
Then I could get on with some work.
DEBBIE: I've got no power.
Not only has the supermarket checkout ground to a halt, their products are beginning to thaw.
Our fridge stock won't last long without refrigeration.
We're gonna get it in the trolley and try and flog it to people in the street and get it gone.
Right, so 50 pence for that, sweetheart? It's going cheap.
Cheap, cheap, you know.
'Ere, boys, you interested in some chicken? - Not with legs like that, mate.
- How about these ones in here, then? - Do you want three chickens? KARL: Six quid.
Six quid for three chickens.
That's a deal.
That's a bargain, that is.
I'm happy with the price.
You'll do Tesco's out of business.
- Well, that's the idea.
- Nice.
Punk music When power's restored the next day, the Chamber of Commerce have delivered new stock to Gill's boutique.
I guess punk's in.
I don't mind leather.
That's fine.
As usual, Gill takes it on herself to be a trendsetter and models what she sells.
And then she offers a make-over to the other high street retailer who's got to keep his finger on the pulse of fashion.
Come on.
It's a cross between Sid Vicious and Ken Dodd.
I'm Sid Dodd.
Look out, Shepton! Yeah! But David's first task of the day is publicising a band not many anarchists were into.
Don't be scared.
It's only me underneath all this.
I've got Brotherhood Of Man coming down to the shop.
Oh, wow.
The real Brotherhood Of Man are coming in to sign autographs.
Have you heard of the Brotherhood Of Man? They had a number one single, Save All Your Kisses For Me.
That's right, yeah.
He knows that a successful record retailer must focus not on what's cool but on what will sell.
They're turning up at my shop this afternoon at five o'clock, Lashmar's Records.
You'll have to fight through the crowd.
It's gonna be a big event.
Well, I hope it is.
(Church bells ring) So far this morning, Sundher's been working on his own.
OK, Josh, Karina, it's ten o'clock, time to wake up.
Daddy's been in the shop for over three hours and you're still in bed.
You gonna get up? The young Sandhers have had enough.
KARINA: I'm not looking forward to getting up and working in the shop, cos it gets monotonous.
SANDHER: Ten o'clock, it's not good enough.
Ideally they should have been here eight o'clock with me to help me out.
But Sundher has a plan that will force his children to take on more responsibility.
Karina, Josh, can you run the shop for two hours while we're away? JOSH: No, we can't.
When I was I small, I used to run the shop.
- This is child cruelty.
JOSH: Yeah.
Bye! By the '70s, it was only in small family businesses that a 12-year-old like Josh would be seen working.
This is our cheese, bacon First, the junior Sandhers have to master the most basic of shopkeeping skills.
KARINA: I think it's two pounds something, the jam.
JOSH: £2.
- Is it? - Yes.
- Oh, my God.
I don't know how to work the till.
Yeah, that's £3.
- £3.
77 altogether? - Yes.
Right, OK.
Josh isn't sure his sister has got her maths right.
There you go.
That's £1.
50 for the jam, then two packs of spices.
I We need a calculator.
KARINA: Hello.
- Hello.
KARINA: How are you? JOSH: 72p for the rice.
You found out the price of the rice for us.
JOSH: Oh! - Josh.
How did that manage to happen? Right, I'll clean that up in a second.
Karina, do you know what this is? Oh, that's that Indian stuff.
What's it called? It's an Indian spice.
I think it's going really well, as we've had quite a few customers in, but we've served them happily and all of them have been happy, so I think it's going really well.
I wouldn't go into a business if it was like this, because it's so extreme.
Like, everything's just hard.
After two hours, the bosses are back.
SANDHER: Did you enjoy it? KARINA: No, I didn't enjoy it at all.
I hated it.
It was horrible.
Karina got a bit stressed.
I don't know why.
There was loads of people in here.
By the time Juliet from the Chamber of Commerce pays a visit, Josh and Karina already have a fuller understanding of what life was like for their parents in the past.
But there's one aspect of the '70s which Sundher hasn't shared with his children, the racism he experienced, and at a time when extremists were regularly on the march, Sundher himself was assaulted.
I remember one particularly when I was going to the shop and a couple of lads were shouting racist names to me and I ignored them.
And one of them tapped me on my shoulder and I turned around and he just punched me in the face for no reason.
And I had another punch in my face and I thought to myself, "Why am I getting beaten? I've done nothing whatsoever, you know.
" I'm so glad that my kids are not going through that.
I think hearing your story, which is really very painful, it's a very, very shaming story.
It was tough, and we were trying to do business at the same time.
There's no point in doing it, really.
When all you're trying to do is make a living and serve the community.
A very shameful story, it really is, a very shameful story.
KARINA: I can understand why he didn't tell us before cos it's emotional.
I'm usually quite a strong person, but hearing that stuff makes you quite upset cos it happened to your dad and your grandad, so obviously it does hit you quite a bit.
PAM: The kids really don't know any of this.
We don't really tell the kids.
I feel quite glad that I'm living life now and not then.
But I feel sad for my dad, being so shocked and scared, waiting for the smash.
Gill is punking up her punters.
Oh, my God! That's so cool! What's your mum gonna say when she sees you? Punk was a movement that valued independent designers like Gill.
Look at that.
And is still a model for how small retailers can put two fingers up at chain-store conformity.
MAN: It'd be brilliant for Shepton Mallet to have shops like this.
It would add such creativity to the town.
I think it would be really fun.
You see it in big cities in really cool arty areas, but not in Shepton.
In the big cities, all shops are all the same, so it's lovely to have something so different in the smaller towns.
- All right, thank you very much.
- Thank you.
I've got some leather gloves you might like.
Shepton's shoppers have now had time to make up their minds about their new supermarket.
It's all about get round the store as fast as you can, get it in the basket, get out quick.
The supermarket, at the end of the day, just wants your money.
The corner shop, that was much more personal, more enjoyable experience.
But they didn't have the produce, there was not so much selection, and you weren't able to pick things up and touch them and browse so easily.
You get the personal service, don't you, in the corner shops, whereas I always think in a supermarket, you're just a number to them.
More and more Britons in the '70s shopped for groceries just once a week, thanks to more of us having freezers, cars and supermarkets.
So it's a sign of Sergisave's success that it's become emptier as the week goes on.
- I'm stuck on here just doing (Beeping) It's all I do all day long, so it's pretty boring.
When there's no customers, it's hard, cos you just have to sit and just wait for them.
In all the other eras if you didn't have customers, it was a bit of a godsend cos you had a lot of other things to do.
I am bored beyond belief.
I am completely lost.
We've gone through all the eras and been de-skilled.
We don't roast our own coffee, we don't make our own butter, we don't blend our own tea.
We do nothing.
We've gone literally from sacks to packs.
And it's all downhill as far as I'm concerned.
Yet even though no-one has any love for the supermarket, people keep using it.
I miss the little shops, you know, you do, but it's all right.
You get what you want and we're always in a hurry, so it's OK.
Ladies and gentlemen, citizens.
It's time for Lashmar Records' big PR event.
There hasn't been a crowd this big in the town square since VE Day.
This is not a cover versions band, not one member, his mate's dog and his auntie.
This is actually Brotherhood Of Man! Can I borrow your pen for one second? I'll sign this first.
If you get them to sign that, you've got a collectors item.
MAN: Take care.
DAVID: And you.
- Use one of my bags to get it signed.
- Thank you.
Cos it is us that's putting it on, Lashmar's Records.
And his promotional campaign finally pays off.
DAVID: We had 'em queuing at the counter for the first time since we opened, queuing at the counter waving money and buying.
So if you do something extra for the customers, say, "This is special, this is community, this is where you can hang out and have a laugh," they'll flock to your doorstep.
For David, today's been about much more than making money.
DAVID: It's actually been quite emotional to me.
I realise how much I miss it.
I love trading, I love records, I love music, and I love a relationship with my customers.
Absolutely wonderful.
DAVID: And that's something which I'm aware how that gradually was eroded.
So there's a degree of emotion and loss.
It's the last day of trading on the historic high street.
I just think it's gonna be a really sad day today.
I know for a fact if I see somebody crying, it's gonna start me off.
I hate that.
I don't wanna be crying.
By now, the young Sandhers are getting ready for work without too much complaint.
- It suits you with your hair tied up.
- Does not.
- It does.
- It's disgusting.
- You should tie it up all the time.
- No, it doesn't suit me at all.
And their shop has some new stock.
SANDHER: That's a nice plate.
The Queen's Silver Jubilee in 1977 wasn't just an opportunity to boost sales of tea towels it also saw street parties being held across Britain.
And Shepton Mallet's high street is planning to restage these celebrations to mark the end of trading.
(Thunder rumbles) DAVID: Typical British summer.
Big celebrations, Queen's Jubilee, and it's tipping with rain.
It's really put the dampers on everything, hasn't it? That's an understatement.
Look at it.
It's horrible.
We should get this down and have a bit of bunting in a hall somewhere.
Work quickly begins on relocating the street party away from the street.
It adds to the stress on an already pressured morning.
The shopkeepers also need to tot up their final takings.
The Chamber of Commerce are back in town to inspect the accounts.
Their first question: Has Gill finally learned to be a businesswoman? GREGG: I've been doubting Gill's ability to take any money.
I thought 1970s fashion would be virtually impossible with those silly clothes.
She's taken nearly 900 quid.
897 quid.
I mean, hats off to that lady.
That's amazing.
That's really, really good.
I'm absolutely chuffed to bits with that.
She's just made it a buzzy place.
Everybody in Shepton Mallet wants to hang out here and they really want to keep it.
However, the other shop selling '70s style took less than a quarter of the money made by the boutique.
There's a need for what Gill does in the way that David's shop can only ever be a curiosity these days.
GREGG: Exactly.
But he has really got people into the high street and he's got that personal service and the expertise.
But the till doesn't lie.
214 quid.
DAVID: We've gone too far down the road now to persuade people that buying vinyl is a viable option.
It's just not coming back, is it? CDs'll be gone soon.
I really like the concept of it, but it's not gonna happen.
Downloading's the future.
My laptop's just a little bit bigger than a vinyl and it's got about 8,000 more songs on, so it's a little bit more convenient.
DAVID: I've been a museum that sells some of its exhibits, and that's all I have been.
This is not viable as a retail operation.
The other new arrivals on the high street worked harder than anyone, so have they been rewarded with a profit? To take 550 quid, near as damn it, I think is a very credible job.
They made a success of things because they were prepared to work really hard, they were prepared to keep open long after the supermarkets.
They couldn't compete on price, but what they could compete on was convenience.
- Thank you.
- That's 75.
The most important thing I've learned is that I can work more hours than I usually can, and the family can work better together than alone.
SANDHER: It was a shock to them.
They realised how difficult it was for me when I was young, helping my dad out.
JOSH: We're closer now.
It's really good.
But the shop that took the most money was the place no-one loves yet everyone uses.
GREGG: They've taken over £1,000 again.
Throughout every era, the Sergisons have proved to me they are a class act.
If you combine hard work with some basic marketing skills, you can make a go of anything anywhere, and they've proved it here.
But for the Sergisons themselves, it's a hollow victory.
The 1970s, yes, what a boring era.
I don't wanna be a big conglomerate.
It's not what I'm about.
I'm more of a small businessman, and with any luck I'll continue doing that.
I just felt like I lost my personality, and all that lovely personal service I'm used to giving kind of died.
In the 1870s, everybody was individual.
You had your butcher.
You also had your baker.
And then as time's gone on, we've lost that now and it's all come to me.
I do the entire lot.
History has shown us that the successful grocers have turned into the successful supermarkets of today and have killed the high street.
At the start of the '70s, supermarket chains took 44% of all grocery sales.
In 2010, they take almost 98%.
In one town, however, the high street has come back to life, at least for the last six weeks.
Come on in.
Now Shepton Mallet is out in force again for the Silver Jubilee party, joined by some familiar faces.
Andrew Sharp and his son Michael ran the high street's butchers, and the Devlin family were the town's bakers, from the 1870s until the 1960s, when both their trades were taken over by the grocers.
Another casualty of progress was blacksmith Simon Grant Jones.
Across the eras, all of them worked tirelessly to draw people back into a previously unloved town centre.
Oh, my word.
Look at this.
Look at this.
WOMAN: Everybody's made friends, interacted with each other a lot more, not just people with the shopkeepers but people with the other customers.
The high street has really brought us all together as a community, and I don't see why it can't work like that again.
GREGG: Ladies and gentlemen, we wanted to see what we may learn from 100 years of our high street history and clues to perhaps the future of our high street.
And I think the biggest thing more than anything else is, if you just look along this room, is the actual sense of community.
I'm getting choked up.
And chatting to everybody, it's most certainly possible that this can continue.
There's enough brain and heart here to do whatever you want.
It really is up to you, guys.
It didn't matter what era we set this high street in, we had huge successes, we always did, and that was down to hard work and some marketing.
If you can bring a little razzmatazz, no matter what that is, a point of difference into the high street, you will have a success.
It's proved to me undoubtedly that there is a place for the high street.
But the future of any high street lies in the hands of its community.
I think I've just quite simply learned that the high street won't work unless people want it to.
Basically it's up to the customers, not the traders about what happens in a high street.
If there's no customers, there will be no traders.
Whatever the future holds, Shepton Mallet now has to bid farewell to its time-travelling shopkeepers.
I'm not losing touch with you, honey, that's for sure.
Don't be upset.
It's been amazing.
I feel like I've been in a time machine.
However tough it might now be for local shops to compete with the big chains I know I called you a cockney spiv, but I take it all back.
at least these traders have proved they could offer something extra alongside their rivals.
Bye, honey, bye.
There's a place for these big corporations that can provide convenient, cheap, good-quality products, and we can get them any time of day or night and anywhere we go.
That's what consumers want, clearly.
But there's also a place for small, unique, individual businesses, and if you don't support them, every high street in the world is gonna look identical.
Thanks for everything.
You made it really special.
GILL: This project has absolutely proved 100% that people love interacting with their shopkeepers.
Bye, darling.
Thanks for popping in.
It's really nice to see you.
Bye! MAN: What is nice is to see a family like yourselves and to get that service from you.
You don't get that today.
People are important.
When you're in a business, they are your number one and you've got to look after them.
This is where you gain over the supermarkets.
How do you overcome the competition? You do something different.
If you ever wanna come back and open up a shop, do.
We need shops like this.
DEBBIE: Very emotional.
I can't believe what we've achieved, what we've done, everything we've gone through, but most of all we did this for a reason, and the reason is to bring our high street back.
I hope we've achieved what we set out to do.