Another slice of old Upminster falls as decades old schoolwear shop closes its doors

PUBLISHED: 13:00 28 April 2017

Kinda's schoolwear shop in Upminster is closing after 65 years trading.

Kinda's schoolwear shop in Upminster is closing after 65 years trading.


A shop that has served parents and their children for generations is set to close after 65 years.

Kinda's schoolwear shop in Upminster is closing after 65 years trading.Kinda's schoolwear shop in Upminster is closing after 65 years trading.

Kinda’s, Station Road, Upminster, specialised in uniforms for schools in Hornchurch, Upminster, Cranham, Romford and Brentwood.

Mubashir Tufail, who runs Havering Schoolwear, Hornchurch Road, Hornchurch bought the business after its previous owner – Claire Poulten – died.

Jackie Clemenson, 54, of Cranston Park Avenue, Upminster, said: “I can remember shopping for my Coopers’ uniform at Kinda’s in the late seventies.

“Since that time it has hardly changed. From the shop sign to the interior fittings it has always had a lovely traditional feel that is so different from characterless modern stores.

“The emphasis was on offering a very personal service too.

“When I returned as a parent, decades later, I never felt rushed or pressured to make a purchase.

“Every summer you would see people queueing around the block to stock up on all their uniform needs.

“I’ll be really sorry to see it go. It’s another slice of old Upminster that’s fallen by the wayside.”

Mr Tufail said all shop staff and school uniforms supplied by Kinda’s will be transferred to Hornchurch.

“It is not worth keeping the shop open because it’s only two miles away [from the Hornchurch branch],” he said.

“It’s doubling up the expenses.”

Kinda’s opened in 1952 catering for children aged three to 18.

Along with schools, it sold uniforms for cubs, scouts, brownies and guides.

Ms Poulten’s brother John, tried to keep the business open after she suddenly died in October 2015 but found it difficult as he lives 60 miles away.

“It was opened by a Mr and Mrs Lewis,” he said.

“I was taken there when I was five by my mother. They retired in 1985 then my sister took over and ran it until she died.

“It’s all very sad but a fact of life. I am confident that Mubashir has done the best he can.”

The store will close on May 8 and uniforms can be bought into store or online at

Share your fond memories of Kinda’s and pictures of you and your children in uniforms bought from the store, Email

If you value what this story gives you, please consider supporting the Romford Recorder. Click the link in the orange box above for details.

Become a supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Latest from the Romford Recorder