Romford hairdresser Raymond says goodbye after 43 years
�It was a case of hair today and gone tomorrow for a Romford hairdresser who has hung up his scissors for the last time.
Raymond Brandman, owner of Raymond Bernard Hairdressing, has been cutting, washing and styling customers’ hair in London Road for the past 43 years.
But on Friday of last week the 65-year-old was preparing to swap blue rinse for the bowling green and get ready to cut loose in retirement.
“I’m going to play a lot more bowls because it’s something I really enjoy,” he said.
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“But first things first. I’m off on a well-deserved holiday.”
The grandfather-of-three started in the industry as a 14-year-old hairwasher.
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He says he has enjoyed every minute of his life in the salon.
He set up his business when he was 22, seeing through three recessions as well as the miners’ strike when electricity was restricted to just three days a week.
“Those were hard times,” he admits.
“But I bought myself a generator and that’s how I got through that.”
He says his salon is more of a “social club” than a business, with many regulars paying weekly visits for a wash and style – as well as a cuppa and a chat.
“Some people have been coming to me since I opened in 1968,” he said.
“They’re in their 80s now, and they’re quite upset I’m closing, because I use old school techniques not many hairdressers still do.”
Former long-serving employee Jan Still said: “It’s the end of an era.
“A lot of people will be sad to see him go.”
Raymond now plans to dedicate time to volunteering for St Francis Hospice, Broxhill Road, Havering-atte-Bower, a charity he has supported for years.