HistoryPhotos bring back memories of Reids department store

Photos bring back memories of Reids department store

department store bundaberg
Sandra Patterson who found the album of photos which bought back memories of her time working at Reids Department Store.

A Bundaberg woman has shared historic photos of a local department store that was once a popular feature of the Bundaberg CBD.

Sandra Patterson said she was cleaning up around her home when she came across a number of photographs from her time working at Reids Department Store.

She said the popular business was once located along Bourbong Street, just down from King Kong Sales, and stocked everything from fabrics, fashion, linen, shoes, crockery and more.

“It was an absolutely beautiful store,” she said

“It was one of the biggest stores in the street at that stage, along with Buss and Turner.”

The team at Reids Department Store.

Sandra said she worked in both the cosmetics department and as a manager during her time at Reids.

“I started at the store in 1979 working at the cosmetics counter looking after Revlon, Estee Lauder, MaxFactor and Clinique,” she said.

“I travelled around to the different stores in Rockhampton, Mackay and Gladstone as a cosmetic consultant during my time.

“I was in charge of the ground floor, so it was all the bottom floor which housed cosmetics, hosiery and jewellery.”

Sandra said the store stocked everything from clothing to crockery, with an emphasis on fashion.

She said some of her favourite memories included the fashion parades hosted by Reids for the community.

“We used to do fashion parades in the upstairs space of the store which were used as fundraisers for different causes, they were great to be involved in,” Sandra said.

“We organised so many fashion parades for the region.

“We spent hours practicing and doing it properly and it was a really professional thing, like a big show that we then also hosted at the Rowers club and the racecourse.”

Reids had stores in Ipswich, Mackay, Gladstone, Bundaberg, Rockhampton.

In photos shared by Sandra, the popularity of the store is evident with crowds of people pushing through the aisles to grab a bargain.

She said fashion was a huge selling point, with unique hats, gloves and stockings the on-trend styles.

The Bundaberg shop was established in the main street after taking over John Black's, which was a major family-owned department store that was established in the region in the late 1800s.

Originally it was situated in North Bundaberg before moving to the Bourbong Street location in the early 1900s.

Reids eventually took over the shop but the original Black's Buildings signage still remains on the façade.

Black's Buildings was where Reids and John Black's department stores were once located.

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