Fifty years ago Charles Norwood made a snap decision to buy a barber’s shop and hairdressing salon for the princely sum of £4,000.
It was a quick decision, but not a bad one.
For half a century later the business is still going strong and on Sunday, the 50th anniversary of the opening, he invited his staff and 40 former employees to a party to celebrate the milestone.
Among the guests at Jayne’s Salon in Market Place, Oundle, was Phyllis Beeby, 89, who has been a customer at the salon for the last five decades.
Mr Norwood, 77, who took over the business with his late wife Ruth in 1963, said: “Ruth worked at the salon at the time and I had a taxi business.
“The owner decided to sell the business and we bought it for £4,000, including the premises.
“We didn’t spend a long time making up our minds.
“There’s been a lot of changes in the hairdressing business over the years.
“When we took it on the ladies’ salon was separated from the gents’ section.
“Women liked to have their hair done with some privacy then and we had seven cubicles with curtains that pulled across. That was before the days of the uni-sex salon.”
Mr Norwood’s daughter Jayne joined the staff as an apprentice after she left school in 1982 and in 1990 became a joint partner of the business with her dad.
Originally it was called Ruth’s Salon but in it was later renamed after Jayne.
Mr Norwood, who was born in the nearby village of Elton and moved to Oundle when he was nine, said: “We’ve done well over the years. When we opened there were three hairdressers in the town and now there are seven.
“We’ve kept many customers over the years and it was wonderful to celebrate with all the former staff.”