STEPPING back into the past could be the key to the future of shopping in Swindon.

As the town centre reels from the loss of another big-name store after the announcement House of Fraser will be closing next month, independent retailers of retro goods are having more success.

All of them offer hundreds of products that have one important detail in common – they give people the opportunity to relive their childhood. 

A shop devoted entirely to selling every Hot Wheels model imaginable, HWmodels, has had to move to a bigger unit because its popularity
Owner Matt Green said the Cheney Manor store had outgrown its previous unit.

“Having traded out of the previous shop since April we realised that we had outgrown the smaller shop and we wanted to have somewhere with its own front door as the previous unit was in main warehouse of Flexspace,” he said. 

Meanwhile, a new retro toy shop has been opened on Cricklade Road by Swindon brothers Adam and Matt Kaye.

The Kayes launched Back To The Past and are hoping to tap into customers as obsessed with old toys as they are.

“After filling most of our sheds, garages and spare rooms with toys we thought it was time to open up a shop and start selling some of our excess items,” Adam said. 

Another throwback store while opened inside Holmes Music on Faringdon Road has also expanded due to growing popularity. 

Much like Back To The Past, Pete Holmes’ Retro Games HQ was born out of his own collection in 2014. 

“I’ve recently expanded the shop to give customers the wow factor and the response has been fantastic,” said Pete.

In Royal Wootton Bassett a generation of people who grew up trying to ‘catch them all’ can now relive their childhood Pokemon obsession at Watts Cards, a shop dedicated to the still massive trading card game industry. 

Owners Owen and Celine Paris Watts say it is the first one in the area dedicated to selling such products.

“We wanted to open a store because of how much it (trading card games) blew up,” said Celine. 

“We are both collectors, so it is something we are passionate about.

"Therefore, it just makes sense to up to run a store, doing something we both enjoy.”